A living room that is stylish and elegant, yet also comfortable, with an appealing, lived-in feel.. what’s not to love? But wait, it gets even better: decorating a shabby chic living room can also be cost effective — meaning you get a lot in return for the money you put in. Plus, you get to show your creative side!
A living room you can actually live in
If you’re like the Chic Freaks, you can recall the feeling of being a child, peeking inside of a living room that you knew you weren’t allowed to go into. Perhaps the furniture was even wrapped in protective plastic! Or maybe you were allowed to go into this sacred space, under adult supervision, but you were very aware that you had to be on your best behavior. Perhaps it was at your grandparents’ house, or the home of one of your friends. Maybe it was even located in the house you grew up in!
By comparison, a shabby chic living room may feature some of the same classic furniture and accessories, but it’s much warmer and more inviting. That’s right, shabby chic furniture is meant to be used! One of the great things about the aesthetic is that it is elegant, but also real and unpretentious. For Chic Freaks like us, the “perfect” item features imperfections. It’s okay if a cool old chair has a little wear and tear. We like that. Feel like livening up a dark stained wood finish? Go for it! Get out the white paint and go to town! You don’t even really need to be that handy when it comes to shabby chic furniture projects. We’re not going for perfection anyway! In fact, there is an art to deliberately distressing items in order to give them a little bit more character.
A shabby chic living room is cheerful
The shabby chic color palette is anything but drab. The traditional foundational color is white. To this we can add soft blues, faded pinks, mid-century greens.. it’s all up to you. And it’s a lot harder to feel down in such a pleasant environment.
Decorating a shabby chic living room can be inexpensive
This is one of our favorite features of the shabby chic decor style: you don’t have to spend an arm and a leg, if you’re willing to use your own arms and legs! You can go out on the hunt, find a secondhand item that costs next to nothing, do some painting and sanding, and wind up with a shabby chic furniture piece that will make your pride swell! The fact that this decorative style features aged, worn items, makes it accessible to people from all walks of life.
At the same time, you don’t have to be hands-on if you don’t want to, or don’t have an adequate workspace. If your budget allows for it, you have the opportunity to support local artisans by buying their ready-made shabby chic furniture creations.
The furniture in a shabby chic living room doesn’t have to match
You don’t have to spend big money on a matching set of living room furniture, like you might if you were shopping at a high-end furniture store, in order to get things that “go together.” You get to make them go together! All it really takes is some paint, and maybe a few matching decorative details, to take found items and make them look like they go with each other. It can actually be better if they don’t match initially, before they are transformed, because the look is a little bit funkier and more bohemian.
In a shabby chic living room, cool old items have a second chance at life
The shabby chic decor scene tends to draw people who see the value in order things, the kind of things that some people might be inclined to discard. It can be very satisfying to reinvent a found object, giving it new life. At the same time, you are doing something green by keeping the item out of a rubbish dump. In addition, it’s more environmentally friendly to go the secondhand route, compared to buying furniture that just arrived on a boat from China.
The thrill of the find
For many of us in the shabby chic decor scene, finding used furniture to work with is fun! It just seems like there are so many cool things out there, waiting to be discovered (or rescued). In fact, the challenging part is to not get carried away!
The work of others in the scene is inspiring
At Chic Freaks, we just love to see what others are doing with their shabby chic living rooms. The ideas are endless, and the creativity gets us going.
Why do you love shabby chic living rooms?