If you watch my style – how I dress, how I decorate, how I love to deck my world – the term casual elegance might come to mind. That is, after you moved past the term “epic disaster” and “colossal mess.” I’m only half kidding here. Let’s re-phrase and say I aspire to casual elegance and achieve it some of the time. The rest of the time, my life tends to be a well lived-in mess in progress. But I love clean simple lines, muted colors, and (at least in outfitting myself) a lot of black.
But deep in my heart of hearts, I have a soft spot for gently distressed furniture, denim and white, vintage everything, and lots of faded florals. I can’t live with it in large quantities, but I can’t completely let it go.
Rachel Ashwell launched her carefully curated line of vintage floral items in 1989 and named it Shabby Chic, she made it okay – trendy even – to fall in love with our faded jeans, ruffles, and soft, pink cabbage roses splashed over a field pale green. Shabby Chic has run up and down the trends over the years, but the style remains distinct, appealing, and utterly feminine.
To me, the Shabby Chic concept evokes relaxation, pampering, a necessary indulgence in beautiful things, and a connection to wonderful memories past. It’s the soft wash of watercolor, the glow of candlelight, and the feel of linens worn to perfect, comfortable sheerness. Shabby Chic has grace.
As Valentine’s Day approaches, it seems the perfect time to share a little of the romance in this line with my readers – I hope you’ll love it as much as I do.
My own curated collection of Shabby Chic themed treasures includes a 5” x 7” journal with pen, a small notepad with pen, 12 pencils, and half a dozen decorative clothespins (those aforementioned soft, pink cabbage roses splashed over a field pale green). In addition, I’m including a set of four magnets by my friend Susan (made when she had her own wonderful line, Vintage Susie) and a pale pink pen by Studio G because. Well. You know me and pens.
The giveaway will close at midnight on Saturday, February 14 and will be mailed out the following week. Since I’m mentioning Susan’s former line, I should also mention that she currently reps for Origami Owl (another thing you’ll see a lot of if you follow me on Instagram or Twitter). I’m a huge fan of their long chains and charms and lockets you can customize for any occasion. If you enjoy beautiful, sparkly items – necklaces, earrings, and the like, I hope you’ll visit her online to see if you find anything you’ll fall in love with.
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Tuesday Grace Notes are an opportunity for me to share a small bit of harmony amidst the other things I write about. Truly, they are meant to be shorter than my usual pieces (laugh with me here), and just a little something to add a touch of beauty to my life and yours. One week it might be a wonderful book I’ve read and can’t put down. Maybe it will be one of the movies I love (or its soundtrack). You might find a favourite recipe here. Or the new soap I’ve just discovered. You’ll find that many of them are inspired by my mother and the things she taught me about living a gentle, elegant life. I hope you’ll join me as more things are shared.
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