Bringing Shabby Chic Back (Rachel Ashwell as a Romantic Homes Monthly Contributor)

Bringing Shabby Chic Back (Rachel Ashwell as a Romantic Homes Monthly Contributor)

It’s Day 268 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project and I’m delighted that Romantic Homes Magazine is bringing Shabby Chic back by having Rachel Ashwell as a month contributor! I fell in love with this style of decorating back in the late 90s soon after Rachel Ashwell, its founder, opened her Malibu “shop heard round the world”. At that time, authentic Shabby Chic magazine spreads featuring Rachel’s work (and not all of the knockoffs we see today) graced every bookstore and newsstand. Around Y2K Rachel’s popularity grew to celebrity status and so did her list of clients which included Jennifer Lopez, Pamela Anderson and Jessica Simpson. Any time I needed a Shabby Chic fix, I could pick up a copy of several different magazines and get lost in pages of eye candy and inspiration. Around 2009 this Pink Collar design maven took some unsound business advice that cost her dearly and resulted in bankruptcy. (I know because I researched her for a graduate study project on organizational leadership). Stores dotted across the country and in her native England closed their doors and only her California, New York and London sites remained open. While still able to access the much diminished Simply Shabby Chic offerings at Target and the occasional book or magazine feature, I missed regular doses of this decorating style and its originator. Seeing her name and home on the cover of Romantic Homes today and learning Rachel Ashwell will be a monthly contributor means they’re bringing Shabby Chic back!

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Rachel Ashwell’s Shabby Chic home gracing the cover of Romantic Homes.                                       The magazine sits atop my Simply Shabby Chic luggage stand in my office.  

Fellow bloggers and French Country decorating enthusiasts might appreciate this: Rachel Ashwell isn’t the only one who’s joined the Romantic Homes staff.  Courtney Allison, the incredibly successful blogger behind “French Country Cottage” is the magazine’s new Editor. I must confess, other than Shabby Chic, Courtney’s style is one of the few that has inspired me, not only in decorating but in becoming a blogger. She’s perfected the art and truly made it into a career, maximizing and monetizing every opportunity – something to which many bloggers aspire. You can visit Courtney’s site at www.frenchcountrycottage.net. Though Courtney’s style is different than Rachel’s the Shabby Chic influence is evident in the editor’s French Country decor. The editor stated,  “She will be sharing vintage treasures, design inspirations and much more.” Hopefully “the more” means more Shabby Chic inspired homes featured!

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose life long decorating enthusiast with an interior design degree, there was a time when I wanted to do it full time. I landed really good jobs but hated the “selling side” of things. Even so, I never stopped doing freelance work and still offer interior coaching as part of my business. In fact, I’d just done so with a client right before I found the magazine while picking up a birthday card for my son. What I felt when I saw it could probably be described as joy, which reinforces that the decorator in me is alive and well. Now thanks to Romantic Homes bringing Shabby Chic back, my favorite decorating style is too.

What’s your favorite decorating style? How are you Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose about exposing yourself to it and expressing in your home and/or office?

Be savvy & chic,

~ Pink Collar Coach

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