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Page after page of wedding blogs and magazines across the globe feature gorgeous weddings with shabby chic touches, like pendant banners, tiny pastel accessories and paper-cut flowers. However, when it comes to our homes and businesses, currently we are crushing on a Mid-Century look a'la Mad Men. In Buenos Aires, however, the shabby chic, DIY look has never been hotter, with no shortage of cafes, restaurants and clothing and decor stores designed in this style. Below is a guide in how to achieve this eclectic look.
The key element of this look is mixing together contemporary home decor and vintage pieces in an "elegantly disheveled" way. None of the spaces appear cluttered, but if you take a closer look there are things everywhere. A tip to achieve this look is to make sure that everything is extremely organized. While there are a lot of accessories, as you can see, they are all placed with precision and spaced evenly.
Another key element of this look is scouring flea markets for the best vintage "everything" you can find. Picture frames, plates, cutlery, artwork and especially furniture can all be found with a good amount of time and effort spent at the flea market - or online thanks to sites like eBay. If the things you find have an endearing amount of wear, this only adds to the charm of the look. If you find a great piece that is a bit too tattered, remember that you can always repaint or reupholster anything as long as the bones of the piece are in good condition.
Lighting fixtures are often rustic and charming and give off a lot of light. There are no dark corners or mood lighting involved with achieving this look. Here you see vintage baskets that have been painted and strung upside down: instant chandeliers. Simple globe pendants offer a huge amount of light and don't detract from the details and accessories. Large windows let in a lot of natural light, which is important to the organic, rustic style.
Color is very important in achieving this look as well; those who are intimidated by color need not apply. Bright, bold primaries and pastels dominate, usually with a crisp white base. Feel free to mix as many colors as your heart desires, as you can see the more color, the more successful the look. Just make sure that you are within the same color temperature, don't use a maroon when a violet will serve better.
Even if you are not a DIY maven, you can easily find DIY-style accessories to complete your look. Handwritten notes for freshly baked pastries can easily be translated to the home; adding handwritten labels to storage jars in the kitchen, or cheeky quotes as wall art achieve this look. Using chalkboards and writing out notes is another way to personalize the look. Take an old frame, spray the glass with black matte spray paint and, voila, you have a repurposed chalkboard that you can use for reminders, shopping lists, to-dos and much more.
Don't be afraid to infuse this style into your life. It is very home friendly as the major characteristics of the look are rustic comfort and vintage charm, something that almost everyone can relate to on some level. And if all else fails, find some attractive Latin men and put them in vintage, eclectic aprons and you're good to go!
All Images: Allison Rosenberg
Allison Rosenberg has had the opportunity to call California, Michigan, Australia, and Argentina home at different periods in her life, with many other stops along her journey. She received degrees from the University of Michigan in film production and theory and from FIDM/LA in interior design. She works freelance in interior design in Los Angeles, and has recently taken to the road with her husband to discover and write about design around the world.
She loves to travel, uncover, and explore and has a soft spot for art deco antiques. While not at work, you will often find her in a movie theater, trying out a new recipe or between the pages of a design magazine.
Well done Allison - I always look forward to reading your next Blog !!!
Love these design concepts! i love how they feel kinda messy, but supremely inviting!
Thanks for posting!