Thursday, March 25, 2010

Serious Shabby Chic

Looking something like the setting for a modern day Charles Dickens novel, the drawing room of Crowsley Park in Oxfordshire, England as it appeared in a 1980’s edition of World of Interiors, is a wildly organic yet honest interpretation of the English shabby chic aesthetic.

This grand mansion, once in a state of near ruin, was let to a pair of architects free of charge on the condition they prevent further dilapidation. While the structure was stabilized and made habitable no cosmetic alterations were made; as evidenced by the un-patched nail holes in the eighteenth century paneling where previous layers of decoration were stripped away. The result is a raw yet imposing space that appears to have been filled over time with a mix of random vintage furnishings and found objects. A cozy wingchair, an old tufted sofa, and a textural wicker piece find themselves clustered around the grand marble mantle while a simple 1960’s paper lantern hangs from the incredible ceiling. Stacks of firewood, books, dried flowers, baskets, driftwood, and other seemingly random objects accessorize the room as an elegant pair of antique portraits flank the fireplace.

Though the space might seem wild and chaotic it certainly gives the sense of a well-used and well-loved room. I credit this hauntingly romantic image as the source of my habit of incorporating found objects into my own interiors. Out walking I often pick up twigs, moss, flowers, driftwood, shells, sea glass, or pebbles that catch my eye. You may have noticed many of the aforementioned elements in a previous post where I filled a hurricane glass with shells, seed pods, and sea glass, as well as utilizing a piece of driftwood and a few hydrangea blooms dried from last summer’s garden.
Photos by James Wedge
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