Shabby chic is a modern name for French Country style. Inspired by the romantic cottages of the French and European countryside, this style is a timeless classic of interior design — so much so that many modern design trends are simply re-imaginings of French Country and shabby chic style.
Modern farmhouse style is a dialed-down version of shabby chic, taking the same comfortable and clean aesthetic but incorporating fewer florals. And cottage style, aka cottage core — the look that’s all over your Instagram feed — is an amplified version of shabby chic that packs in more florals and patterns, with vintage-inspired accents in every corner.
To bring the shabby chic look into your bedroom, you just need some artfully worn-in furniture paired with a soft pastel color palette and a few glamorous touches. Mix in floral or striped linens, a bit of button tufting, and voilà! You’ve got a bedroom design that’s both comfortable and très chic.
With those guidelines in mind, we’ve rounded up our favorite design ideas to inspire your romantic shabby chic bedroom makeover. Explore color palettes, vintage-inspired furniture, and essential accessories that will have you feeling the love.
3 color palettes for your romantic shabby chic bedroom
Your color palette will inform all of your room decor choices, so let’s get that locked down first. We already mentioned that shabby chic designs center around pastel, but if soft, springtime colors aren’t your heart’s desire, don’t feel beholden to that palette.
Modern interpretations of shabby chic style have embraced moodier tones. And the ruffles and pleats on shabby chic textiles add depth to an all-white bedroom design. Once you get a sense of what shabby chic elements you want to include, you’ll be able to make your color palette work.
Here are our three favorite color palettes for a romantic shabby chic bedroom.
1. The traditional shabby chic color palette
The most classic colors for your shabby chic bedroom decor are floral-inspired pastels. Picture a plush bedspread with a pink and green peony motif. Add a table lamp with a lavender ruffle lampshade on the nightstand, and just under it, a light blue teacup decorated with pink roses. This is the quintessential shabby chic interior.
2. The natural shabby chic color palette
This understated color palette of white, oat, and sage is a favorite of organic modern and farmhouse bedrooms. It keeps to the traditional, light shades of shabby chic design without being overly feminine.
Picture a white duvet with sage green sheets peeking out from under it and an oat-colored linen throw across the foot of the bed. There are matching shams on the euro pillows and a burlap table runner lining the top of the dresser. Swap out the rose prints for eucalyptus leaves, and you have a nature-inspired escape that still embodies the romantic vibe of a classic shabby chic bedroom.
3. The modern shabby chic color palette
Dusky hues are the darker side of pastels, and they bring their own romantic touch to any space. A moody color palette of warm grey and dusky mauve invokes images of evenings spent with the lights down low.
Imagine a dark heather duvet cover paired with french grey sheets, and black and burgundy rose-print throw pillows. Add dark wood furniture to maintain the sultry mood.
If you want to go even darker, these alluring shades play nicely with jewel tones. Incorporate a sapphire throw pillow or add a striking floral pattern in amethyst and obsidian tones.
5 pieces of furniture for your romantic shabby chic bedroom
Shabby chic design often incorporates traditional style furniture, like bed frames with arched headboards and dressers with carved details on the drawers. True to its name, the furniture has some wear and tear while maintaining its elegance. You want pieces that look like they’ve been loved for generations.
Unless you’re an expert at DIY refinishing, it can be hard to get this artfully worn look from true vintage furniture — which is often worn out rather than worn in. But, many local furniture stores will carry vintage-inspired pieces that fit the theme. Here are our favorite furniture pieces to add to a romantic shabby chic bedroom.
1. A wrought iron bed frame
Wrought iron bed frames, like the Livingston Panel Metal Bed, are a classic romantic bedroom idea. These bed frames add instant cottage appeal to your master bedroom, and the openings between the ironwork leave room for you to get creative. Adorn your wrought iron bed by draping tulle or styling silk flowers around the headboard for a romantic touch.
2. A canopy bed
With turned posts and decorative finials, a canopy bed will make you feel like a guest on a country estate. You’ll wake up each morning ready for a stroll through the gardens before tea in the parlor! The Betony Twin Canopy Bed is an ideal addition to a small bedroom or guest room. And a canopy bed frame is another piece that allows you to add your own touch. Make it even more romantic by hanging fairy lights or a sheer fabric across the top of the canopy.
3. A button-tufted headboard
Little touches of luxury are an important feature of shabby chic home decor, and tufting is luxurious enough for royalty. Add this headboard to your bed to create an impressive feature that anchors your romantic bedroom design. Choose a linen headboard, like on the Sonoma Camel Back Bed, for a little bit of that “shabby,” down-to-earth humility that makes this type of interior design cozier than a more traditional style.
4. A gold and glass side table
Not all your bedroom furniture needs to be intended for the bedroom. A living room side table with a glass top and gold table legs — like these 2-Piece Round Glass Top Nesting Tables — gives your romantic shabby chic bedroom a more open and airy feel than a solid wood nightstand. The gold accents will complement any color palette, from traditional soft pastels to moody hues and jewel tones.
5. A classic chest with a curved silhouette
A chest doesn’t take up as much space as an armoire, but it still manages to bring some height to your room decor, adding visual interest to your design. Look for a curved silhouette, like the Dominique 4-Drawer Chest, to add a touch of romantic softness that a boxy alternative would be lacking.
5 accessories for your romantic shabby chic bedroom
Accessories add personality to your room and are the easiest thing to swap out when it’s time for a room makeover. A romantic shabby chic bedroom is a great place to show off your vintage flea market finds, so turn your final decorating decisions into a treasure hunt. These five shabby chic bedroom decor ideas will help complete the look:
1. Romantic lighting
A crystal chandelier is a signature of shabby chic style and offers a sparkling contrast to more rustic furniture, adding visual interest to your design.
For more romantic options, incorporate a ruffled lampshade, or arrange vintage fabrics like lace or tulle over surfaces as DIY runners for your side table or dresser.
2. Accent furniture
If you have a larger room with extra floor space, you can create a more luxurious feeling of relaxation with the right accent pieces. Stand a cheval mirror up against one of your walls. Add a tufted accent chair where you can read a book or lay out your clothes. Or place an upholstered bench at the foot of your bed for additional seating and storage.
3. Vintage wall decor
Items like cross-stitched or embroidered fabric displayed in a vintage frame or an embroidery loop make your bedroom feel like it’s part of a simpler time. You can complement a floral motif by adding pressed flower wall art, or add to your French Country feel with a framed chalkboard.
4. Delicate textiles
Printed and textured fabrics will help you add both elegance and romance to your space. Look for a ruffled or pleated bedspread to add texture, or incorporate floral or striped throw pillows to establish your shabby chic motif. Incorporate sheer curtains to give the room a soft, moonlit glow.
5. Florals galore
Nothing delivers natural beauty to a room like vibrant flowers, and with floral patterns, your romantic shabby chic bedroom can feel like a cozy spring day all year long. Look for floral prints in your linens, wallpaper, or fabrics, like this Barrel Back Upholstered Accent Chair, which can bring wildflower imagery to a sunny corner. You can even incorporate floral accents in more minimalist designs, like the understated elegance of this Accent Cabinet with Floral Carved Door.
Isn’t it romantic?
A romantic shabby chic bedroom incorporates feminine decor, like roses and ruffles, but still manages to feel inviting instead of old-fashioned.
You can create your own version of this timeless decorating style by choosing a favorite color scheme — typical pastels, understated neutrals, or moodier tones. Once you have a color palette in mind, you’ll be ready to start your search for the pieces that will transform your bedroom feel into the romantic escape of your dreams.
Choose a timeless wrought iron bed, or go for a show-stopping tufted headboard. Add nightstands, dressers, and armoires in soft silhouettes with rounded shapes or curved elements. Then, decorate your heart out with all the flea market treasures you can find.
But before you start your shabby chic bedroom makeover, we’ll let you in on a little secret that all the best designers know: The best way to get the look you want is to see your furniture and accessories in person before you buy. Head to your local furniture store to find the pieces that are right for your room.
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