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6 Affordable Ways To Create A Shabby Chic Kitchen

By Katie Carlson on Jan 15, 2016
6 Affordable Ways To Create A Shabby Chic Kitchen

When you hear shabby chic, what words come to mind? You might think vintage, distressed and stylish. Well, that’s exactly right. Shabby chic is a form of interior design where furniture and décor are selected for signs of wear and tear. This style requires items that achieve the look of an antique and have special flair and character. 

Building a shabby chic kitchen is a great project for those looking for a change. You’ll have fun shopping around without breaking your bank. Follow these tips to add effortless and affordable elegance to your home.


Distressed Vintage Pieces

Décor and furniture are some of the most important aspects of a shabby chic kitchen. If done right, it’s possible to create both a rustic and feminine look and feel. Salvaged and whitewashed wood, pops of pastel and time-worn hints of the past are the cornerstones of shabby chic decorating. You should look for charming, antique and distressed vintage items for your kitchen. These pieces are out there and they’re affordable.

Check out a local antique shop, your parent’s or grandparent’s basement or go online and search for specific furniture and décor that fits your style. Don’t be afraid to search the nearby countryside or neighborhood for materials others might overlook.


Some shabby chic pieces that are sure to make statement are: a kitchen table, chairs and stools, wall units, an island or old window frames. To get this look right you’ll want to find furniture and décor that’s neutral in color. Light pastels are also a nice way to go. Keep it light so you can do more with your accent colors. The best part about this style is that it can be affordable and sophisticated if you’re patient, resourceful and a little creative. 

Pop of Color

Bright Accents

While the overall color scheme of a shabby chic kitchen is neutral and pale, this is your chance to add a pop of color. Plants, flowers and dishes are just a few ideas you can use to incorporate bright accents. Don’t go overboard, keep it lively, but simple.

Some homeowners prefer to use a piece of furniture or paint as their pop of color, for example, a bright wall unit (standalone cabinet) or accent wall. Don’t be afraid to add various accents of other styles to your shabby chic kitchen such as industrial, boho or vintage.


Glass-Front Upper Cabinets

If you’re going for shabby chic, then you should install glass-front upper cabinets to show off your dishes and closed door lower cabinets to hide supplies. If you have wood cabinets and are sick and tired of the way they look, think about adding a coat of bold paint. It’s a spectacular look and cheaper than installing whole new cabinets. If you do want to replace your cabinets, think about selecting ones with beadboard panels that add subtle texture.


Paint & Kitchen Art

Shabby chic kitchens require neutral or light pastel paint colors. These colors will give you the worn and faded look, which is what you’re going for in this case. Don’t be afraid to play around with your paint so that it flakes and chips off in a natural looking way. Do It Yourself has a helpful site you can use to help you paint and distress the proper way. If you do it right, you’ll create a beautiful rustic environment in your kitchen and give your home a romantic old feel.

Wall Decor

Now onto the fun part, wall art! Shopping for wall art and shabby chic décor can be an enjoyable experience. The options are endless, and the shabby chic style has some of the most creative pieces on the market. Some wall art ideas include: quotes on distressed wood boards, cast iron, mirror and window frames, plants, paintings, dishes and shelving. The Teardrop Bottles Trio piece that’s pictured above is a super cute example of unique kitchen décor! Each is mounted on a wood base to create a rustic and attractive look. A lot of stores carry shabby chic items these days. You can shop for items online at places like Amazon and Overstock, or find a local antique shop.

Wood Floors


Wood floors are going to continue to be a big trend into 2015-16. In addition, shabby chic meets boho is a new style that’s trending where floors are made to be bright. If you love color and are feeling bold, Rhodium Floors suggests making your floors the creative focus of your room. You’ve been given the green light to paint your wooden floors in order to create a vibrant, exciting and beautiful canvas. Don’t forget to add a protective finish over the colored wood so you keep your floors durable and stunning for years to come.

Washed Oak Laminate Floor

Two other ideas we love are rustic floors with vintage patterns and white washed oak laminate. This floor is fun, neutral and fantastically shabby chic. One of my personal favorites, by the way! This floor is appealing to homeowners because it’s got a distressed look but it’s also quite trendy. This floor works well in beach houses and vacation homes as well.



We’re going back in time! Shabby chic appliances are similar to what you saw back in the 1950s, but with a modern twist. You’ll want your appliances to be shades of light pastel, off-white, black or silver, and don’t be afraid to incorporate florals and patterns. The more vintage looking, the better. The fridge, oven, microwave, dishwasher and sink are some of the appliances you should keep in mind as you shop around. With these tips you’re on your way to creating the perfect shabby chic kitchen for your home! 



Shabby chic is a style that’s affordable, trendy and sparks creativity. You can see that there are a vast amount of ways to go about transforming your kitchen to shabby chic. Whether your taste is vintage and rustic, or modern and polished, there’s definitely no shortage of décor schemes and possibilities with this style.

We all need a change once in a while. Click here if you’re looking to remodel your kitchen and we’ll send you quotes from pros near you.

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