Interview with RACHEL ASHWELL {2011, part 2}

October 11, 2011

I'm back with more shabby chic love!
Hope you're feelin' it.
Were you aware this blogger majored
in shabby chic in college?
Okay. A blasphemous lie.
But she has studied
all the books!

Author, designer, and entrepreneur
r a c h e l   a s h w e l l
has a brand new title:
and chatted with us
humbly here {in part 1} about things imperfectly perfect.

Rachel Ashwell's Shabby Chic Inspirations

Rachel favors
the charmingly worn,
the feminine with edge,
the vintage-y bling,
know what I'm about to add?

*ding ding ding!*

A romantically faded, 
slightly whispery

Rachel's blog

You already know my heart goes BOOM
for sweet blush-y worn out pointe shoes...
and I wanted to hear more from Rachel
about the significance of this color
in her palette.
And don't forget Rachel has
that fabulous British accent
as you read her responses!

MR: Your ideas about using the right pink as a nod to innocence,
hope, and femininity resonate with me.
Why is there such shyness about pink and a
tendency to reserve it for girls’ rooms?
To me, the right pink
needs no words to express prettiness,
whether a paint finish, a flower or a piece of fabric.

pink roses

The clean soft baby or dusty pink,
(with a little blue cast), is pure romance
and femininity and sets the stage for the
innocence of a little girl, the belief in love,
and all things soft and sweet.

BUT only a little is needed.

Rachel's blog

A little of pink goes such a long way,
too much of pink goes nowhere
and is off putting, and I think, gives
pink a bad name for too frou frou.
An accent of pink, layered in with
other pastels, or ivory or even some rich
distressed wood allows for
pink to step outside of a girls bedroom
and enhance color that needs a
little softness as opposed to sweetness.

*I'm interrupting.*
Omg, you're sort of brilliant,
Rachel Ashwell.


In my latest book
(Rachel Ashwell's Shabby Chic Inspirations),
a chapter of The Shabby Man,
shows a timeworn chandelier
with pink crystal drops
hanging in quite a manly settting;
but because this powerful little accent of pink
is its only place , it enhances the rest of the elements
and palette perfectly.

Rachel's blog

I so admire how Rachel's palette
has evolved and expanded
without saying goodbye
to this
dreamy shade of lovely.

Rachel Ashwell

Many thanks to Rachel for the chat
and to you for joining the discussion.
There are 2 more installments.
(get it?)

Fancy pale pink in your home or wearing it?
Do you agree it is an evocative color

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  1. You are so right she is one of a kind and quite brillant. I love her take on PINK!!! So true and spot on, Kathysue

  2. She is simply brilliant and she is so true about the myth of pink. I love how she explains the fact that a little pink matched with other neutrals and pastels can indeed instill softness as opposed to sweetness. Over do is what gives pink a bad name- try naming pink professor Dolores Umbridge.

  3. thanks for bringing us all this gorgeousness!

  4. Hello lovely! I'm hopping on over from A Beach Cottage {Good Life Wednesday}! Your link was on "Rachel Ashwell," so it caught my eye - my link was meeting Rachel for the first time at her book signing last week!!! :) Love all the Shabby Chic! Anyway, your blog is quite lovely - I am your newest follower. I'd love for you to come visit my blog when you have a chance, and follow me along as well {if you like what you see}. :) I hope you are having a fabulous week so far! Take care!

    Cheers from Los Angeles,

  5. Michele, I recently came across a lady's house..beautifully decorated, on a budget, in fact it was a tiny little council house...she had such great taste and she had used Cabbages & Roses Hatley fabric in the roman blinds...and teamed it in a room with old floorboards and dark brown leather looked amazing...and I haven't stopped thinking about that pink hatley since...and how I could use it. Really enjoying the interview...Robx

  6. Ahh such a pretty post! Totally agree with using soft blush-y pink in small considered doses to really pretty up a place, I do the same!

    Meera xx

  7. I love pink. I wear it and use it to colour our home.

    This very morning I used it to embarass my daughter. I wore my pink raincoat, carried my pink ruffly umbrella and wore my pink boots. I asked her if it was too much and she laughed!

    I mean come on, is there such a thing as too much pink???!!

    Only if you're wearing it head to toe!

    so yes, I love pink. My favourite colour.

  8. Wow... lovely, lovely, lovely, M!!!

    Loved this. It's amazing, but I can feel you put your soul in every post you prepare.

    I hope everything is great with you, my friend.


    Luciane at

  9. Wow... lovely, lovely, lovely, M!!!

    Loved this. It's amazing, but I can feel you put your soul in every post you prepare.

    I hope everything is great with you, my friend.


    Luciane at

  10. i have many friends who wouldn't dream of wearing pink, but it is the most natural thing for me personally when it's the right pink.

    like rachel, i like how it makes me feel feminine and innocent.

    thanks for reading, friends!


  11. I cannot imagine someone not wearing pink. A pale soft pink gives your face a youthful glow. Fabulous interview. RA is amazing. I see too many people take what is supposed to be shabby & chic and turn it into tons of flowers and frou and frou and frou. I don't think they quite get the concept of what shabby chic really is.....(that's just my opinion) Love your blog and happily following now.

  12. I will never forget when I saw her first book. A friend was holding it on a train ride from our downtown job. I was smitten and I still am.

    Wonderful interview.

  13. Awesome interview. Thanks so much for your kind comments and for joining in the party. I would love to follow you back but for the life of me I can't find where to follow you on your blog. Am I missing something. Let me know where it's located and I will join you.

  14. How exciting to have an interview with Rachel Ashwell. Thank you for sharing it with us. Lovely.
    Kylie x

  15. oh, wouldn't you like to be her for a day1!!!

  16. Oh my! I'm a huge Rachel Ashwell fan... Amazing interview, I'd be dancing in the streets!!! Your newest follower.

  17. I'm with you,, i love the right shade of pink,... When i see that perfect color pink on anything, it's hard for me to resist it...
    And... omg, how i love those paintings in the photos... they're wonderful!


  18. @cindy
    the paintings by Laurence Amelie are so YOU.

    ohhhhhh i remember when her first book came out too! i wanted to live inside its pages and i felt such a kindred spirit with rachel. i've never been able to get away with the western boots like her though. they give her 'edge' and i just look like a ridiculous suburban cowgirl.

  19. I am a Rachel
    at heart, but in
    reality it's hard
    to do with men in
    the house! I want
    to buy this book
    just for The Shabby
    Man chapter as I know
    it will be filled
    with great ideas. I
    do think you need to
    use pink thoughtfully.
    It can be gorgeous when
    done right, and R.A.
    does it SO right!!
    xx Suzanne

  20. I've never been overly fond of pink in home decor... but the way she layers just a hint of soft pink is incredible. I'm absolutely loving the blue and pink together and I'm much more open to the thought of adding a touch of pink to my home.

  21. @suzanne
    you bring up a great point because my home is fairly feminine for a male-dominated household. they let me do my thing because they know how much it means to me and really seem to care more about function and that i remember to buy pizza rolls than anything. (also i'm very strong willed).


  22. Hello, I've loved the two interviews with Rachel. Her whole concept of pink being married with an edgier masculine/urban or contrasting shades is really something I have to absorb. I love it but I've been way too pink crazy for years now! It's lucky my husband doesn't mind all my pink and floral wallpaper. Luckily, we do live in a brick house so the edge is there (just like Rachel's cowboy boots). I think she's an awesome creative spark who keeps evolving and getting stronger and better and richer. How fortunate for all the modern technology that we get to share snippet of her journey. xx

  23. Michele my dear these interviews are wonderful! I am so enjoying all this beauty and Rachel is just amazing. I can't wait to go pick up her book. Her style is so relaxing, beautiful and inspiring and I look forward to more of her.
    Thank you!

  24. Oooh a touch of pink is such a gorgeous nod to femininity without being too over the top and looks FABULOUS in these images.

    Personally? I love it with a little bit of black for grown up VAVAVOOM. Mmmm. Yes please.


  25. Thank you so much sharing and for linking up to our party Show and Share this week! Come on back this Wednesday to link up your current projects.

    A mommy's life...with a touch of YELLOW

  26. Great she is Ms Rachel. And so are you!

    *I'm interrupting.*
    Omg, you're sort of brilliant,
    Rachel Ashwell. (You are so funny, Michele!!)

    Look forward to 2 more sessions!

    Hugs to you,



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