Coining a New Term

Shabby Chic

Image by bourgeoisbee via Flickr

Ok, so you are asking yourself what does she mean with the title of this post.  Well, let me explain it to you.  As a store owner, I keep an eye on what the newest trends are that are happening mainly by looking online and through the forums that I’m on with other store owners, just the same way most folks do.  Now since I’m in Canada and most of my info comes from connections on the other side of the boarder and  it seems as though we are a little behind the times as far as decor trends go.  For about the last year & a half, I’ve been in LOVE with the Shabby Chic design trend and I’ve been bringing bits and pieces of it into my little gift store, but when I’d try to explain to customers what Shabby Chic is they’d look at me as though I had three heads.  There were very few people who understood the concept.

A Brief History:

The term “Shabby Chic” was coined in the 1980s by interior designer Rachel Ashwell who later founded the decor company by the same name.  Basically, shabby chic is a type of style that centers around a white or off white colour scheme accented with soft pastels.  Old furniture is painted in a white wash, or new furniture is distressed to make it look old.

As you can see since the Shabby Chic came to light in the 80s, even though I’m ahead of the game, I’m still behind 😀

My Personal Shabby Chic Style

I personally love the look of anything with a Parisian influence.  Old french postcards, Busts & Statues, Candelabras & French Ephemera.  The colours of black, white and sepia just make me smile.

Ok, we’re getting to the point 😉

So anyway, this last weekend I attended the Canadian Gift ant Tableware Association, a large trade show in Toronto.  To my delight, there were some vendors who had items with look I so desire!  From table ware to wall art, linens to jewelry , oh I was in heaven… unfortunately (or could it be fortunately) my credit cards were already maxed out.  When I got home my husband asked me how it was.  I said that “finally there was pieces of Parisphernalia to be found!”  He said what a good term for it 🙂  So there you have it Parisphernalia is my term for anything with a Parisian Chic feel to it.  So if you ever hear Parisphernalia being used you can say that you heard it here first and Sherry Campbell was the one who coined the term 😉

Well, that’s my story, and I’m sticking to it 🙂

TTFN Sherry



Filed under Shabby Chic Paris Collection

5 responses to “Coining a New Term

  1. This article post is just tremendous!


  2. love the term Parisphernalia… totally going to use it now!


    • Thanks!! The more I think about it the more I like it. It never would have dawned on me to use it as a term, it just came out while talking with my husband 🙂 When he said it was a great word I though WOW, maybe I’m onto something 🙂



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