Rachel Ashwell's Texas Retreat

Monday, April 30, 2012

Have you discovered Garden and Gun?  It's a Tennessee based publication that's loaded with great articles and photography.  While browsing the magazine online a few days ago I came across a story that featured Rachel Ashwell's latest project in Round Top, Texas.  According to the article, Rachel had stayed at the bed and breakfast over the years when she came into town for their annual Antiques Show and Fair.  When the property came up for sale, she bought the property and started work on the restoration/transformation. It's now a Bed and Breakfast/spa known as The Prairie, and there's  a Shabby Chic store on the grounds.

To retain the ambiance and history of the original structure, Rachel kept the original unvarnished wood flooring and tin roofs, but  put her mark on the place with sparkly chandeliers and lots of white paint and furniture.  The new looks is a lot of classic Rachel Ashwell/Shabby Chic and some Texas Country, with a dash of luxe lodge.
I think this chandelier sums up the look of this place in a single statement.  On a sidenote, I have a pair of sconces with those exact deerheads holding those exact crystal baskets.  I got them about 10 years ago and have yet to find the perfect spot for them.  They're not one of those things you can work in just anywhere.

The dining area is mostly Texas Lodge with a little Shabby Chic on the side. Ashwell embraced the taxidermy left behind by the former owners.

Classic Rachel.  Not digging the mismatched chandeliers, but I love the white/rustic wood combination.

More inherited taxidermy made whimsical by crowning it with flowers and flanking it with crystal.  This seems like a big leap out of her comfort zone with the dark, moody wallpaper and heavy wood moldings.

See more of The Prairie and read the article here.

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jeanette from everton terrace said...

Great story, would love to visit and of course, go to Round Top. I'm not digging the mixed chandeliers either. Looks like the kind of place you could just relax.

Kerry Steele- Design du Monde said...

I have been hearing about Garden and Gun here and there. I will have to check it out.

oldhousesrock said...

I love Garden and Gun! I actually "borrowed" a copy from a doctors office recently and plan to subscribe. The name though is going to give my New England relatives palpatations :)

amber wallace said...

That's amazing! Shabby chic isn't really my style anymore but I credit her with a lot of my love of design, ease of decorating and her flea market book changed my life! I will always love her! What a neat mix of styles.

Ashley said...

Like Amber commented above, Rachel Ashwell's style isn't my own, but clearly she has a strong vision and sticks to it. That has made her really successful!

Kathysue said...

I have discovered Garden and Gun from Susan, Between Naps on the Porch a while back. I even got a subscription for my brother for Christmas one year. Fun to see Rachael Ashwell's Texas home. Kathysue

Splendid Sass said...

Who else would have thought of flowers and ribbon on the deer head. Cute.
She started a new way of decorating, and it hasn't gone anywhere.
Thanks for sharing.

Teresa Hatfield ~ Splendid Sass said...

And I can't stand the chandelier, lol! Almost forgot.

Paula said...

I actually LOVE that empire style/deer head chandelier! I also love the antelope with the garland crown - so theatrical and quirky, but somehow it works. I agree - not too keen on the mis-matched chandeliers in the sitting room either. Great post! x

Lisa @ Shine Your Light said...

I just can't decide about taxidermy. It kind of grosses me out! I do love that comfy vibe that is Rachel's trademark!

Karena said...


I have heard great things about Garden and Guns,Not crazy about taxidermy and there are the chandeliers. I do think she is tying to update her look though!

The 2012 Artist Series featuring Designer and Paper Artist Anita Rivera...(of Castles Crowns and Cottages)is on my site, please stop by! Her work is amazing!

Art by Karena

Bed and Breakfast Santa Barbara said...

Gorgeous. I love the extensive attention to detail throughout. Great job!

Naomi@DesignManifest said...

that deer/ crystal chandy is pretty cool/ pretty/ weird. How funny that you have a similar one!!

Cris Angsten said...

I think the ONLY way I could live with a deer head or antlers hung on my walls is by crowning them with flowers! I do like the rustic dining ceiling though - fun!

Jo said...

Such a clever way to work taxidermy into the space and still keep it romantic. The chandelier is so lovely.

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