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Dream pink in Paphos
When Andri Zihonos was made redundant, she proved the truism that ‘When one door closes another opens’. Her particular new door is painted pink and leads into her very own shop. An interior designer, Andri has now brought shabby chic to Paphos and her shop is an absolute delight, but only for those born without a minimalist bone in their body.
For those unfamiliar with the term, shabby chic started in the UK and evokes the type of comfortable and cosy but perhaps faded elegance of country houses. Decades of family wear and tear plus Labradors would have reduced once elegant furnishings to a somewhat shabby state. Owners of these homes were unwilling to replace or couldn’t find replicas of their favourite pieces of furniture and fabrics so they opted to distress, sand, sew and hand paint to achieve a look closely linked to 18th century Swedish decoration or French Chateau. They also copied from the American Shaker movement, where simplicity and plainness was key to this community’s entire way of life.
What can be achieved is the appearance of antique without the price tag, plus a comfortable and very lived-in feeling throughout your house and garden, and in these straightened times it’s also considered highly fashionable not to spend money if you can. With shabby chic you can save cash and still decorate your home.
Walk through Andri’s brave new door and you immediately enter an almost edible confection of pastel delights - slim French café chairs sit next to long, country-style wooden tables; there’s an antique lookalike French bed decked with delicious coverings. Tempting pillows and cushions sporting fabric designs make one come over all homey and nostalgic for good old Laura Ashley and although there seems an unchecked growth of floral prints sprouting everywhere, somehow it all seems to work and work well together.
I’m sure psychologists would have a field day studying the type of customer who buys from Andri, but I have my suspicion it’s women who are far too busy living their life to practise their grandmother’s domesticity, but here at Dream Pink they can buy it all off the shelf and so create a perfect nest with ease, and without paying over the odds for the privilege.
Andri sources her stock in London and she not only has a ‘Yummy Mummy’ eye, she also offers some witty modern twists like the simply superb yet functional toilet roll holder for under €20. Those deeply into kitchenalia will be incapable of leaving this shop without making the till ring; there are enamel containers of every size and shape, lovely herb racks, trays, classic wooden plate racks, kitchen cabinets and small breakfast tables. There’s the quirky animal door stops, clever 50s style greetings cards and gorgeous front door mats awash with colourful images to welcome your guests. In fact, I defy anyone to resist purchasing, even if it’s only a wonderful Rocco mirror, a bedside table or fun enamel sign promoting the well known fact that ‘Gin is indeed mother’s little helper’.
As a gift shop for birthdays and holidays, its got to be top of anyone’s list and just in case folk have the wrong idea about Dream Pink as a shop it’s not akin to walking into a nightmarish Barbie bedroom, it’s much more of a salon than a shop, where the owner has mixed old-world charm with modern standards of luxury and comfort. With collectibles, gifts and vintage bric a brac it’s a grand first stop off point if gift shopping for friends (remember that wonderful loo roll holder).
Mind you its not a place to visit if you are still clinging to a magnolia walled mentality and the cool, cold minimalism of the 90s - here you can get minimalism but it comes with oodles of character, you can also buy a sense of glamour, feel cosy and all hot chocolate and vanilla ice creamy, or be sweetly Jane Austen sensual. But one thing’s for sure, it’s also very classy and unadulterated feminine with the added bonus that whenever you open the door you get that distinct and exciting flea market aesthetic, this is therapeutic shopping at its very, very best.
Is not situated within a recognised shopping area, it’s in the centre of the Universal residential area. First get to Debenhams roundabout take the dual carriageway (towards the sea) down to the first set of traffic lights, turn right, then take the first left, go down this residential road until you see on your left a café. Dream Pink is next door. Tel: 26 955788