Beach Thoughts

Just last week I was sitting on the beach gazing out at clear skies and listening to the soothing sounds of the waves, and I could not help but think how I could transport some of this calmness and serenity back home.  I wanted a bit of this feeling in my home without the kitschy shell mirrors, lamps, and boxes or an overdone nautical theme so often associated with beach décor.

While it is difficult to achieve this tranquil and comfortable feeling without making it too cliché, try these suggestions:

  • Use neutral, sandy colors but definitely break up the neutral with unexpected shots of color – turquoise, blue, or coral colors are classic. Add crisp white accents.

  • Go for bare wood floors – light stained or cerused wood creates a fresh look.

  • Casual distressed or painted furniture is easy to care for and creates a relaxed style.

  • Mix styles and materials using natural elements for rugs, window treatments and furnishings – rattan, bamboo, wicker, sisal, grasscloth and cotton are all great.

  • Think about washable white cotton slipcovers or using outdoor fabrics indoors for easy care.

  • Sheer fabrics bring in the light and feel breezy.

  • Evoke that beach-like feel with subtle hints – awning striped fabric on pillows, vintage marine life prints, a vignette of a FEW beautiful shells, a bit of driftwood , or coral  or a lovely seascape painting can reference the theme without screaming it!

I wanted the tranquility and lovely memories even next winter when the skies are gray and the temperatures plummet!  Since my vacations to the shore don’t come often enough, a sea-inspired décor can be my getaway!


Photo Credits:  Dining Area by Dwight Loudon from HGTV Rate My Space: notice the natural light-colored floorboards, the sisal rug, painted furniture, and the wall color.

Living Room – photo by Mark Lohman for Coastal Living: notice the slipcovered furnishings and the attractive coastal vignette on the coffee table.

Bunk Room - photo by J. Savage Gibson for Coastal Living: We love a bunk room to accommodate family and friends with kids!  Notice how the small scale prints along with the plaid rug anchor the room with coordinating beachy colors.  The curtains on the bunks are an added bonus for privacy.