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The heart of coastal design

When you’re playing with the idea of going coastal with your home décor, there’s a lot of ‘inspiration’ to be had out there – with all sorts of tips and tricks as to how you can bring your vision to life. You’ll find plenty of it here, that’s for sure. But this month, we wanted to step away from the whimsical and get a little bit more practical; focusing instead on what coastal design and décor should be all about.

At its core, escaping to beach living for most is about shedding the trappings of modern life; opting instead for simplicity and a pared-down life without the clutter and helter-skelter of the real world.

More often than not, this gets left behind – and instead decorators and DIYers get lost in reaching for simple toolkits filled with things like anchors, oars, prints and yeah – sometimes shells, too! While it sounds simple in a wide range of ways – people can often overdo things. There are other, more subtle ways of giving your home that cabin or cottage-on-the-coast feel.

Beach décor – heck, ALL design – is about creating a mood as opposed to using props. It’s great to use classic elements, but don’t depend on it. Great beach design should echo back to what we discussed – a simple departure from the complexities of life.

The other, powerful message that coastal design can send is a comfort with imperfections. Like the spaces we’re attempting to create, as individuals – we’re all weathered in one way, shape or form and coastal design can help leave us at ease with that feeling, leaving us comfortable in our own skin.

At the end of the day, what’s most important is that whatever you choose to do with your space – that you make it authentically yours. You can’t fake you, after all and our spaces more often than not should be a reflection of us and our loved ones. They should tell a story. You should have things in your space that are conversation pieces or that call back to memories, feelings or experiences. They should make your feel proud and most important of all – make you happy.

We talk a lot about what you ‘should’ do with your coastal design, but reality is that we’re simply here for inspiration. What you should do – is you.

Creating the perfect coastal bedroom

When we think coastal living, we think ‘relaxation’ and when we think ‘relaxation’ – the bedroom is probably the first room that comes to mind. That’s what we’re here to discuss today. Here are some tips on how you can give your bedroom the perfect resort feel and look.

Let’s jump right in!

Have a place to kick back

The best bedrooms don’t just have a bed – but also a place where you can kick back and relax. Think about creating your own space with an upholstered bench, sette, chasie or even a pair of comfy chairs that are perfect for that morning book and coffee.

Window treatments are your friend!

While you’re here to relax and enjoy the wonderful light and weather, the room does need to serve it’s functional purpose – and that’s allowing you a place to sleep. We recommend not shying away from blackout-lined curtains and pair them with airy, sheer drapery that’ll give you privacy without sacrificing light flow or beautiful views.

Lighting is everything

When it comes to lighting any coastal home, be sure to stay away from overhead lights. The light is more stark, often too bright, and simply too harsh for the mood and tone you’ll want to go for. Lamplights cast a softer, more inviting glow to the proceedings. Also you can incorporate dimers that’ll help you find the perfect light – whether it’s night or day.

Focus on the view

Nothing beats a room with a view. In fact – what’ll make your bedroom really pop – isn’t anything in it – but how you use what’s in it to compliment and highlight what’s outside. Use your view as the room’s focal point and design and arrange around that. Even if you’re not on the water itself, you’ll be able to find plenty of eye-catching scenery that can take your room from hum-drum to spectacular.

Colors yet again

Coastal colors are those that’ll help you unwind, relax and appreciate what you have. Blues, greens, whites and neutrals will be your go-to’s and believe or not – it’s those colors in combination that have proven to (scientifically) induce relaxation.

Nothing beats a great beach home and the heart of it should be the place where you lay your head for the night. Good luck!

How to look coastal without looking too Jimmy Buffet

One of the more common questions we get is how to decorate coastal without coming off as conventional and today’s blog is going to be dedicated to precisely that.

Here are some tips and guidelines that you can follow to make sure that your décor not only looks great, but also comes off as authentic and tasteful.

Color palettes 

Choosing the right color for your walls immediately helps not only set the tone, but also the overall mood and feel of the room. The ocean, sky and beach can all provide inspiration and help you choose a style that’s comfortable but not overwhelming.

We encourage readers to think neutral – as in grays, warm manilas and crisp whites. Not only do these colors give you that beach-front feel you’re looking for, but they’re colors that go well with just about everything and give you a greater degree of flexibility when it comes to furnishing and adding accents.

Think light grays, crisp whites, sandy manilas, muted greens and watery sea blues. Navy and steel grays can be used effectively as well.

Use lots of light

 Beaches are bright places and as such, you’ll want that to come across in the space you’re decorating. Any way you can maximize natural lights from openings and windows is the best place to start. Push back those drapes and let the sunlight do its work.

Ever been to a beach home that had dark and gloomy colors? We thought so. Go bright and maximize the light!

Casual furnishings work best

Ostentatious is the last thing you want to go for when choosing the right furniture. Beach life is casual, laid back and in some ways, slightly rugged. The more natural, the better – so choose natural fibers like cane, sea grass or knotted wool. Hand painted beach color pallets look great and always, always be sure to use some of the natural detritus as decoration. Driftwood, shells and other beach debris can help work wonders.

At the end of the day – you should be thinking about versatility, comfort, color, light and of course – treasures from in and around the beach. Put those pieces together and you’ll have a space that says ‘relax, you’re in a better place’ in no time! Good luck!