home about me our home

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

How To Decorate A Nautical/Coastal Room

And Not Go Overboard!

When summer has arrived we all tend to think of the beach and anything coastal. 

Often we want just a touch of that in our homes as a reminder of happy summer days at the beach, and summer time is a great time to add touches of a nautical/coastal theme to our homes.


You might wonder why I just put up the buyer beware sign. 

I have seen some lovely rooms with nautical/coastal touches, and then I have seen rooms that look as if they are a tourist shop in a beach town on the boardwalk.

Whenever we add touches to our home that are thematic we really need to use restraint. There is such a fine line to be aware of when doing a Coastal, or Nautical room.

We could probably all make a long list of elements that we would think of when decorating a Coastal home, but trust me you don’t need one, or two of each item on that list.

Try being very strategic when you add these touches.

Step back, and look at your room, and think about where you might add something you really love, and if you want to add more, step back again, and be honest with yourself is it going to take you into a beach gift shop status?

I am going to show you some good examples of a Coastal/Nautical look in some rooms.

You will notice they are not overtly Nautical, or Coastal……

nautical design
The obvious pieces are the sail boat, and the knotted  ropes on the pillows. 

What is not so obvious are the textures that are brought into the room with the sisal rug, basket, wicker furniture and the boards on the wall reminiscent of a beach cottage.

Of course the blue, white, and sand colors are all naturals for this look.

If this homeowner had added a bunch of shells, and Japanese fishing floats, or a lets go to the beach sign, it would have taken this room over board in the Coastal department.

Cote De Texas blue and white living room

In this room you will be hard pressed to find a coastal looking anything, and yet it is definitely giving a coastal vibe. 

If you look closely the door stop is the closest things to nautical in the room. Now take a closer look, notice the blue and white color scheme, the textural sisal rugs. 

The coffee table evokes the look of a weathered piece of driftwood. The coffee table next to the fireplace looks as if it is a crab trap. The two side chairs look almost like a folding deck chair. 

This room is a perfect example of how you can do a Coastal looking room without all the kitsch found on the boardwalk at the tourist shops.

Creamy Whites with Coastal Accents

This room has shells, so naturally that is a giveaway this is a Coastal room. 

Notice how the shells are all in one area and displayed nicely in the book shelves. 

They used mostly creamy whites here with the addition of blue and sand, again making the room feel Coastal without being overtly Coastal.

Keep in mind the colors and textures you use in a room that you want to have a Coastal feel.

Navy Accents

This vignette does have shells, and it does have nautical prints, but it is done with restraint. 

Another addition that gives a Coastal feel is the large banana leaf plant that naturally reminds me the feel of soft ocean breezes on a tropical island.

Notice the color of the wood here as well. It has that soft patina that driftwood gets from the ocean and the ocean air and sun. 

Again, we see sisal rugs reminiscent of the sand I like the way they used the one gold frame with the fun little gold crab sitting on the books.

I guess the one thing I would say loud and clear is…….

……. “If you want a coastal look in your room try to use coastal elements with restraint. Do NOT have them all over the room, choose one or two areas to display your coastal elements.”

In my new home I want to have a Coastal vibe to my home, but one of restraint and a traditional bend. 

In making plans for the future I have tried to use great restraint on where I will use certain elements to evoke the feel of a Coastal Cottage.

Some might think it odd since my home is in a community that is surrounded by grape vineyards, but you see I have a love for the ocean so I am going to continue in the same vein I used in my other home.

I wrote another blog post on Coastal rooms for those of you who prefer not to decorate with blues, but like more neutrals….

Click HERE!!