With summer in full swing, sunny beaches and blue skies are a fixture of our days – so it’s a perfect time to start thinking about how to bring that happy, calming energy into the home year-round.
Coastal décor has come a long way from seashell frames and lamps. Instead, a modern coastal interior is often more subtle and versatile, updating classic colours and prints, and embracing natural textures and materials.
Rebecca Snowden, interior style Advisor at Furniture Choice, shares three ways to get a welcoming, summer-inspired coastal home.
Embrace natural textures and materials
Being at the coast is a very sensorial experience, so when designing and planning a contemporary coastal-inspired home, texture and organic elements are a central part of getting it right.
“The main trick here is that it’s not just about how these materials feel to the touch, but also how they look. Linen, rattan and jute all have both visual and tactile texture, adding character and bringing nature indoors. Including plants, such as dried seagrass also gives your room an organic feel – and sometimes, a bit of drama too.”
“There are many ways to do this: wooden chairs or a wicker pendant can immediately add a tropical feel to the dining room, while opting for linen in a sofa, or a bed, creates a naturally warm, welcoming mood. The important thing is to make it feel natural, so if you’re worried about overdoing it, it’s best to start small and add decor and pieces that can be moved around.”
Blue and white have always been classic choices for beach decor, pairing beautifully to boot. Traditionally, the shades of choice have tended to be lighter blues like turquoise and aquamarine, but for a 2019 update, go for darker tones, like deep indigo and navy.
“We’re really moving away from the brighter, pastel tones of past seasons, and looking for inspiration from the ocean,” Rebecca advises. “Richer shades of blue with deeper undertones are a modern take on this look, creating a calm, contemporary space, especially when matched with creamy white tones.”
“Layering is key here, so use different shades of white to create a luxurious, welcoming base, and then add pops of blue with pillows, throws, or a statement wall. For example, a half painted wall that has sailor blue contrasted against crisp white has an understated naval vibe, and also creates a sense of airiness and height in the room – a bonus when working with space constraints.”
Play with updated prints: think stripes and shibori!
With a simple colour scheme, injecting classic prints (with an updated twist) can immediately evoke summer – particularly a summer by the beach.
“Let’s start with stripes: they’re a classic for a reason, and will easily fit into a contemporary beach-inspired home, especially in navy and white,” Rebecca says. “Incorporating this print in different rooms can create cohesion, and brings the theme together without being overwhelming. For instance, you can have striped cushions in the living room, and a rug in the dining room, creating a subtle tie-in.”
“Another print associated with summer is tie dye. But we’re not talking about 60s psychedelia – instead it’s all about the subtler charms of shibori, an ancient Japanese dyeing technique. Shibori’s distinctive indigo patterns have the carefree look and feel of tie dye, but with a contemporary, chic twist – try using it for a playful print in the living room, or as fun, elegant dining napkins and placemats.”