Whether you adore the classic maritime look of New England, British seaside nostalgia or something else entirely, the coastal style in all its variations is easy, breezy, casual and fun. What’s not to love?


British Seaside With all of its whitewashed surfaces and faded fabrics, the British seaside look is like a postcard from a very charming other time. Gallons of white paint are the main ingredient — you’ll need to cover walls, ceilings, floors and furniture with a fresh, milky white coat. Weathered vintage wood and tin, beachcombing finds and faded pastel fabrics stand in relief against the crisp, clean background. Driftwood lighting completes the look and feel.

The charm comes partly from the simplicity, so the trick is to keep things spare, not overstuffed — think seaside hut with just the essentials, not prissy tea shop.


New England Coastal

Classic and understated, New England coastal style draws inspiration from the region’s rich maritime history. Crisp blue and white dominate the palette

This look is all about simplicity, so keep things pared back with slipcovered furniture, bare floors or natural-fiber rugs, and woven accent pieces. For decor, think authentic — a Nantucket basket, glass buoy or vintage seaside painting would work.


Beachy Glam Popular in both Southern California and the coastal South, this version of beach style is colorful and playful. Think of a soothing aqua and white palette, jazzed up with a zebra print and a blingy chandelier. Or a beautiful lamp with an organic shape but done in slick white porcelain.

A good balance includes around 80 to 90 percent classic beach-style elements (like weathered wood, seaside paintings or rope accents) and 10 to 20 percent glam.



August 07, 2014 — Lisa Wood