Words by Maggie Walton

Photography by Eric Killingsworth


Those last few weeks of May are pure magic – another school year is drawing to a close, the days seem longer as more time is spent outdoors relaxing with family and friends, and summer is so close you can almost taste it. Evening boat rides out on the lake, family vacations to the Texas Coast… for many, summertime is spent on the water. A beautiful, coastal-style home doesn’t require a tropical view. If you can’t actually be in the water, creating refreshing, relaxed rooms inspires the vacation-feels of summer. The cool colorscapes continue to invite us to enjoy our homes even as the temperature outside climbs. With a few simple design tricks, every day can feel like a day at the beach. Here are my favorite tips for creating a beach-inspired home.

Natural Light

In your approach to a modern coastal-inspired home, explore ways to let as much sunlight in as possible, allowing the natural light to be the main source of illumination in your home. Swap out heavy blinds and window treatments with bamboo shades and ivory curtain panels. Allow your simple window treatments to act merely as a picture frame, accentuating the gorgeous view that is beyond and cultivating the light-filled quality to which we are all drawn to in coastal homes.


Ocean Inspired Color Palette

Escape to the seaside with a color palette that reminds you of the ocean, sky and sand. Heavy doses of white, tawny tans, watery sea blues, muted greens, deep navy and steel grays – incorporating these coastal colors into your furniture and decor will immediately transform your home and give it the feeling of a relaxed coastal environment. Nothing screams coastal design like a white kitchen. White cabinets accented by the shimmer of a blue-green, iridescent tile backsplash is a constant reminder of the turquoise sea or deep blue waters. For entertaining, swap out your formal dinnerware for something a bit more casual. Consider adding melamine dishware in a vibrant color or pattern, perfect for both indoor and outdoor use. For a coastal look in your bedroom, choose luxurious white bed linens to add a deluxe, hotel-style feel, accenting with varying shades of blue or a striped or botanical patterned pillow or throw. If you opt for all white-bedding, make a statement with an upholstered headboard in a vibrant color or pattern.


Boost Your Texture

No beach-inspired home would be complete without the layering of different textures. How each piece in your home looks like it feels is a crucial aspect of coastal design. Incorporating woven materials like jute, sisal, seagrass or knotted wool into your home helps connect the indoors with the outdoors. For a touch of sophisticated luxury and to add to the comfortable and relaxed vibe, consider adding a natural fiber area rug to your home – this durable option works great in any space. A bamboo tray on a coffee table or a rattan basket that holds throw blankets are other simple and functional ways to add texture to any room.

Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, “Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air.” Whether you live near the water or not, creating a casual, breezy coastal style home is the perfect way to welcome the summer months.