The big mistake that people make with selecting accessories for a Coastal Style is to cram the house full of beach related curios rather than select just a few to carefully use throughout the scheme. The decorator's mantra of less is more is so important for this look. Let me show you how to classically style a coastal home without going overboard.
Firstly, one of the most important points to remember when you are renovating and decorating a property in a coastal style is to focus on the fundamentals that will ensure you get the look right:
- Understated colour palette
- Natural finishes
- Weathered timbers
- Fabrics made from linen and cotton
- A range of different textures
These elements will define the coastal look and give you the basis for your scheme. With this achieved there will be no doubt that your home is in the coastal style.
Now consider where you can add a touch of style with some finishing touches that relate to the coastal environment. This doesn't mean thinking of everything coastal related – surfboards, oars, coral, pebbles, shells and rope and filling the space with every incarnation of them in bedlinen, artworks, ornaments and books.
Consider these elements and just introduce a couple of items. Remember you already have your basic coastal look so all you need to do is accessorise this to bring a personal touch.
Classic accessories for a coastal style
If you have a large surfboard mounted against or on the wall, don't then also have surfboards printed on cushions, in artworks or as small ornaments. One large statement piece says it all and can be a great talking point, leaving your visitors in no doubt as to where your heart lies and that this is a beach lover's domain. One nonchalantly left at the front door would be perfect.
This is a nice understated accessory for a coastal look but don't use it throughout the room. A collection of artworks in Coral can look stunning with perhaps just one large piece as a topper for books or on a console or coffee table. Don't buy up big and display throughout the house, keep it simple and then the accessory will take centre stage.
A large piece of driftwood can look gorgeous in this setting, particularly if it is holding up a glass coffee table or as a stunning centre piece on a scrubbed dining table. With its understated colour and smooth worn texture this makes the perfect accessory. Scale is important here so ensure it is over sized and generous.
Use baskets for firewood, storage for throws and cushions, planters for oversized palms and table centre pieces. This is a gorgeous accessory that is perfect for a coastal look but is also extremely practical.
Related: How to style with baskets
The style of pendant that you choose will help to define your style and a rattan pendant is the best one to use for a laid back relaxed coastal look.
The Surfrider beach house hotel in California's Malibu beach, pictured above, is the perfect example of how a coastal home should look – gorgeous laid back natural finishes with those gorgeous pendants!
Finally, when thinking of accessories for a coastal style, don't forget just a little bit of rope either in a small vignette or even as a door stopper. Nothing evokes a coastal lagoon or haven than some tactile boating rope.
I am a strong advocate for rugs in any home or scheme. Simple cotton rugs are relaxed and perfect for a coastal look. Also consider using an outdoor rug too as they are super stain resistant and therefore great if your coastal home is a holiday one or you want to complete an outdoor setting.
Further reading for a coastal style:
Related: A Coastal Style Vignette
If you are confused about how to decorate and style your home, it is a good idea to put together a mood board. I have a FREE resource library which has an e-book for you to download showing you how to put one together. With lots of other resources, and more added regularly, this is an invaluable source of information and checklists to help you with your renovation. Download here.
Do you get overwhelmed by all the choices available with online shopping and you're not sure how to pull it all together? I have put together mood boards of furniture and accessories for a coastal style bedroom, living and dining room. You can shop the style here.
Don't forget to leave a comment and let me know about your current decorating project.