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What Are Some Key Elements of Coastal Home Design?

Updated: Mar 31

If you're looking to capture the relaxed, easygoing feeling of life by the sea in your interior space, the coastal design style is a perfect place to start. This style combines natural materials and light, airy colors to create rooms that feel like an extension of the outdoors.

Natural materials, such as wood and stone, add warmth and coziness to the space while keeping the overall design light and airy. The use of light colors, such as whites, blues, and greens, also helps to create a refreshing and calming atmosphere for your home.

To help you create the perfect coastal home design that captures the spirit and beauty of life by the sea, interior experts at Rhode Island Design share some key elements to keep in mind. Buckle up, and let's dive right in.

What Is Coastal Design Style?

At its core, coastal home design is all about striking the perfect balance between form and function, utilizing natural materials wherever possible, and incorporating calming colors and textures.

It is a popular choice for those looking to capture the beauty, tranquility, and relaxed vibe of life by the sea. The coastal design style is characterized by natural materials, plenty of natural light, and unique décor that evokes the calming spirit of the ocean.

Key Elements

With the coastal home design, you want an interior space that reflects a breezy, relaxed, and beachy atmosphere. To achieve this look, there are a few key elements you'll want to incorporate into your design.

  • Bright and airy colors: Coastal design embraces natural light and airy, bright colors to create a warm and inviting space. Think whites, creams, light blues, and greens - colors drawn from the coastal environment, including the sea, clouds, and sand. These colors create a sense of calm and tranquility.

  • Simple, clean, and striped patterns: Simple patterns that evoke a breezy, relaxed mood are key. Think stripes, dots, or geometric shapes drawn from the beach environment. Striped fabrics, for instance, can be used as a decorative accent or used to cover large expanses of space.

  • Natural textures and driftwood finishes on furnishings - A coastal design exudes a casual, relaxed vibe that makes you feel like you're at a beach house. And what better way to do that than with natural textures and driftwood finishes on furniture? These elements add a sense of warmth and comfort to the space.

Coastal Design Encourages Open Space

The coastal home design is all about creating an easy, breezy lifestyle. This means embracing open spaces and a flowing floor plan that encourages a sense of relaxation. No stuffy, formal living rooms here!

Instead, the focus is on creating an open, airy feel by opening up the floor plan to allow for more natural light and fresh sea breeze. You can accomplish this with large dressers that allow you to store away your personal items, while keeping the exposed space clear and uncluttered. You can also opt for a more minimalist vibe to open up the space as much as possible. Either way, the keyword here is always “space.” By properly storing your belongings, you are able to keep table tops clear and transform the energy of the home for the best.

Yes, Add In Shells—But With Restraint

While you might be tempted to go all out with seashells, woven baskets, or other coastal décor, creating a stylish and sophisticated look is to use these elements sparingly.

After all, you don't want your home to resemble a beachside souvenir shop, right? Instead, opt for a few carefully-chosen items that can help set the tone for the space without being too overbearing.

Place a blue glass vase on your mantel, for example, or hang a single nautical-themed painting as the focal point of an empty wall to add striking visual interest.

Interior Design Tips from the Experts

If you're new to coastal design, it can be a bit daunting to figure out how to create the look and feel of a seaside home. Luckily, interior design tips from experts can help give you a better understanding of what works and what doesn't.

  • One key element is to pay attention to the color scheme. Coastal colors should be soft and calming, like whites, blues, and greens. These colors are reminiscent of the sea and sky and can help to create a tranquil atmosphere.

  • You should also keep the light in check. You want your design to be bright but not too bright or harsh. You can accomplish this by using light colors on the walls and adding plenty of natural light with large windows.

  • And finally, don't overlook the importance of texture. The coastal design should be soft and inviting, so paying attention to the chosen materials is essential. Soft materials like linen, cotton, and wool will help to create a cozy and welcoming space. Smooth wooden floors, plush area rugs, and comfortable furniture are all key to creating the perfect coastal home.

Ready to Give Your Space an Update? Contact Rhode Island Design Center

If you're looking to give your coastal home a facelift, Rhode Island Design Center professionals can help. We offer interior design services that can help you create the perfect coastal design, from color schemes to furniture and décor. Contact us today to learn more about our interior design services and how we can help you transform your space.


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