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The Coastal Design Style


The Coastal design style, often termed "beachy" or "nautical," draws inspiration from the sea, sand, and sky to evoke a serene and airy ambiance in residential spaces. This style is characterized by its light, breezy aesthetic, intending to recreate the relaxed vibe of a beachside retreat, regardless of the home's actual proximity to the coast.

Natural light is a defining element of the Coastal style, with homes often featuring large windows, sheer curtains, or sliding doors that allow sunlight to flood the interiors. Decor accents like seashells, coral, or maritime-themed artwork further emphasize the beach-inspired aesthetic. The result is an environment that feels refreshing, open, and inherently tranquil, offering residents an escape to the seaside, even if only in spirit.



Coastal Style Architecture



Coastal architecture embodies the spirit of life by the sea The design features wide, expansive windows and often includes large porches or decks to capitalize on ocean vistas. Pitched roofs, sometimes with shingles, offer an aesthetic appeal and assist in shedding rain. Simple, clean lines characterize coastal homes, reflecting the unpretentiousness of beach life.


  • Coastal architecture often features raised foundations for protection against flooding.

  • Expansive windows and open layouts maximize views and natural light.

  • Large porches or decks are common, enhancing outdoor living and ocean vistas.

  • Pitched roofs, frequently with shingles, combine aesthetics with functionality for coastal conditions.

  • The architectural style boasts simple, clean lines, mirroring the relaxed essence of the beach.



Coastal Style Materials



Coastal design champions the use of natural, durable materials. Hardwood, weathered or whitewashed, is prevalent in flooring and furniture while Driftwood make decorative furnishings.. Natural fibers like jute, seagrass, and rattan are incorporated into rugs, furniture, or accent pieces. Linen and cotton, often in light shades, are favorite choices for upholstery and drapery due to their breathable nature. Stone, reminiscent of beach pebbles or coastal cliffs, can be integrated into countertops or fireplace surrounds.


  • Weathered or whitewashed hardwood is a staple for flooring and furniture.

  • Driftwood is often repurposed for decor and furnishing accents.

  • Natural fibers like jute and rattan introduce texture and organic charm.

  • Breathable fabrics, such as linen and cotton, are preferred for upholstery and curtains.

  • Stone elements evoke the ruggedness of coastal landscapes in interior applications.



Coastal Style Colors and Finishes



Whites and soft neutrals lay the foundation, evoking the color of sandy beaches and sun-bleached driftwood. Shades of blue, from pale aqua to deeper navy, reflect the ocean's expanse, while gentle grays mirror the coastal fog. Common finishes are matte and distressed, with whitewashed or weathered wood symbolizing timeworn seaside structures. Natural fabrics may have a slightly faded appearance, suggesting the gentle wear from sun and salt.


  • Coastal palettes are dominated by whites, soft neutrals, and varying shades of blue.

  • Gentle grays in the mix reflect coastal mists and overcast skies.

  • Matte and distressed finishes evoke the timeworn charm of seaside living.

  • Whitewashed or weathered wood is a signature finish, reminiscent of sun-bleached structures.

  • Natural fabrics often exhibit a sun and salt-faded appearance, enhancing the style's authenticity.



Coastal Style Furniture and Decor



Coastal furniture pieces are mostly crafted from light-toned woods, often in weathered or whitewashed finish. Comfortable oversized sofas and plush chairs are upholstered in natural, breathable fabrics. Wicker and rattan pieces add texture and a casual feel. Decor is understated yet evocative of the sea — think seashells, coral sculptures, maritime-themed artwork, and driftwood accents. Soft, airy textiles, like linen curtains or jute rugs, complement the design.


  • Furniture in Coastal design favors light-toned, weathered woods, reflecting the beach environment.

  • Comfort is paramount, with oversized seating upholstered in breathable fabrics.

  • Wicker and rattan furnishings introduce texture and a laid-back aesthetic.

  • Seashells, driftwood, and maritime-themed decor emphasize the connection to the sea.

  • Airy textiles like linen and jute round out the relaxed, beachy ambiance.



Coastal Style Lighting



Coastal lighting fixtures often incorporate natural materials in the form of rope-wrapped pendants or driftwood-accented chandeliers. Glass lanterns or clear pendant lights can evoke the feel of floating bubbles or vintage ship bottles. Simplicity is key, so many fixtures lean towards minimalist designs, allowing the natural beauty of the materials to shine. Table and floor lamps might feature bases crafted from ceramics, shells, or bleached wood, often paired with neutral or subtly patterned shades.


  • Coastal lighting often features natural materials like rope or driftwood.

  • Glass lanterns and clear pendant lights mirror the clarity of seaside environments.

  • The design of fixtures leans minimalist, emphasizing the material's intrinsic beauty.

  • Lamps often showcase bases made of ceramics, shells, or bleached wood.

  • Neutral shades on lamps reinforce the soft, beach-inspired palette of coastal design.