Creating coastal interiors can be all about colour, but it is also about texture – and what can show off the coast more than waves themselves, says interiors columnist Carol Burns. Get your coastal inspiration for interior design and sprucing up your home here.
Like many people lucky enough to live by the coast, I can easily while away hours sitting and watching waves crash onto my local beach. Of course, in January, it is best done safely through the window of a café, complete with a coffee (or a cocktail). But when the view isn’t available, your home can make a surprisingly effective substitute. Forget the deckchair stripes and navy blue and white, and create subtle coastal interiors using colours and textures evocative of waves. But getting the look right requires a sleight of the hand. (and the eye). It’s not about the obvious: you will need to master the skill of textures and colours for a more nuanced nautical look.
The obvious room for adding a feel of the coast is the bathroom. This water-lover’s retreat never looks so good as it does in winter: add a smattering of storm lamps, candles dabbed with nautical-inspired essential oils to bring luxurious bathing to the smallest of spaces. For the full look during daylight hours, use burnished hues of blue and green to create horizon-skimming tile lines: but beware, choose a maximum of three shades, we are creating an sense of undulation and subtle movement, we don’t want to cause sea sickness.
Introducing waves into your coastal interior design doesn’t have to be literal, instead be inspired by that magnetic sense of gentle movement, cocooned inside one of the great sensual pleasures the world has to offer.
Elsewhere in the house, you can create a natural horizon in your eyeline. Do it simply with paint: split your wall in to thirds, typically you would use a darker colour in the bottom third and a lighter colour on the top two thirds.
My tip – make sure you stock up on masking tape. Like the real horizon, the line needs to be perfect. Time and effort with a tape measure and a spirit level will pay dividends. Add in a few splotches of chalk paint on anything remotely wooden (I vote for the floor) and you will have a beachside shack look, rather than the ubiquitous feel of a boutique seaside hotel room.
Satisfy your taste for adventure and go for something outlandish in your cloakroom; this oft-overlooked little space is the perfect place to add an outlandish sense of the sea. Add loud wallpaper and find space for all that seaside memorabilia you have hiding in the attic – or even buy some more. Afterall we all heart Skegness.