Living on (a very beautiful) island in the middle of the ocean, we are bound to be inspired by it. Decorating with a nautical theme is a great way to bring the outside in but as with any design element, a little goes a long way and it’s easy to go overboard if you’re not focused on the entire space.
Want to add coastal touches to your home? Here are some subtle ways to create an ocean theme without feeling like you’ve just stepped onto the set for The Little Mermaid.
The soft tones of sea glass make a great colour scheme for a space like the bedroom where you want to feel relaxed. Pick wall paint (I love Benjamin Moore Seapearl for this look) and accessories with a slightly duller undertone to avoid contrast. Add a simple ocean inspired decoration like this starfish banner above the bed, a glass lamp in teal on a side table with a driftwood finish.
Breezy colours in shades of blue are great for brightening up small spaces that may not have a lot of light. In the kitchen, accent a brighter shade of ocean blue like Benjamin Moore Morning Sky Blue with colourful accessories in a combinations of vibrant shades. The area above the cupboards is prime real estate for decorating without creating too much clutter on the counters. Because a stock white paint can be too cold, for trim, cabinets or woodwork try a softer alternative like Benjamin Moore Cloud White (one of my favourites!).
Chances are if you love boats and the ocean you know how to tie a knot or two. Add interesting hardware like these rope handles for a unique touch.
Almost every room needs lights. Look for ones that remind you of being on a boat! This light fixture totally reminds me of those utility lights you see in boat hallways.
Looking for more of the quintessential nautical colour scheme? You can’t go wrong with blue and white. For balance, don’t over do it on the anchors, ships, seashells and coral though.
But don’t forget that there are many other colours in the ocean! Some of the most beautiful coastal spaces are created with shades of coral and soft white like this bedroom. Colourful fabrics and a lamp with a sea shell design bring the sea indoors.
Just because you might prefer a more contemporary design doesn’t mean you can’t decorate with coastal accessories. Keep furniture and architecture clean and crisp with sharp lines, minimize clutter, use a monochromatic colour scheme but throw in accessories like these coral fans in neutral colours.
The sun’s harsh rays can be very damaging to exterior woodwork around the house or on the boat. Usually we do our best to protect it with varnishes but when decorating a coastal space, give it a rustic feel by incorporating some weathered pieces like this table. Love DIY? If you’re handy with a paint brush you can easily give your old furniture new life with a faux finish like this one.
And finally don’t forget to dress your bookcases. They’re a great place to display your passion for the ocean. Keep them from looking too busy by choosing a simple colour scheme to unify the pieces of your collection together.