Coastal Style Decorating Guide Part 4: Colour

PART 4

# Use of Colour to Create a Coastal Look

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Photo from RSL Prize Draw 309


Part of the charm of living by the sea is the myriad of calming colours that unmistakably define the coastal environment. By using some of these relaxing colours in our homes, we can create a similar sense of  tranquility. Bring the beach to your home by choosing colours and textures that reflect the natural elements of beach side environment.

I just love the RSL Prize homes for demonstrating this philosophy as the design sense in beach side properties usually have broad appeal – I buy a ticket everytime – just in case!

#Key Features


* White On White – Classic coastal style is all about casual, relaxed, spacious, breezy interiors that flow seamlessly into the outdoors.
* Resist the urge to put too many items of furniture in the room. Choose only what is absolutely necessary and accessories with soft furnishings and decor.

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Photo from RSL Prize Draw 309


* Don’t be afraid of large areas of white on white. Instead, be inspired by the seashore and indulge in some of the many shades of ‘white’ that exist such as:
         – natural whisper whites resembling pure white sea shells
         – sandy whites reminiscent of warmer toned sandy beaches
         – bone whites like the sun bleached shimmer of driftwood
         – or blue and green-toned whites recall the tumbling whitewash foam of waves crashing on the seashore.
* Sparingly splash your favourite coastal accent colour – mine is turquoise but here, RSL Prize Home designers have gone for tones of coastal blue.

*Note the 3 indoor plants add their own splash of green making the indoors somehow feel part of the outdoors too.

04_upstairs_livingPhoto from RSL Art Union Prize Draw 313

* Using more shads and textures of white will make your coastal home seem lighter, bigger and brighter.
* Combine shades of white from the same group to add diversity and avoid looking cold and bland. Creamier tones of white will warm up a home in cooler climates while grey, silvery and bluish tones of white are great for creating a fresher, cooler oceanic feel.
* Matching / coordinated soft furnishings gives a ‘designer’ feel

RSL art Union Prize Home-

Photo from RSL Prize Draw 311


*Adding some fun textures that you like within the colour palette can add subtle variety within uniformity, such as slightly patterned porcelain dining setting on plain cotton napery, natural coloured fabric lounge with chevron or fishscale patterned scatter cushions, a sleek low coffee table and a pale linen lampshade.

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01_ocean_viewsPhoto from RSL Prize Draw 313

* White interiors provide a ‘blank canvas’ for displaying art, knickknacks and other articles reminiscent of the theme.

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Photo from The Manly Daily 

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Photo from Gold Lotteries Prize Home

Previous Posts on this topic: 

Part 1: Architecture & Design
Part 2: Floors, Walls & Ceilings
Part 3: Natural and Artificial Light

Future Posts:

Part 5: Textures & Materials
Part 6: Fabrics
Part 7: Display & Adornment

Nicki Richards

Nicki Richards

Director & Co-Founder at Beach Abode Living
Nicki is a self confessed cushion lover, director and co-founder of Beach Abode Living, an Australian owned and operated company, based on the Gold Coast. Specialising in outdoor cushions inspired by the beach and coastal living, the focus is principally on designing and creating unique, functional and affordable products that allow everyone to enjoy and appreciate the great Australian lifestyle. Style is as important with homewares as it is in fashion, so being 'on trend' requires continual development of ideas and designs, through travel, experimentation and collaboration. Favourite Quote: "You can never over-cushion!"
Nicki Richards
Nicki Richards

About Nicki Richards

Nicki is a self confessed cushion lover, director and co-founder of Beach Abode Living, an Australian owned and operated company, based on the Gold Coast. Specialising in outdoor cushions inspired by the beach and coastal living, the focus is principally on designing and creating unique, functional and affordable products that allow everyone to enjoy and appreciate the great Australian lifestyle. Style is as important with homewares as it is in fashion, so being 'on trend' requires continual development of ideas and designs, through travel, experimentation and collaboration. Favourite Quote: "You can never over-cushion!"

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