Coastal Bedrooms that Feel Like a Vacation

Time Several Hours

Budget $ $$$

Skill Level

WORDS BY Gillian Grefe

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Published on August 11, 2020

A coastal-inspired bedroom can make you feel like you’re at the beach year-round. There’s something about the effortlessly chic elements of coastal design that make you feel like you’re steps away from the beach, even when you’re in the middle of the city. 

But, before you start hauling in seashells and “Life’s a Beach” embroidered pillows, let’s set the record straight on coastal design. Some might say that coastal decor is more about a relaxed, “beachy state of mind,” than actual beach-inspired elements. If you’re looking for anchors and seashells, seek out nautical decor. Bright resort-inspired prints and palettes? That’s more tropical.

But if you’re aiming for a subtle nod to life along the shore, coastal is the style for you. To evoke a carefree summer vibe in your bedroom, take note of these coastal-inspired designs.

Coastal elements can bring a laid-back  and effortless mood to any space. Start with a calming neutral palette on the walls, bedding, and drapes. A crisp white on the walls will reflect light, making the room feel even airier.  

Then, pull in relaxed design elements with natural textures, a signature in coastal design. A wooden beaded chandelier can add some visual interest to the room with a nod to a classic shape, and adding an open-weave basket made with natural fibers feels like a perfectly imperfect addition to the room. 

Adding something like a pair of terra cotta-style lamps will create some dimension to the room’s texture, but doesn’t take away from the relaxed finish of the bedroom. Every element might be planned to a “T”, but the overall vibe comes off as, “Oh, I just happened to pull this together.”

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Coastal bedrooms are light, bright, and natural, but they don’t need to be devoid of accent colors. With coastal design, accent colors are still soft and natural, blues, grays, and greens. Try a pale blue cotton blanket across the bed that can stand out against the white end tables and crisp linen bedding. Mix in muted gray touches across the room, including pillows and an upholstered bench at the foot of the bed.  

If you want to bring beachy visuals into the bedroom, try a subtle coastal print over the bed or a small nod to the seaside with a modern coral sculpture. Just remember to weave in shore-inspired accents with a light hand versus a more literal and overbearing interpretation. 

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To create the perfect coastal sleeping space, you can’t go wrong with a crisp and clean neutral palette of whites and tans. Sticking with a soft palette of white finishes can make your coastal bedroom feel simple and laid back, yet put together. 

This design incorporates natural textures like linen slipcovers and cotton bedding, with just a subtle jute pouf.  There’s something quintessentially beachy about slip-covers, as they bring a laid-back vibe that’s anything but fussy (cue: the coastal-cool home from Something’s Gotta Give).

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As with any style, there’s always an opportunity to bend some rules. Coastal doesn’t have to be all white on white with muted accent colors. Try a neutral and blue palette with high contrast accents of black for a relaxed, yet refined, feel. . Layer in natural textures like a rattan lounge chair, wicker basket, wool pouf, natural wood bench, and weathered black nightstands

Just because coastal design focuses on simplicity doesn’t mean prints are out of the question. Try simple, minimal patterns like a classic coastal stripe linen duvet cover, or traditional area rug.

You can also take coastal design in a mid-century direction. Both styles have clean lines and a minimal aesthetic. Try keeping a neutral palette, but incorporating a few blue accents and bold geometric prints, can bring in some mid-century vibes.

Add in a potted fiddle leaf fig and abstract oceanic artwork for a final touch.   

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Words by Havenly Staff