Whether your waterfront property is home base or a weekend retreat, you want the space to feel comfortable and uniquely you. Since design trends come and go--some sustainable, others fleeting crazes--it helps to reflect on your needs and preferences before diving into a decorating frenzy. That said, recent design trends have given us everything from funky patterns to minimalist lines. Whatever direction you lean, try to enjoy the process of creation...remember, it's supposed to be fun.#1 Keep Things Classic and Livable
Perhaps the most important rule of decorating insists you avoid impulse buys and choose only that which enhances the space and your mood while in it. Be purposeful and strategic and you won't end up regretting all the hard work months later.
If bold colors make you nervous, don't paint the kitchen canary yellow because it's all the rage. On the other hand, if you prefer neutrals but have grown bored with them, consider adding throw pillows with a little pizzazz or a funky clock over the mantle. That way, if you hate the color a few years later, it won't take much effort to switch out the accents with something more palatable.
Outside the bubble of beach living, channeling nature in your decor always enhances the vibe. Therefore, it stands to reason that a shore house can take this idea and go crazy with it. People posses an inherent inclination towards bonding with nature, so anything you can do to shorten the gap between garden and bedside table will help you feel alive and well-balanced.
This can mean incorporating natural wood floors and accents, indoor plants, large windows/skylights, or anything to invite the nostalgia of nature's blessings.
#3 Embrace Jewel Tones
When you look out on the New Jersey shoreline, what do you see? White, fluffy clouds, blue sky, tall, green trees? As the sun sets, you might catch glimpses of a cotton candy sky streaked orange and pink. To keep those tones flowing, create a complementary scene indoors.
You can use turquoise tile or indigo rugs, soft pink linens or an emerald green accent wall. Even better, try layering colors, fabrics and accessories to create a more dynamic look. Using these colors across a background of white or beige can create a cleaner look, and opting for black trim or hardware can add drama.
#4 Stick With Light Flooring
To keep your indoor theme light and airy, avoid dark woods or tile on floors. When you take a step back and survey the space, light gray, pale oak, or white-washed flooring will undoubtedly achieve a more desired effect.
#5 Go All White
In contrast to design movements outside beach house living (where white walls are being vigorously shunned), you can feel safe to keep your shore home gleaming white. This idea fits with keeping your eyes on nature and sticking with classic styles, as the light colors inside will contrast beautifully with the calming blues and greens of the ocean. Plus, classic white is easy to fix when you tire of it.
#6 Connect With Your Inner Bohemian
The boho look pairs well with almost any decor, beach house style included. Vintage patterns and eclectic accent pieces can make any shorefront cottage feel a little avant-garde, bringing an edge to your all-white living room or cobalt blue kitchen. More importantly, you can go easy or heavy with this look depending on your preference. Layer a bold rug atop a natural fiber one to create a little contrast or throw some patterned wallpaper behind a corner chair. Have fun experimenting with vintage mirrors or go all out with a gallery wall of mixed prints. Truly, you can't go wrong with this one.
#7 Maximize the Front or Back Porch
When you're on ocean time, the world stands still. Stressors take a back seat to sunshine and to-do lists lose their power. In this, luxuriating in your New Jersey shore home means sipping your coffee in a rocking chair on the porch or reading the classics with a glass of wine after dinner. For more on patios and porches, visit our blog "What's Better? A Deck or a Patio?".
So encourage this easiness with a comfortable, inviting outdoor refuge. To help augment the porch, add oversized pillows to a comfy lounger or place a few succulents on the side table near a framed picture that brings you joy. Seal the deal with a ceiling fan, and you're on your way to unadulterated bliss.