What is coastal style interior design?

Living on the coast of Long Island, in the Hamptons, is what has inspired both my boutique home furnishings store and my style of interior design. I work with clients with many different tastes and lifestyles, but there is as thread that ties each project together and that is coastal style. So, I thought I would define what coastal style interior design is.

Let’s talk color first.

Cooper's Beach, Southampton on a foggy day
Cooper’s Beach, Southampton on a foggy day. Inspiration for  a coastal style interior.


Whether you only spend summers by the water or you are lucky enough to be there year round, your coastal style interior would have reflections of the seaside.

Sandy tones, blues, greys, and greens in paint color or wallpaper.

A living room for one of our Southampton projects. Machester tan walls above grass cloth bring sin sandy tones
A living room for one of our Southampton projects. Manchester tan walls above grass cloth brings in sandy tones.


If you’re looking for a vibrant space, you may bring it bright pops of color. Someone looking for calm will prefer subtle tones of similar colors throughout the space like the look in the guest room we did below.

Serene guest bedroom in East Quogue. Wall color Silver Gray Benjamin Moore
Serene guest bedroom in East Quogue. Wall color Silver Gray Benjamin Moore


Second, let’s talk texture. This is so important to me in making a house feel like home. You might want clean modern lines and glossy finishes that feel like the sun reflecting on the ocean or you might prefer the aged finishes of vintage pieces or driftwood like wood tones. Perhaps a grass cloth wallpaper or sisal rug to bring in the grainy texture of the beach?

Grass cloth, burlap, and sea grass create a cozy year round coastal bedroom
Grass cloth, burlap, and sea grass create a cozy atmosphere year round in this Southampton coastal bedroom.


Window treatments are another way a coastal style interior is defined. You could choose shutters throughout the home for a clean beachy feel or go for the softness of textured linen sheers and woven wood shades.

Kessler dining room
Sky blue grass cloth wallpaper and woven wood shades add to the coastal atmosphere of this Bridgehampton dining room.
Kessler Master Bedroom
Shutters create a clean crisp window treatment. While the linen upholstered bed softens this Bridgehampton bedroom.


These are just a few of the ways you can make your home, wherever you are, feel like a coastal retreat. Let me know which ways you bring that coastal style to your home. I’d love to hear from you.

Be inspired,


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meet shannon

Creator of coastal retreats for families to feel good in, lover of beach walks, and sustainable living.




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What’s Your Coastal Style?

There are 5 unique design aesthetics that make up coastal design. Which style suits your taste? Take Our Quiz To Find Out!