Landlocked? 9 Ways to Bring Beach-Style Home

Country Living
At Home

If you're longing for the beach but miles away from the shore, take tips from this historic Nantucket cottage to transition your home into a coastal paradise.

1. Decorate with Nautical Elements

This dining room's late-1800's farm table and reproduction chairs are from Nantucket House Antiques. The verdigris chandelier is by Richard Mulligan. A model sailboat stands in the corner.

2. Take Advantage of Every Nook and Cranny

A custom linen cabinet and a ship's ladder -- both crafted locally -- make the most of an upstairs hall corner. Also notice the ship-inspired outdoor fixture, which brings light to an indoor space.

Plus: Tour a beautiful beach house, decorated on a tight budget »

3. Use Light, Beachy Paint Colors

Instead of the expected bright white interiors, opt for coastal blues and greens that enliven antique quilts and period chests, apothecary bottles, and stacked footstools. Choose paints with names that include the words mist and dew, like this kitchen painted in Benjamin Moore's Morning Dew. "After being outside in the bright sun, those tones calm everything," says the homeowner. "You feel like you're wrapped inside a fog.

4. Decorate with Antiques

Century-old quilts in Pinwheel and Bear's Paw patterns dress these antique wrought-iron beds. The new rag rug was handwoven by area artisans at the Weaving Room, and the demijohn lamp hails from a nearby antiques shop.

Bright Idea: Loosen up a traditional bedroom with mismatched quilts.

Plus: 20+ decorating ideas for your porch and patio »

5. Re-imagine an Existing Space

The former pantry in this home morphed into the "Ship's Room," where a built-in berth beckons guests to curl up with a good book. A wooden barrel top and a nautical buoy combine to make timeworn wall art.

6. Display Nautical Collections

This stair landing doubles as a mini museum of regional tools, including a cranberry rake, a wire lobster trap, and glass floats. The caged pendant light was discovered at Val Maitino Antiques; the cabinets' strap hinges are by Whitechapel.

Plus: 100+ stunning bedroom design ideas »

7. Create Little Vignettes

A document box from the late 19th century now serves as a trunk for extra blankets in a guest bedroom. Old pharmacy bottles and a Shaker box echo the blue hue.

8. Continue the Theme in Every Room

Even a home office can feel like a beach vacation home, when you display collections, like a vintage nautical lamp, a Nantucket Alerion Fleet racing pennant, and hats from sailing clubs around the world. The weathered pine desk was once a tavern table.

Plus: Beautiful living room ideas you'll love »

9. Consider Installing an Outdoor Shower

An outdoor shower boasts driftwood wall hooks by artist Daniel Mack and a custom whale-shaped door latch.

See more from

Our Ultimate Guide to Kitchen Decorating »
40 Amazing Before-and-After Home Makeovers »
10 Ways to Design a Colorful Bedroom »
20 Easy Ways to Update Your Kitchen »

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Reprinted with permission of Hearst Communications, Inc.