21 Ways to Decorate a Living Room with Coastal Beach Decor

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Are you looking to refresh your home for summer? Try these easy ways to decorate with summer coastal beach decor with a casual vintage inspired style!  Keep reading to see how I use coastal beach decor to create a summer cottage home feeling! 

I love decorating for all of the seasons.  Each one just has its own special feeling and flair, doesn’t it?  There are several reasons why I love to decorate with summer coastal beach decor style around our home each year.

First of all, we live in Florida!  Is there any other way to decorate for summer other than some easy coastal beach decor touches?!  At least it means the sand we track in from the beach kind of goes with whole look.  Haha!

Secondly, I love the light and airy feeling our home gets when I decorate with summer coastal beach decor style.  It is fun to try and make our home feel like our own little summer vacation beach house, even though we live here year round!

Guess what?  You can decorate with summer coastal beach decor design style no matter where you live!  It’s fun, easy and I’ll share some simple ideas you can incorporate into your own summer home in an elegant way too.

What are the elements of coastal decor?

There are a lot of different ways to decorate with a coastal theme.  However, my favorite coastal decor ideas are simple, casual, light, and breezy with neutral tones! Here are some basics that I bring in every summer to help create our summer home story:

How do you decorate in coastal beach decor style?

Coastal style and nautical decor have come along way since the early 2000s, I have to say.  While you can still go into big-box home decor stores and find aisles full of shell-covered pillow covers and beach reproduction signs, there are some more subtle coastal trends that I personally really enjoy!

For example, I have traded out most of my regular home decor store-bought coastal accents for pieces of vintage coral from antique shops and sea fans from my local beach shop.

Reproduction signs have been replaced with pretty vintage or vintage-inspired sea scapes.  At the same time, they are styled with carefully curated collections of pieces that tell a tale of a lazy, summer beach day!

Things we use, such as straw hats and beach bags, are hung as decor (and convenient to grab when headed out the door) and add a coastal feel.  Simple, neutral throw pillows and light-weight gauzy blankets add just the right cozy touches for summer movie nights without looking too heavy or cluttered.

Less is more is so accurate for this light, airy, coastal look!  A few simple touches, added to a soft, neutral color palette, will give you just what you need to decorate with summer coastal style.


21 Ways to Decorate a Living Room with Coastal Beach Decor

How to Decorate with Summer Coastal Beach Decor: Summer Home Tour

How to Decorate with Coastal Beach Decor Tip #1: Declutter!

If for no other season or reason, summer is the perfect time to declutter and enjoy a simple coastal beach decor style.  Now, I am far from a minimalist in my decorating.  Actually, a minimalist style just wouldn’t work for our home (and my favorite collections) very well at all.  However, summer is the season where I dial it way back.  “Less is more” is a good rule of thumb for summer decorating, no matter what style you take on.

If you haven’t already done a thorough declutter as part of your spring cleaning, summer is the perfect time to do so!  Host a community yard sale or bless your local thrift store.

However you go about clearing out some of the clutter, this is the time to get it done!

Trust me: your fall and Christmas decor-loving-self will thank you later!  Haha!

Pro Tip:  Enjoy a lighter, more breezy look for summer by using less decor over all.  Leave more “white space” and create statement and a focal point with your very favorite pieces!

How to Decorate with Coastal Beach Decor Tip #2: Edit Your Decor

Part of the appeal of the light, coastal style is a space that is more free of some of the fuss and “extra” that other seasons tend to have.

Pro Tip:  After I decorate with summer coastal beach decor style in a space, I often live with it for a few days, then come back and edit.  Sometimes, I’ll add something in. However, most often, I’ll take away a little piece here or there.  

You don’t have to go full on “minimalist” to achieve this look.  By grouping items together in collections, you can feature a lot of your favorites in a less-cluttered style.  Let’s take a look at a few spaces where I’ve actually used a lot of decor pieces, but they definitely feel more light and airy than other seasons.

  • How to Decorate With Coastal Beach Decor Style Tip #3: Incorporate coastal colors

    We love going to the beach in the summer.  Yes, we are so blessed to actually live where a lot of people vacation!

    One of my favorite things about the beach is the soothing sound of the ocean waves and the calming aesthetic of the natural, soft colors.  The pretty blue sky against the cool tones of the ocean pair perfectly with the tan and white sandy beaches.  At the same time, earth toned shells scatter beautifully along the shore, giving texture and character.

    You can decorate with summer coastal beach decor by bringing that aesthetic into your home too!  Light blue color throw pillows, crisp whites (like a white sofa or linen fabric curtains), and earth tones with a sisal rug and woven baskets are the perfect kinds of big pieces for easy coastal beach decor styling.

    One of my favorite things about the styling in my dining room are the whites and tan colors of my vintage pieces.  The neutrals turn the light blue and green of these vintage bottles and sea glass into a focal point, even though they are so simple!

    You can also add some coastal colors with easy accents, such as:

How to Decorate with Coastal Beach DecorTip #4: Use baskets and woven textures.

Even if you’re not going for a coastal beach decor look, baskets and woven elements add wonderful texture to summer decorating!  At the same time, the natural fibers of baskets are perfect for coastal beach decor.  Plus, they are great for organization and can help with some of the storage needs from that decluttering in Tip #2!

On the coffee table, I use these stacked baskets to keep family card games convenient for some quick summer evening fun!

Here are some great options for adding woven texture into your summer decor:

How to Decorate With Coastal Beach Decor Tip #5: Hang up some straw hats!

In our family room, I had fun hanging a collection of thrifted straw hats on my gallery wall, paired with a cute straw bag too.  There is something about hanging simple, every day objects as a collection that turns them into the perfect wall art for coastal beach decor!

Plus, this was super budget-friendly as all of the hats were thrifted.  Most of them were under $3.00!

While collections are great, you can also toss a single hat over the corner of a chair or bedpost for a super quick and simple coastal touch.  Even if you didn’t just come from the beach, your home will have that relaxed feeling!

How to Decorate With Coastal Beach Decor Tip #6: Add tropical greenery.

How do I make my house look coastal?

Another super easy way to add a breezy look to your summer coastal decorating is to incorporate some palm branches.  Actually, I take out some of my other greenery (remember that decluttering of Tip #2!) and replace it with simple palm branches.

That is easy enough for me to do and it’s also completely FREE, as we have a lot of palm trees in our yard!  However, if you do not live in a tropical state, try THESE budget-friendly and beautiful faux palm branches for a low-maintenance and easy style!

You can also just drop by for a glass of lemonade and a chat.  I’ll be happy to cut a few branches for you for free!  Add them to a vase of water and they will stay looking beautiful for weeks!

How to Decorate With Coastal Beach Decor Tip #7: Tuck in a piece of coral.

How to decorate your house in coastal style?

One of the most obvious ways to decorate a coastal-style living room is to add found objects, like coral and shells.  I am separating shells from coral, however, as coral can really make such a gorgeous statement on its own.

If you find real coral in a substantial size, you are likely to pay a good investment price for it.  My husband bought this huge piece for me from an antique store for Mother’s Day one year and it is such a special piece.

Instead of switching out a lot of decor in the music room, which is a small space for a living room, I simply took out a couple of spring accessories, added this large coral, and a couple of other small pieces of coral.  With very little effort, the entire room immediately took on a relaxed and elegant coastal style that I love and enjoy!

Pro Tip:  Real coral can be very expensive.  However, THIS faux coral is incredibly real looking and very budget-friendly.  THESE faux coral pieces are also great deals.  You don’t need a lot to make a beautiful coastal statement in any room!

How to Decorate With Coastal Beach Decor Tip #8: Add a bowl of sea shells!

Sea shells are one of the best and easiest coastal living room ideas out there!  Plus, the natural materials create a really beautiful and organic coastal space.  You can quickly and simply add a coastal touch to any space by adding a pretty bowl of sea shells!  Perhaps you have some shells from a favorite beach trip tucked away somewhere. Summer is the perfect time to pull those out.  Then, put them in a bowl or bottle and add to a summer vignette!

I had a lot of fun with our shell and driftwood collections on my coffee table.  However, even though we have SO MANY, it still wasn’t enough to fill this huge antique trencher.  So, here’s what I did:

How to create a coastal centerpiece:

You can get a big bag of really pretty assorted shells HERE!

These small driftwood pieces are great budget-friendly filler too!

You can shop a variety of gorgeous wooden vessels, perfect for your own summer centerpiece, on my storefront HERE!

How to Decorate With Coastal Beach DecorTip #9: Incorporate ocean-inspired art.

One of my favorite ways to switch up decor for any season is by changing out my art and gallery walls.  Even though art can get a little pricey, I absolutely love these vintage-inspired prints for under $16.  They look like real paintings and are easy to switch out for seasons.  THIS coastal wall decor is perfect for a beach-themed living room.  Plus, they don’t take up storage space!

For under $20, you can have a whole new seasonal gallery wall every season!  I seriously cannot get over how gorgeous they look in a coastal-style living room.  A set of 5 prints that look vintage for under $20?  You can’t beat it!!!  I love to pair mine with thrifted frames for super budget-friendly art on the living room walls!

I also love to pick up vintage art at markets, yard sales, and thrift shops.  This painting that I used on my summer mantel was only $25 at an outdoor market!  You just never know what you might find!

How to Decorate With Coastal Beach DecorTip #10: Decorate with beach-inspired signs.

Can you mix coastal and modern decor?

My answer (just my humble opinion), is YES!  Coastal beach decor accents can work with any kind of decor, from vintage to cottage and from traditional to modern.  Coastal accessories are perfect even with casual boho styles and farmhouse decor!

I added these gorgeous pieces from one of my favorite small businesses, Joyfully Said, to my dining room.  I love how the modern style of the painting is softened with the light wood.  The wood blends perfectly with my vintage European pieces.  The “You, Me, & the Sea” adds a fun, playful touch, which I definitely love for the summer!

I chose to use the light woods and sea glass colors for my Joyfully Said pieces.  However, they have a variety of wood stains, font colors, and even sizes of art with modern coastal designs.  Plus, you can use my coupon code: FRENCHNEST for some summer savings!

They have several different options in their summer collection that will add just the right amount of coastal style to your summer home!  Shop my favorites HERE!

How to Decorate with Coastal Beach Decor Tip #11: Incorporate some pieces with patina.

What style goes with coastal?

I think you can mix coastal beach decor accents with almost any home decor style.  However, my favorite kind of coastal looks definitely have some weathered patina mixed in.

Even if your weathered wood is weathered from sitting on a farm in the midwest, you can mix it with some coastal accents.  All of a sudden, it takes on the look of wood that has been weathered by the sea salt of the ocean over many years.

See how you can use your decor pieces to create a home decor story?!?

I love bringing in some of my favorite architectural salvage pieces to add to coastal-inspired vignettes around our home.  This cabinet vignette, for example, only has one thing that is specific to the coastal beach decor style: the coral candle holder.  However, the mix of rattan, weathered wood, palm branches, and coastal hues all play a part to help tell a coastal home decor story.

Pro Tip: Mix elements to create a coastal style without being overly thematic with your decor.

How to Decorate With Coastal Beach Decor Tip #12: Simplify by decorating with what you use.

Okay, in full disclosure, I don’t like wearing hats and I usually use a different bag for the beach.  However, you can achieve that casual, coastal style by decorating with beautiful items that are functional too!  (Even if you don’t actually use them.  Haha!)

I added my favorite French market bag and a cute hat to the small wall in our entryway.  They are convenient to grab on the way out the door.  At the same time, the woven style and overall look are a perfect complement to a relaxed, lived-in feel of the coastal beach decor style.

A summer home is all about simplicity.  You want to keep your coastal beach decor simple so you have more time for creating special summer memories.  Combining function with decor is a great way to get that simplified look that works so well with a summer coastal decor style.

How to Decorate With Coastal Beach Decor Tip #13: Decorate with stripe patterns.

Summer and stripes just go hand in hand!  Whether it’s on my favorite linen fabric summer dress, a casual pillow, a light-weight throw blanket, or a comfy beach towel, you’ll find blue and white stripes in almost any coastal style!

You can add a quick coastal vibe to any room by adding a stripe pattern with coastal furniture and accessories!

Here are a few favorites to add stripes:

How to Decorate With Coastal Beach Decor Tip #14: Use jute accents.

I love using jute accents around our home.  Actually, I keep jute rugs in more than one room year round.  During the spring and summer, I especially love adding some small jute accents, like pillow covers, placemats, and even table runners.  THESE jute ottomans add perfect beach style too, yet they can be used year round.

Even though I have had these square jute placemats for at least 5 years, they are still some of my favorites.  They are still available for purchase HERE!

Paired with these non-breakable, casual light blue gingham dishes in my dining room, they add a pretty layer with more texture to this everyday summer tablescape.

Jute is easy to maintain and I love that it adds so much texture while still being low-maintenance and easy to style!

How to Decorate With Coastal Beach Decor Tip #15: Add driftwood accessories!

Adding texture is a perfect way to bring in those coastal vibes for summer.  After all, the beach is certainly full of amazing texture, right?!  Consider adding some simple driftwood pieces to summer vignettes around your home.  The light wood tones, whether on big pieces of furniture or small accents like driftwood, are essential for the coastal cottage look.  You can see more ideas about how to include light wood tones for the coastal grandmother home decor style HERE!

As with the coral, you don’t need a lot in order to make a statement.  A couple of key pieces can bring in a subtle coastal style without feeling overly thematic like you’re in Key West!  Haha!

small driftwood piece looks pretty tucked in beside a plant and candle or combined with shells in a bowl.  I enjoyed styling mine in this big trencher on the coffee table.  At the same time, you can use this inexpensive driftwood filler for any bowl or vase around your home!

How to Decorate with Coastal Beach Decor Tip #16: Add flowers!

Flowers are always in style!  Summer is a perfect time to enjoy a fresh bouquet of flowers on a coffee table, nightstand, or even by the kitchen sink!  I especially love to use my vintage vessels to hold pretty flowers.  Over on THIS post, you can find my favorite tips for styling inexpensive grocery store flowers!

On THIS post, I share 3 simple and easy ways to arrange my favorite summertime flowers!

While I love fresh flowers, I don’t always have time or remember to grab some at the grocery store.  However, my favorite faux peonies look so realistic!  I love the white flowers combined with the coastal blue of these pretty vases!  My other favorites are these incredibly realistic faux hydrangea flowers.  I cannot get over how real they look!  Plus, there are a lot of different options for colors of these beautiful faux hydrangeas.

How to Decorate With Summer Coastal Style Tip #17: Create coastal vignettes.

You can give any space a simple coastal look without redecorating the whole room!  In fact, one of my favorite ways to decorate for different seasons and holidays is by creating vignettes throughout the room.

Simply switching a vignette on a coffee table or side table can make your whole living room feel fresh!  At the same time, a new centerpiece on the dining room table or summer coastal art hung on a gallery wall can transform the room!

Here are a few posts to help you decorate this vignette spaces:

How to Decorate With Summer Coastal Style Tip #18: Decorate with summer book titles!

I love using vintage books to decorate our home.  Thrifted books can be great to add a touch of seasonal color to a room.  However, I also love to look for book titles that help tell my home decor story.

Next time you’re out thrifting, check out the book section!  You may come across some books that add those coastal hues.  At the same time, titles that have “ocean, sea, beach, vacation, or coast” could be wonderful details to add to your space!  Whether you have plenty of shelves to line with pretty books or simply add a small stack of vintage book finds to a coffee table vignette, they can add so much interest and character to coastal living room designs.

Over on THIS post, I share over 27 of my favorite ways to decorate with thrifted books!

How to Decorate With Summer Beach Decor Tip #19: Use linen fabrics.

When you’re thinking about the texture you want to bring into your space for summer decorating, make sure to include some linen!  I love wearing linen in the summer and I also love decorating with it!  Linen fabric  pillows, tablecloths, table runners, and even throw blankets are perfect ways to bring this lovely texture with a cohesive look into your home.

I lightened up the layers in my master bedroom for the summer.  This gorgeous linen duvet from Simple Opulence is perfect for the foot of my bed.  It adds a cozy and comfy look while still being light and airy.  At the same time, I am enjoying the softness of these neutral colors too!

I also layered this super soft gauzy coverlet for some neutral pattern and my favorite gauzy throw blanket.

Even though it’s hot outside, the air conditioning is definitely running in our Florida home and I love getting cozy for a good summer movie night!

How to Decorate with Coastal Beach Decor Tip #20: Decorate with travel collections.

Do you have a favorite collection from summer vacations?  If your kids have loaded their beach bags with shells from a trip, this is the perfect season to put those to good use!

Even though my kids are older kids now, they still love to bring home pretty shells and add to our ever growing collection!

Perhaps you collect something that you’ve picked up throughout vacation or summer travels.  Favorite old bottles, postcards, or souvenirs can become a fun conversation piece to enjoy as part of your casual, relaxed summer home style!

How to Decorate With Summer Coastal Style Tip #21: Add beach decor outdoors too!

Don’t forget about the exterior of your home too!  Welcome friends and family into your coastal-style living room with fun coastal touches on your front porch and patio areas. To add a coastal beach decor look to the outside of our home, I kept it simple with striped and floral outdoor pillows, some jute accentsa pretty outdoor umbrella, and weather-resistant outdoor lanterns!

Pro Tip: These outdoor battery-operated candles make a summer night look so relaxing and cozy!

Are you ready for summer?

Now is the time to start planning, gathering your favorite summer styles, simplifying, and preparing your home for a wonderful summer season!

As a mom, these coming weeks are sacred family time and I am so excited to have our summer home ready to make as many wonderful summer memories as we possibly can!

You can browse my favorite summer decor HERE and my favorite “coastal grandmother” home decor style HERE!

I’d love for you to follow me on social media!  You can find my home decor inspiration on Instagram, Pinterestand Facebook!  











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