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Modern Coastal Decorating Ideas for Your Home

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Recently, I realized that since I started adding a touch of modern coastal decor to our home, I don’t need to do a lot of seasonal decorating. By sticking with a color scheme that reflects the ocean and sky–including crisp whites, deep blues and neutral hues–everything seems to work together, no matter what time of year it is!

Although there are many versions of coastal style, my favorite is modern coastal interior design, which is light, minimal, and fresh, incorporating a mix of relaxed beach house and classic tailored styles.

Inspired by the organic colors and textures of nature, contemporary coastal decor might include light woods, baskets, natural fiber rugs, woven light fixtures, and easy-care fabrics like cotton and linen.

Because it’s based on natural elements, coastal decor never goes out of style.  As design styles and trends change, coastal style can easily evolve and adapt–for example, incorporating lighter wood tones rather than dark, or featuring softer neutral hues rather than saturated colors.

When incorporating coastal design in your home, try to use a light touch.  Since beach house style is essentially carefree and relaxed, it’s easy to go overboard with coastal decorating.  (Believe me, I’ve gone there and am still editing! 😉)  Some things to avoid overdoing:  signs, rope, anchors, nautical/boat themes, starfish/crab/lobster motifs, etc.

For a modern coastal look, start with a background of white and off-white, as well as soft colors of the sand and sky, in crisp, casual fabrics like cotton and linen.  Then add in some natural elements, including lots of baskets, light woods, and lovely textures through rugs, pillows, and throws:

 

For inspiration, you might want to take a look at sites like Serena and Lily, Dear Keaton, or Jenni Kayne, all of which convey the relaxed California coastal look everyone’s loving right now.

Modern Coastal Decorating Ideas for Your Home

Below, you’ll find several examples of how you can incorporate fresh, modern coastal decor in different rooms in your home:

Modern Coastal Living Room Ideas

I love this gorgeous living room!  The striped side chairs, natural fiber rug, and light wood mantel and shelves add the perfect touch of modern coastal style to this space.  Similar chairs here, here, and here.  From Pure Salt Interiors:

Beautiful modern living room idea with striped chairs and built in shelves and cabinets next to TV and fireplace - living room ideas - living room decor - white living room - modern living room

This beautiful living room, designed by Livingston Interiors, is a great example of modern coastal style.  A neutral color palette, light touches of blue, grey-toned woods, and natural elements add a light and airy feeling to this space:

Light and lovely living room Interior Design: Livingston Interiors · Photography: Mol Goodman · Builder: STN Builders · Location: Irvine, California · Style: Transitional

I also love this stunning modern coastal living room from Kate Marker Interiors, with its light wood beams and accent pieces, natural fiber rug, and soft blue and grey hues:

Beautiful light filled living room with wood beams and neutral tones - Kate Marker Interiors

Soft, neutral tones and a round coffee table create a warm and inviting space to relax.  From Pure Salt Interiors:

A contemporary living room with warm coastal style - living room ideas - transitional decor - modern living room - round coffee table

Recently, I’ve been trying out some new looks in our living room, below, as I wanted to make this area a bit more casual and comfy for summer. We moved in the sectional and coffee table from our hearth room / TV area and added a new rug, upholstered ottomans, and different artwork.

White and black living room design with modern coastal touches, picture frame wall molding, slipcovered sectional, lidded basket, striped rug and round table - jane at home - Benjamin Moore Simply White wall color #style #coastal #neutral #interiorliving room sources

Our new living room arrangement is kind of a “test drive.” Since we loved having the sectional in the TV area, I’m not sure how long this space will stay this way. 

But I’m really loving the lighter, more casual feeling in here, so if we end up moving the sectional back to the hearth room, I think I’ll be shopping for new furniture for this space!

Baskets are one of my favorite ways to bring a modern beach house feeling to our home.  As far as I’m concerned, you can never have too many!  And the best thing about baskets is they never go out of style!

Summer home decor ideas using baskets in the living roomsources

For more living room decorating ideas, see this post:  Modern Living Room Ideas I Love.

In the family room

The family room/great room/TV room is the perfect place to bring a touch of casual coastal style to your home.  In the beautiful space below, from Lindye Galloway Interiors, the wood beams, neutral color palette, striped pillow, shelf styling, and pop of classic blue on the cabinetry and in the rug, bring a fresh and comfortable feeling to this modern coastal family room:

Love this warm and inviting living room with built in shelving and gorgeous wood beams #coastaldecor #livingroomdecor #bluedecor ⠀⠀⠀⠀

This space is actually a sitting area adjacent to a master bedroom; however, I thought I’d share it here because it’s a great example of how to decorate a small living room or family room with modern coastal style.  From Pure Salt Interior Design:

Beautiful modern living room with soft neutral colors and round ottoman - living room ideas - transitional living room

I also love this casual living space from Kate Marker Interiors, with its show-stopping light fixture and soft colors of the sand and sky:

Beautiful light-filled living room with builtin shelves and beaded coastal chandelier - Kate Marker

 

Here’s another modern coastal family room from Pure Salt Interiors.  I love the soft neutral tones they used in this space.

Beautiful modern coastal living room design

Hanging rattan chairs add a boho beach house aesthetic to the living room, as shown in this contemporary coastal home designed by Julie Howard for Timber Trails Development Company, via Home Bunch:

Hanging swing chairs a tiled fireplace surround light coastal decor and French Doors in James River Gray Benjamin Moore paint color #livingroom #livingroomdecor #coastaldecor #coastalstyle #BenjaminMooreJamesRiverGray #Frenchdoors #beachy #beachhouse
This beautiful sitting area off the kitchen incorporates soft neutrals, wood beams, and a gorgeous grouping of chairs around a striking coffee table to create a luxurious, yet approachable, coastal living room design.  From Pure Salt Interiors:

Modern coastal living room with four chairs around a coffee table | keeping room | sitting area | modern coastal decor

We have a similar small living room in our home, where we hang out and watch TV most evenings.  I like to bring a relaxed, beach house feeling to this space with a round wood coffee table, natural textures, coastal artwork, a blue & white area rug, and slipcovered seating (this is the Gronlid sectional from IKEA, which is no longer available–here’s a similar alternative):

Coastal home decor in the living room - jane at homehearth room sources

Modern Coastal Dining Room Ideas

The lovely dining room below, from Jill Egan Interiors, shows how versatile and elegant coastal decor can be.  From the soft ivory slipcovered chairs, to the large coral decorative piece on the credenza, to the natural wood elements, this space evokes a feeling of casual elegance. The stunning light fixture reminds me of a cascading waterfall!

Isn’t this lovely ... a narrow table in the dining room allowing closer conversations, along with slipcovered dining chairs for a beautiful modern California coastal look

Artwork is an easy, yet impactful way to bring a touch of modern coastal style to the dining room, as shown in this beautiful space from Kate Lester Interiors:

Modern dining room with rustic wood table, black chairs and lantern light, and modern coastal artwork

Another way to add a touch of contemporary coastal style to the dining room is by adding an oversized woven chandelier, as seen in this beautiful space from Brynn Olson Design:  (see my lighting post for more ideas)

Dining Area | Breakfast Nook Idea | Woven Light | Round Table | Modern Chairs | Light Woods | Brynn Olson | #interiordesign #dining #lighting

I love this beautiful dining room from Light and Dwell–it shows that simple touches like a striped rug and beautiful chandelier can add a fresh, modern coastal feeling to a space:

Soft neutral tones and a white dining table and chandelier lend an elevated, modern coastal feeling to this stunning dining space from Kate Marker Interiors:

 

I added a touch of coastal style to our dining room with woven chairs, as well as a natural jute rug (I’m still on the hunt for a new dining table!):

Modern coastal decor in the dining room: woven chairs and jute rug - jane at homedining room sources

For more dining room ideas, see this post:  Modern Dining Room Decorating Ideas.

Modern Coastal Kitchen Ideas

Whether you opt for lots of woven elements, glass & brass, light woods, or just an abundance of fresh white, there are many ways to bring a touch of modern coastal decor to the kitchen, as shown in the lovely spaces below. 

Striped slipcovered counter stools and brass pendant lights add a fresh feeling to this beautiful coastal cottage kitchen design from Lindye Galloway Interiors:

Gray striped upholstered counter stools sit at a gray wash wood island topped with a white quartz countertop illuminated by Goodman hanging Lamps hung from a white coffered ceiling.

A beautiful beach house style kitchen, with an abundance of white, cone pendant lights, and wooden counter stools.  From Pure Salt Interior Design:

Beautiful modern white kitchen with a beach house aesthetic - kitchen remodel - kitchen ideas - modern coastal decor

This lovely California kitchen, from Caroline Kilmartin, has a wonderful, modern beach house vibe, and is a long-time favorite of mine:

Beautiful Kitchen Inspiration #kitchen #kitchendesign #kitcheninspo #kitchenremodel #kitchenideas

Rattan counter stools (we have the same ones in our kitchen) and glass pendant lights add a fresh feeling to this contemporary coastal kitchen by Livingston Interiors:

Modern coastal decor in the kitchen - Viola Remodel - Gallery — Home | Livingston Interiors

Here’s another example of modern coastal style in the kitchen, incorporating gorgeous pendant lights and woven counter stools.  From Pure Salt Interiors:

Modern coastal kitchen design Eastside Costa Mesa — Pure Salt Interiors - #kitchen #kitchendesign #kitchenremodel #kitchendecor #home #style

The light and airy coastal-inspired kitchen shown below was designed and styled by Studio McGee and Erin Hansen for Christine Andrew.  Here is a source for the beautiful counter stools:

Beautiful white kitchen pendant lighting ideas you'll love - modern coastal kitchen decor with beautiful brass and white pendant lighting over the island and woven counter stools - Christine Andrew - kitchen ideas - coastal kitchen - modern coastal kitchen - kitchen decor - kitchen design

A wonderful example of modern coastal decorating, the kitchen below features an abundance of white, striped counter stools, and a gray-blue kitchen island (painted with Sherwin Williams Smoky Candle).  From AGK Design Studio, via Home Bunch:

California modern coastal kitchen with grey blue island and striped counter stools | kitchen design | kitchen ideas | coastal farmhouse | coastal cottage | blue kitchen island

Here’s another view of this lovely kitchen, with a better look at those wonderful director’s chair style stools:

California modern coastal kitchen with grey blue island and striped counter stools | kitchen design | kitchen ideas | coastal farmhouse | coastal cottage | blue kitchen island

Beautiful warm woods, exposed beams, and coastal style pendant lights make this lake house kitchen feel cohesive and inviting – from Park and Oak Interior Design:

Light woods and whites - lake house coastal decor in the kitchen - Park and Oak #kitchenremodel #kitchendesign #kitchenideas

Woven seating, pendant lights, natural woods, and an abundance of white perfectly convey beach house style in this open-concept kitchen and dining area from The Grove Byron Bay

Beautiful coastal decor in the kitchen #kitchendesign #kitcheninspo #kitchenremodel #kitchenideas

 

Beautiful modern kitchen design with dark black vanity and woven counter stools - pure saltPure Salt Interiors

 

Beautiful modern kitchen design with off white cabinets and woven counter stools - kitchen remodel - kitchen ideas - kitchen decor - kitchen lighting - studio mcgeeStudio McGee

 

Love this beautiful kitchen design with blue and white slipcovered counter stools and white cone pendant lights over the island - approachable, everyday modern style - kitchen remodel - kitchen lighting - modern coastal kitchen - brooke wagner designBrooke Wagner Design

Natural textures and pops of white and blue add a light touch of coastal style to our kitchen:

Organic textures, open shelving and touches of blue and white add a touch of modern coastal / beach house style to our kitchen - jane at home - kitchen remodel - kitchen decor - kitchen ideaskitchen sources

For more kitchen decorating ideas, see this post:  Beautiful Kitchen Design Ideas to Inspire Your Next Renovation.

Modern Coastal Bedroom Ideas

As in the kitchen, there are countless ways to bring a touch of contemporary coastal style to the bedroom.  Here’s one of my favorite coastal bedrooms, from Marie Flanigan Interiors.  The shiplap and four-poster bed add a hint of coastal farmhouse style to this space:

Modern coastal bedroom decor and design ideas #home #style #interiordesign

This might be the space that inspired my love of modern coastal decorating.  I love the fresh, relaxed feeling and interesting textures in this boho bedroom design from Amber Interiors:

Beautiful boho beach house master bedroom #home #style #bohobedroom #whitebedroom

Something as simple as a striped pillow, woven pendant light, or a tasseled throw blanket can add a beautiful touch of the beach to the bedroom, as shown in this lovely space by Studio Life Style, via My Domaine:

Loving Lately: This Majestic California Home

A beautiful four-poster bed, soft colors, warm woods, and natural fabrics bring a modern yet approachable feeling to this lovely coastal bedroom from Pure Salt Interiors:

Calm and serene master bedroom with modern coastal touches - Pure Salt Interiors

White walls, casual fabrics, natural textures, coastal-inspired artwork, and a hint of stripes lend a light and breezy feeling to this wonderful master bedroom from Amber Interior Design:

Master Bedroom Decorating Ideas #home #style #interiordesign

Contemporary artwork is a great way to add a touch of modern coastal decor to the bedroom, as shown in this beautiful space from Pure Salt Interior Design:

Beautiful guest bedroom inspiration with a modern coastal / beach house aesthetic - bedroom decor - boho bedroom

 

The coastal artwork above the bed in our master bedroom was purchased locally a couple of years ago, but I found a few similar pieces, which I share on my artwork favorites page.

Blue and white calming master bedroom suite with modern coastal touches - jane at homeour master bedroom sources

For more bedroom ideas, see this post:  Modern Bedroom Decorating Ideas for a Dreamy Master Suite.

Modern Coastal Bathroom Ideas

The bathroom is one of the best spots to try out a touch of modern coastal style–especially in a small powder or guest bath, where you can get really creative.

Vertical shiplap and a light wood louvered vanity add an elevated beach house feeling to this small bathroom design from Studio McGee:

A dark blue vanity, as well as brass lantern sconces, and a large basket give a coastal feeling to this lovely bathroom.  From Mindy Gayer Design:

Beautiful modern master bathroom with dark blue vanity, marble countertop, and brass gold accents - bathroom remodel - bathroom design - bathroom decor

The light wood vanity, as well as the chrome fixtures and striped rug, create a beautiful coastal-inspired bathroom.  From Pure Salt Interiors:

Beautiful bathroom inspiration - light wood vanity with black pulls and chrome faucets and sconces

When we remodeled our guest bathroom last year, I wanted to add a touch of modern coastal style to this space without going overboard, so I simply painted the vanity (with Benjamin Moore Van Deusen Blue) and added a striped rug and towels, a few woven elements, and plenty of white:

How I added a touch of modern coastal style to our guest bathroom - bathroom decor - bathroom remodel - small bathroom ideas - blue vanity - Benjamin Moore Van Deusen Blueour guest bathroom sources

For more bathroom ideas, see my post, Beautiful Bathroom Design & Decor Ideas You’ll Love.

Modern Coastal Entryway Ideas

Shiplap walls, a natural fiber rug, and a glorious blue door create the quintessential coastal entryway, located on Sullivan’s Island, South Carolina.  From Barrow Building Group:

Shiplap walls, a natural fiber rug, and a glorious blue door create the quintessential coastal entryway.  From Barrow Building Group.

Handled two-toned baskets and a curved natural wood console table bring a coastal aesthetic to this light and airy entryway from Studio McGee:

Modern coastal decor in the entryway from Studio McGee

I love this beautiful beach house entryway with its vertical shiplap walls, woven pendant light, lidded baskets, and oversized mirror, from Pure Salt Interiors:

Beautiful modern coastal entryway with round mirror and baskets - beach house decor

 

A seashell gathered on one of our family trips to Charleston is displayed in a glass case in our entryway–it’s a happy reminder of my favorite place–the beach.

Blue cabinet and round mirror with picture frame molding (moulding)in the entrywayentryway sources

For more entryway and foyer ideas, see this post:  Stylish Entryway Ideas for a Beautiful First Impression.

On the Patio

With its casual atmosphere and separation from the rest of the house, the patio is the perfect place to experiment with modern coastal decorating. Here are a few outdoor spaces with a fresh, contemporary coastal look. 

This beautiful patio area from Pencil and Paper Co., with its slipcovered furniture, striped pillow, and touches of bamboo, sets the ideal tone for summer relaxing and entertaining.

Beautiful outdoor patio space with a modern coastal vibe perfect for summer entertaining

A beautiful outdoor dining area and covered patio.  The oversized woven pendant lights, gray-washed dining table, and unique dining chairs add a modern coastal feeling to this space.  From Pure Salt Interiors.

Beautiful modern coastal outdoor dining area and covered patio

Striped cushions, sleek lanterns, and wicker furniture create a beautiful modern coastal outdoor living area.  From Design Works, via Style Me Pretty:

Beautiful modern coastal patio design idea with fireplace

Hanging rattan chairs and a cool driftwood-like light fixture add a touch of modern coastal decor to this beautiful covered outdoor space, from Shop sKout, via Domino:

Beautiful coastal outdoor living space with hanging swings

On our covered patio, floaty white curtains, baskets, and an abundance of blue and white bring a coastal feeling to our outdoor space.

Modern coastal touches on the patio - jane at homeour patio sources

For more patio decorating ideas, see this post: Beautiful Patio Ideas for Relaxed Outdoor Living.

coastal decor finds:

 

Thank you so much for stopping by! I hope you found lots of ideas to help you bring a touch of contemporary coastal style to your home!  Make sure to read my sister post, Modern Beach House Decorating Ideas: 5 Easy Ways to Refresh Your Style, for more modern coastal decorating ideas!

If you’re looking for modern coastal pillows, furniture, modern coastal lighting, rugs, or decor, see my page, Modern Coastal Favorites.  xo jane

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  • Reply
    Alison
    January 15, 2021 at 9:06 pm

    So many beautiful examples of modern coastal style, including your own! 🙂

    • Reply
      Jane
      January 16, 2021 at 12:58 pm

      Thank you for your sweet words, Alison! You are so kind. Have a wonderful weekend! xo Jane

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  • Reply
    Melissa
    December 21, 2020 at 10:58 am

    Hi Jane! Love these coastal decorating ideas. Thank you for sharing! I’ll definitely be checking back when I refresh my master bedroom in my beach cottage! -Melissa http://www.beachlifebliss.com

  • Reply
    Teresa Murley
    December 15, 2020 at 2:41 pm

    Hi Jane, I just found your website. I love this style! I had been calling it traditional with a little coastal. You are calling it modern coastal. I am about to style a bedroom and know that I want white, white, white with just hints of blue (teal or aqua) but I am overwhelmed in picking the white. There are a million choices. And then what color should the floor be? Would white carpet be too much white? And does the trim and ceilings get the same white color as the walls? Could you point me in the right direction? Thanks.

    • Reply
      Jane
      December 17, 2020 at 11:03 am

      Hi Teresa! Thank you so much for your kind words. I love your ideas and think if you love white, you should go for it and do what makes you happy! I don’t think white carpet would be too much–if you wanted to add in some color later, you could always lay an area rug over the carpet. As far as paint colors go, I used White Dove and Simply White, both by Benjamin Moore, throughout our home–both of which have a warm undertone. I also have a post on how to choose the right white paint color for your home if you need some help in that area. We painted most of the ceilings in our home the same color as the walls, and I try to use the same color of white for the baseboards; however, I usually use a semi-gloss sheen for the trim and a satin or matte sheen on the walls. I hope this helps! I also have a “bedroom” board over on Pinterest with hundreds of ideas–that might help, too. Happy decorating! I know it will be beautiful.xo

      • Reply
        Suzanne Kramer
        June 18, 2021 at 1:36 pm

        Which white did you use in the living room with the light teal French doors? It’s so beautiful.

        • Reply
          Jane
          June 19, 2021 at 4:22 pm

          Hi Suzanne, the wall color in that space is Benjamin Moore Classic Grey. Have a great weekend! xo

  • Reply
    Donna
    December 1, 2020 at 3:29 am

    Love Love Love your decor
    I’m looking at a white leather kind of modern sectional for my living room. Could I incorporate this into your look. The walls are white and the floors are luxury vinyl in a light plank tone. I’m also having them do a shiplap over my fireplace. I would like to accent in denim and blue tones.
    Just worried that couch may be to modern for coastal, but I think I could mix.

    • Reply
      Jane
      December 1, 2020 at 11:37 am

      Thank you so much for your lovely comment, Donna! I love the idea of a modern sectional for your living room–in fact, many designers are adding modern pieces to coastal style spaces, and I think it looks fabulous. You might want to check out Serena & Lily’s website to see how they incorporate modern furniture pieces in coastal living rooms. Your living room sounds beautiful, and I hope you’ll share an “after” photo with me when you’re done! xo Jane

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    Lisa Cagle
    March 6, 2020 at 11:19 am

    Hi Jane, I love your blog! I live on the coast in South Florida. My question is regarding finishes of lighting, faucets, artwork etc. Do they need to match throughout the house? I have some art framed in gold and some in black, I have mostly stainless faucets but black base lamps in the adjoining dining room. Do I need all my lighting to be in the same family (gold or silver or black)?

    • Reply
      Jane
      March 6, 2020 at 3:58 pm

      Hi Lisa! Thank you so much for your lovely comment. Mixing metals and finishes throughout your home is 100% okay–in fact, it’s more than okay! The days of having to match everything are over, and I couldn’t be happier. When our home was built, we had brushed nickel finishes installed throughout (which was in style at the time), but as we’ve updated we’ve started adding touches of black and brass in metals, lighting and finishes. I think it adds more depth and interest to a space when things don’t all match perfectly, so feel free to mix and match to your heart’s desire! xo jane

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