FIND A SHOWROOM
BUY ONLINE
INSPIRATION
Waves

How Waves Can Help Your Décor

The Space-saving Magic of Flush and Semi-flush Mounts

Small Spaces, Big Impact

California Coastal

5 Things You Can Do to Bring Coastal Vibes to Your Space

July 18, 2019
img

California Coastal

5 Things You Can Do to Bring Coastal Vibes to Your Space

July 18, 2019

Summer's here and the surf's up! Not all of us are at the beach, which is all the more reason to bring the beach home with a cool coastal look. Enter the casual Californian, and with him or her a subset of coastal décor sure to help give you a sunny disposition. California's not just a state; it's also a state of mind. 

As this excellent overview on The Spruce points out, there are several kinds of coastal design, and American coastal itself is breaking down into disparate subcategories. Including California coastal. And as Emily Henderson pointed out so wonderfully in her awesome post on the elements of California style, it may look effortless, but that's the result of good choices and hard work (and sometimes allocating a project's budget to the places where it will make the biggest difference).

So, what is California coastal design and what are five things that you can add that will bring those Californian coastal vibes into your space? Troy Lighting is based in California, so let us be your guide and show you how to ride this wave.

 

1. Natural Fibers & Materials

Any coastal décor interior starts off with a white, bright interior. Some light blue or sage green for a room is good here and there, too, and dark blue or navy blue in moderation for contrast are always welcome, like a classic breton. From there, it's the accents that matter. Evoke colors of sand and sea with natural fibers along a range of beige and tan colors mixed with a bit of blue.

Bringing in natural materials is essential. Whether we're talking driftwood, woodsy and twiny things, or rough nautical rope and woven rugs, natural fibers and elemental objects are not only a key part of the look, they exude that relaxed feel one gets at the beach. Fixtures and furniture with materials like rattan, bamboo, malacca, and so on are a great way to accomplish this.


Homeowner: Kelsey Sutton of Classic Gray Home | Light: Sawyer by Troy Lighting

As another natural element, wooden beams are another timeless aspect of Californian style, and that is no exception when you combine it with coastal. This bedroom brings the white, bright minimalism together with the natural fibers and the wooden beams for a stunning bedroom. Troy's Raef chandelier speaks to the cathedral-like aura of this space where the relationship is cherished and rest rekindles the homeowners.


Design: Catherine & Bryan Williamson of Beginning in the Middle | Light: Raef Chandelier by Troy Lighting

Quick View
 
33.75"W x 23.50"H
$1,096.00
In Stock
1 Finish Available

Quick View
 
28"W x14.50"H
$1,096.00
Estimated 12/30/2019
1 Finish Available

Quick View
 
15.75"W x 7"H
$436.00
Estimated 12/30/2019
1 Finish Available

Quick View
 
16"W x6.75"H
$504.00
In Stock
1 Finish Available

2. Wavy ~ Curvy ~ Groovy

In our last post, we were discussing waves, and how, as a design motif, they're just endlessly cool, endlessly elegant. A few days later, Domino backed us up on it: "The Shape of the Season is Obviously the Wave," they said. And, hey, we're not going to argue with Domino.

Waves of any sort are a definite win in all design schemata, but they're especially apropos in coastal design. Naturally, incorporating something wavy into the space will evoke the ocean meeting the shoreline. (And for true Californian cred, you can take the wave idea one step further and use surfboards as key decorative accents.)

Curvy lines on furniture, iconic wave patterns, grooves cut into lamps and metal—all evoke the sensuous dance of the tides. They're relaxing and easy on the eyes.

Our Sawyer's minimalist form allows the gentle waves of its arms to stand out, while its dark iron frame contrasts with white and off-white spaces, making it a natural choice for a California coastal look.

3. Wrought Iron

The coastal look is essentially a romanticization of the past. On the East Coast, it hearkens back to the days of whaling, when many of the cottages in places like Cape Cod were built and that whole look was developed. On the West Coast, it might be more of a mid-century thing, when Beach Boys tunes were first hitting the airwaves and bohemians like Henry Miller were carving out their niche in a wild Big Sur. Or it might be a conjuring of the rough stuff of Gold Rush pioneers and other Westward-bound folks in earlier days.  The nautical and nostalgic intermingle, but remain firmly grounded in the present with today's style. 

Which is why wrought iron is always such a great look for the coastal home. Dark wrought iron with simple, strong lines contrasts with the bright interior and invokes an older world, while today's pieces carry contemporary sensibilities, such as are evident in our Poppy Hill and Sawyer. Mix that in with some nautical rope, like in our Pike Place, and you got yourself a no-brainer. 

 

Quick View
 
38"W x23"H
$526.00
In Stock
1 Finish Available

Quick View
 
53.50"W x 32.25"H
$392.00
In Stock
1 Finish Available

4. Nautical Accents (But Don't Go Overboard!)

Of course, nothing says coastal living like nautical items. We covered this a while back in a Hudson Valley Lighting post. The challenge is, which accents and how many make for an evocative space with a casual cool? 'Cause tipping the balance is easy.

A decorative paddle or oar, some vintage flotation items (like in the Classic Gray Home picture above), driftwood, lighting that looks like it was from a boat or a lighthouse, some oceanic art—all fine things that add some nautical flavor, giving a space some classic coastal vibes.

Another subtle way to go about it is to add decorative items that look like they are from the ocean in a suggestive sort of way, such as our Uni and Sierra fixtures.

 

Quick View
 
32"W x14.50"H
$1,152.00
Estimated 12/30/2019
1 Finish Available

Quick View
 
50"W x38.50"H
$4,616.00
In Stock
1 Finish Available

Quick View
 
uni
8.50"W x 25.50"H
$614.00
In Stock
1 Finish Available

Quick View
 
uni
30"W x12.50"H
$1,110.00
In Stock
1 Finish Available

Quick View
 
uni
40"W x28"H
$3,046.00
In Stock
1 Finish Available

5. Indoor-Outdoor Living

Lastly, Californian living and all coastal types have an easy-breezy flow between indoor and outdoor spaces, where each feels like a natural continuation of the others. Entertaining, relaxing, cooking, and eating can all happen in one space as easily as the other, and can flow naturally between both depending on weather and whim. 


Homeowner: Jillian Harris | Exterior Sconce: Henry Street by Troy Lighting

Indoor-outdoor living is not just about having a comfortable patio/porch/courtyard space and outdoor kitchen. (Although that's certainly part of it, and thoughtful gardening and lighting go a long way to the usability and beauty of this important space.) It's about large windows and glass doors welcoming the aesthetic grandeur of the outdoors and natural light into the space, and having those natural fibers and materials we talked about earlier easing the transition between the two worlds. This is especially true in areas where one transitions from outside to inside, like the entry and the backdoor, or off a kitchen or bedroom.

What do you think of the California coastal look?

The water's warm if you feel ready to jump in. Surf along by exploring lights of ours that conjure coastal vibes by clicking below.