How to achieve the ultimate coastal-style home

Sun-drenched finishes say "beach." Photo: Courtesy
Sun-drenched finishes say “beach.” Photo: Courtesy

Two décor styles are popular with Americans and Canadians who have a new home in Mexico. We’ll discuss one of those style next week. Since most expat properties tend to be near the ocean, it will come as no surprise that the other style is coastal.

Coastal décor is best described as a fun and relaxing style that stirs memories of summer vacations of lore. This is one of the fastest growing and most popular décor styles, whether you live on the ocean or just want to evoke the feel of the seaside. Natural light and fabrics, as well as ocean blue and sun-drenched white color tones, constitute the core elements of this style. From there, the category splits depending on which coast you prefer to take your inspiration: tropical, cottage, Mediterranean or American.

For tropical, or island style, think dark greens, floral colors and natural weaves. Teak is also a go-to material to create this vibe. I particularly love this style for homes that are situated in jungle settings. What an excellent way to extend the outside indoors.

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Cottage is arguably the most relaxed of the subsets of coastal décor style. Most furniture pieces in this style coordinate but are not matched. An eclectic approach with a common color palette is the way to tie everything together while maintaining the ultimate relaxed feel. Wood furniture made from reclaimed materials and vintage pieces that catch your interest is the best way to create this look.

The Mediterranean style brings to mind bright terra cotta colors, lots of carving detail, heavy black iron and dark woods. This is a perfect option to decorate a home in Mexico since it evokes the old-world feel of the shores of Spain.

The American style of coastal décor takes a nautical slant with reflective surfaces, navy blues and rope. Relaxed upholstery often with white or off-white slipcovers are a fixture of this coastal style. Shiplap, chevron patterns and decorative lanterns round out little touches that complete the style.

If Coastal décor is the style that appeals, there are some beautiful interior paint colors available in Mexico. The Coastal Cool color card is one of my favorites. It gives me many options to work with depending on whether my client prefers bolder or softer colored walls.

Although white shutters and horizontal blinds are common, billowing white cotton or linen drapes really make the room look relaxed.

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For upholstered goods, stay clear of dark colors. Instead, go light and airy with a white or cream fabric cover. With the new performance fabrics available, there is no reason to be concerned about owning a light-color sofa, sectional or sofa bed. Heavily coated, yet incredibly soft, even red wine left overnight will easily roll off in the morning. Down feather filling or thick foam, with a frame that has curved arms, will create this style.

Choose headboards, tables, chairs and rugs constructed from natural weaves, distressed wood and wrought iron metal to complete the look.

Sheryl Novak is an expat from Canada who has owned a home in Mexico for over 10 years. She is the owner of SOLutions Mexico, an online furniture store and an expert on sourcing all styles of furniture, for all budgets, in Mexico. Buying a home in Mexico? Email furniture@solutionsmexico.com to get a free home inventory list.

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