Bring the Modern Beach House Aesthetic into Your Space
These 9 products will make you feel like you’re in an airy, contemporary living room looking out on Nantucket Harbor
Dating back to the mid-eighteenth century, the practice of escaping to seaside retreats to focus on one’s health and physical well-being is alive and well today—albeit somewhat modified—in the modern take on the beach house. “A house by the sea conjures magical notions of an oasis. At the mention of one, we imagine a place geared for relaxation and outdoor living, a place for whiling away afternoons with a book.” So says design writer and editor Jaci Conry in her newest book, At Home on the Water (Gibbs Smith, 2022), which surveys 12 coastal homes along the East and West Coasts of the United States.
In this double-height living room of a coastal retreat overlooking Nantucket Harbor in Massachusetts, the beach house mentality is on display with a clean, modern twist. Working with expert designer and director of interiors for Workshop/APD, Michael Ellison, the homeowners painted the walls white to create a cool, clean look throughout the residence, and then added warmth to each room through the furnishings, rugs, and accessories.
The sheer height of the room allows for two levels of windows oriented toward the water so that an abundance of sunlight and fresh air can permeate the space. To break up the long swath of gray from the stone fireplace that reaches the ceiling, the owners purchased an enormous abstract painting at a Christie’s auction that brings in shades of green, blue, gray, and tan that the rest of the furnishings play off of. Jewel green lounge chairs balance the neutral tones of an off-white couch and pale pink throw pillows. To add to the dreamy, coastal charm, a small reading loft against one wall creates a vantage point to look out across the space and provides a cozy hanging chair to curl up in while reading a book.
As Conry notes, “Homes by the sea are much beloved by their inhabitants. They are places to which people come home again and again when they’re in need of ease and serenity, breaks from lives of busyness.” Ready to slow down and relax in your space with the faint scent of saltwater wafting through the air? Here are nine editors’ picks to get you started.
1. Contemporary Sculpted Wooden Coffee Table with Asymmetrical Marble Top // 1stdibs.com
2. Matte Black Terracotta Table Lamp // burkedecor.com
3. White Oak Half Moon Candle Holder // thepostsupply.com
4. Latte Ace Lounge Chair in Tuscan Green // insideweather.com
5. Folding Camp Stool // lifeintents.com
6. Nanna Ditzel Alu-Rattan Hanging Egg Chair // potterybarn.com
7. William Crosby, Signs of Spring, 2022, Acrylic on Canvas, 16″ x 20″ // portlandartgallery.com
8. Linger LED Mini Pendant // lumens.com
9. Ceni Fresh White Sofa // article.com