Looking for a Beach Getaway? Stay home!
Nothing makes me happier than sand between my toes, warm sun and rolling waves. But anything could be further from my reality these days. (I bet I'm not the only one!) I am jealously devouring photos of friend's sunny vacations and scanning travel sites for deals too good to be true. I am daydreaming of the days when the sun is here again and all this snow is gone. So maybe I should stop daydreaming and put myself together a room that's my coastal dream vacation? Sure, my kitchen doesn't include all inclusive food and drinks. And I will have to wash my own towels, but what if I could get halfway to the sunshine by making my own beach vacation room at home?
Here's what my plan would look like:
Is that as appealing to you as it is to me? Here are some basic tips for putting together your own vacation room at home and keep that Canadian summer feeling all year round.
Bring on the Sunshine
Nothing is more reminiscent of the beachside than a room basked in a light, bright, warm colour. Choosing paints, furniture, carpets and accessories that aren't heavy and dark are the first step to sunshine. Now's the time to avoid black and deep grey. You CAN use black and leathers as accents to balance the room but don't choose them as the dominant pieces.
Paint the Snow Away
For a calming beach retreat, choose muted colours that you’d find in nature for your walls and furniture. A neutral palette will allow you to add colour in accessories. The Lunenberg hutch has a casual appeal with a painted cream finish and deep mahogany wood. You can add punches of colour and still keep a casual beach feel in bigger neutral furniture pieces.
Bring in Natural Textures
Think of all the textures you'd feel at the beach -- sisal, linen, stone, soft water and palm leaves. These feelings will capture the essence of the beach and keep you grounded in your plan. Eschew brocade, heavy drapery and tufting for this look. If you are re-covering furniture, think about a heavy cotton in a light colour or a ticking stripe. Even slipcovers are a great alternative to permanently stitching a couch fabric in place; and as an added bonus, they are washable. Adding sisal baskets, leafy palms in big white or colourful pots, and a woven carpet will keep the feeling of sand in your toes and the beach breezes nearby.
Turn on the Light - Naturally
Open the blinds, roll up the heavy carpet and hang some light, breezy curtains. Gauzy window treatments will help visually brighten the room and evoke your sunshine senses. Opt for a simple window treatment that has movement but provides privacy at night and full sun effect when Mr. Golden Sun shines down upon us. Even on cloudy days, closed light curtains can mimic a bright day by reflecting the white of what could be clouds, or, sigh, snow.
If you've been a beachcomber on a previous vacation, haul out those mementos and display them in a meaningful way. Sand? Put some in a mason jar, add a candle and a few small shells and you have a perfect soft night light. Shells? Mount your delicate treasures in deep frames and hang them in the room. Threes work best. Summer photos can be scattered throughout the room. The best part about a beach room is that it doesn't need to be perfect. You can have things a little more sandy than chic. It's a room in which you can relax, put your feet up and serve mimosas in. It doesn't need to be formal or too arranged.
This room can be soothing, calming and fun too. I'm not saying that you need to pull out the plastic shovels, kiddie pool and hula skirt and take it to a comedic level; rather embrace some creativity. Adding a fun lamp that wouldn't work in a traditional space would inject some personality. A boot tray at the door filled with river pebbles instead of a typical doormat can set the mood simply.
I hope this has inspired you to bring a little beach to your house or cottage this year. I can’t wait to let the sun shine in!