With Memorial Day upon us, it is legitimately time to start scheming for summer. The new book, Beach House Happy: The Joy of Living by the Water by Antonia Van Der Meer (the editor-in-chief of InStyle’s sister publication Coastal Living) provides a peek into the interiors of an array of seaside homes and excellent fodder for your own personal décor touches. Whether you have a second home, happen to live near a beach, or just want to give a vacation vibe to your landlocked abode, the photo-driven book offers plenty of inspiration. Here are a few tips to steal, drawn from two very different homes that are profiled within its pages.
Staying Neutral: There is something innately relaxing about a space appointed with earth tones—think driftwood, stone and sand. In this modern vacation house (above) in Puerto Aventuras, Mexico, a concrete slab table, white washed wooden cabinets and putty-toned walls harmonize nicely. A collection of rush baskets and clay bowls like the ones pictured here are especially easy to incorporate into any interior to get the look.
Tapping into Texture: Modern can be cozy when soft upholstery and layered textiles enter into the mix. The bed in the same Mexico abode is dressed with crisp white sheets and a nubby, fringed blanket. A soft muslin slipcover on a chair keeps the look tranquil and unfussy. The pale tones have a breeziness that easily telegraphs summer.
Injecting Color: If you adore the energy and fun that bold hues can bring to a room, consider using vibrant pattern with precision. This home in Newport Beach, California does just that by introducing a swirly ikat print from fashion and home designer Trina Turk on a banquette to punctuate an otherwise neutral setting.
In that same Newport Beach home, chartreuse seat cushions on tall white kitchen stools bring hits of sunshine to the gleaming white island.
Adding Artwork: Not-so-serious, framed and colorful prints are an ideal way to dress up the walls of a house dedicated to kicking back. This poster by Super Rural is guaranteed to trigger smiles, and bring a jolt of color to a room. Affordable artwork (Minted.com is another excellent resource) offers you so much flexibility—change it on a whim to suit your mood. Select images and tones that make you happy, as the book's title suggests, and run with it!