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How to Design a Gray Coastal Living Room with Beach Vibe Decor – 16 Tips

How to Design a Coastal Style Room

Courtesy of Houzz – Shop this style at Havenly

How to Design a Gray Coastal Living Room with Beach Vibe Decor - 16 Tips

Meet the Author and Your Future Designer: Julio Arco is a passionate architect with years of experience in architecture, interior design, urban design, and housing. He studied at prestigious universities across North America and Europe. 


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How to Design a Gray Coastal Living Room with Beach Vibe Decor - 16 Tips

Coastal Interior Design – Introduction Video 

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Designing a gray coastal living room is all about creating an airy, light-filled space with beach vibe decor. The perfect coastal-style room uses as much natural light to create a bright and airy atmosphere. 

This coastal theme uses a neutral color palette favoring gray colors. Furnishings should be comfortable and inviting, perfect for relaxing after a long day at the beach.

When it comes to beach vibe home decor, remember to keep things simple, and you’ll create the perfect coastal oasis.

Origins of the Coastal Theme

This style has long been popular for its natural light and airy feel and evolved from how coastal residents originally built their dwellings. While the underlying parameters of the style stay the same, the design differs aesthetically in various countries.

Ultimately, the seaside aesthetic has fused with contemporary and central concepts to become less literal and reflect the homeowner’s values and location. The beach vibe decor is a popular choice for those who want to create a peaceful and relaxing atmosphere in their home.

How to Design a Coastal Style Room

Courtesy of Houzz – Shop this style at Havenly

Main Elements for a Gray Coastal Living Room

This style is all about bringing the outdoors in and creating a space that feels light and airy. The best design takes advantage of light and views.

This coastal theme is inspired by the classic beach bungalow and evokes a feeling of relaxation and coastal-style living. Therefore, it includes natural elements like seashells, netting, rattan and wicker, and gray colors

How to Design a Coastal Style Room

Courtesy of Houzz – Shop this style at Havenly

1.- Gray Colors

Coastal colors are inspired by the natural colors found on a beach. The colors are usually light and airy, with shades of gray tones. These coastal theme color palette will reflect the sunlight, and the airy colors will create a sense of open space

How to Design a Coastal Style Room

Courtesy of Houzz – Shop this style at Havenly

2.- Open Floor Plan

There are several reasons why the beach vibe home decor trend is so popular. For one, it evokes a sense of peace and tranquility. The soft colors and light create a calming and inviting atmosphere.

Another reason why this style is so popular is that it takes advantage of an open floor plan, which is perfect for living rooms. An open floor plan makes a space feel larger and airier. It’s also ideal for entertaining, as it allows you to move freely from one room to another.

How to Design a Coastal Style Room

Courtesy of Houzz – Shop this style at Havenly

3.- Effortlessness

When it comes to coastal theme design, simplicity is key. Whether your living room has a more traditional style or a more modern aesthetic, the goal is to create an area that feels relaxed and comfortable.

This can be achieved through a variety of design elements. For instance, distressed furniture and worn wood convey a sense of effortlessness. To further enhance this feeling, consider using outdoor rugs and carpets. If you have pets, consider reading our guide on pet-friendly rugs.

How to Design a Coastal Style Room

Courtesy of Houzz – Shop this style at Havenly

4.- Natural Textures

Anyone who has ever spent a day at the beach can attest to the fact that there is something about the air that just screams relaxation. Perhaps it is the sound of the waves crashing against the shore or the smell of saltwater in the air.

Whatever the reason, there is no denying that having a coastal living room has a certain appeal. And thanks to this trend, it is now possible to bring a piece of the coast into your home by incorporating natural textures.

Natural textures are an essential element in a gray coastal living room. They add interest and depth to a space while still maintaining a sense of simplicity. Incorporating natural textures into your home is a great way to create a space that feels both stylish and inviting.

There are many ways to add natural textures to your home. For instance, you can use beach vibes decor elements and furniture made of wicker or rattan furniture, sisal rugs, or seagrass baskets. Or, if you want to add a touch of texture to your walls, consider using peel-and-stick wallpapers or fabric wall coverings.

The focus is on creating a calming and relaxing coastal theme, using natural illumination and materials to create an inviting and serene environment. 

How to Design a Coastal Style Room

Courtesy of Houzz – Shop this style at Havenly

5.- Minimal colors

This style is all about achieving a sense of visual tranquility. This can be best achieved by minimizing the number of colors you use and focusing on a grayscale design.

Stick to a delicate, subtle tint of all your desired colors. This will help create a more unified and cohesive look. And remember, the beach vibes are all about capturing the natural lighting, so make sure your windows are uncovered and uncluttered to let the sunlight in and reflect on the light grayscale color palette. 

By following these simple tips, you’ll be well on your way to achieving the perfect coastal interior design style. It’s worth mentioning that colors also psychologically affect our mood, and these materials and colors do have a positive effect on people. 

How to Design a Coastal Style Room

Courtesy of Houzz – Shop this style at Havenly

6.- Stripes Decor

Whether you live on the coast or just want to enjoy the coastal lifestyle, there are many ways to incorporate stripes into your home décor. Coastal-inspired interior design is all about creating a relaxing, natural environment that reflects the colors and textures of the seaside.

One of the easiest ways to achieve this look is by using striped fabrics. Gray-and-white stripes are a classic coastal color scheme, but you can also experiment with different colors and widths of stripes to create your own unique look.

In addition to upholstery and soft furnishings, stripes can also be used in minimal window treatments, rugs, pillows, and other accessories. Horizontal stripes are particularly effective in living rooms with limited natural light, as they help to brighten up the space.

Keep in mind that vertical stripes can make a room feel more spacious, while diagonal stripes can add visual interest. No matter what style you prefer, there’s a way to incorporate stripes into your coastal-inspired interior design.

How to Design a Coastal Style Room

Courtesy of Houzz – Shop this style at Havenly

7.- Abstract Art

As anyone who has ever visited the coast knows, the sound of waves crashing against the shore is both soothing and invigorating. The smell of saltwater in the air is also a unique experience. But how can you bring the feeling of the coast into your home?

One way is to choose coastal-inspired artwork, including colors that are typically light and airy which can help create a feeling of peace and tranquility in your home. If you’re looking for a way to bring the coast into your home, coastal themed art is a great option.

How to Design a Coastal Style Room

Courtesy of Houzz – Shop this style at Havenly

8.- Warm Accents

This style often incorporates natural textures and muted colors inspired by the sand, sea life, and sky.

When it comes to carpeting, jute is always a good choice. Its neutral color blends well with gray colors. At the same time, its natural texture adds a touch of warmth.

Jute is also durable and easy to care for, making it ideal for busy family homes. However, if you have pets, it’s essential to learn about pet-friendly fabrics and how to take care of your furniture.

How to Design a Coastal Style Room

Courtesy of Houzz – Shop this style at Havenly

9.- Pick the Right Materials for your Gray Coastal Living Room


Jute and sisal are two great textiles for adding texture to a space. Both materials have a natural off-white hue that makes them appear a lot like sand, making them ideal for coastal-style rugs. In coastal interior design, natural materials are often used to bring the outdoors in and maximize the available natural illumination.

Jute and sisal are both perfect for this style of interior design, as they add a touch of nature to any space. Additionally, both materials are extremely durable, making them ideal for high-traffic areas. So whether you’re looking to add a coastal flair to your space or simply want a durable and stylish rug, jute or sisal is a great choice.


Wood and bamboo are two essential materials for this style. Both materials add warmth and character to spaces and work well with natural sunlight. Bamboo is especially versatile, as it can be used for furniture, flooring, and accessories.

When collected responsibly, bamboo is one of the most sustainable materials available. As coastal interior design becomes more popular, wood and bamboo will continue to be key materials.


Glass has long been associated with the seaside, thanks to its origins in the sand. And brass (or copper) has been used on boats for centuries, lending a touch of luxury to any coastal interior. When used together, glass and brass can create a beautiful aesthetic that is perfect for homes near the water.

Natural sunlight will bounce off the brass, creating a warm and inviting space. And the glass will help to reflect the light and create an expansive feeling. Whether you’re looking for a coastal-inspired kitchen or a beach-themed bathroom, glass and brass is sure to give your space the perfect final touches.

Natural Fabrics

This style is all about creating a relaxing, beach-inspired space. The best way to achieve this look is by incorporating natural materials and fabrics. Cotton and linen are perfect for this purpose as they are soft and airy, allowing natural sunlight to filter through.

They also have a relaxed, coastal feel that will help to create the perfect atmosphere in your home. When choosing cotton and linen fabrics, be sure to select those that are organic and sustainably sourced. This will ensure that your design is eco-friendly as well as stylish.

How to Design a Coastal Style Room

Courtesy of Houzz – Shop this style at Havenly

10.- Smooth Tiles

One of the easiest ways to create a coastal-inspired space is to use smooth tiles. Smooth tiles are easy to apply and can instantly transform a surface. Look for tiles with nautical designs and gray colors with a sleek aesthetic to create a modern look. Plus, smooth tiles’ cool colors will help create an airy, coastal feel in your home.

11.- Slipcover Furniture

Consider slipcover furniture for your gray coastal living room if you’re looking for a way to update your home’s style. Additionally, you can find slipcover furniture that comes in a variety of prints and colors, so you can easily find the perfect look for your home.

Slipcover furniture is also a great way to experiment with different interior design styles. So if you’re not sure if this style is the right look for you, try slipcovering a piece of furniture and see how you like it. You may be surprised at how much you love the look. Additionally, this is a great pet-friendly technique to care for your furniture!

How to Design a Coastal Style Room

Courtesy of Houzz – Shop this style at Havenly

12.- Light-colored Woods

One of the first guidelines is to keep your aesthetics light and breezy. This means finding a wood shade that complements your design’s other textures and patterns. Dark wood is too dominating and can lack the light, airy feeling that is essential in this beach design style. 

Instead, opt for a lighter, pale tone of wood for pieces for your living room. Wood furniture is essential to this style and can help to create the desired effect. In a word, the wood should be light, airy, and breezy. 

13.- Infuse Pampas Grass

This beautiful plant can help create a soothing atmosphere in any home, whether you live on the coast or not.

Pampas grass grows naturally in coastal areas and is known for its ability to tolerate salt spray and strong winds. It’s also known for its beautiful plumes, which can add a touch of elegance to any room.

When used in living room designs, pampas grass can help to create a sense of space and openness. It can also help to reflect light, brightening up even the darkest corners of your home. So, if you’re looking to inject some style into your home décor, then pampas grass is the perfect place to start.

How to Design a Coastal Style Room

Courtesy of Houzz – Shop this style at Havenly

14.- Dark Blue Accents

Deep ocean blue is often associated with coastal-style interior design and can evoke feelings of relaxation and serenity. The color is also known to reflect natural illumination well, making it a popular choice for both small and large spaces.

If you’re looking to add a touch of style to your gray coastal living room, dark blue accent colors are a great way to do so. And because they reflect light so well, they’re also a great way to brighten up a room. 

How to Design a Gray Coastal Living Room with Beach Vibe Decor - 16 Tips

Courtesy of Houzz – Shop this style at Havenly

15.- Modern Nautical Decor

A coastal theme living room is more than just nautical motifs. It’s a feeling evoked by natural light, airy fabrics, and a relaxed atmosphere. And while modern nautical decor and motifs help, focus on creating a space that feels open, bright, and calming. Then, add some beach-themed accents to drive home the coastal vibe. Stick to linen fabrics with small anchor or sailboat designs. 

How to Design a Gray Coastal Living Room with Beach Vibe Decor - 16 Tips

Courtesy of Houzz – Shop this style at Havenly

16.- Hardwood floors

Not only do hardwood floors provide a coastal aesthetic, but they are also easy to care for and durable, especially if you have pets. In addition, hardwood floors can help to reflect natural light, making your home feel bright and airy.

How to Design a Gray Coastal Living Room with Beach Vibe Decor - 16 Tips

Courtesy of Houzz – Shop this style at Havenly

Design a Gray Coastal Living Room -FAQ

Where can I hire coastal interior designers?

You can hire an interior designer at Havenly. Your interior designer will create a floor plan for you and suggest furniture and decor that fits your style and budget.

What is the difference between beachy and coastal styles?

If you as an interior designer, you’ll be told there is a difference between the two styles. For example, the beachy style is more laid-back, while the coastal is a little more polished.

What are some characteristics of beach house interior design?

Beachy style house interior design is airy, light, and breezy with a casual and relaxed atmosphere. The colors are usually pale and muted, and the furniture is often wicker or rattan. Seashells, coral, and other nautical motifs are common.

How do I make my living room feel coastal?

The use of clean lines, lighter woods, and crisp whites accompanied by an accent color such as blue, will help achieve this look.

What is the best material and color for a coastal coffee table?

There is no one answer to this question as it depends on your personal style and the overall look you are going for in your space. However, some popular materials include light-colored wood, glass, and wicker. 

How to Design a Gray Coastal Living Room with Beach Vibe Decor - 16 Tips

Hire an Online Interior Designer at Havenly

There are several online interior design websites, but Havenly is your best option to hire from a robust list of interior designers that will help you in decorating and creating the perfect dog-friendly home. 

When you sign up for Havenly, you will take a short quiz about your design style and what you are looking for in a designer. Havenly will then match you with a designer who will help you select paint colors, furniture, and accessories that are both stylish and safe for your furry friend.

In addition, your Havenly designer will be able to provide tips on how to create a space that is both comfortable for your dog and inviting for guests. With Havenly, creating a beautiful and functional home that your dog will love is easy and stress-free.

Click here if you want to learn more about Havenly or book an interior designer and get 25% off your design package if you click here!

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M.Arch. Julio Arco
M.Arch. Julio Arco

Bachelor of Architecture - ITESM University
Master of Architecture - McGill University
Architecture in Urban Context Certificate - LDM University
Interior Designer - Havenly
Architecture Professor - ITESM University

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