9 Easy Living Room Ideas for Your Coastal or Cottage Home

Your living room is a hub of activities, from lounging for movie night to hosting a gathering of family and friends. Whether you’re sprucing up your space for the holidays or because you’re simply ready for a refresh, you’ve come to the right spot because coastal living room ideas are among our favorite subjects. Living rooms are the places in the home that are most easily updated and can be the most impactful!

Whether your living room is large, small, or uniquely shaped, we have a few tips and tricks for you to consider.

You’re Going to Love These Coastal Living Room Ideas

Here are some living room ideas to get you started in your coastal or cottage home:

Living Room Idea #1: An Open Floor Plan Still Reigns!


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While some may suggest an open floor plan is on the way out, we still find them to be a lovely common feature in most coastal homes. Why? Because it’s an efficient use of a room and an easy way to combine spaces for maximum impact. This gives the homeowners flexibility in how they design their living spaces. When you design the floor plan, it is important to consider the available windows in the house and position your furnishings accordingly. You should avoid blocked views or cut-off windows because they do not promote an airy atmosphere.

RELATED: Looking for Inspiration? 7 Modern Living Rooms You’ll Love

Living Room Idea #2: Millwork Makes a Space

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The horizontal shiplap applications from the 2010s may have seen their heyday, but millwork in a coastal home will never go out of style. Make your coastal or cottage living room come to life when you dress the walls with white-painted woodwork, such as beadboard wainscoting, board, and batten, white-washed paneled walls, or vertical shiplap.

Driftwood, weathered wood, natural marbles, ash, and bamboo on your walls and ceilings will easily create the coastal look in your living room. But be sure to include a few darker stained pieces to help anchor the room full of light palettes.

Living Room Idea #3: Accessorize with Sea and Shore Treasures

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No coastal living room is complete without paying homage to the sea! An easy way to make it coastal is to introduce treasures from the sea and shore as your interior decoration. Those bags of seashells, sea glass, stones, or any other little things you pulled out from the sea during your beach-combing tour will come in handy and use them to create simple art to display in your living room.

Not near the ocean to collect these lovely treasures? No problem! Here at Cottage & Bungalow, we offer many gorgeous shell decor items to consider.

Living Room Idea #4: Texture, Texture, Texture

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From cool and modern to cozy and homey, texture can have a big impact on the aesthetics of a space.

Simply put, without texture, a space will fall flat. It’s crucial to look at the room and bring an area together with mixed materials for vibrancy and warmth. It’s a way of adding depth and dimension to a room as well as comfort. The use of texture in tactile items such as fabrics, wood, and stone adds physical comfort and visual appeal to a room. It’s essential to layer textural materials and combine them with one another.

You can also add textural pieces through thoughtful accents such as vases, table lampsdecorative pillows, area rugs, and side tables. These pieces can add another bit of coastal flair to your space while also creating a focal point in your living room and defining the space.


Living Room Idea #5: Bring In Coastal Patterns

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You can try combining various patterns for your coastal living room, such as stripes, solids, or large-scale prints with dramatic colors. You could also introduce different textures into small spaces by adding a rich rug over hardwood floors. Coastal rugs are ideal because they do not date quickly and bring visual interest to the floor while staying neutral enough to handle any color palette changes.

RELATED: Cottage & Bungalow’s Ultimate Rug Guide

Living Room Idea #6: Soft & Natural

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You can create a coastal look without sacrificing elegance and style. Consider furniture that’s not too stuffy or ostentatious but comfortable and casual for an inviting feel.

It’s also a good idea to use natural fibers throughout the space, such as cane, rattan, sisal, seagrass, or jute. Go for knotted wool for your floor coverings, including hand-tufted rugs. They will create a welcome environment on the beach without compromising on your style and elegance.


Living Room Idea #7: Quintessential Coastal is Light & Bright

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The most inviting coastal living rooms are light, airy, and bright, and they should not feel too closed-in or claustrophobic. The easiest way is to utilize drapes, furniture arrangements, and other methods to expose as much natural light as possible. Use lighter colors on the walls and consider introducing darker colors through accessories like throw pillows or area rugs for a nice pop of contrast.

Even if you live thousands of miles inland, you can push back those drapes over your cottage windows and let the sunlight and the wonderful outdoor views in. Obscuring your beach or cottage views should be the last thing on anyone’s mind.

Living Room Idea #8: Add Character with Bold Color Pairings

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While light, bright and neutral is synonymous with “coastal home decor,” something is exciting about a space that is bursting with color. This colorful room from Dering Hall designers is more than enough inspiration to go big once and for all. Bold color pairings are unexpected, but adding an accent wall in classic blue or deep green is a quick and easy way to add instant panache.

RELATED: Living Room Paint Ideas for Your Beach House

Living Room Idea #9: Add a Statement Chandelier

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Lighting is important in any living room, no matter your style. When designing your coastal home’s living room, make space for an eye-catching chandelier. Living room chandeliers are great for brightening the space while instantly elevating the style.

Other types of lighting are important too! Sconces or wall lamps can be installed around seating areas, so they provide adequate light for reading. You may also want to invest in table and floor lamps, so enough light for general household use.

It’s easy to create a space you’ll love when you look for inspiration. Visit Cottage & Bungalow for beautifully crafted coastal furniture and beach decor.

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