15 relaxed rooms for summer living
Bright dining room
Seahorses from a garden antique store are the wow factor in the dining room of a Hamptons cottage decorated by Leslie Klotz. The vision for the cottage was "to make it feel like a bright beachy cottage in summer, and warm and comfortable in winter," Klotz says. Louis XVI-style dining chairs are covered in a jaunty shade of chartreuse leather, and backed in coral and white print. The table is from Liza Sherman Antiques.
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Nantucket living room
In the living room of a Nantucket house, designer T. Keller Donovan reveals his genius for turning tradition on its head. Wicker furniture has surprisingly modern silhouettes. "There's a nautical feeling to things like the trim on the curtains and the piping on the upholstery," he says. "I was inspired by the look of lounge chairs on an old yacht and that great old 1930s pool furniture, both of which had contrast piping."
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The willowy canopy and Fabricut's Strondak curtains give the master bedroom of a Georgia beach house an airy and tranquil but secluded and intimate feel. "Most people love a canopy bed, and sleeping under all that white voile is dreamy," designer Jim Howard says.
Bold powder room
In a New Jersey beach house's small bathroom, designer Mona Ross Berman used a loud geometric wallpaper in bright ocean blue – Recessed from Studio Printworks – to give a slightly over-the-top feeling. "In a summer house you have greater license to have fun, be irreverent," Berman says.
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In a California wine country house, architect Stephen Sutro transformed the garage into a poolhouse with French doors that open onto the pool area. Designer Stephen Shubel mirrored the back wall to amplify the natural light and space. "I was trying to capture the spirit and energy of summer," he says. "And when I think of summer, I think of bathing suits and shorts, and drinks with bright hues." Chakki ottomans by Serena & Lily bring in a hint of Morocco. A Belgian Classic Roll Arm sofa from Restoration Hardware is covered in Designers Guild's Palmieri in Charcoal.
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Bold living and dining area
In the living-dining area of a Balboa Island, California, beach cottage, a vintage coffee table and stools in Hable Construction's Sweet Pea Beads sits on a zebra-print rug by Jonathan Adler. The embroidered tablecloth, from Mexico, is available at Jacaranda Home. "My style of decorating is, 'I love this, I love that, let's put it all together and make it work," designer Krista Ewart says.
Designer Paula Perlin and architect Mark Ferguson created this idyllic blue porch for a house in Martha's Vineyard. Walters Wicker Seagrass sofa and armchairs covered in Brunschwig & Fils cornflower blue and white plaid make the screened porch an inviting family gathering place. Ceiling color is Morning Glory by Benjamin Moore.
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Island-style living room
For a blank wall in the living room of her Bahamas house, designer Amanda Lindroth summoned 1960s Billy Baldwin and found a vintage rattan screen to fill the space —"super sporty." A console table is jazzed up with navy Island Ikat by China Seas.
Dining room with a graphic punch
Black window mullions and door and chair frames add graphic punch in a family vacation home on Sullivan's Island, South Carolina. For beachy boldness, designer Sally Markham lit the dining table with rattan Orbita pendant lamps by Tomoko Mizu. Gervasoni's Otto dining chairs are woven rawhide on ebonized wood.
Relaxed living room
The horizontal line and blue cushions of the built-in sofa connect to the water view in architect Cary Tamarkin's Shelter Island, New York, beach house. Interior designer Suzanne Shaker added Hans Wegner's Cp5 lounge chairs from Suite NY and Carlos Motta's Asturias armchair from Espasso to echo the house's modern mood. The paper-and-¬bamboo Akari lanterns from the Noguchi Museum are in harmony with the Japanese-inspired handmade aesthetic. A shaggy Bravoure carpet by Danskina is the same soft gray as the concrete floors.