Marine Magic: 7 interior ideas for a nautical-inspired room

Nautical interiors are a design trend that has stood the test of time. With such a clean and classic aesthetic, making your home stand out from the crowd can be difficult. If you’re looking for some inspiration to liven up your marine space and make you feel like you’re living on the seas, read our ideas for creating a nautical-inspired bedroom.

Be aware of colors

Blue and white are classic nautical colors but can seem slightly overdone these days. Add some interest to your room by adding soft beige tones with pops of orange or yellow to contrast the blue. Stay away from garish “under the sea” themed wallpapers.

For a nautical theme, add palm trees and bright accents. Photo by Jovy86 via iStock by Getty Images

Instead, keep your walls nice and simple, pairing a navy blue feature wall with nude or soft blue tones on the other three walls. If you’re really into wallpaper, look for a watercolor seascape mural, with washes on blues, greens and grays to add a soothing feel to the room.

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Accessorize appropriately for a nautical-inspired piece

Use touches of home accessories to enhance the look of your nautical-inspired room. Think driftwood shelving, a sleek marine clock, and subtly striped throw pillows. You are aiming for a tribute to sailing, not spraying every decorative element with images of sailboats. Add a dark blue rug to your floor to finish the look.

If you prefer a beach vibe, keep your decor soft and unrefined. Think seashells strewn across side tables, white knit throws and imperfect throw pillows that give the room an organic feel. It’s a great option for budget-conscious makeovers, as you can shop at thrift stores or pick up your own items along the beach.



nautical inspired bedroom

Driftwood and found objects can be an inexpensive way to decorate a nautical-inspired room. Photo by roselou via iStock by Getty Images

Furnish your bedroom with nautical inspiration

For any nautical-inspired room, the furniture should be wooden. Light, sandy driftwood works well for a beachy feel, but a deep oak table is reminiscent of a captain’s desk. Pick a wood tone and stick with it throughout, otherwise you risk the room looking sloppy and uncoordinated.

If you are decorating a living room, choose your sofas and chairs wisely. Deep blues are great because they won’t mark easily and will keep the sofa looking cool. Occasional chairs offset the room nicely and can be a bit more adventurous in taste. Use a contrasting color or a small print on the fabric to add liveliness to the piece, rather than going all blue. Mismatched fabrics are a key trend right now.

nautical inspired bedroom

Blue is a great color for the couch. Photo by tashka2000 via iStock by Getty Images

Nail down your tile

Choose a fish scale tile for a different take on the trend if you’re decorating a bathroom or kitchen. Move away from colors of ocean blue tones and towards sea glass colors to modernize the look. It works well on floors or ceilings and letting the shape do the talking (rather than the color) means you can focus on other accents to make the room pop.

Get Creative With Your Nautical-Inspired Bedroom

Use items that are not intentionally made to decorate your home for added interest. Why not try hanging a fishing board or leaning an anchor against the wall? Think outside the box by framing an old 1930s-style bathing suit and using it instead of a painting. If you’re a fan of crafting, you can easily reuse old items to make exciting new ones.

nautical inspired bedroom

Found objects are perfect for a nautical themed bedroom. Photo by Katarzyna Bialasiewicz via iStock by Getty Images

Find a piece of driftwood, then sand each end so it lays flat on the floor. Attach a circle of glass to the top and there you have a creative handmade coffee table.

Get your lighting right

Antique gold or charcoal lanterns are a great lighting option for a nautical themed room. If you have high ceilings, hang them from slightly longer chains than usual so they hang low, emphasizing the length of the room. If metal lamps aren’t your thing, opt for a large wicker ceiling shade that can be matched with shades scattered around the room. Bonus points if you pair it with wicker furniture!

Consider your window treatments

Make sure your window treatment matches the aesthetic of the room. If you’ve gone for a beach vibe, use full-height sheer curtains in a light color that will flutter in the breeze. Pinoleum blinds are a great option if you have a ton of wood in the space. If you’ve opted for a smart captain’s office design, navy blue velvet curtains will add a touch of luxury. If you’re looking for something a little lighter, how about a Roman blind with a subtly squared blue and white fabric? Ralph Lauren is the king of resort chic and has wonderful fabric options for home decor.

nautical inspired bedroom

Billowy curtains can add the perfect finish to a nautical-inspired room. Photo by Katarzyna Bialasiewicz via iStock by Getty Images

Will you adopt the nautical trend this summer? We hope these tips inspire you as you design your own nautical-inspired room. Let us know your favorite style in the comments!

Nautical interiors are a design trend that has stood the test of time.  With such a clean and classic aesthetic, making your home stand out from the crowd can be difficult.  If you're looking for some inspiration to liven up your marine space and make you feel like you're living on the seas, read our ideas for creating a nautical-inspired bedroom.

Betty K. Park