“People are working remotely so they’re spending more time in their vacation homes,” Joni Vanderslice, owner of J. Coastal design has veered away from stark, white showplaces towards livable spaces replete with natural materials, textural finishes, and luxurious performance fabrics. “People are moving away from super modern in coastal homes and warming them up with farmhouse elements,” says Gerson, who often works in the Hamptons.
That means wood plank floors and organic texture and scraped plaster walls.
In a Palm Beach manse, Gerson designed a Venetian plaster wall with an ombré effect that echoes the ocean. “French furniture and lighting designs are spectacular right now,” says Sugerman, who points to the curvy silhouettes and pale woods of Christophe Delcourt’s collection.
“We have a clean, contemporary take on coastal with light, neutral palettes and curved shapes that mimic the ocean.” While Sugarman plays with gray and bronze mirrors to reflect the view, she otherwise opts for matte finishes and textured surfaces like rough, chiseled countertops that evoke the feel of being on the beach. Southern California native Marks blends East and West Coast sensibilities. He’s working on an open-air kitchen pavilion that overlooks the Pacific Ocean and recently completed his own spa shed for relaxing, reading, and watching television. Private zones merge with public ones as designers define cozy retreats within open layouts; an especially important hallmark of the Covid era. As for color, Najnigier concedes that while the ocean hues will never become obsolete, the current-day coastal palette feels freshest when rooted in warm neutrals. While gathering was the primary focus of a summer home pre-pandemic, today people need spots where they can be productive.
Vanderslice says C-tables are equally ideal for cocktails and for laptops, and console tables can double as desks. For outdoor living, Vanderslice is most excited about new offerings in lighting, such as floor lamps that look as though they belong indoors.
She also rhapsodizes about the technological advances of performance fabrics like velvet, which she maintains has a place at the beach.