nautical know-how…

Know how I know it’s almost Summer? Nautical-themed designs start popping up! I’m not a huge fan of theme designs, ’cause they can be WAY over done and look matchy-matchy. Just one too many lighthouses or (gulp) seagulls , and nautical becomes “no, no, please no”. Designers who can take a tricky theme and give it a subtle treatment get my stamp of approval.

I love the simplicity of this DIY rope treatment for a table lamp that was demonstrated on House & Home’s online TV show. I also love the retro wallpaper pictures–easy peasy to make and just the right degree of campy nautical. As for the pillow–very cute, but too fussy to make. I’d just go out and buy one.

(remember: if you click on the photos you’ll go right to the URL for the source).


photo courtesy House & Home online TV

This room doesn’t actually have anything overtly nautical. Instead, it suggests the theme with the standing lamp, the dark navy, light blue and off-white color treatment. The stripes and the dots also give it that cruise liner feel. I could do without the birds on the wall, but hey…if sea birds are your thang, go for it.

photo via Houzz by Celia James

If anything says nautical, it’s a room by Ralph Lauren Home. It’s that wonderful mix of navy blue, white, wicker and reclaimed timber! Makes you think of the old tall ships with rakish men wearing blowsy sleeves and looking toward the horizon with furled brows. Of virtuous women with long curly auburn hair blowing in the sea breeze with unfurled corset laces ….I should write a Harlequin romance! Wow!

Notice how there’s only one sailboat reference, not fifteen?

photo courtesy Ralph Lauren Home

Restoration Hardware is no slouch when it comes to nautical either. Although it’s not really subtle, the theme isn’t garish, so they pass muster (get it?). (I can hear their designers shaking their heads and sighing at my complete lack of insight! I get it, you’re trying to sell gorgeous products. I’m a retailer too…we should do coffee!)

Their nautical lighting is over-the-top beautiful, and I love the combination of “reclaimed” wood and shuddered doors on the cabinet. I must have that desk!!! Anyone got about $20K I can have? Huh? Come on.

photo courtesy Restoration Hardwar

Country Living and nautical seems to like an oxymoron to me, but it works. Perhaps a titch overboard (Get it? See how easy it is to get carried away and just become annoying?), but I like elements in the room. The zebra print footstool keeps it from getting kitchy, but I’d lose the framed poster and the lifebouy pillow. I’d probably substitute with the DIY wallpaper prints (see above) and anchor pillow. I’d also add some silver sea life from my own store, Nicole Jane Home .

photo courtesy Country LIving

photo courtesy Nicole Jane Home

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