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Modern Coastal Living Room Ideas & Coastal Decor You’ll Love

Welcome to the mecca for modern coastal living room interior design and decor! If you’re looking to infuse your home with a breezy and elegant coastal vibe, Saltsy has you covered. We’ve got the tips for the best modern coastal decorating ideas, but even if you’re looking at a more traditional coastal, relaxed coastal, or even a coastal farmhouse living room aesthetic, we think you’ll find an idea here to help you style your living room for the perfect look! 

Interior Design Mood Board for Modern Coastal Living Room Ideas

A Modern Coastal Design for Your Living Space

For Saltsy’s take on modern coastal living room ideas, we’ve balanced a modern aesthetic with a classic coastal feel to create a welcoming, bright, and airy vibe. The key to this winning look is starting with a beach house style and adding a touch of luxury to modern coastal aesthetic. You’ll notice that the accents are a bit softer and more welcoming, but not informal — it’s truly the sweet spot for a seaside-esque modern living room design.

Read on for details on how we created this modern coastal living room look and where to find some of our favorite living room furniture and decor to style your own coastal or beach home! 

Modern Furniture with a Modern Coastal Look

The Anchor Pieces: Living Room Furniture to Set the Scene

When balancing modern design with a coastal style for your living room design, we suggest selecting anchor pieces with uncomplicated details and neutral finishes. For this look, we paired a sleek sofa with a softer organic side chair to create balance. The wood legs of each piece sit atop the area rug which features gray, turquoise, and ivory tones— giving us the perfect palette to work with. (You know we love those coastal blues!)

If your living room is also your TV room, this is a great time to select a beautiful console table. Look for options that provide a combo of open and closed storage so you can keep the necessities tucked away and enhance the coastal vibe with decor on the open shelves in an intentional way.

Saltsy Secret: No matter what your favorite coastal color palette is, using a neutral furniture and bringing that color in through the area rug and other living room decor allows you to leave space to change it up between holidays, seasons, and for the long haul! 

Birch Lane | Cami 91'' Upholstered Sofa
West Elm | Sophie Chair
JONATHAN Y Tidal Modern Strie' Transitional Indoor Area Rug, 2 of 12
Cottage & Bungalow Newport TV Console

Sources: Sofa | Chair | Rug | TV Console

The Accent Pieces: Side Tables, Coffee Tables, and Lighting

Once you have the anchor pieces selected, it’s time to bring in the first layer of detail. As you select pieces, focus on texture and tone to turn your living room into a harmonious space. The goal is to integrate a touch of coastal elements with modern design details throughout — always finding balance.

Wood tones don’t need to, and frankly shouldn’t, match perfectly. For this look, we selected a coffee table with a simple shape in a highly textured material to create the perfect canvas for future layers of modern coastal decor to be layered on later. For the side tables at the sofa, simple and clean is the way to go, while accent table for the side chair is a textural rattan with a white wash – pulling all the finishes together. 

Pottery Barn Folsom Rectangular Coffee Table
Cottage & Bungalow Balinese Accent Table
Birch Lane | Shannen End Table With Storage

Sources: Coffee Table | Accent Table | End Table

For lighting, try creating a dramatic moment with a fixture hanging in the center of your space. We selected this fixture from LZF; the white-washed wood veneer material is broken down and formed into a soft, organic, and modern take on a shell. Smaller accent lights like table and floor lamps are more interchangeable over time, so don’t be afraid to use an accent color that coordinates with the area rug and sets the tone for design inspiration.

Mini Mikado Pendant by Miguel Herranz for LZF via Lumen Lighting
Pottery Barn | Gagel Ceramic Table Lamp

Sources: Coffee Table | Accent Table | End Table

Coastal Artwork, Decor, and Details to Enhance the Coastal Feel

To really bring your beautiful modern coastal living room to life, style your living room with all sorts of beachy details. Remember, it can be easy to over-furnish a coastal space, so work in layers, adding in pieces and experiencing them in the space before you add more. As you can layer, it becomes easier to see where there might be gaps and where you need to potentially pull some decor out to create harmony and balance. 

Starting with artwork, we fell in love with these Pottery Barn Driftwood Wall Panels – they’re perfect in a set of three over the sofa to create modern-natural triad. A mirror is also a great way to add some texture too — check out the Cape Mirror. And if art is more your scene, we love this unexpected aerial view textured art.

Pottery Barn | Driftwood Handcrafted Wall Panel
Uttermost | Cape Mirror, Natural
Plaster Art Texture Painting

Sources: Coffee Table | Accent Table | End Table

When you’re starting to add the details to decorate a coastal living room, remember to keep with your coastal color scheme so the whole space feels complementary. It’s easy to veer off course, but a modern coastal feel thrives on cohesiveness. The great thing about going with a neutral base palette is that you can pull the color in any direction with ease. 

We love Textile-ish for this exact reason: They have pillows that come as a styled set, so you know what you get will be harmonious, like this Sandy Pillow Combo below. Throw blankets are a great way to add texture — these Turkish Chevron Throw blankets are a perfect match for the pillow set, and are buttery soft and warm too! 

Chevron Turkish Throw with Tassels - Turkish Blanket

Sources: Coffee Table | Accent Table | End Table

Pulling in coastal decor and keeping a modern, light and airy living room is about not overdoing the extras. We recommend pulling in some greenery in different sizes and scales to add a touch of warmth to the space. We integrated a faux agave plant into the aesthetic here as well as some sweet succulents for the coffee table or any shelving you might have. 

Pottery Barn | Faux Faded Striped Agave Plant
Succulent Assortment with Planters

Sources: Coffee Table | Accent Table | End Table

Lastly, add a coastal element here and there to style your living room like a pro. A few items we recommend are designer books (focus on the binding color!), vases, candles, trays, and sculptures and/or decorative objects. Remember: Balance texture, color, and pattern when selecting pieces and don’t be afraid to take chances on creating that holistic aesthetic. Sometimes you need to get an item home to know if it really works, just keep the receipt and give it a try! 

West Elm | Mid-Century Whitewashed Wood Lanterns
Pottery Barn | Seehorn Handcrafted Ceramics Collection
Coral Sculpture on Marble Stand

Sources: Coffee Table | Accent Table | End Table

Enjoy Your Modern Coastal Living Room

And that’s it! Just like that you can embrace the essence of coastal living while adding your own style to your living room at the same time. Remember to start with a neutral base, add the color palette of your choice, then bring in some of your favorite natural seaside elements and voila! You’ll have the perfect modern coastal living room! 

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