Interiors Advice - use the natural wonders of the coast to help create the perfect home

PUBLISHED: 11:36 23 May 2013 | UPDATED: 11:36 23 May 2013

Bring the outside in with these naturally lovely seed pod pieces by Michelle Mason from Linea at House of Fraser

Bring the outside in with these naturally lovely seed pod pieces by Michelle Mason from Linea at House of Fraser


You don’t need to look too far to find design inspiration on the Yorkshire coast – just poke your head out of the window.

The flora and fauna of our rich natural heritage provide the perfect backdrop for a laid-back yet lovely coastal home, making the job of choosing colours, fabrics and accessories a whole lot easier.

‘Where the outside views take over as the room’s focal point, coastal home interiors favour neutral-toned backgrounds and fabrics punctuated by colourful accents,’ explained Justine Kirkham, head of design at James Brindley (

‘Use a sandy neutral palette and make bold statements with key pieces of furniture and accessories in coastal themed patterns like nautical stripes. Blue has had a revival this season and we’re seeing everything from beautiful strong navy to soft smoky blue. From rich emerald to neon or punchy mint, green is always popular in summer, but even more so this year. Limes and olives are present in many interior schemes that we’re working on at the moment, particularly those that are retro inspired.

‘Most shades of green and blue are easily teamed with crisp white, perfect for coastal homes. However, this season we are also seeing bolder colour combinations, with blues and greens blending beautifully with accents in botanical brights – reds, oranges and yellows.’

If you’re lucky enough to have a home on the edge of the Yorkshire coastline, greens and blues are sound choices for your east-facing rooms, bringing them alive in the bright mornings. As the light changes quite dramatically during the day, you might want to use a darker tone on your woodwork so your walls appear lighter.

When it comes to your coastal garden, Martin Howe of Wykeham Mature Plants ( believes you can’t beat rowan, whitebeam, sycamore, alder, Austrian and Scots pine and Holme oak. He’s also partial to ash but, unfortunately, they are currently not being sold due to restrictions placed on the movement of trees imposed to limit the spread of Ash Dieback Disease.

‘If you’re looking for shrubs that will thrive on the Yorkshire coast, try eleagnus, daisy bush, bay and buddleia,’ he continued. ‘And when it comes to coastal hedging plants, you should really be looking at leylandii, escallonia and griselinia littoralis.

Although a lot of established griselinia hedges died in Scarborough and the surrounding areas in the hard winter of 2010 as it is only reliably hardy to about -14C or so. We’ve stopped growing it as a consequence.’


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