Light, bright and whitewashed with a sophisticated yet beachy vibe that comes across as effortless and calming, Hamptons style interiors are an Americanised version of French interior design styles such as Baroque, Rococo and Empire.
The look is inspired by the architecture and decorating of holiday homes in the luxury seaside communities that hug the eastern coast of upstate New York, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut. It's known for its relaxed coastal atmosphere, yet it accomplishes it in a slightly formal way – making it ideal for those who are after a classic, traditional appeal in their home.
The fresh, airy palette of white-washed linens, natural textures, ocean inspired blues and freshly painted white timber finishes works beautifully in New Zealand and Australian homes. Features such as this living room’s tongue-and-groove panelling on the lower half of the wall in misty Resene Sea Fog go the extra mile to create a classic and elegant space. Reminiscent of the homes and baches of yesteryear, the tongue-and-groove panelling adds an extra touch of charm to the space, while also introducing a modern twist with a two-toned wall.
The Hamptons colour palette is clear and crisp, capturing the wild nature of the ocean and condensing it into a cultivated scheme of clear blues and crisp whites. Blue is one of the most calming colours and the Hamptons style explores this through a range of blue hues. For a more modest look, paint your walls in a pale, almost pastel blue such as Resene Forecast or Resene Duck Egg Blue. If you want to keep it traditional, introduce navy blues instead. Dark Resene Bunting and Resene Blue Night will work wonders in any space, adding a sense of depth and sophistication. Incorporate those iconic Hamptons stripes by pairing your choice of Resene blue with a crisp white, such as Resene Black White or warmer Resene Alabaster for a statement striped feature wall.
If a striped feature or blue walls are too bold for your taste, there are plenty of other ways to incorporate a Hamptons atmosphere into your space. Begin with walls in an off white, such as Resene Sea Fog or Resene Half Merino. Then add pops of blue through your furniture and décor, including a striped pattern through cushions or a textured throw.
While a Hamptons home is the embodiment of relaxed elegance and expense, you don’t need to break the bank achieving the look. One sure-fire way to introduce those beachy blues into your home is to upcycle a piece of furniture, such as a cabinet or coffee table. Draw the colour of your walls into the space by using the same hue in a different strength. For example, this living room keeps the Resene Sea Fog panelling relevant by incorporating an upcycled cane side table in Resene Quarter Sea Fog.
If you live by the seaside, make the most of the décor nature has to offer by bringing in shells and driftwood. Natural elements such as these make perfect ornaments and are budget-friendly. You can even go one step further and create a piece of DIY artwork for the space. Try framing a piece of MDF board or canvas painted in muted Resene Sand or rocky Resene Surf Spray, then glue natural materials like feathers or shells in a scattered manner across the canvas for a three-dimensional effect.
The trick is to ensure that most of your shells or feathers are clustered at the bottom of the painting, as this will give it a grounded effect. Whether your home is a new build or a vintage bach, you can easily achieve a sophisticated Hamptons look with Resene’s wide range of ocean blues, sandy creams and crisp whites.
Accessories: Sofa from Johnston Imports (JI Home). Cream/indigo fine stripe linen cushions from Johnston Imports (JI Home). Cream/grey linen cushions from Johnston Imports (JI Home). Navy Blue Velvet Cushion from Nood. Diamond Rug from Designer Rugs. Grey on grey with rectangle repeat rug from Bed Bath and Beyond. French glass jars and shells are stylist’s own.
Paint: Walls in Resene Forecast. Tongue and groove panelling in Resene Sea Fog. Timber flooring in Resene Colorwood Mid Greywash. Screens in Resene Half Sea Fog and Resene Regent Grey. Round woven rug in Resene Blue Night. Hall table in Resene Blue Night. Cabinet in Resene Sea Fog with inset panels in Resene Blue Night (navy version) and Resene Regent Grey (grey version). Vases (on cabinet) in Resene Azure, Resene Juniper and Resene Sorrento. Square votive candle holders (on hall table) in Resene Azure, Resene Horizon, Resene Blue Moon and Resene Panorama. DIY square canvas artworks in Resene Opal, Resene Azure, Resene Panorama, Resene Blue Moon, Resene Horizon and Resene Azure. DIY lighthouse artwork in Resene Blue Moon (sky), Resene Horizon (sea), Resene Grey Seal (sand), Resene Coast (background land), Resene Explorer (foreground land, with lighthouse on it), and Resene Pohutukawa and Resene Quarter Sea Fog (lighthouse). DIY feather artwork in Resene Conch. Side tray table top in Resene Bermuda Grey. Cane woven candle votive in Resene Half Black White. Timber lamp base in Resene Colorwood Whitewash. Round cane side table in Resene Quarter Sea Fog.
Styling by Megan Harrison-Turner. Photography by Bryce Carleton. 2022
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