A few days ago I posted about the exterior spaces at Maryland designer Brooke Steuart's vacation home (which you can read more about HERE). Now, it's time to head inside to see how Brooke designed the living spaces in her beautiful beach house to suit the needs of her active family of six. As in my last post, all of the photography is by a wonderful photographer, Mike Busada, of Mike B Photography.
The interiors of Brooke's beach house are much like the exteriors where daring, bold colors were used to create warm and inviting interior spaces. Although a casual beach theme is prevalent throughout her home, Brooke also brings a touch of whimsy and the unexpected to her Delaware vacation house to help keep it from becoming too kitschy.
When asked how decorating a vacation home differs from decorating a home you live in day to day, Brooke replied, "I believe that a vacation home should be able to push the limits a bit more than your primary residence. At our beach house, I was able to incorporate punches of my favorite colors and take risks. You want a vacation home to feel special, alive, and it should be a place you look forward to visiting."
In the dining area, located just off the kitchen, a hand painted shell motif table, relaxed woven seating, and soft aqua walls give a nod to the home's seaside location. Petite crystal chandeliers add contrast and sparkle to the room and create a bit of drama.
The unique dining room table is not only beautiful but also large enough to accommodate Brooke's family and friends.
The dining room takes on a whole new persona when the sun sets. Elegant wall scones, sparkling crystal chandeliers, and candlelight provide soft diffused light and add an aire of elegance to the room.
Adjacent to the dining area is a beautiful gourmet kitchen. Crisp white cabinetry is highlighted by hardwood floors and stainless steel appliances. A large painted and distressed turquoise island adds a punch of color and provides additional work space for this family of six.
Restaurant style appliances make the kitchen a chef's dream. And the beautiful glass tile backsplash is reminiscent of sea glass found during their walks along the beach.
Bar style seating is located in another part of the kitchen so that the four Steuart children can enjoy breakfast or an afternoon snack away from the main prep area of the center island. This clever design allows for plenty of room and flow in the kitchen, a great idea since the kitchen is always the gathering place of any home.
Granite that mimics the ocean and sand is the perfect choice for a busy family of six. Durable, easy to clean, and beautiful, the granite doesn't show crumbs or fingerprints. And when you're on vacation, no one wants to be worried about those sorts of things!
Under cabinet and interior cabinet lighting provides task lighting and adds ambiance to the kitchen after dark.
The family room at Brooke's beach house is warm and welcoming. Bold color is introduced through artwork, accessories, and furnishings. Brooke draws inspiration from many places, books, magazines, industry websites, but often her inspiration comes from one or two special pieces she finds for each room. "I often draw inspiration from one or two items, it may be a piece of artwork, a pillow, or even a flower whose color inspires me...from there, I can design an entire room around those key pieces," says Brooke.
Brooke is a girl after my own heart and loves finding weathered pieces of furniture and flea market finds which she pairs beautifully with more modern elements throughout the house.
Brooke uses natural materials throughout her beach house such as wicker, seagrass, and linen to create a comfortable feeling and because they are easy care. By choosing elements which are family friendly and easy to clean, she doesn't have to spend time worrying about salt water and sand being tracked in. "Having a big family and lots of friends visiting, I try not to worry about the outside coming in, that's why we are at the beach, to enjoy the amazing elements," Brooke adds.
But just because she has found a way to create a comfortable kid friendly vacation home doesn't mean she's willing to sacrifice style and beauty. She still manages to make her home as pretty as it is practical through art and accessories, such as the lovely glass sculpture and coral throw pillows pictured above.
Creating eye catching vignettes is another wonderful way to infuse a space with personality and display cherished mementos such as books or seashells.
Brooke often adds color to a room through the use of paint, such as the punch or orange in the living room. It's a fun, bright color that reminds me of an orange Popsicle on a hot summer's day! And by finding whimsical pieces of furniture, such as the dog coffee table, she is able to take a more formal space and add a bit of humor and the unexpected to keep it from being too stuffy.
I hope you've enjoyed seeing the living spaces in Brooke Steuart's beach house and be sure to check back later this week to see more of her wonderful vacation home when I'll be showing you the bedrooms! You won't want to miss seeing how Brooke combines classic beach elements, Balinese design, and romance to create unique and exciting rooms!
For more information about Mike B. Photography, the wonderful photographer who took the photos of Brooke Steuart's beach house, click HERE!
And to contact designer Brooke Steuart to find out how she can help you create your own dream home, click HERE!