I used to live in Destin, Florida — known for having some of the whitest beaches in the world. A few years after my father died, my mother remarried and we moved to Kentucky (talk about culture shock!) but my heart has never left the Emerald Coast. I always figured I’d end up moving back there and resuming my beach bum status. But life has a way of making decisions for us sometimes. I met a guy, fell in love and got married. You know the drill. My whole family was in Kentucky, his whole family was in Kentucky, so we have stayed in Kentucky. I did introduce him to Destin during a vacation, however, and he loved it so much that we have gone back for vacations many times over the years — win!
That pretty crocheted coaster is part of a set I made for the deck because the colorway reminds me of the beautiful turquoise, white and grey of the surf that I love so much about being near a beach. The table and chairs are a Martha Stewart Living set that my husband & I picked up at Home Depot several years ago. I have plans (when it’s time to replace the cushions and pillows) to go for a similar color theme to bring a more beach-y feel to our favorite outdoor relaxation area.
Coastal Living: A Celebration of Living by the Water by Henrietta Heald is a fascinating read for anyone who is interested in the lifestyle of those who live on the water. With over 180 full color pages and several weeks of fairly regular reading and thumbing through the pages, I have yet to get bored with this book. Divided into four sections: Classic Coastal, Modern Coastal, Casual Coastal, and Rustic Coastal — there is ample eye candy with the stunning pictures and plenty of inspiration to decorate your personal space in whichever coastal theme you prefer, even if you live nowhere near a shore.
Every single day I miss the beach breezes, the call of the gulls, running Hwy. 98 with my best friend (who has also since moved away from the area). The fishing docks and all the smells and noises associated with it that used to be situated at the foot of the Destin Bridge has been replaced with a boardwalk and tourist-y stuff, as has most of the coastline that is now lined with condos, resorts, shops and restaurants. However, no matter what changes about the Destin area, one thing stays the same, always —- the ocean, the silky white sand of the beaches and the salty breeze that blows in off the surf.
Anyway, back to the book. My favorite section is the Casual Coastal, for sure. I love the laid-back style where small scuffs and scratches aren’t eyesores, rather giving decor a well-worn and loved feel, adding character to the space.
If gardening or cooking are interests, you will find info about plants for a coastal garden as well as recipes sprinkled throughout the book. Food is such an important part of American culture, no matter where you live or what traditions you love. You will find pictures, cultural stories and information about coastal living all around the world. It’s a great way to “visit” many places that most people never have the opportunity to travel to during their lifetimes.
If you like what you see here, check out publisher Ryland Peters & Small for other great titles. I have two other books from them as well, A Woman’s Huts and Hideaways by Gill Heriz and Simply Scandinavian by Sara Norrman that I have a great time looking through often, as well. I have a particular affinity for Scandinavian design as my family lineage is Norwegian. You can click the titles to see my posts about those books, if you’re interested. These three titles have earned a spot on the side table where I like to sit in the living room for easy access when I feel like flipping through the pages and dreaming a little!
Disclaimer: I received the title shown free of charge to facilitate review. No other compensation was received. All opinions are 100% my own.