Orange County is known for its beaches and relaxed lifestyle, both of which are often reflected in home designs and décor. If you’re looking to add a touch of coastal flair to your own OC home, you don’t have to look too far or surrender your wallet. Peggy Mullarky is an expert in interior home design and offers five tips for achieving the perfect home makeover on a budget.
Tip #1: Re-design With Furniture
Far Below Retail
1414 E. Wilshire Ave.
Santa Ana, CA 92705
Whether your house was built in a Victorian, Craftsman or Spanish style, you can easily update the interior look with new furniture. A beach-themed living space can be accomplished with cottage-style furniture, including cabinets with louvered doors and overstuffed sofas with cotton slip covers. The right color palette will help define your space. Choose furniture and accessories that are white, off-white, sand, gray, or any hue of blue. You’ll find plenty of furniture options at Far Below Retail in Santa Ana, a furniture warehouse that sells high-quality furniture at prices well below retail.
Tip #2: Save Money Using Accents
The Accents On Us
23552 Commerce Center Drive, Suites E and F
Laguna Hills, CA 92653
If your budget doesn’t include overhauling your living room furniture, Mullarky says you can still achieve that seaside flair using accents such as pillows and throws. A boring leather couch can get a makeover by adding pillows covered in beach-themed fabrics. If you can’t find pillows with coral and seashells, coordinate blue, white, and sand-colored pillows to get that beachside feel. The Accents On Us is a local OC shop with a great collection of hand-crafted accent pillows for every room in your house. This is also a nice place to find antique accents and consigned furniture.
Tip #3: Don’t Ignore The Floors
18155 Euclid St.
Fountain Valley, CA 92708
Completing a new interior design for your house means you have to work from the ground up. Don’t ignore the floors. Warm up your room by placing cotton or sisal area rugs over those hardwood floors. You can give any type of flooring a beachy feel with the right type of rug and runners. Rugco has a huge inventory of rugs and is conveniently located in the heart of Orange County.
Tip #4: Find The Perfect Lighting
Light Bulbs Etc.
658 N. Tustin St.
Orange, CA 92867
The right lighting can help enhance the coastal theme in your newly decorated living space. Mullarky recommends lamps with glass bases that can be filled with seashells and beach sand. You may also find ceramic bases imprinted or painted with seagulls or starfish designs. If that’s not your style, consider a sand-colored lamp base topped off with a sky blue lampshade. Start your light shopping at Light Bulbs Etc. in Orange. The store carries a giant selection of indoor and outdoor lighting. If you can’t find what you’re looking for in the store, peruse a few giant catalogs and staff members will rush order the perfect light for you.
Tip #5: Finish The Walls With Art
509 South Coast Highway
Laguna Beach, CA 92651
Wall art can be a wonderful way to bring your beach theme to life. Walk down the main thoroughfare of any beach city in Orange County and you’ll find dozens of galleries and boutiques that sell beach-themed art. Beach sunsets in watercolor, a dolphin on canvas, and lithographs of seashell collections can all be the capstone to your design efforts. If you’re willing to spend a little extra on collectible art, visit the Wyland Gallery in Laguna Beach. You’ll recognize these famous paintings of marine life created by Robert Wyland.
Truc Dever is a freelance writer covering all things Orange County. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.