By Homes Editor Ellen McGauley
As clever design ideas go, patterned flooring in beach houses ranks right up there with bunk beds and outdoor showers. You can hide sand and add major wow factor in a single design element. Think checkerboard floors (rarely have I happened upon one that I didn't want to pick up and take home with me), chevron stripes, diamond patterns, and even subtle, marbled stains on concrete.
Take a look at these stunners:
In this Charleston beach house, interior designer Jenny Keenan worked with decorative painter Suzanne Allen to come up with this fun flooring pattern. The trick to making a bold design like this one work? Keep the color palette simple (white, blue, and more white!) and introduce plenty of light for balance.
The marbled tiles in this laundry room, also by Jenny Keenan, are so elegant, yet super smart. The white woodwork dresses them down a bit, making them beach house brilliant.
This checkerboard pattern was painted onto wood floors in the entry of last year's Coastal Living Showhouse. Designer Betsy Burnham told me she chose grey instead of black to ease the formality often associated with this pattern (particularly in entryways) and really color it coastal.
I love the patterned cement tiles in this kids' bathroom in the same Showhouse. They have a Moroccan flair to them, and really sing against sea green.
This faux bois design in William Diamond's East Hampton cottage has always been a favorite of mine. The hand-painted pattern was applied to regular old wood floors.
For more floor design inspiration, check out this slideshow!