All you need are a few well-placed items for a suggestion of coastal ambience
Can't get enough of the beach after heading home for the day? Sentimental sorts, bring the outdoors home with you through decorative elements taking their cue from the beach. Turn your car around and head to the nearest boutique: Snatch up driftwood bowls, starfish or coral pieces currently popularizing local store shelves.
The hunger for beach-inspired accessories for the home is a national trend, at the height of its popularity. SoHa Living merchandiser Matthew Figueroa predicts the trend will likely last through spring. Though beach-friendly items can be found year-round at the Honolulu store, Figueroa said the national interest in beach chic has pushed the store's typical stock of nature-inspired pieces to the extreme.
"We live in a beach culture," so there will always be a built-in fan base for such items, said Figueroa. "Nationally the trend should fade out in six months to a year. But here or places like the Hamptons, you'll continue to see such items. It's an easy way to decorate."
Beyond the obvious pairings of colors such as light blues and greens, inspiration can be found in coral motifs and loose shells.
CINDY ELLEN RUSSELL / CRUSSELL@STARBULLETIN.COM
Napkin ring holders, $4.95 each, from Under a Hula Moon, add a quiet note of sophistication.
These accessories can act as adornment for tabletops or bookshelves. Think less ticky-tacky dancing hula girls and more organic, elegant pieces such as shells in a variety of patterns and hues.
For those especially mindful of budget, check Ben Franklin craft stores periodically for man-made coral replicas made of resin.
Among the offerings in stock at stores and boutiques in and around Honolulu:
Under a Hula Moon: Ward Center, 596-4442; and Kailua Town Center, 600 Kailua Road, 261-4252. The home-decor and gift boutique offers items such as seashell frames and hand-painted plates and platters with coral designs. On the more unusual side: seashell night lights, $10.95, and shell toothpicks, $7.50 for a set of 25. Items vary by store location.
My Little Secret: Ward Warehouse, 596-2990. Fragrant starfish-shaped floating candles add a whimsical touch, boxed pair $5.95; also seashell-, sea horse-shaped floating candles from SoHa, $2.50 each.
SoHa Living: 1200 Ala Moana Blvd., 591-9777. From driftwood bowls, $330, to coral pieces, $30 and up for small pieces and $190 for large, SoHa offers an abundance of natural pieces. Smaller centerpiece conversation pieces include shells affixed to a candlestick base, $17.25. The store also offers linens with coral designs from sisters Sandra Dermond and Susan Peterson of Dermond Peterson Design. Made exclusively for the store, the linens, $18-$24, include this napkin, $20, tucked under the bowl.