4 Ways to Get an Elevated, Modern Beachy Look Outdoors Well Into Fall

published Sep 6, 2022
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Sound in Montauk at The Surf Lodge framed by Macrame Umbrellas
Credit: Courtesy of The Surf Lodge and Arhaus

The summer might be coming to a close, but that doesn’t mean you still can’t get a coastal-inspired look in your home or backyard. Even those in colder climates still have at least two months of solid outdoor living left (with a fire pit or outdoor heaters!), so now’s still a good time to either think about switching up your decor or ready your outdoor digs for the next season.

2022 has been the year of the modern beachy look — think streamlined silhouettes, a clean palette, and elevated seaside touches with handsome materials and weathered finishes. Speaking to Jayma Cardoso, the hotelier behind the Surf Lodge in Montauk, New York, I honed in even further on this shoreline-inspired aesthetic with tips should you want to get this look at home. 

Credit: Courtesy of The Surf Lodge and Arhaus

Layer up

“When approaching the design of a space, I never want it to feel uniform,” says Cardoso. “I love to evoke a sense of discovery with layers, balancing highs and lows for a truly unique experience.” 

You can see this design philosophy at work in The Surf Lodge’s beach, where Cardoso used furniture from Arhaus as a foundation then added in umbrellas, accent pillows, and locally-sourced vintage pieces, including trendy wooden mushroom lawn ornaments, stuck right into the sand. The Hamptons Day Bed is one of Cardoso’s (and her many  guests’) favorite items that literally has its own layer: a canopy. If you want a budget-friendly way to get a similar look in your own backyard, you can pair a bench with a trellis and add a set of outdoor curtains, threading them through the top of the trellis frame.

Credit: Courtesy of The Surf Lodge and Arhaus

Lean on teak

Cardoso zeroed in on teak pieces, like the Canyon Sofa, which was used several times across the entire Surf Lodge beach. “Teak is high quality and will withstand the test of time in the outdoor elements,” says Cardozo. She also recommends investing in close-fitting outdoor furniture covers, which can help your investments literally weather the storm and take cover for winter. 

Credit: Courtesy of The Surf Lodge and Arhaus

Consider a mural moment outdoors

Paint isn’t just for your indoor walls. The modern beachy look’s all about a mural. “Art is one of the core pillars of The Surf Lodge experience, and we re-do the stage mural every year as part of our ongoing artist-in-residence series, which also encompasses lobby installations and artwork on the beach,” says Cardoso. “The newly updated outdoor space extends to our summer stage, where an abstract mural by Brazilian artist Tarsila Schubert acts as a colorful backdrop.” The Surf Lodge also has another mural on their grounds, as pictured above.

Don’t have a stage in your yard? Me either. That said, you can still find a spot for a fun, geometric paint treatment. Consider a fence or even a portion of your concrete foundation. You may be surprised by how much whimsy and joy a little bit of color and an abstract pattern can add to your home.

Credit: Courtesy of The Surf Lodge and Arhaus

Lean into your location for inspiration

The ocean might be thousands of miles away if you’re landlocked, but chances are you probably have a river or lake somewhere nearby. Whatever your location, take a little design inspiration from your local geography when it comes to picking finishes and furnishings. Observe the flora and fauna of your surroundings (and nearest body of water), and build upon that story.

That’s exactly what Cardoso did when choosing pieces for The Surf Lodge. “I wanted to do something different while keeping with the organic nature of Montauk with muted rustic vibes,” says Cardoso. “In this setting, the materiality, earthy tones, and comfort of the pieces brings a laid-back vibe and approachable feel.”