I’ve recently been feeling inspired by designers and room designs outside my usual Scandinavian Mid-Century comfort zone. I thought a post on a design style I’ve been coveting for its understated luxury and harmonious mood would be apropos. Enter: “California Cool”. Also known as California Modern aka Easy West Coast Style aka Comfortable, Liveable and Textured aka, well… you get the point.
(The queen of this particular style, according to yours truly at least, is Amber Lewis of Amber Interiors. IMHO, she nails this look every.single.time.)
A California Cool Interiors Checklist
This style can be summed up in the following points:
- A balance of mostly de-saturated colours coming through in upholstery and rugs,
- Textured and patterned fabrics in throw pillows and bedding,
- Oversized furniture with a pairing of neutral upholstery and lighter wood,
- Woven pendants mixed with minimal mid-century lighting,
- Brass accents, and…
- Stripes! Stripes for days in fabrics and rugs.
- Add in beautiful greenery, real or faux, branches or plants.
California Cool is in-between the minimalist “less is more” aesthetic but never as full or vibrant as a bohemian, eclectic space. The effect is soothing and the style is present but understated. If I had to choose a person to represent the style, I would choose Garance Dore. I also think the popularity of this style is what has single-handedly brought back the use of traditional rugs in modern rooms!
Similarities & Differences to Scandinavian style
They’re both neutral and bright and favour simple textures and clean lines. They tend to feature fewer, better quality pieces. They’re both ideals of simple luxury. However, where Scandinavian in its true monochromatic form can sometimes come across a little stark, California Cool maintains the clean aesthetic while still adding warmth through colours and prints.
Let’s take a look at a few California Cool rooms and then I’ve put together a shopping list at the end of this post for you to get the same look!
Shop the California Cool Look
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Leave me a comment below and tell me if this style resonates with you too!
Until next time,