We all have our getaway dreams, and despite of the fact that we’re all so different, we imagine wonderful tropical islands heaped with blooming begonia and long, golden beaches.

What if we told you that this is actually possible in the very comfort of your home? Let’s consider the possibility of designing Caribbean style homes:

Inspired by coastal designs, Caribbean interior design boosts with the energy of different cultures and it is seemingly abundant in terms of colors to push your imagination to work.

Caribbean interior decorating has to be authentic, rooted in the habits of people who actually live on islands. What is very specific about the style is that it has nothing to do with themes: it is about the feelings and state of mind of the person who is staying in that place.

Caribbean-Interior-Design8 Caribbean Interior DesignImage source: Lauren Christine Henno

The rules are simple: everything should stay easy, breezy, and light. A Caribbean surrounding is supposed to relax you, which is why it relies mostly on soft, neutral colors, natural materials and comfy furniture. The final product of your work has to be something that you will actually avoid.

Caribbean walls

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I bet there weren’t any walls in your original Caribbean plan, but they are here, and you have to think what to do with them. While a standard scheme of blue and white is an unmistakable choice, we encourage you to use more vibrant palettes, something including lime, coral, yellow, or peach.

A very important moment is to focus on nature, and that makes green a good choice too.

For moments reminiscent of ocean waters, use light blue shades, or crispy, warm whites. You can even use one color in total, assuming you’re planning to play with multiple shades and tones.

However, it is better to use two colors the most (to paint walls blue, and ceilings white, for instance). Bright buttery with canary yellow is very typical for bold Caribbean homes.

Artistic souls are advised to paint natural elements on the walls (trees, flowers, or even birds), and not to worry if their skills don’t go as far as the preciseness of an experienced paper.

Instead of drawing, you can hang images, cover cracks with interesting paintings, or even purchase a premade Caribbean wallpaper.

When it comes to kitchens and bathrooms, we recommend bright mosaic tiles disposed illogically on every wall.


Caribbean-Interior-Design5 Caribbean Interior DesignImage source: Meridith Baer Home

Sand is not a good option for a floor, I am sure you all agree on this. If you want to keep it light, go for bright browns or bleached pine, and use materials such as stone and tile. The floor may seem cold in the beginning, but a bright rug is perfectly enough to warm the ambiance up.


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The first association of tropical islands is sunshine, and you have to replicate it with your lighting fixtures.

Make sure each corner is properly illuminated (large floor lamps are cut for the purpose), or be brave and experiment with colorful lampshades that depict Caribbean life scenes (turtles swimming in the ocean, people buying stuff on the market, etc). That’s the most whimsical solution you could possibly make.


Caribbean-Interior-Design1 Caribbean Interior DesignImage source: Fairfax & Sammons Architects

Durability and functionality are most important here: follow the logic of direct sunlight resistance, and use natural fibers like rattan, bamboo, or wicker. Hang baskets with daring patterns around, ideally placed against white lidded boxes for a more refined look. Avoid everything that looks artificial, especially minimalist lacquer solutions.

The good side is that you can find plenty of beds, tables, and couches made from these materials, looking absolutely the same as genuine Caribbean ones do. If they happen to be darker, cover them with bright and interesting fabrics.

Upholstery should be vivid: if it is wood, make it mahogany. Whatever you choose, remember that the priority is comfort-it should be natural, but functional as well.

Crispy textiles

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Caribbean stands for crispy textiles, for example white as the background of colorful embroidery or other saturated textiles.

What could be perfect for evoking Caribbean vibes is sheer canopy fabric-it will look amazing, resort-like on your curtains and bedposts, but it will also protect you from creepy crawlies distorting your sleep.


Caribbean-Interior-Design4 Caribbean Interior DesignImage source: House of Jade Interiors

However you choose to cover/uncover your windows, remember to let as much sunshine inside as you can. That narrows your choice down to neutrally colored lightweight cotton, custom drapery panels, or linen draperies.

Sand-hued shutters made of faux wood are totally Caribbean too, the same as bamboo/rattan blinds in rooms with similar seating. Colors should remain calm and neutral.


Caribbean-Interior-Design9 Caribbean Interior DesignImage source: Saint Dizier Design

Most probably, you planed your list of Caribbean accessories, and if there is one thing to be found on every of your lists that would be either shells or corals.

But why not taking accessorizing a step further? If you are artistic, use your creativity to incorporate authentic Caribbean artwork, such as paintings, photographs, or unique media combinations that will resemble Caribbean life differently than an article in a cheap travel magazine.

Try to ‘hunt down’ real time scenes, something like a portion of ethnic cuisine, a portrait of a child playing on the beach, or simply a bowl of tropical fruits. This counts for your walls, tiles, dishes, flower pots, and every other suitable surface.

Tropical plants

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Greenery and plants should not be underestimated in any style. They are of utmost importance in Caribbean homes, which means that you have to replace the lack of lush blooms or tropical flowers that cannot be grown in your region.

A good way to go is to purchase tropical greenery that is resistant (there are leaves that can last in water for weeks, and they are extremely affordable!).

Caribbean kitchens

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Kitchens are perfect for Caribbean experimenting, especially if you decorate them with bright, positive colors and noticeable Caribbean accents.

A good idea is to paint walls lime green, and to add gingerbread trims to make the room look more island-like. Curtains should be playful, and that refers also to rugs, towels, and tablecloths.

The liveliness rule expands to cabinetry too: there is no reason to spare your storage from a vivid orange splash that can certainly bring you the desired Caribbean vibe!

Neutral palettes

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The same as in the case of walls, other elements will tolerate a couple of neutral tones (especially whites and creams). Another color that looks good is brown, even if it is not that festive.

However, having in mind that this is your home, and you’re supposed to live in it, you shouldn’t sacrifice functionality for good and playful looks. The ultimate purpose is to balance between the two.

If your sofas, tables, rugs, or cabinets are bold, contrast with a neutral element. It can be wooden chairs, wooden tables, turquoise rugs, or any other element that comes to your mind.

Final thoughts

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If you’re really going Caribbean, you have to understand that Caribbean culture is a result of many generations of changes and modifications. It accepted elements from French, Dutch, English, Spanish, and African life, and that can be seen in interior design just as clear as it is in music and cuisine.

This is a good thing, as it means that you have a rainbow of choices and ideas to bring the tropical vibe inside your home.