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Coastal Grandmother Charm: 41 Home Improvements to Upgrade Your Lifestyle

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Embrace the Comfort of Coastal Grandmother Style

Ever seen a Nancy Meyers movie and wished to live in that calm, cozy setting? Inspired by ‘coastal grandmothers’, the ‘Coastal Grandmother’ style is my personal favorite. It’s more than just decor—it’s a way of life that embodies timeless elegance a la Diane Keaton, (Something’s Gotta Give) set against a soothing coastal backdrop. The Coastal Grandmother style is effortlessly stylish, offering a put-together look that’s comfortable and relaxed. The best part? You don’t need to be near the beach to invite this warmth into your home. Its universal appeal is so captivating it even got the Washington Post talking!

Huge Fan of Coastal Grandmother Aesthetic

The coastal grandmother aesthetic style is all about simplicity, with a breezy, beach-like feel that suits everyone, regardless of age or gender. From ginger jars to a matching pajama set, it brings a timeless look to your space. Imagine sipping white wine by the beach, surrounded by the simple pleasures of life. Add a collared shirt, a staple item in the coastal grandmother’s wardrobe, in bright colors and some bonus points for the right mindset, embodying both traditional and modern elements essential for achieving this look. Don’t forget a bucket hat to complete the ensemble, channeling the stylish, creative, and slightly kooky vibe of iconic movie characters like Erica Barry and Jane Adler, reflecting a laid-back and comfortable coastal lifestyle.

It’s like having heirloom tomatoes on your kitchen counter and throwing a few extra throw pillows on your sofa for that extra touch of comfort. Embrace the coastal grandmother style and enjoy the beauty of a beach-inspired lifestyle.

Source: Alamy LTD., 31 December 2002, Something's Gotta Give, digital image, Diane Keaton.

Source: (2003). DIANE KEATON, SOMETHING’S GOTTA GIVE, 2003 Warner Bros. Set decorator Beth Rubino, who worked with Nancy Meyers on Something’s Gotta Give, creates an impressive Hamptons home for Diane Keaton (Erica). Keaton is a Manhattan playwright whose daughter is having an affair with Harry, played by Jack Nicholson, until chest pains turn their world upside down. In this scene, Erica is sitting at her bedroom desk contemplating a stroll on the beach with Harry. The setting is timeless! The gorgeous coastal lifestyle depicted in this film still resonates almost two decades after its release.

The Appeal of the Coastal Grandmother Style

Let’s dive into the Washington Post article titled “Your Guide to the Ultimate Coastal Grandmother Summer.” The Coastal Grandmother style goes beyond aesthetics; it’s a way of life that seamlessly combines comfort, functionality, and accessibility. Part of embracing this lifestyle includes visiting the farmer’s market for fresh ingredients, aligning with the high-quality, laid-back, and fresh-from-the-garden lifestyle that is quintessential to the coastal grandmother aesthetic.

With its soothing colors, use of natural materials, and clean design, it creates a serene environment that alleviates stress and promotes well-being. This coastal style is just the thing to bring a fresh and summery aesthetic to your home.

Something’s Gotta Give

This coastal style is just the thing to bring a fresh and summery aesthetic to your home. Inspired by the coastal lifestyle, this design approach includes natural elements and fresh flowers, evoking a leisurely beach walk. This style is an excellent choice for most everyone, but particularly beneficial for individuals with mobility issues or Alzheimer’s, as well as children.

The blend of ADA-compliant elements with the coastal living concept creates a unique coastal living experience that is both elegant and safe. This design approach, inspired by a coastal living experience, was applied over a decade ago for a homeowner on the East Coast, and its core principles remain as meaningful and relevant today.

Gina Jaja. (March 2024). Top: CDM Home Tour. Lower Left and right: Gigi Day. Table Setting and Waterfront Stoll on Balboa Island – Coastal Grandmother Aesthetic [Photograph]. Mod Daily LLC.

Coastal Grandmother – A Home Makeover

Set Sail on a Home Transformation Adventure

We now invite you to join us on a remarkable journey—a journey that transformed a 50-year-old house into a stunning, customized sanctuary, extending the owner’s life. Our efforts didn’t go unnoticed.

We earned multiple awards for design and construction. The project, featuring 41 unique home improvement ideas, has been recognized for its design and construction, showcasing the impact of thoughtful design.

Emma’s Home Makeover: A True Story

We bring you an inspiring story about Emma’s home makeover. Emma thought home remodeling was a luxury, so she chose to save rather than invest in home improvements. But when Alzheimer’s began to impact her cognitive abilities, her beloved home became a hazard due to its outdated layout and fittings. Her doctor recommended moving her to a memory care unit.

Gigi Day. Coastal Grandmother Style welcoming gate, blue hydrangeas and blue and white striped outdoor seating [Photograph]. Mod Daily LLC.

A Son’s Heartfelt Promise

Determined to stay home, Emma’s son made a heartfelt promise—he would keep his mother out of a nursing home. That promise sparked an extraordinary home renovation journey. Despite the challenges, Emma returned to her reimagined seaside cottage.

Her family made significant changes to her home to ensure her safety, allowing her to continue the routines and traditions that brought her joy.

Honoring Emma’s Transformation

Emma’s health improvement coupled with her determination to retain her independence, inspired many. Her remarkable lifestyle transformation even caught the attention of NBCUniversal’s affiliate, NECN. Her family’s home remodel was featured in the Dream House series and shared again at the year’s end among five other exceptional homes.

Each home, including Emma’s quaint seaside beach cottage, achieved “Dreamies” status in a unique design category. NECN highlighted the Coastal Grandmother project as a great example of a lifesaving endeavor – and it truly was. With this guide, you too can create a safe, beautiful, and transformative living space for your family.

We’ve created an organized infographic that showcases Emma’s story, highlighting her return to the seaside cottage her late husband built for her decades ago, capturing the essence of coastal grandmother life. Source: (2023). Emma’s Health Journey [Photograph]. Mod Daily LLC / Gigi Day.

Emma: A Coastal Grandmother

And so we’ll start from the beginning. Emma, my client, invited her grandson to stay with her for a few weeks. He witnessed events that focused on his grandmother’s forgetfulness during his visit. She flooded the kitchen and then the bathroom.

Later that week, she placed a dish towel on top of an open flame on her gas stove. He was horrified as she left the room without realizing what she had done. On top of all of this, she could not manage her medication dosage properly.

Next followed a whirlwind round of events, including Emma being rushed to the ER. During Emma’s hospitalization, she was diagnosed with moderate Alzheimer’s Disease and Pneumonia.

Immerse yourself in the coastal grandmother’s wardrobe as she strolls through the local farmer’s market, effortlessly showcasing a classic striped sweater and a comfortable button-down. Experience the captivating beach house vibe and discover your own coastal-inspired outfits to embody the timeless style of coastal living. Let the vibrant hues of pretty yellow and white gingham, the freshness of freshly picked blueberries, and the joy of indulging in pancakes evoke the essence of quintessential summer living all year round. Source: (2023). Coastal Grandmother vision board. Mod Daily LLC / Gigi Day.

Emma embodies the ‘inner coastal grandmother’ through her lifestyle choices and home decor, drawing inspiration from a life filled with seaside walks, gardening, and cherished family moments, all wrapped in a classic, cozy, and neutral aesthetic.

Lifestyle: Preserving Daily Rituals

While in the hospital, Emma missed the little rituals that made her mornings special. She missed talking with her neighbor over coffee and walking by the beach. Emma missed being with her friends each week playing cards. In particular, she missed watching the Red Sox and the Patriots and cheering loudly (very loudly) for both teams. She longed to return to it all.

Coastal Grandma Style – Creating a Safer Home

To bring Emma back home, her family had to include important upgrades such as hands-free faucets and a (flameless) induction cooktop. Steve kept his promise despite the challenges, and Emma returned to her beloved home, which extended her life, according to her intake nurse.

[The Mod Daily]. (2021, February 15). 41 Coastal Grandmother and Home Improvement Ideas for a Fabulous Life [Video].

Coastal Grandmother Returns Home

For a home that will work for you as it did for Emma, it’s best to start at the beginning with a comprehensive project planner. We’ve compiled a list of home improvement ideas based on Emma’s own renovation journey, each focused on enhancing safety, accessibility, and comfort.

Coastal Grandmother Ideas

What is a coastal grandmother style?


Home Improvement Ideas

  1. OPENINGS: Entrances, interior doorways and openings were widened to allow the owner easy access with a walker or wheelchair.
  2. CEILING: The ceilings were raised to create a feeling of greater spaciousness.
  3. CLUTTER-FREE: Common areas, including the hall, kitchen and, living room are safe from trip hazards like rugs and decor.
  4. PATH LIGHTING: 24/7 LED in-wall lights lead the way from the homeowner’s bedroom to the bathroom, kitchen, and living room. It’s the type of lighting you see in a movie theatre, and it brightly guides the homeowner from one room to the next to avoid a fall.
  5. SAVE WATER: The home was optimized to use less energy and water, resulting in a more sustainable living environment.

Source: (2023). Home Renovation – Living Room. Mod Daily LLC / Gigi Day. A photo of the new living room with ocean and garden views and the Coastal Grandmother dining table you will read about a little later this summer.

Source: (2023). Home Renovation Before and After. Mod Daily LLC / Gigi Day. Here is a glimpse of Emma’s Cottage by the sea. The image on the left includes her new coastal kitchen with safety features. A hands-free faucet, similar to Kohler’s Sensate, is installed to avoid flooding and create a more hygienic kitchen environment. The cameraman was a lovely gentleman from NECN and that’s me all of those years ago providing the home tour for NECN’s Dream House. The photo in the middle includes Emma’s new Wolf Induction Cooktop includes with a safety lock and no open flames. And the image on the right includes her kitchen before the home improvement.

Coastal Grandmother Ideas

Coastal Grandmother homes looks bright and beautiful.

Source: (2023). Coastal Grandmother vision board. Mod Daily LLC / Gigi Day. Biophilic design brings the coastal grandmother aesthetic to life, transforming spaces with memorable home decor and beautifully decorated rooms.


Bring the Outdoors Into Your Home

  • 6. COASTAL GRANDMA STYLE:  Make your house feel happy (like a summer day) and beautiful, avoiding an institutional look.
  • 7. COASTAL THEME: Capture the essence of the sea with a coastal-inspired theme. [Read: Blake Lively Style – How to Plan a Stunning Home Decor Project]
  • 8. BIOPHILIC DESIGN: The palette in this design contains soothing, healing colors, with each hue bringing the outdoors into the home.
  • 9. NATURAL HUES: The updated kitchen brings in natural colors.
  • 10. SAFETY: The previous kitchen showed its age and the kitchen cabinets were all unfinished. Also ventilation had not been installed over the stove. Now the new kitchen is safe and drawers are clearly labeled.

Coastal Grandmother Ideas

Kitchen Design – Let’s get cooking!


Kitchen Appliances and Fixtures

  • 11. SINK: The kitchen sink area includes a soft radius corner and shallow depth, Blanco sink that is perfect for accessing dishes.
  • 12. FAUCET: Similar to KOHLER® touchless kitchen faucets, the hands-free faucet will turn off automatically if the client forgets to do so.
  • 13. DISHWASHER: We chose a compact, 18-inch wide Miele dishwasher to support a hygienic kitchen environment.
  • 14. COOKTOP: Wolf induction cooktop is efficient and heats up quickly. The electromagnetic field induces heat in the cookware with precise temperature control.
  • 15. APPLIANCE HEIGHT: The height of the Wolf wall oven and Wolf Microwave are placed at the right height for Emma.

Source: (2023). NECN Film Crew and Gigi Day in Newly Renovated Kitchen. Mod Daily LLC / Gigi Day. The images highlight the home improvement. Notice the ceiling height at the refrigerator wall. See the before photographs at the bottom of the post. Image on left includes two members of the NECN film crew.

Coastal Grandmother Ideas

Let the sunshine in!

Source: (2023). Home Remodel. Mod Daily LLC / Gigi Day. Images were taken at the time NECN filmed the Coastal Grandmother Home. That is, except for the bottom right image giving a glimpse of the original entrance.


It’s Time for Dinner

  • 16. SUB ZERO GLASS FRONT REFRIGERATOR: There are two good reasons we have specified the Sub Zero 30′′ Classic Over-and-Under Refrigerator Freezer with Glass Door.
    • The first reason is that the glass front offers easy visibility for memory-challenged individuals, who then have a more easily visible and prominent reminder to eat.
    • Reason number two: having a clear view of the refrigerator contents makes it much easier for caregivers to monitor supply levels.
  • 17. GLASS PANELED ENTRY DOOR: We selected a glass-paneled entry door to bring more natural light into the coastal cottage. Daylight reduces the risk of osteoporosis, reduces the risk of heart disease, and guards against seasonal depression.

Coastal Grandmother Ideas

A dining room with a view of the sea!


Small Details Add Up

  • 18. COUNTERTOP MATERIAL: A Cambria quartz countertop is environmentally friendly, long-lasting, antimicrobial, and needs no maintenance.
  • 19: DINING ROOM WITH A VIEW: On the other side of the kitchen’s partition wall, a dining table is located to take advantage of the sea view.
  • 20: DINING CHAIR: There are a few details in the dining area, including a specific chair for the homeowner. The seat cushion is thick, so she can prop herself in and out of it.
  • 21: TABLE DESIGN: The table was custom built with a pedestal instead of legs. Additionally, the top has a gradual radius instead of an apron. Our goal is to reduce the possibility of Emma being injured on the table by removing the legs and apron.

Coastal Grandmother style or Coastal Grandmother aesthetic is a feeling and a lifestyle.

Coastal Grandmother Ideas

Discover bathroom ideas that will improve the safety of your home (for all ages).

Source: (2023). Bathroom Remodel. Mod Daily LLC / Gigi Day. Newly renovated bathroom with curbless shower and beautiful wall tile.


Bathroom Remodel

  • 22. BATHROOM GUT: During the renovation process, the entire bathroom was gutted and completely redesigned.
  • 23. WATER-RESISTANT PRODUCTS: The fittings, including storage cabinets, had to be waterproof or water-resistant.
  • 24. CURBLESS SHOWER: a standard 16″ high tub in the old bathroom proved to be extremely difficult for the owner to climb over. The tub was replaced with a curbless shower loaded with amenities.
  • 24. BARRIER-FREE: The barrier-free shower accommodates a wheelchair.
  • 25. SHOWER SEAT: A wall-mounted shower seat can be folded up and out of the way when not in use.

Coastal Grandmother Ideas

Bathroom safety is an important part of the design process.


Bathroom Safety Bars

  • 26: GRAB BARS: Grab bars in the shower help reduce the risk of a dangerous fall.
  • 27. HAND SHOWER: A hand shower with a flexible hose is ideal while sitting on the bench or attached to the shower bar as a stationary head (Grohe).
  • 28. SHOWER TILE: The shower surround combines easy-to-maintain waterproof porcelain tile with Ravenna Bamboo Mosaics for a beautiful feature wall.
  • 29. SINK + TOILET BARS: For optimum safety, grab bars at the sink, the toilet will reduce the likelihood of injury.
  • 30. LAVATORY FAUCET: Hands-free faucet prevent flooding mishaps. A motion sensor faucet is also a water-saving device that can save up to 70% of the water usually used by faucets.

Source: (2023). Bathroom Remodel. Mod Daily LLC / Gigi Day. Bathrooms can be dangerous and grab bars at the sink and the toilet will reduce the likelihood of injury.

Coastal Grandmother Ideas

A wayfinding system helps people navigate at home with more ease and independence.

SHOWER SEAT: A wall-mounted shower seat can be folded up and out of the way when not in use. Notice the hand shower and use of waterproof curtains instead of a glass door.


Better Seat Height

  • 31. COMFORT HEIGHT TOILET: We installed a Kohler comfort height toilet – it’s similar in height as a typical dining chair. It may prevent injuries.
  • 32. FLOOR TILE: For safety reasons, we specified a petite mosaic for the floor (instead of larger tiles that offer less traction). Besides being aesthetically pleasing, our choice of floor is also very functional.
  • 33. TILE TRANSITIONS: Due to her impaired vision, the dark green floor border makes it easier for her to see wall transitions.
  • 34. VISUAL CUES: Interior doors are painted with different colors to signify a room change.

Coastal Grandmother Ideas

A new master bedroom. Use favorite things as inspiration!

Incorporating elements from your wardrobe into your bedroom design can create a personalized and cohesive aesthetic. For instance, if light blue and shades of chambray are staples in your coastal-inspired attire, consider integrating these hues into your bedroom’s color scheme. This approach not only adds a serene and airy feel to the space but also reflects the coastal anesthetic’s preference for light blue, aligning your living environment with your personal style.


Knowledge is Power!

  • 35. WAYFINDING: Visual cues and sometimes referred to as wayfinding in a commercial setting mindset used throughout the home.
  • 36. PRETTY HUES: Besides the nature-inspired palette that reduces depression, we infuse the master bedroom with colors found in the owner’s clothes.
  • 37. A NEW BED: The old bed was replaced with a comfy upholstered headboard, footboard, and a plant-based mattress and is so cozy.
  • 38. The washer and dryer were in the basement. We transformed the master bedroom’s workflow and installed Asko’s panel-ready washer and dryer.

The antique white fronts of the appliances match the antique white custom cabinetry that surrounds them (the den to the left of the bedroom is now part of the new bedroom footprint).

Coastal Grandmother Ideas – A New Kitchen Pantry

The Philips Lifeline Automated Medication Dispensing Service is vital to this Coastal Grandmother.

Philips Lifeline Automated Medication Dispensing Service.


Convenience & Storage!

  • 39. NEW KITCHEN PANTRY: We modified the home’s interior footprint drastically to add essential features such as a new kitchen pantry.
  • 40. NEW CORNER DESK: A new corner desk with overhead storage is easily accessible in the common area.
  • 41. AUTOMATED MEDICATION DISPENSER: The small desk provides enough space to display Philips Lifeline Automated Medication Dispensing Service. It is a simple way to manage even complex medication regimens. It truly is a unique system that includes an audio prompt to remind the homeowner to take her medication. If a dosage is missed, a caregiver receives an automated phone call or text.

The Return on Investment of a Home Improvement

Enhance the way you live and increase the value of your property with a home improvement project! It’s a worthwhile investment that can truly transform your living space. Alongside exercise, a sense of humor, and the occasional dessert, making a few changes to your home can lead to a better lifestyle. For those looking to embrace the Coastal Grandmother lifestyle, these improvements are just what you need to create a serene and inviting living space that aligns perfectly with the aesthetic and comfort this trend embodies.

The Proverbial “Before” Shots

Source: (2023). Images of Home “Before” Remodel. Mod Daily LLC / Gigi Day. From top left: the original office that we incorporate into the master bedroom. Top row, middle photos are original living room shots. Top and bottom right: original bathroom photographs and bottom left is the original master bedroom. The wall in the background will be removed with the home improvement.


Thank you for exploring the Experience Coastal Grandmother Charm: 41 Vibrant Home Improvement Ideas Revealed. We value your feedback and would love to hear from you. Share your comments and suggestions with us by emailing hello@theModDaily.com. If you find this article helpful, We invite you to share it with your friends.

Remember to sign up for our newsletter to stay connected and receive updates on upcoming articles, design tips, and exclusive offers. Let’s continue this journey of transformation together!

Source: (2023). Coastal Grandmother vision board. Mod Daily LLC / Gigi Day. Embrace the coastal grandma style with a touch of freshness through vibrant floral arrangements and the aroma of fresh herbs.

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Gigi Day
Gigi Dayhttps://themoddaily.com/
Gigi Day is a designer and writer. Her blog, The Mod Daily, is full of life-enhancing home décor, lifestyle tips, and advice to optimize life at home.

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