Beach Cottages: Fresh Tradition

An amped-up color palette gives this Nantucket guest cottage positive energy


front porch

Modern chaises combine comfort with artful style on the front porch of this guesthouse. The porch deck is painted a soft gray to keep the setting cool and to let the sculptural furnishings take center stage. Plump pillows in citrus and water hues announce the fresh and lively palette found inside the house.

dining room

New York interior designer John Willey mixes classic furniture with “offbeat selections” for fresh interiors. Here, white vinyl box cushions pump up the style quotient of English ladderback chairs.


Chartreuse and high-gloss white paint extend a happy greeting in the foyer of this summer house. Open baskets tucked under an antique English sideboard corral towels and beach supplies.

living room

The wall color shifts to sky blue in the vaulted living area to temper the intense light it receives. To keep the space casual and fun, John chose awning stripes for contrasting cushions on the coral-colored sofa.


Accessories act like jewelry here, adding touches of surprise and sparkle. For pure color, a pendant lamp is strung with turquoise.


For a foolproof color mix, look out the windows. Natural linen fabric and aqua walls offer a serene sand and sea palette.

guest room

The palette of soft brights wanders into the cottage’s bedrooms, where it joins with crisp pattern to wake up the small spaces. John added color and simple cross moldings to the ceilings for subtle architecture.

guest room

Grasscloth wallcoverings andgrass green accents invite in the colors and textures of the home’s lush natural setting. Facing
limited floorspace—and wall space—John chose artful fabrics and window coverings with airy patterns and simple colors.


Hilary Adorno