We all know that first and foremost, a boat should be functional and keep the crew safe while on the water, but when you’re docked or at anchor, it’s so nice to have a space below that feels like home.
Boat decorating can be a bit of a challenge due to the limited amount of space available. You want your saloon to be comfortable, cozy, and personal to you, but you don’t want it to feel small, cramped, or cluttered.
A few well-placed accessories are the key to transforming the ambiance of your boat’s interior. They are versatile, and require little effort or expense on your part, allowing you to quickly and easily add your own unique splash of style. Better yet, if you’re the type of person whose decorating style varies with the season, accessories are easily interchangeable.
Here are a few of our favorite ways to turn your boat cabin into a space you’ll want to kick back and relax in.
Colorful Throw Pillows
Most boat interiors come in neutral tones – whites, beiges, and various shades of wood. The great thing about decorating around neutral tones is that even small splashes of color can make a huge impact.
Throw pillows are an easy way to step outside the box by allowing you to experiment with more fun colors and prints, such as this reversible throw pillow, with a floral print on the front and stripes on the back.
If you’re more of a traditionalist, look for something like this corded pillow. Its blue color lends itself to a more nautical theme, but the unusual pattern makes it just unique enough to stand out.
See more of our boat pillows, including solid colors and nautical prints here.
Whether you’re at home, at a restaurant, or on your boat, the right lighting definitely sets the mood in a space. A little extra light here, a softer light there…a little can go a long way to help create a relaxing ambiance.
One of my favorites is this LED Mica Branch Bunch. Just put the branches (which are wrapped in 30 tiny LED lights) in a vase, along with the battery pack, and you’ve got a beautiful way to light up a table or corner area on your boat.
You can also use LED rope lighting and put it along the base of your seating or along shelves to add some subtle light to a space.
Fun Floor Rugs
Rugs, like pillows, are another way you can make a bold statement and add color and personality to a room. In fact, many interior designers say that when decorating a space, you should buy the rug first, then decorate around that.
Rugs also serve double duty since they help protect those gorgeous teak and holly soles from wear and tear. If you purchase standard home rugs, you may find that the sizes don’t often fit within the size requirements on a boat, which of course has narrower walkways and smaller floor areas.
Our boat rugs are made specificially for boats – you can get runner rugs that are just 14″ wide (perfect for smaller boats), or 22″ wide (for slightly larger boats). These boat rugs are quick drying and are fade, stain, and mildew resistant. We also have a wide variety of colors to choose from!
The great thing about baskets is that they are both decorative and functional. Since space is such a commodity on a boat, baskets are one of the best ways to spruce up a space because they are decorative, but they also serve as storage, so it’s a win-win all around!
We use baskets on our boat to hold everything from magazines, to all of the cords for our electronics, to extra table runners, and other odds and ends.
More Design Inspiration
Want more boat design inspiration? Follow us on Pinterest to see our pins with the latest and greatest tips on how to decorate your boat’s interior!