Cabana Life

I’ve always felt that real creativity arises when faced with a small space. The owners of the cabana’s at this old fashioned beach club have each made their personal mark on their nautical getaways. Some have splattered painted floors. Some have amazing murals. All of them are bursting with personality and a fun look into life by the sea.

So, if the empty cabana, pictured below, was yours, how would you decorate it? Dream up what your look would be in our comment section!


About Cate

Cate is a former decorating editor of a shelter magazine based in Manhattan, who has recently moved from the Big Apple to Charlottesville with husband and baby. An interior design enthusiast, she enjoys all things aesthetic.
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46 Responses to Cabana Life

  1. Cate says:

    I would paint the floor grey and white stripes, really wide stripes, and then have white whicker furniture. Accessories would include canary yellow chintz pillows, an iron tea cart, and shells everywhere… Maybe whispy, gauzy curtains floating over the window?

  2. I love love LOVE these creative touches! Absolutely adorable — wish I had that kind of inspiration and fun space to work with…


  3. How neat! Mine would be a simple white walls with wood floors, dark furniture, open windows and sheer curtains. Ahh, sounds nice πŸ™‚

  4. Definitely a pull out couch and a table, so I could eat and sleep by the beach. The style? Whatever fit!

  5. Laura Louise Plummer says:

    I would do one Cabana for each astrological element: earth, air, fire and water. In the earth one, i would have lots of plants, sand, stones, and deep earthy colors like brown, green, blue and gray. In the air one, I would have fans and scarves, murals of the sky, and images of birds in flight. In the water one, I would have running water fountains, murals of the ocean, and images of fish, whales and merpeople. In the fire room, I would have fiery colors like bright orange, red and yellow. I would have candles and lava lamps, and deep smoky incense circulating throughout. I would play a CD of “crackling fire”, and light some “campfire” incense to set the mood.

  6. Lauren says:

    I love this! I also love your striped floor idea … and the teal floor in the first cabana. I would have such a hard time deciding what to do, but it would definitely involve blues, whites, and a daybed for afternoon naps!

  7. Lonnie says:

    I’d paint everything white. Inside only a couple mats, some cushions, blanket, and a plant. A sign that said Peace.
    Nice pictures!

  8. Stephanie says:

    Wow great ideas everyone!

    If that cabana were mine I would go all out with crazy 80s wicker beach furniture in corals and teals. The floor would be painted white and I would have white coral and a giant clam shell holding magazines. I’d also choose a sturdy rug. Oh and there would be a cooler for cocktails and beer, of course!

  9. gaycarboys says:

    Black and white for me. A comfy day bed and big cane loungers in black and white toile and the floor painted in black and white checks. White cane table and black candelabras with black and white striped and patterned cushions in all sizes. Black and white striped blinds and white walls. Its a shame there is no power outlets because I would have had a black chandelier! Just because you’re in a cabana is no excuse to be camping!

  10. Amazing photos. I would decorate the floor the color of sand maybe with a hint of sparkle. The walls a lavendar gray hue/tone. Natural wicker or rattan furniture. Decorate the walls with various photos of the ocean, beach grass, sand, etc. in aged or driftwood type frames. Be a little oasis. Thanks for sharing – Congrats on being FP!

  11. Texanne says:

    Terrific post. Thanks be to Fresh Pressed for pointing it out.
    Let’s see. First I’d get the ridgeline straight, then scrape off the layers of old shingles and put on fresh new ones. I’d put in a small, sturdy sofa, covered in green-and-white-striped canvas. An ottoman to match. Small desk (is there electricity?) with lamp. Small bookshelf. As someone else mentioned, lots of shells, perhaps a kitschy net on the wall to hold small items. Hooks for my beach bike. Gauzy curtains. Sigh. It ain’t real, but lovely to contemplate. Thanks!

  12. dollarsaenz says:

    This is awesome! People just use these for when they go to the beach? Never seen these, I want one!

  13. Dan Oig says:

    Really neat place! I’d love to check this out one day πŸ™‚

  14. This is awesome! I would put a hammock, some big oblong bean bag chairs. Lot’s of pillows. I think a mixture of tans and blue gray for color, all very muted. An armoire loaded with games and books and paper and paint and pens and pencils and little lap desks. Congrats on FP! πŸ˜‰

  15. Amazing photos. I live by the Arabian sea but here we have rather rustic huts.. not something as elaborately decorated as these cabanas but we still love ’em. (: congratulations on being FP!

  16. Kristin says:

    I love these little cabanas! The beach club where I used to lifeguard back in my high school days had them, and it was so fun to see how everyone decorated them. I would have Cate West Design come and design mine for me πŸ˜‰

  17. Eva McCane says:

    very cute! i want a cabana immediately. thanks for sharing.

  18. jsh0608 says:

    Great pictures!!! I would want a replica of the beach scene from outside, with a fan of course. :0)

  19. Lakia Gordon says:

    Amazing photos! I love cabanas!

  20. First of all, where are those cabanas placed?! Beautiful!

    Secondly, I would defenetley keep the white and blue- marinastyle, however, I would add some red, maybe just a few pillows or a painting. I would probably try to let in more light somehow, just dont really know how. Further on I would built a rural-wodden sofa (and paint it white) along the wal with window. In front of it I would like a large woddentable (also White, also rural) and maybe one or two chairs. Lastly I would put a large painting on one of the remaining walls, perhaps a picture of the shorline or similar.

  21. I would paint the walls and the floor blue and paint star fish and mermaids. The ceiling would have the sky painted on it and I would also put in a futon with lots of pillows, so comfy chairs, a fan and maybe a mini fridge if possible.

  22. I love the one with the orange wall, although the furniture is pretty bad. I also like the checkerboard painted floor.
    I think I would like a solid painted floor with some weathered/distressed wood furniture. Something minimal.

  23. I really love the pictures of rooms with generous amount of living space πŸ™‚

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  25. july says:

    That’s Great!!
    Thanks for sharing such a nice pic.

    Quarry Equipment

  26. Pezcita says:

    I’d have jungle theme with a futon (preferably a brown one), curtains with a bamboo/tropical birds pattern, lightly varnished or barewood floors (to look like bamboo), and a thick green rug. Next, I’d accessorize with twisty wooden tables, exotic plants, and stuffed “wild” animals or animal pillows. On the wall, I’d have a giant mural of my comic strip characters lost in the jungle.
    You can see them on my blog,

    What do people use cabanas for? They don’t look big enough to stay in overnight.

  27. newsy1 says:

    This is so cool. I never knew things like these existed. I would probably stick with colors of the sea, a sea of blues and greens like pale blue, aqua, turquoise and deeper. I would paint the floor the color of sand and have canvas covered furniture in off-white. I would have a comfortable chaise that you could actually sleep on in a muted white and off-white stripe and tons of pillows in blues, greens and sandy colors. I would add a shag-like multi colored area rug. Hey, this was fun. Great blog and pictures.

  28. csroth3 says:

    I would go with a Caribbean theme. The walls would be a light aqua cool, but i like the idea of wall art like the second photo. Maybe sand, water & palm trees instead of ivy. Natural colored wicker furniture with warm splashes of color in a floral print for chair cushions. Maybe an overstuffed neutral colored love seat with colorful throw pillows too. Some type of natural woven flooring like jute or tatami or something like that. A couple palm plants and a hibiscus bush for sure. A ceiling fan too.

  29. vallaura says:

    i’ll paint all with lush green with pictures of trees. chairs will be made from wood, so it will be living in the forest, shady, quiet and peaceful. nice photos! love them all πŸ™‚

  30. AwesomeAim says:

    Striped walls with different color schemes on each face, then art painted on it. Wooden floors giving way to a carpet, with a irregular curvy line separating them. Egg-chair (you know those? yeah.) in the corner (tilted towards the light source), and a full-wall bookshelf on the adjacent wall. A large coffee table in the middle (adjustable height), and colorful cushions everywhere. Oh, and shelves on the wall, with a espresso machine on a small, round glass table. Probably some cool lights that go around the ceiling, and the kind of light in the middle that throws shadow patterns onto the walls. A small fridge somewhere inconspicuous, because I’m realistic like that. xD

  31. richannkur says:

    My dream farm house is similar to this.

  32. CONIEFOX says:

    Wow~~Very creative and beautiful! haha..i have a fool question. does it very hot in summer? haha~

  33. your photos are amazing! love the light and how the furniture was arranged in a splish splash way.

  34. itstheendoftheday says:

    The simple life eh?

  35. James says:

    yeaah ..
    amazing photo’s !! I love cabanas!

  36. soulstrand says:

    Love your little spaces… me too… always drawn to them… my son is moving out and his room will be mine, all mine! I am an alternative therapist… art therapy, massage therapy, reiki, soul exploration, past life regression therapy… I would create a space that is ethereal, simple, mysterious, just as our soul is. Pale blue walls, dark wood floors, billowy sheer curtains from top to bottom covering the windows and walls… Everything stored in a closet when needed… ahhhhh!!!!!! Diane… visit me at!

  37. Abby says:

    So exciting that you all got “Freshly Pressed”! Curiously enough, a post from my (previously unread) dog blog ( was Freshly Pressed on WordPress today. I wonder if there’s a C’ville connection…

    Way to go, The Charlotte!

  38. Pingback: Art: Summer Beach Huts | A Head-On View of Life

  39. oh dear where would I start? flowers, prints, white chairs, handmade rag rug, my dog millies bed of course, candles, soft warm welsh blankets, a good book to read and a cup of coffee.

  40. joybound says:

    Absolutely love the attention to details. And the colors! I’m new at this blogging thing but just put up one on home decorating to channel my inner frustrated interior designer. Your pictures are a wonderful inspiration.


  41. kat says:

    Oh wow, that looks so cool! Thanks for sharing! I’m new to blogging here and I just love how supportive and creative everyone is! If you have time, could you please check out my blog? I would love some advice or feedback, and how to get more exposure πŸ™‚

  42. realanonymousgirl2011 says:

    Those are some really cute cabanas!

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