With boundless coastlines, a breathtaking outback, sightseeing for days, and year-round agreeable weather, it’s no wonder Australia has a love affair with our land down under. With outdoor living playing such an intrinsic part of the Australian lifestyle, it only makes sense that one of our favourite home design styles embraces all that is beautiful about the great outdoors. Hamptons style combines comfort, elegance, and natural surrounds in one highly covetable design trend, and Australia can’t get enough.
To get the scoop on all things Hamptons outdoor style, we sat down with professional designer and Hamptons expert, Natalee Bowen.
To wholeheartedly embrace Hamptons style is to wholeheartedly embrace the great outdoors, and what better way to do this than by adding one or two outdoor buildings to your design scheme. For design expert, Natalee, “Hamptons style is all about creating the summer resort style of living. An alfresco kitchen, outdoor pool and adjacent pool house, or something as simple as large sliding doors that open up your home to the backyard are all ideal for creating a complete outdoor entertaining space. You want to feel like your home is a holiday destination all year round,” she adds.
Whether you’re working with an interior or exterior, Hamptons style is all about intricate structures. If you include a covered verandah in your design scheme, consider adding a pitched gable roof to keep in line with the traditional look of Hamptons style roofing, advises Natalee. Don’t forget to include that quintessential weatherboard look on the exterior of your verandah or outdoor room with Linea™ Weatherboard. The weatherboard look that’s created with the cement composite profile is as close to traditional Hamptons style weatherboard as you can get and instantly infuses a charming coastal ambience. “It’s all about creating long, clean lines and deep shadows with Linea weatherboard”, says Natalee.
The devil is all in the detail when creating a Hamptons outdoor room, verandah or complementary structures such as balustrades, eaves, cupolas, and arbours. “Australian’s are continually being drawn to more elegant and sophisticated design elements”, says Natalee. This can be adopted with upstairs balconies and detailed balustrades. “Vertical or crisscrossed timber balustrades in calming whites or a contrasting shade is one of those classic architectural details that adds a touch of elegance to a Hamptons home”, says Natalee. What’s more, additions such as these mingle beautifully with exterior materials such as Linea weatherboard.
While there’s no denying that the elegance of Hamptons style immediately draws eyes upwards to features like weatherboard and impressive roofing, it pays to focus on embellishments below your feet as well. For Natalee, a Hamptons style floor is all about wooden flooring. “If you’re dressing the floors in your outdoor room, I love wide oak floorboards in either an American mocha shade or stained dark oak to create an open and breezy flow to the rest of the house.”
If you’re laying flooring outdoors in an entryway or driveway, stone is a popular choice for Hamptons style. “Natural textures like stone work wonders in a Hamptons style home because you’re once again bringing in that natural element”, says Natalee. “Using natural materials such as stone is also a great way to bring in the Hamptons colour palette of whites, neutrals and greys”, she adds.
When it comes to creating Hamptons style with your alfresco accents, “The key words are timeless elegance”, says Natalee. “Many homeowners get confused between Hamptons and beachy or Hamptons and country,” she adds. To avoid zigzagging between contrasting design styles and staying true to traditional Hamptons style, Natalee advises focusing on texture and colour palette. “A soothing colour scheme of pastels, all-white or soft grey that takes inspiration from the ocean along with natural materials like rattan and timber will bring an instant feeling of freshness to your home.” When choosing décor or furniture items for your verandah, always opt for natural materials such as timber cabinetry or cane chairs.
Another common misjudgement when creating a Hamptons style décor scheme is confusing coastal charm with coastal kitsch by over-decorating. To combat this, Natalee recommends pairing back on your décor items and only bringing in natural elements with jute or sisal rugs, a shell or two here and there, and pops of colour with plants and linen cushions. If you really want to make a bold splash in your verandah or outdoor room, you can’t go wrong with a beaded chandelier.