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Monday Musings- Coastal Grandmother Style

Happy Monday, ladies. First, there was Grandmillenial design or “granny chic” decor which is popular with millennials. They’re putting their own twist on traditional with bold patterns, printed curtains, fringe, pleats, and heirloom furniture. Now it’s Coastal Grandmother style. More than decor, this is also a lifestyle and fashion aesthetic. Have you heard of it? Here’s how to get the coastal grandmother style.

coastal grandmother style example
RAFFIA BUCKET HATL.L. BEAN COTTON CARDIGAN RELAXED FIT POPLIN SHIRT /  GAP KHAKI’S  /  JACK ROGERS SANDALS  /  SMALL HOOP EARRINGS  /  MARKET TOTE BAG  /  LIPGLOSS IN “LUCKY” RAYBANS IN TORTOISE CLASSIC

This effortlessly put-together style is inspired by Nancy Meyer’s films and specifically, Diane Keaton in Somethings Got to Give.  A young woman first coined the phrase on TikTok, and it’s since taken on a life of its own. Everywhere I went on the web this weekend, I saw references to “coastal grandmother”.

The style includes lots of loose breathable fashion. Chunky knits and loose linen in neutral beiges white, cream, and natural fabrics including cashmere. Oversized oxford shirts, comfy chinos, and lots of classic neutrals. It’s a romanticized Hamptons-esque vibe that’s getting more popular by the moment.

CANVAS PACKABLE HATCARDIGAN  /  LANDS END CASHMERE TURTLENECK  /  WASHED LINEN PANTS  /  PEARL STUDS   /  SUPERGA SNEAKERS  /  CANVAS TOTE BAG  /  WARBY PARKER SUNGLASSES

The coastal grandmother also has a defined lifestyle many aspire to. She sips wine on her porch while her latest Ina Garten creation finishes baking. She loves to garden, shop at the farmers market, enjoys her book club, takes long walks on the beach, and believes in downtime to relax and recharge. She basically lives the good life…to which I say, sign me right up.

It’s been a rough couple of years for all of us so fashion and a lifestyle that feels effortless, are certainly easy to aspire to. We don’t have to live near the beach or have grandchildren to be a coastal grandmother. The fashion is clean, classic, and casual. The lifestyle comes from being comfortable in our own skin and doing the things that bring us joy. We appreciate the wisdom that age has granted us and live our best life by being true to ourselves.

COASTAL GRANDMOTHER lIFESTYLE

 

Have you heard of this aesthetic?

Thanks for reading and remember to wear what makes you feel confident.

 

 

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94 Comments

  1. I havent heard the reference but the style reminds me of Martha Stewart’s style. She always looks timeless. I like it as it seems appropriate for anything

  2. I love the look and do have most of the pieces in my wardrobe, although I wear color as well. The open cardigan in the second grouping is almost an exact duplicate of one from Talbots I have had for over 10 years, and fortunately has survived my seasonal closet purges. I don’t wear it often (probably why it is still in good shape!) but it is a classic all weather item. I also find the cardigan color very flattering to my fair skin and light colored hair (I’m a brunette who lightened my hair as the gray/white came in.) Leave out the straw hat and tote, and this Midwest grandmother (please call me Mimi) can pull off the “Coastal Grandmother” style.

    1. I have an almost identical cardigan too. I think I’ll wear it today with white jeans.

  3. I absolutely LOVE this style! I didn’t know that it had a “name”, though. 🙂

  4. Love this style! Thanks for posting this fun collection of pieces! Made me want to buy it all! 🙂 Hope you’ll share more of this easy style that’s perfect for this phase of life! Thank you!

    1. I love it too so I will share more.

  5. I like the second look. It is more classic and tailored. The first looks like the pieces are oversized and frumpy. A look a young, thin women could pull off but not this 69 year old. I never wear cardigans. I’m not sure why but I just don’t feel comfortable in them. I bought a linen dress years ago, wore it once, then donated it. I don’t want to look like I slept in my clothes. I do love neutrals both in my clothing choices and decor. But the lifestyle is me all over. I love to garden, belong to a book club, try new recipes, take long walks every day, and an evening stroll along the boardwalk. I’m retired and enjoying life.

    1. I prefer the second look for myself too. A bit more elegant. In fact I own a few of them 🙂

  6. I love this look, although it is not one that Diane Keaton totally espouses anymore. I agree with the New England “preppie” comment. Call me a grinch, but one thing that I don’t like is the ‘grandmother’ tag. We’ve talked about women over 55 or 60 becoming invisible. Calling us grandmothers really puts the nail in the coffin on self-identity. When I am a grandmother, I don’t want my kids to start calling me grandma when they speak to or about me when the grandkids aren’t around. My husband used to call his mother “grandma” on the phone. Okay, I am off my soapbox now. Cotton and linen neutrals are great for summer: you really can’t go wrong with them,

    1. It’s interesting that granny chic and grandmother have been used so recently to describe a style that young women are aspiring too. They’re also coloring their hair gray!

    2. Hi Maeve, I’m with you about the “grandmother” tag. Frankly, it sends me over the edge same so “OK Boomer.” 😉

    3. Maeve, let us know how you feel about it when you do become a grandmother. It’s the greatest joy of my life, and since I’m over 70, I don’t think I’m fooling anyone that I’m still a sweet young thing! Call me grandma, please.

      1. I am with you Kay – being a grandmother is such a joy and a privilege. I became a grandmother at 43 and in a few months around my 70th birthday will become a great grandmother. It’s so very special to be a grannie. Doesn’t have to mean frumpy or “past it”. Have a great day everyone.

      2. I love being a granny!!

  7. Oh boy,I think for the first time in my life I might be ‘fashion forward’. Have been dressing like this, or close to it for a while. No I didn’t realize it was a thing! I had to laugh as I recently retired, and joined a book club! Thank you again Jennifer for keeping me up to date!

  8. Boy, I’m all over this like white on rice! I just spent the weekend reading about this, even downloading a Spotify coastal grandma playlist with great music! I also happen to be grandma age and live by the ocean!

    1. Hi, could you share the grandma playlist? thank you

      1. There are many Coastal Grandma playlists on Spotify. Peruse them!

  9. Meg Anderson says:

    LOVE this post!

  10. I’m not a fan of neutrals but elements of the coastal grandmother style appeal to me. Hats are a must for me during our long Texas summers. We put away our sweaters a few months ago. I just need to add some cheery color and I’ll be on board!

  11. I love this mix of easy naturals, and the whites and creams are lovely… but while the “barly” and khaki look superb with them, some of us cannot wear any hint of brown. Can you suggest what might work for us?

  12. The only coast I live next to is Lake Michigan. The trees are just starting to leaf. I need color! Bright beautiful color!

  13. I have always loved texture and neutrals and disliked tight fitted clothes so maybe I’ve been a bit of a Costal Granny all along. Who knew there was a name for that style! Now that my hair is white, the whites and creams are a little harder to work with and not look washed out, but I still love them. By the way, what’s wrong with shopping out of the L.L. Bean catalog? Both they and Land’s End have good quality clothing that last. No shame in that!

    1. Who said we shouldn’t shop LL Bean and Lands End? They have fabulous quality clothes!

  14. Ahhh, the Hamptons are a looong way from the Gulf Coast where we gave up sweaters two months ago and wear bright cheery clothing in loose comfort and great jewelry because we are an artist colony.

    1. An artist colony sounds dreamy! Lucky you.

    2. Another Gulf Coaster here and I thought the same thing. The sweaters and layering only work for us during winter – maybe 6 or 8 weeks out of the year. Bright colors and light fabrics work best down here so I guess we won’t be coastal grandmothers! I like the look, just not practical here in NOLA.

  15. This look seems classic to me for the beach and just about year-round with some changes. But I did live in Florida for over 30 years. Now, in Georgia, the look seems great for now. With my coloring, I wear sunscreen and hats. And I wear white jeans all the time, too.

    1. Hard to go wrong with classics!

  16. I love the look and the natural colors but how do people deal with the linen wrinkles.

    1. You just need to accept the wrinkles. Coastal Grandmother or not, I’m sure hours of ironing aren’t part of the lifestyle 😸

    2. They learn to embrace them. I find certain linens crease easier than others but they all do to a great extent.

      1. I like linen but not for pants, can’t stand the wrinkles there. I don’t mind the wrinkles in shirts and dresses. A tip I have for linen dresses, though is to look for pattern or print.

      2. A pattern would help camouflage the wrinkles.

  17. To me the look has always said, I’m confident, casual, and smartly independent. Label or not, it can be a easy way to dress.

    1. It certainly does. I could create this style from my wardrobe so easily, and love it.

  18. Jennifer… I’ve been embracing that look for years! I lived on the Oregon Coast. But four years ago we moved to the Georgia Mountains, and that look made me feel a little out of place, but I still kept up with my style, now its popular…Who knew?

    1. You’re right in style, always have been. It’s true that where we live does influence how our style aesthetic feels.

  19. I had to laugh when I read the head line. Yes, I have heard of this aesthetic, but unfortunately, not in a good way. A fashion editor in an Australian newspaper wrote (last week) a very scathing article about ‘coastal grandmother style’, describing it as bland and the uniform of the wealthy retiree.

    1. I read that article too. It’s not how I see it because I’m less about the movie character and more about the fashion aesthetic.

      1. This was an article in the Sydney Morning Herald by Damien Woolnough, but there are certainly many articles about this particular aesthetic at the moment. The most perjorative description of it was ‘rich, white, usually divorced , older women’ – ouch.

  20. Hmm…looks an awful lot like “New England preppy” style to me…I’m sure just about all those items could be found in the LL Bean catalog!😂😂

    1. I have dressed like this my whole life. It’s hilarious to me that this style is now in the news and controversial! Yes, I’m a granny, but haven’t always been.😂

  21. Here in Connecticut we’ve been doing the Coastal Grandma for decades. Neutral decor, ( pops of color, often blue or seafoam) , clothes in natural fibers that skim the body ( skinnies were an aberration!) . No need to live by the beach , but no nautical decor unless you can see the water! Ina and Martha influences.
    Ha! We’re finally in style!

    1. Lol, I can’t see the water but I want nautical decor! 🙂

  22. I am not familiar with the Coastal Grandmother style phrase. Maybe, because I have lived my 70+ years in the upper Midwest. It’s my goal to be a devoted grandma while attempting to stay current and open minded. All the things you mentioned that describe this style offer a comforting vibe to a relaxed lifestyle. What I’m gathering from this blog is how easy it is to add that unpredictable style to my wardrobe and how that keeps me thinking and willing to change course, here and there. Life’s too short to have a label constricting our ability to change and maybe, add that spark of fun!

    1. I totally agree, Jan. We need to be able to change and experiment as we please. Happy Monday

  23. I started seeing this several weeks ago and I must admit, I am fascinated. I am grandmother age (66) but without grandkids. I live in Florida at the beach and recently bought a house, so the decorating style interested me a lot. I’ve been studying it intensely. I am still working so a lot of the relaxing lifestyle clothing doesn’t work for me. Some of the fashions are OK but I like things that are a bit sexier. Since I am apparently living the lifestyle I think a reality show about coastal grandmothers could be a thing, LOL.

    1. Lucky you living at the beach. That’s always been my dream.

  24. Yes to Coastal Grandmother essentials! I love everything about this classic, clean, and sophisticated look. Way back when, in my late 20’s, I used to sail Lake Michigan, and this look reminds me of those days—especially that roomy nautical bag. So I’m totally on board (forgive the pun) with this style.

    1. Puns are always appreciated here! Happy Monday.

  25. Sheila in Garden City, SC says:

    Good morning! I’ve loved this effortless, casual lifestyle for years. Something’s Gotta Give is my very favorite movie, adore Diane Keaton. Thank you, Jennifer, for always touching on so many interesting topics and keeping us up to date!

    1. It’s always been a favorite of mine too 🙂

  26. Yes, I am signing on for this one!

  27. P.S. I don’t cook, garden, or have kids, I just love white.

  28. Yes, I’ve read about this style. I loved the whole esthetic when the movie came out. I love off white everything, natural fabrics, the beach, always have. Glad it may become popular.

    1. It’s hugely popular which I am loving.

  29. I hadn’t heard of this, but it describes what I’ve been doing unawares!

    1. We are ahead of the trend. We are inspiring the trend! Love it.

  30. Put me down for yes! I love the Coastal Grandmother style. And, I’ve already got the grandmother part down.

    1. Lol, me too! I also own the canvas hat and love neutrals in natural fibers.