Hamptons design is a classic, sophisticated yet understated style which will remain timeless for many years to come. The key to this design is to have a relaxed feel with high-end finishes and a simple colour palette, with attention to joinery detail.
To my mind, in Australia we have fused this style with Australian country to create our own Hamptons interpretation. It is a style that can be seen in beachfront properties, found in the country and at home in suburbia. The key elements to creating this style lie in the use of texture and the layering of elements. Keeping things light, bright and breezy partnered with texture is vital in pulling this look off.
KEY ELEMENTS OF AUSSIE/HAMPTONS STYLE
Essential interior architectural features
Hamptons architecture has features such as shiplap cladding, pitched ceilings, French doors and rooms with lots of light. If light is an issue in your home you can install skylights to overcome this. Walls are often treated with wainscoting. For an entirely Hamptons look inside and out, your house would ideally be made of timber, have large verandahs, painted either blue or white, and dormer windows with manicured gardens.
White is traditionally the basis of the Hampton’s colour palette, but also think about the colours you would see at the beach, such as sand, ivory and cream complimented with navy and soft blues. Pairing these colours with dark timber floors will enable the details in the architecture to become a feature. However, light coloured floors work just as effectively. The advantage of the light colour floors is that they hide dust and fluff — especially important if you have pets inside the home.
The island bench is a must, with the benchtop often made from timber and highlighted with pendant lights. Other benchtops are made traditionally from Carrara or Calcutta marble, although in Australia we are more likely to use an engineered stone made to emulate this product.
If you decide on darker benchtops, the cupboards need to be white, as illustrated in the image above.
The joinery is key to creating this look, with the door and drawers in a shaker profile with detail on end panels. Handles are integral to this look. Splashbacks are composed of subway tiles often in white, but if you wish to add some colour to the space, use pale greys, blues or greens. To be truly authentic install a butler’s sink, giving you the added advantage of a deep sink.
Oversized, soft upholstered lounges in light coloured linen paired with cushions and throws in blues, greens and greys (although any colour can be used if they are subdued). For busy Australian families I strongly suggest that you use fabrics that create this look without the upkeep of pure linen. White wicker furniture and timber side tables also work well together to achieve a Hampton’s feel to your home.
Textured rugs are vital for designating use of space and are often striped or in natural materials such as sisal or jute. If carpet is preferred in bedrooms then sisal is again used.
For a traditional Hamptons look, display natural objects such as coral, shells or driftwood in large glass domes, and strategically place rattan baskets around the room.
Floor and table lamps are also important elements of this style and will create a soft, relaxed ambiance to the room.
Windows ideally should be large French doors, painted white, opening onto a large verandah, and dressed in sheer breezy linen curtains. Shutters can also be used, however, it’s good to remember the more natural light the better.