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3 Classic Styles of Nautical Themed Bedding

Today I'll highlight three styles of nautical themed bedding to bring some fresh inspiration to your next design project. Some well-chosen statement bedding can be the starting point for the rest of the room. As always, there are many ways to interpret this look. Which style appeals to you?

The nautical theme brings so many traditional elements together. From historic lighthouses, to ancient maps, to the stripes worn by sailors as they fought for their country at sea- these elements are classic and romantic. Bringing this sense of history into the mix with the nautical bedroom ideas I have for you today will give any bedroom a refined look, beginning with your bed. Let's dive in and explore these unique bedding styles!

Welcome Aboard: Classic Striped Style that's Clean and Modern

If you're just beginning to test the waters with this style, it's a good idea to start with a complete bedding set so that your look is more cohesive. There are many nautical bedding sets available in a range of styles, but the striped look is by far the most classic. I went with one that features a mix of stripes in varying sizes to keep things interesting, then chose classic nautical bedroom decor to compliment it.

Vertical striped wallpaper, a bed with horizontal stripes, and a ships steering wheel on the wall

Basic striped bedding is typically seen in navy, white, and red. This color palette is simple yet evocative of the nautical decor style, which is instantly recognizable in this virtual room. One look at this inviting bed, filled with a variety of plush cushions, and you're transported to a seaside escape without leaving your home. Mix it up with different stripes to keep the look from being too monotone. I included some solid red pillows and one with lettering to break up the stripes and add a few visual punctuation marks. As always, you can't go wrong with a base of crisp white sheets.

Inspired by the striped bedding, I selected some other simple elements to match, which help to tie the whole bedroom together. I continued the stripe theme in the wallpaper, but kept the stripes small and backed with a neutral color so as not to compete with the bedding or overpower the room. The grouping of plaques with inspirational quotes about the sea is a nice touch to wake up to and helps get you motivated for the day. Be sure to check out my guide to nautical wall decor to see a whole world of other styles.

The Seaside Life: Explore the Ocean's History with an Antique Look

In order to give you a full range of nautical bedroom ideas, I included this room with a more historic feeling. When it comes to this look, traditional elements such as maps and aged looking items play a key role in creating a rustic look.

Ocean map printed wallpaper, a bed with a tan quilt, two wooden tables, and a blue rug

The nautical bedroom decor in this room was inspired by a beautiful ocean-themed quilt. It references the look of a traditional, hand sewn quilt that might have been passed down through generations of your family. It's easy to find a printed duvet that gives you the same feeling, whether sailing runs in your family history or not. Lighthouses, old postcards, and compasses add charm and variety to this bedding set with matching pillows. The sheets are plain white with a faint outline of fishing nets to break up the busy imagery in the duvet cover.

On the walls, I continued the historic look with wallpaper featuring maps of the ocean. It's a delicate touch that goes a long way in making you feel transported into the past and navigating your ship through the uncharted oceans. An aged looking wooden steering wheel and some antique wooden tables and sculptures complete the look.

Decorate with Navy and White: Sailor Style

This bedroom is a different take on the nautical bedding sets I talked about earlier. Similar to the striped set, this one is a cleaner and simpler version which packs more of a graphic punch. These bold navy and white stripes led themselves to a contemporary look, so that's how I decorated the rest of the room. I used elements a sailor would love, as these are classic sailing colors.

Fishing net wallpaper, a striped bed, life preservers on the wall, and a white carpet

This duvet is a strong graphic element, with thick navy and white stripes and pillows to match. I picked out some accent throw pillows to emphasize the sailing theme with an anchor, sailboat, and seahorses. The simple white headboard grounds this look, and is continued visually in the thick horizontal stripes of the matching bedside tables.

Novelty wallpaper printed with a fishing net brings a vertical graphic pattern into the mix to contrast with the stripes. I chose a muted pastel color for the wallpaper to keep it from commanding too much attention. Then I filled the wall space above the bed with large items arranged symmetrically. It's smooth sailing with this simple navy and white look.