Nautical Curtains For Living Room

Curtains with nautical themes – be they the classic navy blue and white variety or a selection of sea-related prints – are beloved by many homeowners, particularly those residing by the sea. Nautical curtains can be a crucial component in creating a living room fit for a captain with the right fabric and pattern!

Nautical curtains come in a variety of patterns, generally in crisp white and blue themes. Their airy appearance can bring a fresh note to a living room, particularly in a house by the sea, where they can be significant contributors to a beachy décor theme.

Nautical curtains are perfect for the living room of your beach house or to add a beachy atmosphere to your home. They could also serve as an attractive focal point for a nautical-themed living room. There are, however, several things to keep in mind when picking out your perfect nautical curtains and incorporating them into a thematic living space.

What Are The Nautical Curtain Options For Your Living Room?

If you’ve set your mind to having nautical-themed curtains in your living room, you may still be bewildered by the variety of options that confront you. What are your options in style and fabric of nautical curtains to enhance your living room?

Common Nautical Patterns For Living Room Curtains

As with any living room curtains, your nautical curtains could either be simple background accents or bold and patterned.

Nautical themes nod to a romanticized image of life at sea. Patterns commonly used for curtains include polka dots or sailor-related patterns like anchors, ship wheels, or lighthouses. Nautical curtains may also feature beautiful illustrations of ships or sea life, such as turtles.

Navy blue is the quintessential nautical color, with its hues being reminiscent of those worn by sailors on the high seas. Stripes are also a staple of nautical themes, with most people instantly associating blue and white (and sometimes red) stripes with sailing.

Choosing The Right Pattern For Your Nautical Curtains

So, how do you choose the correct nautical pattern for your living room? The design and color you select for your nautical curtains should depend primarily on the color scheme of the rest of your living room.

We recommend opting for a more neutral look (perhaps a simple navy or baby blue) if your living space is already full of eye-catching statement pieces. Alternately, bolder patterns and prints (such as chunky stripes or anchor motifs) can add a focal point to a more neutral décor scheme.

Choosing The Right Material For Your Living Room Curtains

The weight of the fabric that your nautical-themed living room curtains are made from is also an essential factor when selecting them. The material you choose should be dependent on your intended purpose for the curtains and how much light you want in your room.

If you wish to let more light into your living room, we recommend a lighter nautical fabric like breezy linen for your drapes. A set like these sheer linen panels (available on Amazon below) highlights the airy and relaxing beachy atmosphere without darkening your living room.

Gauzy nautical curtains (like below on Amazon) or sheer net drapes can also be used for merely decorative purposes if your room benefits from all the light you can get but needs drapes to tie it together. These have the advantage of flooding your living room with light while still protecting it from direct sun, coastal-dwelling insects, and the glances of your nosy neighbors!

If, however, you want to create a cozier atmosphere in your living room, we suggest a sturdier fabric in darker or warmer tones, such as heavy red, white, and blue curtains in a sailor stripe pattern.

These will help insulate your living room while staying on the nautical theme. There are a lot of options to select from, such as these anchor motif darkening drapes available on Amazon.

Can You Use Nautical Curtains Behind Shutters?

Suppose your living room already has shutters (which are beneficial for insulation in areas with more extreme temperature ranges). In this case, you may be wondering whether you can still use nautical curtains in your décor.

The answer is yes! Curtains, particularly the light decorative curtains discussed above or floor-length draperies, pair well with shutters. They should be used to frame and compliment the shutters rather than cover them.

This softens the edges of the practical shutters by adding a touch of sophistication to your living room and emphasizing the light seafaring theme you are trying to evoke.

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Decorating Your Living Room To Match Your Nautical Curtains

If you decide on a maritime theme for your living room curtains, consider subtly extending this theme to the entire living room. Doing so will create a sense of cohesion in your décor and ensure you achieve the beachside nautical ambiance you are aiming for.

Some worry that nautical themes look kitsch; however, this doesn’t have to be the case. Combining sleek wood and brass finishes with tasteful curtains creates a sophisticated maritime room. Keep our recommended features in mind when assembling an elegant and inviting nautical living space.

Features to incorporate in your living room to subtly convey the beach theme without it appearing tacky include:

  • Sticking to lighter colors. Using whites, creams, and baby blues for the majority of your rugs and picture frames will add to the carefree lets-set-sail ambiance.
  • Choose suitable color accents. Consider reflecting touches of nautical colors (such as navy blue, white, or red) through tasteful decorations that match your curtains.
  • Choose your floor carefully. Many decorators suggest light wood floors (such as a pale oak) to create an airy, beachy undertone to your nautical-themed living room.
  • Be mindful of your textures. Consider using sandstone, brass, or woven textures that bring the ocean and sailing to mind when decorating your living room to match your curtains.
  • Add nautical touches to your living room. This includes decorations related to driftwood, brass, nautical rope, ship’s wheels, or art that reflects the marine theme.
  • Consider using weathered wood furniture. Weathered antique-store furniture will tie in well with your curtains to create a classy nautical ambiance.


So, whether decorating your beach house or giving your home a maritime makeover, nautical curtains are the perfect way for any ocean-lover to introduce the theme to their living room. You must consider a few things when choosing your nautical curtains and matching them to the rest of the décor.

It is essential to consider the function you want them to fulfill when selecting your curtains, as this will dictate the fabric you choose. Equally crucial is the cohesion between your curtains and the rest of your living room. Consider adding nautical touches to the rest of the room and using marine accents and colors to ensure a perfect coastal welcome to anyone who enters.