Tropical Decor For Casual, Elegant Tropical Style

Saffron Marigold - Updated: June 4, 2021

To decorate in tropical style is to add touches of tropical decor, of course, but in a way that conveys relaxed elegance. After all, an escape to the tropics should feel as if you’re taking a deep breath out and releasing the stress of everyday life. Tropical style needs to feel as uplifting and refreshing as a dipping your toes in crystal lagoons beneath an crisp blue sky. Bring a touch of the tropics to your home and find bedding, curtains, tropical bath decor, and more in this guide.

tropical view with blue mountain, water, clouds, and white sheer curtains

How do I make my house look tropical?

There are a few ways to make your house look tropical no matter where you live. It’s important to start with a clean, uncluttered space. Tropical homes feel light as island breezes, and you won’t find any stacks to sort through muddying up these homes. After you’ve cleared out your space and given it a thorough and deep cleaning, you’ll want to bring in as much natural sunshine as possible.

white bedroom styled with tropical decor

One of the easiest ways to do this is by replacing any heavy window treatments with light cotton curtains. Our sheer curtains afford privacy while filtering in sunlight, so they’re ideal for this interior design style. Pair them with a blind or shade if that’s what’s needed to block obtrusive afternoon sun. With a fresh clean space and plenty of light, the next step to having a tropical home or tropical-inspired room is to apply touches of tropical decor, tropical colors, and accessories that speak to island living.

What is tropical decor?

While coastal decor nods to the water (thinks lakes, bays, rivers, or oceans), tropical decor celebrates the sights, tastes, and sounds of the sweltering, sunny places that exist in the zone between the Tropic of Cancer and Tropic of Capricorn. The islands of the South Pacific and the Caribbean oceans are famous tropical destinations, but India, Mexico, Australia, and many others are considered tropical, too. This style of decor captures the pulse of these tropical locales through pattern, texture, and color.

tropical view of islands, hawaiian, flowers
photo: Tim Gouw

Characteristics of tropical decor

Tropical style honors the beautiful landscapes and treasures of nature that exist in the tropics. This style of interior decor features natural materials like wicker, rattan, and seagrass. Other natural elements appear prominently in tropical decor: everything from live tropical plants and flowers to paintings of tropical wildlife can be found here. As you may imagine, floral prints and patterns–as well as botanical prints–are classic tropical motifs that are always in vogue when it comes to tropical home decor. Sheer curtains are a must, and for logical reasons. First, they mimic the movement of gentle island breezes; next, they offer privacy while still sifting in loads of natural sunlight. 

windows with white sheer curtains, orchids, rattan plant stand, and tropical decor

 

Tropical colors

Tropical color schemes or palettes make it easy to incorporate the spirit of aloha into your home decor. Traditional tropical colors include those that reflect the colors of sea, sky, and sunsets. Turquoise, mango, coral, banana yellow, palm tree green, hibiscus red–all are at home here. Of course, you can never go wrong with blue and white, a tropical color scheme that conjures images of coconuts, clouds floating against cobalt skies, sheer white curtains and hammocks swaying in the wind. Lastly, all-white color scheme looks perfect when paired with natural fibers and other elements of tropical decor.

tropical decor in a orange, red, and green bedroom

Tropical color schemes & palettes

Tropical decorating can be as bold and bright as you want it to be. If you know you’re drawn to this style, then choose a vibrant palette filled with your favorite tropical color and a few accent colors for a cohesive, lively, and welcoming space that says aloha!

tropical color scheme palette with yellow, teal, and pink

Our Gardens of Versailles print usually leans French country, but when you mix its swirling vines and flowers with iced mango, tropical green, and hot pink, it flourishes with tropical style.

tropical color schemes with teal, white, yellow, and mango

Pair our turquoise Jeweled Peacock with juicy citrus shades of yellow cream, flame orange, and crisp bright white, and you have a classic tropical color scheme that feels fresh, chic, and youthful all at once.

tropical color schemes with blue, white, and violet

Tropical flowers like the African violet and purple hibiscus inspired this tropical palette. Midnight Lotus, rich in cobalt blue and shades of teal, anchors the color scheme. Sky blue, cloud white, and amethyst orchid feature as delightful accents in this sophisticated tropical color scheme.

tropical colors with mango, green, yellow, and fruit punch red

Finally, our Indian Summer line of linens contains a vivid medley of tropical colors all on its own. We used this print to build this last of our tropical color scheme. Banana palm, mimosa, and hibiscus all look divine against the mango backdrop of Indian Summer.

 

Tropical bedding 

How can you decorate a tropical bedroom in a way that looks resort chic and not hokey or overdone? The answer: with tropical colors and natural finishes. It’s really that simple! And the easiest way to bring color into a tropical bedroom is with tropical print bedding. Our lightweight Indian bedspreads exemplify tropical bedding. After all, they’re made with hazy, hot, and humid tropical climes in mind! However, you may prefer the weight of a duvet over a tropical bedspread (and might like sleeping with the AC on full blast!). If that’s the case, then reach for one of our reversible duvet covers in a tropical print to give your room a fresh new look.

Tropical decor essentials in the bedroom

sea glass candle holder as tropical decor

 

Burke Decor

Matte Frosted Glass Pillar Candle Holder 

Candles are a must in the bedroom, and this particular candle holder is reminiscent of sea glass. It’s perfect in a tropical bedroom, living room–or in any room!

Tommy Bahama

Cotton Printed Sheets in Pineapple Garland

This nod to the tropics feels elegant and smart: instead of a flower garland, it’s a pineapple garland! Thanks to its gentle pattern and neutral colors, it will pair beautifully with any of our tropical bedspreads or duvet covers, too. 

Saffron Marigold

Tulip Mist White Sheer Curtain Panels

Gossamer, airy white sheer curtains are just the thing for any space to give off tropical vibes. These are especially romantic when hung en masse at the bedroom window. Pair with blinds or a shade for added privacy.

blue floral pillowcases with tropical pattern
Saffron Marigold

Midnight Lotus Pillow Shams

You can really never go wrong when decorating with blue and white.  That classic color scheme gets the tropical treatment in our Midnight Lotus pattern. Try these with solid white bedding for a bold pop of color.

 

Tropical Curtains

A tropical living room design should be colorful, breezy, and relaxing upon sight. To create a tropical setting, your window treatments should exemplify the light and airy look in terms of weight and feel. Long and flowing white sheer curtains are a classic and chic go-to for tropical living room decor. However, you might prefer to highlight the sultry heat of the tropics through the application of a bold tropical color scheme–in which case colorful curtains will be just right.

Tropical decor essentials in the living room

wicker lift top coffee table
Beachcrest Home

Nobles Lift-Top Coffee Table

A lift-top table is beyond convenient–especially in smaller living spaces. The woven wicker of this particular lift-top coffee table makes it a stunning, must-have piece of tropical living room decor.

mini palm tree, tropical decor
Fast Growing Trees

Pygmy Date Palm

No tropical home is complete with a tropical plant or two. This is the perfect palm tree for those of us who crave island style but find ourselves living on the mainland! A small potted palm tree like this is where low maintenance meets high tropical style.

Saffron Marigold

Indian Summer CP Throw Pillow Cover

Invest in a few different throw pillow covers to switch out for the seasons. We adore this one, of course! Here, tropical flowers in shades of juicy watermelon dance across a mango ground. 

blue pillow with tropical decor and palm tree
Saffron Marigold

Celestial Embrace Blue Throw Pillow Cover

If you adore all things vintage and enjoy tropical style decor, then meet Celestial Embrace. This pattern is a little bit boho, a little bit retro Hawaiian, and a lot of fun for styling your space.

 

Tropical shower curtains for a beach bathroom with style 

A beach theme seems to be a mainstay in bathroom decor, but it takes a bit of know-how to create a beach-themed bathroom or tropical bathroom filled with style. For a tropical bathroom, keep in mind the other helpful hints we’ve offered so far in this post in terms of color schemes and natural elements. You actually don’t need too many tropical bathroom decorations! As always, it’s crucial to avoid clutter in this space, especially since bathrooms are smaller rooms to begin with. For color and pattern, hang a great fabric shower curtain. Choose a bathroom window treatment in a coordinating pattern so the linens look cohesive without being matchy-matchy. Round out the space with fluffy towels, a simple accessory set, and one great piece of art that captures your take on tropical style.

Tropical Decor Essentials in Bath

Melissa Marquardt

Liquid Peace

So many of us find the seaside to be a peaceful place, and if that’s you, then consider hanging this stunning print, aptly named Liquid Peace. This abstract oceanscape conveys the energy of the ocean in both its peace and power.

All Modern

Cilian Bamboo Accessory Set

A bathroom accessory set with clean lines in a natural material is exactly what your tropical bathroom needs. This suggests tropical vibes in a subtle, stylish way.

Hawaii Candle
Homesick

Hawaii Candle

Pineapple and coconut combine with a few other juicy notes in this soy candle from the place-based candle company, Homesick. 

Saffron Marigold

Midnight Lotus CP Cafe Curtain

A cafe curtain is a great choice for a bathroom window treatment. It screens out the light and provides privacy at the same time. Whether or not you pair it with a matching valance is up to you!

 

Tropical vibes in the kitchen or dining room

Mai tais and coladas, ripe mangos, ahi poke and fresh-caught seafood on the grill–are you hungry yet, or is it just us? Serving up tropical taste sensations is just one of several sure-fire ways to manifest a sensory experience that transports you to Tahiti, Bora Bora, or St. Croix. Present your culinary creations on dinnerware and table linens that you’d find at any swanky resort or beach bungalow. Carry out your tropical color scheme with colorful glassware, centerpieces, and cloth napkins. And for tropical vibes that last long after a special meal, choose tropical valances for your kitchen window or full-length sheers for the dining room.

Tropical decor essentials in the kitchen and dining room

Fitz & Floyd

Trestle Goblets in Indigo

Filled with mimosas for a sunny brunch or or something fruity and frozen at a summer gathering. Since they’re dishwasher-safe, they make the after-brunch clean-up easy.

Safavieh

Yuta Rattan Counter Stool with Cushion

Update your kitchen decor and impart a tropical bungalow feeling with new island counter stools like these stools makes from natural woven rattan.

Tropical Garden Table Runner
Saffron Marigold

Tropical Garden Table Runner

When you want to add a little something special to your table without feeling fussy, reach for this tropical floral table runner. 

Saffron Marigold

Pacific Blue Round Tablecloth

The zen-like wave pattern of our indigo tablecloth creates a sense of calm at the dining table. This is a wonderful choice for intimate dinners filled with wine and good conversation.

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