Thursday, September 30, 2010

Introducting Dean Miller Surf Bedding At

We have just introduced a new line of tropical bedding at Dean Miller is one of the premier names in surf and Hawaiian theme bedding. You'll find wonderfully inspired patterns featuring surfboards, Hawaiian flowers, woody cars and more. Our Dean Miller Surf Bedding patterns are available as duvet covers, comforters, pillow shams, throw pillows and window valances.

Visit to see more surf bedding, including the new Dean Miller line.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Classy Nautical Bathroom Decor

When people hear the words, nautical bathroom decor, they probably think about a ship's wheel made into a mirror and a large lighthouse used as a toilet paper holder. These images are from a long time ago for today a bathroom that is decorated with scenes from the waters edge and more sandy beaches, seashells, palm trees and seagulls. Everything has a matching shower curtain, toilet seat, hand towel and soap dish in matching colors and styles, all more modern than the traditional boat wheel and lighthouse.

Most people, when they enter into a restroom, will see the shower curtain first and this is where someone who wants to redecorate their room should begin. A muted tan or beige would work well with light yellows and sandy beach browns and a design of a seashore and perhaps a beach house on the shower curtain so that it is not too 'beachy'. A light colored fish or seagull liquid soap dispenser and a brown or light yellow toilet seat cover would complete the look.

Fish, not the ugly real trout, but the whimsical, hand-drawn style are in style and would look nice floating along a pale yellow or light pink shower curtain in a child's powder room. What would finish off this type of room for a child would be a fish tank style toilet seat. It's made of acrylic and resembles a real fish tank with fish floating along inside the seat and lid as well as foliage, but nothing is real and one could see if the toilet needs cleaning or not without lifting the lid.

A restroom with a beach or seaside theme is popular with the seashells right now. These seashells are not overdone, just here and there, gently falling down a cream colored shower curtain or in different shapes as the curtain rod hooks to hold up the shower curtain. Decorations in the shape of seashells are also popular such as a mirror with seashells covering the rim or a tissue box in the shape of a seashell. A family could collect seashells on their next beach vacation and scatter them around the back of the toilet and as a centerpiece us a very large seashell or the tissue box. Another craft idea is to tie seashells together with a thin rope and tieback the shower curtain drapes.

Along with seashells, palm trees are now very popular and considered part of the seascape. A large palm tree could be a towel holder or robe rack and a small palm tree could be a toothbrush holder. Either one large palm tree or several small trees could decorate a tan shower curtain and some could be beaded for something extra. Various shades of greens and browns for a truer to life palm tree would be more 'real' however some people like their beach scenes to be more cartoon so the palm trees would be various colors.

A rug is another item that catches a person eye the first thing when they come into a room and there are a lot of bathmats that match the shower curtains and other items to help bring the decorations full circle. The bathmats are water absorbent and will help when someone steps out of the shower full of water. They come in shapes such as a seashell, a fish or seagull and many others. The colors are endless to match the rest of the room.

Colors in a restroom for a beach theme are typically sandy browns and tans, light yellows, sunny yellows, sea foam greens, sky blues and white which represent the white caps in the blue waters. Matching colors or mixing them can be fun in addition to having a big impact on whatever decorations an individual chooses for their main focal point. For example, if someone chooses a colorful fish and then goes with sunny yellow and sandy tan for towels and carpeting, this would tie everything together nicely.

Not always fishy, nautical decor could mean a variety of things and not necessarily the old skipper's boat wheel or the lighthouse either. There are hundreds of different ways to dress up a restroom that represents the beach or seashore to make a room look natural, modern and welcoming to guests and those who live there and use it everyday. With most of the items, they can be rearranged and placed in a different order and make it look as if the room has been made new again in many instances without spending a lot of money.

Proper Care Of Your Bed Linens

It is advisable to clean all of your bed linens regularly. Sweat, dust, dirt and even stains are some of the common features found on the fabric. Washing them when they are dirty and changing them from time to time allows you to be comfortable when sleeping or resting. It also prevents them from wearing out too soon.

One of the best things you can do is to go through the description of every fabric you intend to buy. This allows you to know how it is supposed to be cared for. If you are not able to handle some of the cleaning or maintenance requirements for a given fabric, consider getting different types of bed linens.

Make it a practice to change your sheets and linens from time to time. It is recommended you do it at least every month. Sweat, dirt and dust can compromise the hygiene of your bed sheets over time. It is healthy and hygienic to sleep on a clean pair of bed linens. Be sure to invest in a number of such material too. This allows you to have something different to exchange with every time.

To help you to keep your bedding in top condition, be sure to follow the care label outlined by the manufacturers. You can use cool water and a quality soap to get rid of dirt and sweat. Consider soaking the sheets in water for a while if they are heavily stained or soiled. Add some detergent to help you get rid of the marks, dirt or stains.

Another tip that can help you to maintain your linens in top condition is to make sure that they do not over dry. It helps to preserve the good quality of the fabric. You can fold the bedding right away and avoid ironing. Using too many procedures on the sheets easily causes them to wear out.

Be sure to rotate bed sheets and pillows so that you have them wearing out evenly. You can exchange your sheets so that you have different pieces at the bottom at different times. This prevents you from having one piece of bed linen that is too worn out than the others.

Other tips that can help you to care for your bed linens properly include using gentle wash cycles. Do not pour in too much detergent as almost half of the recommended amount can do the job. Using bleach can cause your bed linen to wear out too soon.

Visit to find wonderful tropical bedding and beach decor items for your home.

Sea Glass Jello

What a delicious and beautiful snack!


  • Three (3-ounce) boxes of Jell-O or generic store brand gelatin (any colors you’d like)
  • One (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk (substitutions will not work)
  • Two envelopes unflavored gelatin (Knox brand, in the Jell-O aisle)


  1. In three separate containers (use rectangular tupperware or pyrex loaf pans), mix jello package with 1 cup of boiling water. Stir each until dissolved and then refrigerate until firm (at least 4 hours, or overnight).
  2. Once the jello flavors are firm, use a sharp knife to cut the jello into small squares (1/2-inch or so).
  3. Spray a 9×13-inch pyrex pan lightly with nonstick spray. Use a metal spatula to scoop out the jello squares and place them into the prepared pan. Mix the colors up so they’re not bunched all together.
  4. In a separate bowl, add 1/2 cup of cold water. Sprinkle in 2 envelopes of gelatin and stir. Add 1 1/2 cups boiling water to the bowl and stir until dissolved. Stir in the sweetened condensed milk and let cool.
  5. Pour the white gelatin mixture over the cubes of jello and let it fill up the pan. Refrigerate overnight. Slice the jello into squares and serve. These are firm enough to serve on a platter as a hand-held dessert.

Yield: About 24 squares

Source: RecipeGirl

*To copy the look of what is usually found in sea glass, orange, lime and blueberry jello is recommended. The blueberry jello only comes in a 6-ounce package, so you’ll need to divide it in half. You can certainly use whatever flavors you’d like.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Ocean Styles Facebook Giveaway

Hi everybody! Just in time for holiday shopping, I am giving away 3 $50 gift certificates to! I am trying to build up my Ocean Styles Facebook Page. In an effort to do this, everyone who "Likes" my Facebook page by October 31, 2010 will be entered to win.  Don't worry... if you're already a fan, you are already entered. In addition, for every comment on the wall, reviews or photos, you will get an additional entry into the giveaway!

Winners will be chosen on November 1st and contacted via Facebook to receive their gift certificate. So please, tell your friends, spread the word and Like us here!

Tropical Bathroom Decor From Top To Bottom

Bathroom makeovers need not be difficult or expensive. A stylish and easy choice that will turn your bathroom into a relaxing sanctuary is tropical bathroom decor.

The following articles covers redecorating an entire bathroom. It is not necessary to do the entire thing. If you would just like to take one or two of the ideas, it is up to you and will look fine.

The color scheme is the most important first step involved in creating the tropical feel. It is a good idea to collect some pictures of tropical scenes and settle on a color scheme from one of the photos. Painting the walls and ceiling should be done with a light tone like a sky blue or a textured pale coral. The first will create a light and open feel while the second will create the feel of being in a beach resort.

This is a good theme to choose if you have always wanted a mural. If it is properly placed and well done, it can add to the appeal of the room. Do not attempt to do this if you are not comfortable with painting however as it can become messy and a bad job will ruin the wall forcing you to have to start again.

Have no fear of old mismatching tile. They can be painted. Start with a very clean and dry surface, apply a primer, let dry, and apply a waterproof paint. Your local hardware store should be able to help you choose one that will stand up in the moisture in your bathroom.

And so the fun part begins, accessorizing! This is really what will bring out the tropical feeling in the room. If you are on a budget, do not be afraid to scour yard sales, thrift stores, dollar stores, and discount stores. All these places have great items for cheap and no one will be the wiser.

It is also important to note that accessories do not need to match in pattern. In fact, they probably shouldn't for fear of boredom. As long as they fit the theme and the color scheme, they will be fine.

In this case, the shower curtain should be either clear, sheer, or similar to the overall color of the room. You may be tempted by the variety of brightly colored curtains covered in birds or fish, but try to pass. These will make the room more tacky than relaxing. The room should contain color, yes, but keep it reserved for the smaller accessories instead.

Look for wicker baskets for holding items, laundry, and waste. Weathered wooden furniture will also do and bring some authenticity to the bathroom. Towels and cloths can be kept white for this theme or can bring in bursts of color if desired.

Another important feature to the coastal decor is artwork. For this theme, the art should contain brightly colored tropical objects like birds or fish. They will give the bathroom a bit of pop.

Finally, the most important feature for this theme, palm fronds. They will put a brilliant final touch to the theme whether artificial or real. Either will do as long as they are lush and large.

Surfing In Their Halloween Costumes - Too Cute!


Saturday, September 25, 2010

Tips For Preparing For Your Beach Vacation

Whether you are the adventurous type who loves to explore rock pools, indulge in adrenaline pumping water sports, and snorkel with sea life, or you simply enjoy lounging around in the sun reading a book, these tips will help you make your beach vacation a breeze. Start your holiday off the right way by preparing properly to ensure no problems arise at the last minute, putting a damper on your leisure time.

Begin by making a checklist of things that need to be handled beforehand. This includes a car maintenance check if you are driving to your destination, booking flights and accommodation, and making a list of items to pack. If you do this early enough you will feel less pressured for time.

When traveling with family members of different ages you need to consider beach vacation activities you might all like to take part in. Remember to pack games suitable for the beach, including buckets and shovels for the kids.

Do a little research if you are going to an exotic location so you know what to expect in terms of water and beach entertainment. You must make sure all equipment for activities is provided so you do not miss out. Besides items you are not going to need for the beach, your packing list needs to include appropriate beachwear. Swimsuits, hats, shorts, sarongs, t-shirts, flip flops, sunglasses, and towels are just a few of the must-have items.

Make certain you also pack a sun block with a high SPF. You do not want to burn on your first day in the sun, making the rest of your beach vacation a misery. It can get extremely hot, causing people to dehydrate faster than they realize. Take plenty of bottled water with you and pack a few snacks that will not spoil.

Remember to take some time out of the heat for a while. Many people do not realize the sun can have a harmful effect even when in the water. It is essential to pay attention to yourself and other family members.

If you are planning a beach vacation with limited funds and you have decided to drive to your vacation spot, or forgo luxury accommodation close to the beach, make sure you take items that would normally be provided. This includes beach umbrellas, beach chairs, and a first aid kit. Be prepared for any event on your trip, so you are not caught off guard.

Design A Perfect Escape With Hawaiian Bedding

There is nothing more exciting than going on an exotic vacation to Hawaii. As much as you would love to stay  forever, it is probably just not possible. However, you can bring the islands home with you through a bedroom makeover. Create the look and feel of Hawaii in your home with special accents like shells, art, and Hawaiian bedding.

You might want to limit your tropical home makeover to just your bedroom or you could extend it throughout the house. Look for special souvenirs in Hawaii that you can bring home to commemorate your trip. Then you can spread them from room to room or in one special space such as your bedroom.

When making over a bedroom, start by taking a close look at your walls. Consider adding wall paper or a new paint color. Soft ocean blues or neutral sand tones are good choices for paint. You could also use a sponge to give more texture to the walls and create movement similar to the constant ebb and flow of the ocean waves.

Make sure you choose bright tropical bedding that reminds you of Hawaii's tropical landscapes. You could use a graphic floral print or a subtle ocean life pattern. Whatever you choose, make sure that it gives you the calming effect that you experienced on your trip to the islands. You should also make sure it doesn't clash with the wall color.

Add art to your walls by hanging photographs from your trip to the islands. You could have them enlarged or printed in black and white to change the look. Hang them in groupings to create a display of art work that you created on your own. Another idea would be to hang shadow boxes full of souvenirs.

You could display postcards, dried flowers, or special shells that remind you of your trip to Hawaii. Some people collect shells as they walk by the ocean and if that is something you enjoy, display your collection is a set of glass jars or vases. You could also hang posters displaying Hawaiian landscape.

Remember to add simple touches like window treatments to bring the design together. Each special touch will make your tropical decor more welcoming and inviting. From rugs to curtains to Hawaiian bedding, each aspect of the room should remind you of an exotic vacation. As the room comes together, you will feel like you have stepped into a time machine and have the chance to visit Hawaii everyday when you come home.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

5 Tips To Charm Up Your Bathroom With Nautical Decor

The bathroom is one of the busiest places in the home and a perfect setting for some nautical decor. You can turn an ordinary bathroom into a charming one with a few simple pieces strategically placed. Whether you are redoing the whole room or just redecorating, here are a few ideas to help you get started.

1. A total do-over of a bathroom is not as difficult as it sounds. A simple yet effective way to add a unique touch to the room is to place ledges on the walls about six to eight inches apart. The ledges only have to be wide enough to make room for some decorative items like sea shells, star fish, and rocks. If you don't have room for ledges the length of the walls, choose a few places to add two or three for the same effect. Paint the walls in a sea green color to accent the decor you have placed on the ledges.

2. A nostalgic cottage theme would add charm using nautical decorative items. White washed walls or shelves and cabinets is the base of the cottage charm. Adding a few simple small pails in metal and decorated in a nautical theme will add to the look. Place them on shelves or even on the counter and use to hold things. Real shells or a ceramic one can be used to accessorize and as a soap dish. Complete the look with a wooden beach sign on the wall.

3. When redoing the bathroom isn't possible, you can still have a nautical bathroom with just a few little touches. The easiest way to begin is with some towels. They can be found in a variety of colors with seagulls, lighthouses, rocks, and anchors on them. These are perfect even if just used for decorations.

4. A shower curtain is a perfect way to add color and the right decorative touch to the room. These can be printed with ocean designs on them or they can simple with stripes or a solid color in ocean blues and greens or even neutrals. Throwing a bath rug on the floor can also add a touch of color and these are found in nautical patterns also.

5. Other things that can pull a room together are things such as a treasure chest to use for your towels. This can be in wood or wicker. A miniature ship or lighthouse would look perfect on a shelf with some shells or rocks around it. Depending on wall space is available, a nautical wheel, buoy or even some fishing net decorated would be a perfect touch.

Nautical decor is easy to find and relatively inexpensive. The versatility of this theme can lean towards a more masculine look or a feminine one, suitable for anyone's bathroom. The accessories and decorative items may be whimsical and fun to use as well as some elegant and classical pieces. And, when this theme is chosen you can be sure it will never go out of style.

Check out for more great decorating ideas.

Using Beach Decor For Your Wedding

Themes are very big with wedding ceremonies now and whether you are at an actual beach or in a church, beach decor is something easy to incorporate and personalize. With this theme you have the romance and the simplicity of nature to use as you decorate and create the perfect setting for your special day. It is easy to integrate the beach theme in every step of the ceremony right into the reception.

The stage for the ceremony itself is very important and where the real romance takes place. Think about using a beach wedding canopy to take your vows under. The simplicity of this kind of canopy provides a very romantic setting. All you need are four pieces of bamboo and a material that is gauzy, like tulle. You could have this material in white or an ocean turquoise blue.

The aisle where you walk down is another important feature to keep in mind. If you are at the beach, you already have your sand. But if you are elsewhere, lay down a strip of tarp or heavy plastic and cover with sand to create your aisle. Line the aisle with large starfish and conch shells to complete the look.

With pews or a ladder-back style of chairs, you have the opportunity to hang something special. A trendy yet beachy choice would be large lush tassels either in neutral colors like sand or the colors of your wedding. Attach a starfish or shells to the tassels to complete the look.

For the reception and after-wedding party you'll have plenty of chances to include some decorative beach items. For the tables you can place some beautiful shells and adorn them with strings of pearls for a very chic look. You could alternate table decor by including some tables with crystal bowls of sand. The sand can either be natural or colored to match the wedding them. There could be some small shells and pearls or candles in the sand to give it an elegant look.

Other simple touches can add big results to the day. For example, instead of using a ring pillow, use clam shells for the rings. The head table is the center focus during the reception so allow that to stand out with turquoise blue tulle that drapes in swags. To decorate the walls, if inside, hang some fishing nets here and there and then decorate them with some simple beach stuff like shells, starfish, and other nautical items.

Your wedding day is special and no one should decide how it is put together except for you. Creating a beach theme wedding is easy even if you don't live within a hundred miles of a beach. With the right coastal decor and colors, you'll turn your special day into a magical one.

History Of Surfing: Sport Of The Kings And The Common Man

Surfing is something many people enjoy. Anywhere there's an ocean you are likely to see at least one or two people out there catching some waves, or at least trying to. It's not only a popular way of having some fun, it can also be a very lucrative sport. There are competitions held around the world, where contestants are able to win trophies, thousands of dollars, and a title.

This sport is thought to have originated in Hawaii. When the first Europeans arrived on the islands it can be said that they were a bit taken aback by seeing the native islanders frolicking in the water and standing on very long heavy boards as they glided through the breaking waves. This was something mainland people had never encountered before.

The ancient Hawaiians viewed riding the waves as an art. The higher ranking members of society would always have the bigger, lighter boards, while the lower ranking members were allowed the smaller, heavier boards. There were, and still are, many rituals practiced in Hawaii that go along with not only making these boards, but riding them as well. The ocean was a sacred place to the ancient peoples of Hawaii, and for many of them it still is.

With the arrival of missionaries, riding in the waves with surfboards began to decline. Having fun in the surf, to them, was an undesirable practice and they wanted it to be wiped out. Outsiders from all over also contributed to the waning of the sport, but a few stubborn kings held fast to the practice and were able to thwart the attempts by the newcomers, and the sport once again began to thrive.

In the early 1900's, a swimmer and surfer named Duke Kahanamoku started traveling around the world giving swimming presentations. He also used this time to familiarize the rest of the world to the sport of surfing. There is a statue of this wave riding pioneer that still stands today on Waikiki Beach on the island of Oahu.

During the winter months on the island of Oahu, you will find numerous wave-riding competitions. From Waimea Bay, to Sunset Beach, during the colder months, not only does the rain increase, but so does the size of the waves. The waves at Pipeline Beach are some of the most famous in the world. A great number of people have died trying to surf the monstrous waves created there, but the Pipeline Master's Competition is still held there today despite the many risks.

Surfing is an exhilarating ride which requires a great amount skill and balance, not only to get up on the board, but also to stay on it. For beginners, learning how to get on the board can sometimes take all day, but once you're standing and you've managed to catch your first tiny swell, chances are the next time you're near the ocean, you'll find it difficult not to want to grab the nearest board and make your way out past the breakers.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Fruit Salsa with Cinnamon Chips

With Labor Day weekend this weekend, I think that we should celebrate summer's last hurrah with this AMAZING recipe. Have safe and fun Labor Day!


Fruit Salsa
1 cup finely chopped fresh strawberries
1 medium navel orange, peeled and finely chopped
3 medium kiwifruit, peeled and finely chopped
1 can (8 ounces) unsweetened crushed pineapple, drained
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1-1/2 teaspoons sugar

Cinnamon Chips
10 flour tortillas (8 inches)
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • In a small bowl, combine the first six ingredients. Cover and refrigerate until serving.
  • For chips, brush tortillas with butter; cut each into eight wedges. Combine sugar and cinnamon; sprinkle over tortillas. Place on ungreased baking sheets.
  • Bake at 350° for 5-10 minutes or just until crisp. Serve with fruit salsa. Yield: 2-1/2 cups salsa (80 chips).

Redecorating With Beach Bathroom Decor

Beach bathroom decor is probably the easiest and least expensive theme available. It requires minimalism and a muted color scheme that varies very little.

The color scheme should be that of the typical beach. It includes sand, light blue, creams, and white wash. Elements of green and drift wood may also be brought in if desired.

For the walls, choose a soft tone of sand or white wash. You can bring in more color with the accessories. If you prefer a richer and warmer feel, paint the walls a darker sandy gold hue to give the feel of a night beach rather than one in the stark daylight.

You may also find yourself in need of changing existing wall tiles. New tiles can be quite expensive so if your budget does not allow for them, think of painting the ones that are already there to match. First make sure the tiles are clean and dry. The next step is to apply a primer and let that dry. Finally, cover it with a waterproof color to match the theme. Be sure to get the advice of the representatives at the hardware store. They will be able to tell you what best to choose from the available paint.

Accessorizing a beach theme bathroom is very easy. If you live near a beach you have a wealth of accessories at your disposal. First be sure you are allowed to remove items from the beach, some municipal laws do not allow this. If it is legal, collect interesting rocks, shells, and drift wood. You can craft them into picture frames, soap dishes, and even waste baskets. If you are extra crafty, think of ways you can turn the things you find into artwork.

If you do not live near a beach, or you do not have the time or the patience to do crafts, it's OK, you can still accessorize very frugally. Yard sales, thrift stores, dollar stores, and discount dealers all have a wealth of beach themed items that you can use. In addition, your existing items may easily be converted to belong by a quick buffing and white wash treatment.

The best thing about this theme is that the accessories should not by any means match. The beach theme is all about being airy and random. Shower curtains and towels will do in simple white or cream. Baskets and furniture should be wicker, white washed wood, or weathered wood. Weathered wood will bring a richer feel into the room with it's darker color.

Artwork for this room should be simple as well. A print of a single shell or a seagull in a large frame will do. Murals are an option but be careful with them as they can often be tacky.

An important element that is not used as much as it should is the inclusion of greenery. There are always flowers and grasses that grow at the edges of beaches. Yellow daisies are a great choice to brighten and relax the muted beach colors. You may also wish to add some grass-like plants as well.

Keep the number of accessories to a minimum and keep them simple. To add a final touch, use candles to decorate. They will add warmth and serenity to the room.

Find more great beach decor ideas at Ocean Styles.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Christmas - Coastal Style

Summer is nearly over, kids are back in school, fall is almost upon us, so I say that it is never to early to start thinking about decorating your home for the Christmas season.  If you're a beach lover like me, bringing coastal Christmas style to your holiday decorations is a fantastic and beautiful idea.

My absolute favorite Christmas item is the starfish tree topper. A nautical twist on the classic star many people put on top of their tree. And it goes perfectly with any type of seashell ornaments you might have, which are gorgeous hanging on a tree trimmed with white twinkling lights.

 Sea Sparkle Seashell Ornaments (left), No Place Like The Beach Ornaments (right)

Another idea I am definitely planning on doing this year is sending beach themed Christmas cards to my friends and family. Coming from me, no one will be surprised by this, but hopefully I can bring a little sunshine to my family freezing this winter up north. I LOVE the Santa Sand Angel card.

For these and more Coastal Christmas decorating ideas, check out

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

2010 International Coastal Cleanup Day - Sept 25

Saturday, September 25 is the date for the 2010 International Coastal Cleanup.
"In partnership with organizations and individuals across the globe, Ocean Conservancy's International Coastal Cleanup engages people to remove trash and debris from the world's beaches and waterways, identify the sources of debris, and change the behaviors that cause marine debris in the first place."
You can search for a cleanup near you to sign up to help. If there isn't one already scheduled, you can propose a cleanup in your city.