How to Dress Like a Coastal Grandmother, An Aesthetic Style Guide

Fab Sakker
by Fab Sakker

In this style guide, we will be talking all about coastal grandmother, an aesthetic that has taken off on TikTok and has been embraced by the likes of Anne Hathaway and Selena Gomez.

In this guide, we will get into what coastal grandmother is and how you can live your best coastal grandmother lifestyle. I have also put together some coastal grandmother-inspired outfits for you.

Coastal grandmother icons

I know what you’re thinking - coastal grandmother, I don’t want to look like a grandma. But it’s not actually about being a grandmother; it’s more of a state of mind.

Coastal grandmother aesthetic

What is the coastal grandmother aesthetic?

The term was actually coined by TikTok user @lexnicoleta, and she explained that the aesthetic is a mix of Nancy Meyers’ movies, coastal vibes, recipes and cooking, interiors, and so much more.

What is the coastal grandmother aesthetic?

We’re thinking affluent older lady; she’s enjoying her retirement in an amazing Hamptons beach house.

Coastal grandmother kitchen

The classic coastal grandmother has an insanely beautiful oversized kitchen where she cooks, and then she hosts dinner parties and cocktail evenings by the fire pit.

All the while, she never manages to spill anything on her crisp white and cream wardrobe.

Coastal grandmother interior design

The coastal grandmother trend includes fashion, films, interior design, gardening, and travel destinations; there are even Spotify playlists dedicated to the trend, which I think is so funny. 

Coastal grandaughter aesthetic

Coastal grandaughter

There’s even an offshoot of coastal grandmother - coastal granddaughter, which to me is coastal grandmother with some Scandi/Matilda Djerf vibes mixed in.

What is coastal grandmother look?

Basically, coastal grandmother is an all-encompassing aspirational lifestyle aesthetic.

The term has also been picked up outside of TikTok; now, there are many articles written on it, and Anne Hathaway has been hashtagging it on her Instagram.

Diana Keaton and Nancy Meyers' movies

Diana Keaton in Something’s Gotta Give

One of the main inspirations for coastal grandmother is the 2003 Nancy Meyers film Something’s Gotta Give, starring Diane Keaton.

Diane’s wardrobe in this film is really the jumping-off point for coastal grandmother fashion. Crisp white button-downs, turtlenecks, knits in general, beige chinos and linen pants, and of course, the white bucket hat. 

Diane Keaton in Something’s Gotta Give

The Hampton’s house where the film is set is also amazing; everything is very light and airy, and there's bright cinematography, like a lot of Nancy Meyer’s films.

Of course, Diane Keaton in this film has an amazing kitchen. Nancy Meyers is well known for creating amazing kitchen spaces in her movies. She actually writes a lot of action for her characters around the kitchen, so the kitchens are always very spacious with massive island benches and pendant lights.

Coastal grandmother house in Carmel-by-the-Sea.

East Coast vs West Coast coastal grandmother

I feel like we’ve got East Coast coastal grandmother, which is very Something’s Gotta Give and the Hamptons, but then I feel like there could be an offshoot: West Coast, Californian coastal grandmother. She would definitely live in Carmel-by-the-Sea.

The house used in the film Home Again, which was written and directed by Nancy Meyer’s daughter Hallie, is definitely West Coast coastal grandmother. This Mediterranean revival-style house is in LA, but it could totally be in Carmel-by-the-Sea.

Doris Day as a coastal grandmother icon

Doris Day

Carmel always reminds me of Doris Day. Doris was the embodiment of what coastal grandmother is. She retired from Hollywood, moved up to Carmel-by-the-Sea, rescued lots of dogs, then opened a pet-friendly hotel.

Jane Fonda as a coastal grandmother icon

Jane Fonda

Another lady who really embodies the coastal grandmother aesthetic is Jane Fonda. She loves crisp white button-downs with popped collars, knitwear, and lots of beautiful wraps.

She also always has the perfect coastal grandmother salon blowout; her hair always looks amazing.

Coastal grandmother color palette

Coastal grandmother color palette

When you’re creating coastal grandmother outfits, the color scheme is very important. Go for lots of whites, creams, beiges, blues, or any other soft, beachy color. 

How to dress like a coastal grandmother

You could throw in some sage green; any other sandy color would look great.

Coastal grandmother outfits

Coastal grandmother outfit in sand and beige tones

1. Sands & beiges

The first outfit I put together channels Jane Fonda vibes and also brings in those sandy colors with the cropped pants. Coastal grandmothers love cropped pants.

I’m also wearing a beige knit. Knitwear, in general, is very coastal grandmother. Then, I decided to do a Jane Fonda popped collar. This is actually a faux collar; these faux collars just make layering so much easier.

For the shoes, I went with a pair of white sandals, which look great for any kind of beachy outfit, but they still give quite a dressed-up feel.

For the final touch, I popped on a hat that looks like it’s made from straw, but it’s actually 100% seaweed, and does it get any more coastal than literal seaweed? I think not.

Coastal grandmother outfit in beachy blue tones

2. Beachy blues and navy

For the next outfit, I went for an oversized navy button-down. This is giving very coastal granddaughter vibes. The oversized button-down really is a staple for coastal grandmother and coastal granddaughter, especially when paired with linen pants.

I went for these cropped blue ones, but this would be great with white pants too.

To complete this outfit, I had to put on a white bucket hat and channel Diane Keaton. The hast has a wider brim than her bucket hat, but I like turning up the brim to frame my face; I think it looks really adorable.

Coastal grandmother style guide

There is my little guide to the coastal grandmother aesthetic; let me know if you will embrace this vibe and what your favorite aspect of the aesthetic is. I love how it is so relaxed and carefree and has a really laid-back feel.

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