This South Bethany Beach Home Is So Light and Airy

At this South Bethany beach home, designer Katie Winnington achieved a seamless look by sourcing pieces from her own showroom.

For the 2,500-square-foot home in South Bethany Beach, the brief was straightforward: “The core pillars of the design are coastal, calm and clean,” says Katie Winnington, principal designer and creative director of C&E Furniture + Design in Fenwick Island. “This is a second home for my client, and because of that, the owners wanted a sense of serenity.”

“We wanted a really organic feel that played into the airy, coastal surroundings.”
—Katie Winnington

living area
The quartz fireplace (offset by a Harris chair from Winnington’s collection) is the designer’s favorite feature in the home
Katie Winnington living room
Winnington says this is one of the few living rooms she’s designed without a TV.
kitchen Katie Winnington
The clean, monochromatic kitchen reflects ample natural light
dining area
The living room features custom sofas with commissioned art by Susan LaConti
coffee table Katie Winnington
The dining area conveys a “lived-in” look, with modernist and Craftsman elements, including the angular Paula table.

bedroom area

Coastal serenity is a familiar request, but Winnington created aesthetic moments to differentiate the four-bedroom, 3 1/2-bathroom house.

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“We began working with this client in the fall of 2019,” the designer recalls. “Little did we know that just a few months later, COVID-19 would throw us—and the supply chain—off course. Because much of the initial planning took place during the initial stages of the pandemic, it took longer than usual. We had to deal with adjusting to a new normal, including extended lead times due to manufacturing delays. We consulted with the client through the entire architecture phase, interior selections and furniture through to installation.”

The home has water views on two sides; therefore, the palette is restrained so the eye is guided to the waves. “For this beach house retreat, we wanted a really organic feel that played into the airy, coastal surroundings with layered neutrals and natural textures,” Winnington says. Curated examples of uniqueness enliven the muted style; the living room’s floor-to-ceiling fireplace provided just such an opportunity.

“While touring another home for a potential client, I saw a large tile concept that I thought would be perfect for the statement fireplace,” she recalls. “I then searched for a quartz with that perfect earthy feel and my fireplace vision came together flawlessly, making it my favorite feature for this beachy haven.”

bathroom Katie Winnington
The main bathroom, like the kitchen, is monochromatic for a serene affect
dresser
Pieces such as a scored console deliver another “lived-in” quality
bedroom area Katie Winnington
The neutral, organic palette extends throughout the bedrooms.

The Harris chair beside the fireplace comes from the designer’s C&E showroom, Winnington’s third-generation business. “[These] cozy accent elements help to convey the ‘lived-in,’ relaxed look we were after,” she explains.

The living space was a challenge because of its size and scale. “I wanted each side to speak to one another,” Winnington says. “This is why we mirrored the organic texture on either side. The warmer woods with the mix of textures help to create that sought-after, coherent design flow.” The living space features Winnington’s custom sofas, C&E’s Hayden coffee table, and commissioned art by Susan LaConti.

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Another unexpected moment is found in the powder room, where a circular mirror is backed by a herringbone wall in a subtle shade of blue (even the blue color pops are soft). “I wanted to powder room to be the star,” she says. “A powder room can be such a fun space in a house, and I love the idea of centralizing the color with the pattern backsplash.” The arty Paula dining table with its angular base, flanked by Celeste dining chairs, likewise delivers visual stimulation. These modernist-influenced pieces were also sourced from C&E, as was the primary bedroom’s sumptuous yet tailored Blair bed.

Winnington’s deft balance between refinement and coziness defines this beach house’s inviting interiors. It’s about feeling “lived-in”—and living well.

Related: Adam Blackstone Builds a Musical Legacy From Middletown

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