In The Press: ‘Coastal Grandmother’ style familiar in Great Lakes

By Mickey Lyons for The Detroit News

“Rachel Stewart, president of Gardner-White Furniture, has seen an uptick in requests for a coastal aesthetic at the GW Design Studio. She attributes the demand to a few factors, including more time spent at home and advances in fabric technology. Gray, white and pale blue sofas had previously been a hard sell for active families, she says, but ‘there have been so many developments with performance fabrics that now you can have sushi and pizza on your white sofa and not worry about it.’ One Michigan-created fabric Stewart lauds is called, appropriately enough, Crypton.

Americans are spending more time at home, Stewart says, and want an environment that is soothing and natural. The Coastal Grandmother aesthetic brings the outdoors in, with wicker, rattan, and other textured woods, as well as floral arrangements and soft linens. The ‘comfortable elegance’ of the aesthetic, she says, ‘is what many of us are looking for. It dances the fine line of looking beautiful and looking welcoming.’

Stewart sees a connection to her home state in the trend as well. ‘Michigan is beautiful and unpretentious, too, and that’s the style of the Coastal Grandmother.’

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