We are so excited to kick off our journey of coastal style, where we share a virtual road trip of our favorite things about the coast, from décor to dining, and more. Given our company’s namesake, it’s only natural that we start with Maine!
With over 3,000 islands, 6,000 lakes and ponds, and 32,000 miles of rivers and streams, it is no surprise that Maine is the epitome of coastal living.
Fun fact: Maine has 3,478 miles of coastline – more than California (3,427) – and over 5,000 miles of coast if you include all of the islands. -- visitmaine.net
No article about Maine would be complete without a nod to Maine lobster. And any Maine road trip should include a visit to the seasonal lobster shacks where you can enjoy a delicious lobster roll on the go. Red’s Eats in Wiscasset is a famous fan-favorite that is worth the wait in a long line. If you prefer to avoid the lines, we encourage you to enjoy the experience at home; cracking open a fresh catch of crustaceans with family and friends is one of life’s greatest pleasures!
Expect a wait on a sunny July afternoon at the famous Red’s Eats Lobster Shack in Wiscasset.
No trip to Maine is complete without trying a fresh lobster roll.
WHERE COLOR LIVES
One of our favorite things about Maine (there are so many!) is that color is everywhere! From lobster buoys to home décor, we love the celebration of color and fun.
LET THERE BE LIGHT
We love the colorful contrast of the white lighthouse against a blue sky, surrounded by natural hues of the land.
The Pemaquid Point Lighthouse Park is located at the entrance to Muscongus Bay and Johns Bay, in the town of Bristol, Maine.
Maine homes and décor tend to feature timeless New England coastal style. Think cedar shake shingles, white trim, and shaker style furniture. There are a few towns that stand out with their unique sense of style.
THE OTHER PORTLAND
While many people think of Oregon when they hear Portland, they are missing the credit due to the metropolitan area of Portland, Maine. Portland is home to some of the best restaurants on the Eastern seaboard, including Central Provisions, Eventide Oyster Co., Fore Street, and Scales. Portland also boasts a lively waterfront, picturesque views, and a host of cultural and historic attractions, including 20 of the state’s 65 lighthouses.
Cobbled street lined with shops and pubs in the old port district of Portland, Maine.
If you like Maine Cottage color and pattern, chances are you will love Erin Flett. She is a pattern designer and a maker. You can shop her handcrafted wears (her zipper bags and totes are our absolute favorites!) online at erinfletthome.com or stop into her recently renovated 4000 square foot theatre building on Main Street in Gorham, Maine (just 9 miles outside of Portland). That’s where you will likely meet Erin—her retail/showroom and design/production all happen there. All of Erin’s patterns are hand-printed and sewn in Maine. Her cotton barkcloth and canvas fabrics are woven for her in South Carolina.
Erin Flett surrounded by her patterns and products in her Maine studio.
ROBBI FRITZ PORTELA AT MAPLE LANE POTTERY
Maine produces lots of makers in all disciplines and we would be remiss if we did not share one of our favorite potters with you. Robbi works with clay in Windsor, Maine where she converted a 200-year-old farmhouse into a Studio.
She loves to work in stoneware clay and decorates the pottery with a variety of brightly painted whimsical animals and wild creatures, from Lobsters to Foxes. All of her pieces are made of durable stoneware clay suitable for use in the oven, microwave, and dishwasher. Can’t make it to Windsor, shop her pieces on Etsy:
Robbi Fritz Portela at her wheel. A single stoneware lobster mug crafted by Portela , and the exterior of her 200-year-old farmhouse turned studio.
Rockland and Rockport are classic small Maine towns. It is hard to describe without being there, but they just seem to evoke happiness in visitors and residents alike.
Rockland has been recognized as the “Coolest Small Town in US” by Budget Travel, "Top Adventure Town in Maine" by National Geographic Travel and "Top 9 Small Foodie Towns" in Maine. – visitmaine.net
The Harbor at Rockport, Maine.
A HAVEN FOR NATURAL BEAUTY
Vinalhaven is the largest of Maine’s offshore islands, with a population of about 1,100. The island is peaceful and relaxing, with quaint art galleries and a quintessential Maine architectural style, featuring natural cedar shake siding that looks better with age. Cedar shingles start with a bright and earthy brown hue that evolves to a beautiful silvery patina over time.
Sunrise in Carvers Harbor in Vinalhaven Maine
Kennebunkport has a distinct historic character and a bit more traditional style than some of the other coastal Maine towns. Perhaps that is because it was settled in the 1600s, and in current times Kennebunkport is commonly known for Walker’s Point and the Bush Compound.
View from the Matthew Lanigan Bridge entering Kennebunkport, Maine.
Dog walkers, shell gatherers, and casual strollers enjoy the beach below the famous Colony Hotel in Kennebunkport, Maine.
Whatever the reason, Kennebunkport visitors are often surprised to find that the town boasts a charming and eclectic downtown area with quaint boutiques, restaurants, and art galleries. Combined with breathtaking beaches and views of the coast, Kennebunkport offers an unique blend of history, architecture, shopping, and nature.
BOOTHBAY HARBOR FOR CHAIR'S SAKE
Just an hour’s drive north of Portland you will find Boothbay Harbor, Maine. A small gem of a coastal town with a population of less than 3,000. Celebrities like to blend in here. Boothbay Harbor is a quintessential Maine town with a laid back way of life. Peace and serenity can be found at the harbor, the shops and restaurants of downtown, and even the famous lobster shacks. While there, don’t miss the incredible sunrises.
Looking up a street filled with cafes and shops in Boothbay Harbor, Maine.
NAUTICAL BY NATURE
Maine is one of the few places where you can still see majestic five-masted ships and schooners actively sailing the waterways.
A tall ship schooner near Arcadia National Park, off the coast of Bar Harbor, Maine.
Our designers were so inspired that they recreated the look (with a fun twist) in our nautical high-tide bed.
Fun Fact: Maine is as big in area as all the other New England states put together!
Stay tuned for our next coastal stop, and let us know your favorite spots, from Maine to Miami and Seattle to San Diego.
The Maine Cottage Design Crew