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‘The Coastal Grandmother’ trend isn’t just for grannies

Jack Nicholson and Diane Keaton in the romantic comedy Something¿s Gotta Give.

Jack Nicholson and Diane Keaton in the romantic comedy Something¿s Gotta Give.

Published May 2, 2022


Almost two years ago I made the dramatic decision to move out of the city – as far away from the hustle and bustle as I could get.

I found safe haven in a tiny coastal village on the West Coast where I could inhale peace and calm and exhale the frantic city energy I carried around with me.

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While it was the best decision I ever made, as a city girl, moving out into the countryside took some adjusting.

With not a mall in sight, just a few quaint restaurants and working from home, my city slicker wardrobe seemed over the top and rather out of place.

The gold sequins skirt I casually wore to work remains untouched. My beloved black leather biker jacket didn’t even come out of winter storage.

I soon found myself easing into my peaceful surrounding and far more laid-back style.

My style slowly changed from modern eccentric to casual coastal soccer mom.

A wardrobe that was once all-black-everything, is now filled with white T-shirts, loose-fit overalls, baggy knits and Birkenstocks.

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While my style isn’t that of the typical seaside living residence, there is quite a distinct look about the locals.

Just down the road from me, there’s a couple whose style is the epitome of coastal chic.

The elderly couple take their golden Labradors for a walk early every morning looking like they’ve just stepped off the pages of the Country Living magazine.

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He always wears a white cotton button-down shirt with a light knit casually draped over his shoulders, loose-fit neutral toned pants and white loafers, while she’s the spitting image of Diane Keaton in the movie Something’s Gotta Give, with her straw hat and classic tortoiseshell sunglasses.

Their style is a classic example of what has now been coined the “coastal grandmother” trend.

Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlinson in Grace & Frankie PICTURE: Netflix

Think Grace and Frankie in their beach house in Malibu. Grace is always in her country mom chic, crisp button-down shirts and Frankie in her eccentric caftans. Then there’s celebrity chef Ina Garten, the Barefoot Contessa, who glides across her whitewashed kitchen in comfy chinos.

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One could add businesswoman extraordinaire Martha Stewart’s English countryside-meets-the Hamptons look to the mood board.

But as mentioned before, the ultimate example of the style is that of Diane Keaton’s character, Erica Barry, in the movie Something’s Gotta Give.

Diane Keaton in \'Something¿s Gotta Give\'.

It’s this look that TikTokker Lex Nicoleta, who in fact calls herself “The Coastal Grandmother”, has brought into the spotlight. While they might say “grandmother”, it certainly isn’t just for the elderly ladies living their best lives in their all-white wooden-floored ocean view homes.

A month ago, Lex Nicoleta, who in no way looks like a granny, shared a video breaking down exactly what she referred to at the coastal grandmother: “If you love Nancy Meyers movies, coastal vibes, recipes and cooking, Ina Garten, cosy interiors and more, there’s a good chance you might be a coastal grandmother.

“And no you don’t have to be a grandmother to be a coastal grandmother. It’s for anyone and everyone” she adds.

In a series of follow-up videos, she shares how to get the look.

“First things first. Pick yourself up a white button-down because nothing says effortless class like one of these bad boys,” as she points to the image of Grace from the comedy series Grace and Frankie.

Her list of must-have includes a bucket hat, go-to white dress (something simple, delicate and beautiful), linen pants or shorts, a cashmere sweater and classic pair of tan leather sandals.

The Devil Wears Prada star Anne Hathaway recently took to Instagram to express her delight and support of the trend. Sharing a picture of herself wearing a simple shirt and breezy linen pants in tones of cream, she says: “I have been ready for #coastalgrandmother chic since before TikTok was born. May this moment never end.”