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Boat Design Trends 2022

Boat Design Trends 2022

By Dianne Katra

Looking to refit, refurbish or refresh the furnishings on your boat in 2022? These are some of the things you may want to consider before embarking on the journey.

Styles come and go with the years, but the continuing trend for neutral colour palettes with splashes of colour or pattern are still going strong in the design world. Trends have, however, moved from a cooler grey palette to warmer tones, which suit many boats perfectly as they often have timber cabinetry. Below are some tips for refurbishing and modernising different areas of your vessel.


As always, keeping these spaces light is important, but there is a move towards darker flooring/carpets. These are actually ideal for boats, which generally have carpeted walkways that carry a lot of traffic from outside. Many boat owners are also opting for vinyl planking rather than carpet in the main entertaining areas, although this can sometimes be difficult with existing timber cabinets and tables. However, it is important to keep all the rest of the décor light to balance the darker floor.

There is a trend towards using outdoor fabrics for indoor lounges as well, with many outdoor fabrics now exhibiting a softer, more luxurious feel. This allows for a co-ordinated indoor/outdoor design approach for seating as well as excellent wear and cleaning benefits. Options include using plainer fabric inside with throw cushions that have a pattern and then carrying that through to rear deck and flybridge cushions.

The other trend for interior lounges and seating is for chunkier, woven materials. These work extremely well in boats with lots of gloss timber, toning down the shininess with a more earthy texture. Match this with velvet throw cushions and complementary colours and patterns for a fabulously tactile, sophisticated finish.


Again, neutral tones that tie into the rest of the interior décor are key here. Keeping walls, roofs, curtains, bedheads and bedding in a light colour is also very important in cabins that are generally fairly tight for space.

Custom bedspreads or fitted coverlets rather than doonas or blankets add a touch of elegance as well as ensuring that making the beds is a breeze! Keep in mind that the more cushions you have to dress the bed, the more storage you require, which can be quite problematic in smaller cabins.

Splashes of colours in ornaments, pictures, cushions and throws can really lift small spaces, but just make sure they coordinate with other areas of the boat. These colours can then be matched to towels and other accessories in the bathroom(s) to present a unified design.


These days, the massive range of outdoor furniture fabric is well and truly overtaking the traditional vinyl which have been used in cockpits and flybridges for decades. However, there are many new and sleek vinyl options available that can be teamed with accent piping or diamond stitching. This can take your outdoor seating to another level.

Sunbrella is now just one of the companies making outdoor fabric. There are now literally dozens of fabric houses extending their ranges to include outdoor furniture materials that can be used in outdoor entertaining spaces, poolside, by the beach or on boats! These fabrics bring together great designs, textures and colours with easy-to-clean properties that are UV-resistant, and are resistant to fading and sun damage.

When undertaking any refurbishment or refit work on your boat, it is really important to decide on your basic colours and fabric for all of the areas of your boat to ensure you have a coordinated design for the décor, even if you are not planning to redo all the areas at once.

At the moment, planning is also something that needs to be taken into consideration. Marine trimmers, upholsterers, cabinet makers, plumbers, electricians, shipwrights and all the associated trades are in huge demand on the Gold Coast, and wait times to get work done can be lengthy. Shipping and supply delays are also making themselves felt throughout the industry and we continue to see lead times to get products from overseas blown out.

So get organised, plan and book your work in to make sure it can be completed in the timeframe that suits you.

Classic Marine Trimming

Phone:07 5502 7782


Published in print January-March 2022