I Was Ready for "Coastal-Grandma Chic" Before TikTok Existed—11 Items to Buy


(Image credit: @deborabrosa)

Finally, I feel seen. TikTok has brought us plenty of fashion trends since it came into existence but none speaks to me more than the "coastal grandma" aesthetic—a term coined by TikToker Lex Nicoleta, which is characterized by a crisp, affluent summertime lifestyle of an older woman that you'd easily picture in a Nancy Meyers movie—dressed in loose, breezy, and cozy classics set in the backdrop of a quaint coastal town.

Of course, you don't have to be a grandma, or wealthy, or live by the coast to be a coastal grandma. It's a vibe that embodies living the good, slow life—think wearing breezy button-downs, linen pants, bucket hats, and sumptuous sweaters while enjoying fresh oysters and a glass of wine. It's about attending book clubs, growing your own vegetables, and having a set of freshly laundered guest towels on a bed with good linens… you get the picture!


(Image credit: Shutterstock)

To be honest, much like Anne Hathaway mentioned on her InstagramI’ve been dressing like a coastal grandma before TikTok even existed—and I’m 100% here for the effortless anti-trend. If the aesthetic speaks to you then take a look below at some fresh and modern outfits inspired by the coastal grandma aesthetic and shop the key pieces to take on the perennial summertime style.

Breezy Button-Down


(Image credit: @jordanrisa)

Nothing embodies the coastal grandma aesthetic quite like a breezy button-down. A crisp white one is a no-brainer but sky blue hues and stripes are also perfect too.


Bucket Hat


(Image credit: @basictouch)

A bucket hat is a "coastal grandmacore" essential. Think Diane Keaton in Something's Gotta Give, and you've nailed it.




(Image credit: @anoukyve)

Whether it's on a sweater or shirt, crisp and clean nautical stripes embody the aesthetic perfectly. Just add a glass of vino.


Crisp Linens


(Image credit: @hannahcrosskey)

From loose linen pants to shorts and shirts, the effortlessly elegant fabric always adds an understated luxe touch to your outfits.


Cozy Cardigan


(Image credit: @ericadavies)

You're not a coastal grandma if you don't own a sumptuous, soft cardigan to throw on over your button-downs and breezy maxi dresses. Perfect for summer evenings in the garden.


Straw Tote Bags


(Image credit: @anoukyve)

A straw tote bag is ideal for carrying your farmers market finds and fresh flowers.


Long, Flowy Dresses


(Image credit: @monikh)

Long, flowy white dresses in loose, breathable fabrics are the name of the game when it comes to coastal grandma dressing. 


Slide Sandals


(Image credit: @juliesfi)

Chic and minimalist slides are an easy and effortless finishing touch to any Nancy Meyers–inspired outfit.


White Pants


(Image credit: @lindatol)

From ivory jeans to beige chinos, opt for straight or wide-leg pants in crisp white hues to embody the vibe.


Long Shorts


(Image credit: @sasha.mei)

Look for longer-length high-waisted shorts with a flowy drape—preferably in a palette of whites and taupes.


Coastal-Cool Sweaters


(Image credit: @anoukyve)

From white turtlenecks to cable knits—a preppy summer sweater is perfect for the beach and beyond.


Up next, my style is somewhere between coastal grandma and Gen Z—here's what I'm buying.

Judith Jones
Senior Fashion Market Editor

Judith Jones is the senior fashion market editor at Who What Wear who specializes in shopping content and trend stories with high-affiliate impact. She shares the coolest, most desirable fashion market finds and brands for every budget. Previous to working in fashion, Judith worked as a TV host on the PBS travel show Globe Trekker (airing on Netflix and Amazon Prime) sharing her passion for travel and culture.