Colorful Beachside Getaway
"People always stop and comment," Debra Pigage says of the Carillon Beach, Florida, property she shares with husband Michael and children Ellen and Joe. "One person said it looks like a big lime sherbet ice cream cone!"
It's an apt description because a visit to Bikini Bottoms is such a refreshing treat. Ellen and Joe came up with the name based on the Nickelodeon cartoon SpongeBob SquarePants. The yellow, absorbent title character lives in a pineapple in the city of Bikini Bottom. As you would expect from a place with a name inspired by a cartoon, the house is delightfully animated. Leave your serious pants at the door.
photo: Like a lot of great beach homes, this one comes with a nickname--Bikini Bottoms. Wish you could stay here? You can! Visit www.vacationrentals.com, and type in Listing ID# 22761.
A favorite feature is the 640 square feet of outdoor living space (the two-bedroom, two-bath interior measures less than 1,000 square feet). There's a screened porch, a deck on the back of the house, and a second-floor sun deck.
Debra and Michael came up with the blue-and-green color scheme and then added the purple accent color, which was inspired by a sea horse that Debra painted. "The house really shows up," she says. "Every time we drive up to it, we smile."
photo: A built-in platform bed and shelves make smart use of the small master bedroom. The walls are painted Cayman Blue (2060-50) by Benjamin Moore.
"When I gave the cabinetmaker the color of the cabinets, he looked at me funny. It was a risk," Debra says. "I am so glad we did it."
Paint your wood floors to get a coastal look. The secret to a good paint job is the prep work. Wash, sand, and prime the floors. Then paint with latex floor and patio enamel. If it's a high-traffic area, use a water-based polyurethane to seal it.
photo: Michael and Debra chose three shades of blue off the same color card for the floor, cabinets, and wall.
Debra's personal favorite spot is the screened porch. "I love reading a book in the sofa swing and watching people stroll by," she says. And if some of those strollers can't help but stop and comment on this fun and fantastic beach house, can you really blame them?
photo: Michael cut out the fish-shaped table, and Debra painted it. The DIY furniture is one more reason Bikini Bottoms has "a smile around every corner," Debra says.