above: Cailini Coastal’s first bespoke collection of wallpaper. right: Founder & Creative Director, Meg Young.
Photography by Darina Todorova
Samantha Yanks: We love the vibe of Cailini Coastal, especially here in Westport. Tell us a bit about the overall ethos of the company.
Meg Young: Thank you! It is indeed very Westport. Cailini Coastal is an e-commerce destination for luxury coastal home décor and furnishings. Cailini Coastal offers a distinct design style that blends the airy simplicity of California coastal with a timeless East Coast elegance—reflective of the two places I’ve lived!
I started Cailini Coastal like many businesses owners do, to create something that I felt was missing from the market. As a design-loving consumer with a distinct aesthetic, I found that the luxury coastal home space was dominated by only a few mainstream retailers online. There was little to no variety. Living by the beach in Southern California, so many of my peers’ homes started to look alike, with the same recognizable pieces from the same large retailers. I personally love having pieces in my home that are unique, and most of my finds were discovered at local coastal boutiques, antique stores or flea markets. Once I had my two daughters, it became more challenging to shop in person, and I realized there was an opportunity to offer something fresh online.
I wanted to offer a different perspective on coastal décor with unique pieces you didn’t see everywhere. The idea behind Cailini Coastal has always been to feel like you are shopping at a local design boutique in a seaside destination, discovering gems that you’ve never seen before, but with the ability to shop conveniently from your own home.
SY: You have a distinct color palette which takes inspiration in the seaside. Which towns did you have in mind when you launched?
MY: I grew up on Long Island and in New Jersey and spent my summers out east in the Hamptons and down the shore in Avalon and Long Beach Island. I’ve always been influenced by the traditional New England shingle-styled beach homes surrounded by privet hedges and fluffy hydrangea. Those classic homes that are traditional and coastal at the same time. During the decade I lived in California, I fell in love with the beauty of coastal towns like Santa Barbara and Newport Beach—a bit more relaxed with bright and airy interiors, but still more sophisticated than some of the surrounding bohemian surf towns.
SY: When did you launch Cailini Coastal and what was the mission?
MY: I launched Cailini Coastal in the early days of the pandemic (April 2020) with just five bakers racks in my garage in Manhattan Beach, California. The mission of the business was to offer a highly curated assortment of high-quality and unique coastal-inspired pieces you didn’t see everywhere.
There is also a philanthropic mission to our brand. Prior to even launching the business, I knew I wanted to use it to give back in a direct and meaningful way. I chose to partner with Family Promise—a national nonprofit based that works to support low-income families and families experiencing homelessness achieve sustainable independence through a community based response. At the time (the early days of the pandemic), the need was so tremendous, so I committed to donating 100% of profits in the first six months of business. I had no idea if I would have any profit to even give!! Our business took off and we donated $25K in those first six months. We continue to work closely with Family Promise today and we’ve donated more than $70K since we launched our business 3.5 years ago. Our partnership with Family Promise is one of the things I am most proud of. My goal is for Cailini Coastal to donate over $1 million to this great cause—and we will!
SY: You’ve recently moved to Westport, how did you pick the town?
MY: I’m embarrassed to say that we picked the town after spending only a day in it! When were considering our move back east, we leaned on our friends in Fairfield County for input. While our friends were all pushing for their own towns, the secondary place they unanimously said we would love was Westport. Although it was a quick trip, we had such a good feeling when we visited Westport and we are glad we followed our instinct because we truly love it. Someone told us that Westport was the “California of Connecticut,” and I agree with that. It’s the perfect home for our family!
SY: Your recent wallpaper is the next evolution. Why wallpaper? And tell us about some of the prints, texture and pattern play.
MY: Wallpaper is one of our fastest-growing categories and we saw the opportunity to expand our assortment, with this collection being our first foray into Cailini Coastal-designed wallpapers.
When dreaming up this seven-piece collection, I was inspired by quintessential coastal elements—like classic stripes, hydrangeas, shells and sailboats. We decided to make six of the seven wallcoverings on textured grounds—grasscloth and paperweave.
I have always loved textured wallcoverings, but it’s hard to find printed grasscloths (ie: ones with patterns not just a solid color), as most are sold exclusively to-the-trade. I am always looking to add items that are difficult to find and printed textured wallcoverings fit the bill. Several of these designs were inspired by vintage textiles—making them feel even more unique!
SY: We’ve spoken a bit about what’s next privately. Is it time to share publicly a hush-hush, very exciting opening you have planned in CT?
MY: Only because it’s you asking, Samantha! Yes, let’s share it here first! We are thrilled to announce that our first brick and mortar store will be opening in Darien’s new Corbin District in early 2025. We get asked about a store constantly, so we’re very excited to share this news!
We’re working with two of my favorite, uber talented locals on this project—David Genovese of Baywater Properties, who is doing the development, and Lynn Morgan Design (who helped me with our home in Westport)—to make this store a jewel box unlike any other home store with the majority of the pieces in it available exclusively at Cailini Coastal.
We are planning to do pop-up events and shops between now and then—in Westport, too—so stay tuned!
SY: In terms of product categories, with wallpaper being the most recent what’s on the horizon for upcoming launches?
MY: Creating Cailini Coastal branded product has been a goal of mine since we launched, and I’m pleased to share that product development is now at the forefront of our expansion plans. This holiday season is our next big drop. We have over 15 products designed by and exclusive to Cailini Coastal, including bottle brush trees, holiday houses, wreaths, ornaments, table linens and more!