Mediterranean Inspirations for Home and Garden Mediterranean Inspirations for Home and Garden

You don’t have to live in a seaside villa to decorate with elements of Mediterranean style and design. Instead, you simply have to have a love for the exotic, for romantic details and sumptuous elegance. A bedroom with accents reminiscent of a Moroccan bazaar, a kitchen decorated with Marseilles style or a Romanesque pleasure garden complete with murals and grapevine—a Mediterranean design can transform your home subtlety or entirely. The following ideas will tell you how.

Mediterranean is actually a loose term that encompasses many styles, many inspirations. From Gibralter to the mouth of the Nile and all the space in between, Mediterranean design, generally speaking, borrows from all the cultures that inhabit the shores of this infamous sea. Think Spain, Morocco, France, Italy, Greece, Turkey and more. Of course, any one of these locations conjures up a vast array of design possibilities. Simply employ any that are right for your own home.

Color and light is an essential feature of Mediterranean style. Ribbons of sunlight filtering through airy golden linens hung in splayed windows—it’s a poetic image, but it rings with truth. Walls the color of the sea, draperies the rich colors of Berber fabrics—there is a wide palette to choose from. Stick to earthy colors like rusts, reds, browns, oranges and yellows along with shades of the sea—blues and greens and you fairly well have plenty of options to choose between.

When adding Mediterranean touches to your living room, the idea is to pair elegance with comfort. Wide sumptuous sofas, languorous ottomans and floor pillows covered with soft fabric—opulence and simplicity; this is Mediterranean style. You may want to include a Turkish rug and even hang tapestries on the wall. Looking upward, consider installing a hand painted coffered ceiling in the Moorish style. Tiling is an important element of Mediterranean style—consider using Spanish tiles for the fire place.

For the kitchen and dining room think of long wooden tables, not ornately carved, but rather simple—a French provincial table. Ornament with a hanging wrought iron fixture and paint the walls burnished yellow. Consider blue stoneware tablesettings, large pieces of glazed pottery for the shelves and any accents that imply Mediterranean sensibilities—Moorish-tiled backsplash, Berber draperies, prints of Mediterranean scenes can all add great style to these rooms.

The bedroom is uniquely amenable to the sensual side of Mediterranean décor. Beads and carved boxes, lush bedding and bed draperies, pillows and finely-hewn wood furniture all lend themselves to Mediterranean style. Ornate hanging fixtures, candelabras, opulent paintings are also indicative of this romantic style. A bed can be transformed by a crafted headboard employing an Oriental arch, for instance. Beaded lamps, fringed draperies—these are great accents with an exotic appeal.

The garden can also be made over with Mediterranean charm. The ancient pleasure gardens of Rome may inspire wall murals and rustic basins for your own landscape. Consider statues of classical images to place throughout the landscape. Spanish fountains are famous for their beauty, much of which was inspired by the Moors. Mediterranean gardens are comfortable places—never uptight, always hospitable.

With all the ornaments and props available for home and garden today—finding Mediterranean inspirations for your own setting will not be difficult. The following are just a few ideas to get your thinking in the Mediterranean direction: iron grates for windows, ornately-carved bathtub hood, large ceramic pots and jugs, wooden doors studded with metal star grommets, colorful tiles, and candles atop stone or wood pedestals. All theses features and more can add Mediterranean style and elegance to your home.

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