Designing and furnishing a Mediterranean style house

What is Mediterranean style furniture ?

Mediterranean style furniture has ancient origins. The houses of the coasts of southern Italy, Spain, Greece, the southern Balkan Peninsula and North Africa, especially Morocco, are the greatest sources of influence for the birth and development of this style that reminds the colors of the beaches and the sea .

The characteristics of a Mediterranean house

The main features of the Mediterranean style, now very popular for furnishing beach houses or holiday accommodation, are reminiscent of small coastal towns in Greece or Morocco. The dominant white is the clearest example of this and its use stems from the need of the inhabitants of the Mediterranean coasts to protect themselves and their homes from the heat of the beating sun. Have you ever tried to dress in black on the afternoons of July and August? Here, unlike black and dark colors in general, which retain solar energy and therefore heat, white tends to reflect it. Having a white house therefore allows you to better protect it from the sun's heat. Another typical feature of Mediterranean-style interior design is the lightness that distinguishes the rooms; the choice of furniture forms and accessories is numerous but, unlike other furnishing concepts, they must be chosen and used sparingly. A Mediterranean-style house does not have to look like a resort furniture showroom! Fill your rooms carefully and without exaggerating, the furniture should not suffocate the room! Every time you enter the house, you will need to feel a sensation of lightness and freshness, like when you are caressed by the sea breeze.

Materials and colors for a Mediterranean style house

For the furnishing of a Mediterranean style villa or a house by the sea, but also more simply to give a maritime aspect to an apartment in town, you will have to use these colors and materials that will especially transport your spirit to a quiet and very pleasant beach of the Mediterranean coast. Between the walls of your Mediterranean house you will not have to use cold materials: metal and plastic are more representative of an urban environment and not of a house overlooking the sea! Natural stone elements on the walls will help to give the house the right maritime atmosphere, just like the plaster left rough, both inside and outside the house. Although wood is an emblematic material for the Mediterranean style, it can take advantage of leaving exposed beams on the ceiling for example, or furnishing with furniture in natural colors. In addition, wood can be an excellent choice for floors. Alternatively, you can choose coverings with ceramic tiles and majolica decorations, often also used for bathroom walls. As for colors, in a Mediterranean-style home, the typical colors of the sea reign supreme. Thus, in addition to the omnipresence of white, blue and blues are fundamental to recall water and sky, shades of ochre or orange to evoke sand, earth and sun and a pinch of green, on the contrary, to recall vegetation. You can use all these colors for any element of Mediterranean style furniture in your home: walls, floors, furniture, accessories, fabrics and curtains in cotton or linen. But be careful to respect the harmony between the colors: it may seem easy to create a balance when the colors to be used and the furnishing elements are few, but this is not the case. It is very easy to create a house with a non-harmonious or unfinished look. It is very easy to create a house with an unharmonious or unfinished look. In order to design a Mediterranean-style piece of furniture that is so harmonious, it is important to be familiar with the laws of color and the use of space.

Furnishing a garden in a Mediterranean style

A house furnished in a Greek or Mediterranean style will have to show a certain coherence also in the outside spaces. To furnish a garden in a Mediterranean style, a terrace or a patio, it is necessary to be able to recreate the same harmony obtained inside in the outside space and make the green space a continuation of the house, also from an aesthetic point of view. For the furnishing of a Mediterranean-style garden, certain recurring elements can be used: the most common are wicker furniture and terracotta pots, in which to grow rosemary, citrus and lavender plants, or to place some candles or lanterns. These particularly appreciated elements and furnishing accessories that characterize the Mediterranean style can be combined with furniture that allow to play more creatively. In this case, in order to obtain a coherent and elegant result, it is necessary to first know the criteria that guide this style of furniture, and then choose with awareness how many and which contrasting elements to insert and how to maintain the overall harmony.

Mediterranean style furniture : mistakes to avoid

When you decide to furnish your home with a specific style, caution is called for: the step between an effective look and the stickiest banality is really short! In Mediterranean style houses, monochrome is absolutely to be avoided! Blues, blues and browns must be well balanced in a context where white must be the base. Also be careful with the furniture: although they often use the typical colors, Scandinavian style furniture does not match Greek or Mediterranean style furniture for shapes and lines. They would be too cold, modern, linear. In the same way it is important to be careful not to choose furniture too worked, you are always at sea not at Queen Victoria's! All these stylistic imperatives may seem like rigid posts that put a brake on your possibility of personalization. As you read these guidelines, you probably think you need some direction so you don't create a home you don't like in the end, but you also fear that every rule will take you away from spontaneity and personalization. This often happens when you furnish your own home and don't have a thorough knowledge of the world of design and all styles (and of course, I would add, you're not in the business!). This does not happen, however, if your home is designed by a professional who knows how to combine all the important factors:
  • the aesthetic rules that allow you to obtain a harmonious result.
  • your personal taste
  • your way of living the house and your needs.
When one of these three elements does not get the right attention, the design of the whole house is weak and you end up not being satisfied with the final result.

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