How to decorate your home in Mediterranean style and natural materials
Discover how minimalism and Mediterranean décor combine for a sophisticated yet understated interior design style
Minimalism and Mediterranean interior design
When we hear people talking about Mediterranean décor, the very words bring to mind images of sun-drenched landscapes, white stone houses with tantalising views of the sea, and fresh, welcoming interiors.
Indelibly linked to the culture of countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea, its style is the perfect fusion of tradition and modernity.
With its warm tones and natural textures, it represents the essence of a simple, authentic lifestyle that is in harmony with the surrounding environment, and this is where the minimalist aspect comes into play. With its focus on functionality and understatement, it is the perfect antidote to the hectic pace and avid consumerism of modern times.
As such, with their philosophy of simplicity and smart, responsible use of materials aimed at creating peaceful, soothing settings, minimalism and Mediterranean style complement each other to perfection.
While Mediterranean style captures the warmth and vivacity of Southern Europe, minimalism is all about the art of decluttering and placing value on what is truly essential.
In this article, we show you how to create an interior design scheme that brings together a Mediterranean heart and minimalist mind.
Key principles of Mediterranean design
When thinking about Southern European aesthetics, the immediate image is of pale colours and the typical architecture of the lands around the Mediterranean Sea.
White is definitely a theme, bringing to mind the whitewashed traditional low-rise houses that reflect the sun and create a sense of spaciousness. Natural materials such as stone for the walls and terracotta tiles for the roofs are almost emblematic of certain landscapes, while the colour blue evokes the sea and makes for a striking contrast.
One of the many magical aspects of this style is the way it manages to combine simplicity of form with interesting textures. From walls that have been plastered by hand to exposed wooden beams and natural stone floors, every surface can be considered a work of art, brimming with artisanal know-how and tradition.
Shapes are inspired by nature, so tend to be fluid and irregular, often recalling the form of the waves or the gentle curves of the hills.
The landscape is of immense importance, and so oversize windows, French doors and terraces with views of the sea, olive groves or fragrant citrus orchards are a key feature, designed not only to let the light in, but also to create a continuous flow between outdoors and indoors.
Flowers, herbs and trees are also an essential element of Mediterranean-style homes, whether in terracotta pots in a courtyard or planted in a garden.
How to introduce minimalism into a Mediterranean décor
At the heart of minimalist design is an uncluttered, unfussy approach__text in bold__, and this dovetails nicely with the rustic and natural style of Mediterranean décor. The combination of the two results in a soothing, serene atmosphere that exudes authentic elegance.
With its clean lines, natural colours and understated design, the Ompahlos coffee table by the master of minimalism, John Pawson, epitomises the Mediterranean vibe.
Another characteristic of both minimalism and Mediterranean décor is the lack of frills and ostentation, and this is encapsulated in the clean lines of John Pawson’s miniature House of Stone. Part of The Village collection, it exemplifies how a single piece can combine tradition and understatement.
When it comes to accessories, in keeping with the minimalism philosophy, less is definitely more, and they should ideally be functional and decorative. The Ellipse collection of homeware in classic Bianco Carrara marble fits the bill perfectly.
This maxim of quality over quantity is key to both design philosophies, so it’s all about choosing beautiful materials and timeless objects that will last throughout the years.
The importance of natural materials
The Mediterranean culture and its inimitable style have long been loved for its simplicity, elegance and vibrancy, and much of this is down to the materials used in construction and furnishing.
Wood and stone are predominant elements, not only for their aesthetic and practical benefits, but also for the more intangible magic they contain in terms of history and tradition. After all, artists and craftsmen have been inspired by these wonderful natural materials for centuries, and have transformed them into lasting works of art, architecture and furniture.
Natural stone inevitably lends a touch of authenticity and a sense of history. From slabs or uneven pieces of limestone to perfectly honed tiles, they are an enduring symbol of Mediterranean design and timeless elegance.
With its incredible palette of colours and unique veining, stone is a symbol of Mediterranean style, as exemplified by Elisa Ossino’s Proiezioni range of coffee tables, which combine bold geometric forms and fascinating interplays of light.
The coolness and splendour of stone is offset to perfection by the warmth and intimacy of wood. Together, these two natural materials create a yin and yang of tone and texture that makes for a popular combination among design lovers. Our Adda and Punto bathroom collections showcase how stylish yet comforting this pairing can be, with a selection of modular washbasin solutions in wood and stone.
3 easy ideas for injecting Mediterranean design elements into your home décor
We’ve talked about the harmony between minimalism and Mediterranean interior design and the importance of natural colours and materials in both approaches, so to finish, here are 3 easy ways to introduce them to your own home décor:
Understated furniture: as mentioned above, the key is essential lines and a minimum of frills. A perfect example is Elisa Ossino’s Theca display cabinet which combines glass and natural stone in a piece that would fit effortlessly into any Mediterranean setting.
Flowers and plants: these are a fundamental part of Mediterranean landscapes and lifestyle and are an easy way to inject multisensorial design into your home. Plant lemon trees or miniature olives in pots or your garden or group roses, lavender, geraniums or even olive branches artistically in our Mono or Pietra L13 vases.
Evocative accessories: even the smallest pieces can add a sense of the Mediterranean to a décor, such as the whimsical miniature houses from The Village and Archimera collections or the Curl chaise longue, carved from a single block of natural stone.
In addition to impeccable design credentials, what they all share is the fact that these, and the other examples we’ve given in this article, are all lovingly made at our Tuscan premises, just minutes from the Mediterranean Sea.
In conclusion, the art of recreating Mediterranean style lies in finding a balance between minimalism an elegance through colour and natural materials. Less is more, but what this means is that every element of the décor scheme should represent quality, history and design.
If you would like to find out more about how to inject a touch of the Mediterranean into your home, please get in touch. Our team of consultants will be delighted to help.