This style house is a clever combination of a traditional style and a tropical style. It creates a fine balance between modern, classical as well as an island look and feel. These style homes are architecturally designed to resemble traditional homes found in countries like Spain, Italy and France, that interior designers and architects have now given a modern twist to. So what are some of the design characteristics of a Mediterranean house? Let us begin with the kind of materials that you can find in this style home. On the floors, tiles are the most popular covering for the floors. Not just any tiling, terracotta tiles that are thicker than ceramic tiles, and also have a creative uneven finish on them that makes each tile unique. The terracotta tile traditionally comes in a natural brown orange colour that almost resembles a wooden colour when the light shines on it.
Now that the floors have been discussed, let us look at another common material that is wood. This material continuously shows up in every house and room description because of its versatility and availability. This material can also be used on the floors in every room in the house from the bathroom to the patio to the kitchen. But a very distinctive use for wood typically found in a Mediterranean house. Where it is used in the ceiling and the basic structure of the house. These homes have dark wooden panelling found in the ceiling, that is both decorative and helps to maintain the structure of the house. Wood can also be found in the staircase, in the main pieces of furniture as well as in the houses study and even in the kid’s room.
There are a lot of ways to decorate a Mediterranean style home, that can also be in a modern way. The first way to add decoration to this luxuriously styled home is in the lighting. There are many options when it comes to modern and traditional lighting. A traditional, large chandelier is the one way to go, typically in white, crystal or a wicker light fixture, usually coupled with a ceiling fan. Another lighting option is a large lantern like light fixture. This is usually made of iron metal that is a dark brown almost black colour, that is perfect to add a darker aspect to a island like home.
Besides the lighting, there are a few typical ways that a Mediterranean house is professionally decorated. First is with tapestries, these are decorative and traditional piece of textile or fabric that is hand stitched or embroidered with bold colours such as deep reds, gold and greens, usually depicting a scene with historic figures or wildlife. These are hung on the walls or framed to preserve their richness and are seen as collectables. They come in a variation of sizes and shapes and usually sell for over ZAR3,000 a piece.
An architectural element made famous by Mediterranean style houses are the circular arches that adorn the door frames in every room or entry way. This is more typical in a Spanish revival home that just adds that extra touch of an island feel to the home. The archway is also commonly used in the garden as well as in the frames of the windows. Accompanying the archway, another architectural element made famous by this style of home is the column. These columns can be found on the patio, in the kitchen, at the entrance of the home covering the front door, and especially used in the doors of the garage.
It also important to remember to mix up the texture of the fabric as well as decorative elements when decorating the the interior of a Mediterranean house. For instance, adding large or tall potted plants is a signature part of decoration in these style homes, so therefore this is a great way to add texture to the house. You could add different texture in plants by the size of the leaves, the species of the plant, so not just sticking to one family of plants is a clever way to apply this decorative element.
Combining two different styles of design in one home is a difficult task as you do not want too much of the Mediterranean style to show and you also do not want the home to be too South African at the same time, you want to create a balance between the two and here is the way to do it.
Keeping the basis of the home mainly Mediterranean, you can gently add South African elements of decoration into the home. For instance you could add naturally indigenous South African plants to the home. You could also add South African artwork around the house in the form of figurines, paintings and photography, that would look stunning on the walls walking up a staircase, or in the guest bathroom.