It’s understandable: The material makes our homes feel like mini vacations, transporting us to a Southwestern desert escape or a villa on the Italian coast. Terracotta floors may have once been relegated to faux Mediterranean kitchens complete with ornate wood cabinetry and wrought-iron chandeliers, but if the rooms below are any indication, they’re now a surface of choice for modern spaces.
She landed on a Moroccan zellige in traditional octagons, which she paired with tone-on-tone grasscloth-and-timber cupboards to create an earthy, serene room. In this beachy New Jersey remodel, designer Nicole Cohen mixed handmade hexagons with a green-and-white–checkered backsplash and a butcher block countertop.
The quaint surfaces feel fresh thanks to simple white IKEA cabinets and cone-shaped island pendant lamps. Pierre Frey’s weekend retreat in Normandy, France, is 170 years old, so antique terracotta tiles and original wood beams do much of the work in making the place feel storied and warm.
In this Brooklyn laundry room, architect Gerry Smith used antique French Ann Sacks tiles with other classics: a contemporary black phyllite stone (a cousin to soapstone) countertop, cabinets painted in Benjamin Moore’s Kendall Charcoal, and brass hardware. Design duo Ashe + Leandro picked a similarly dark theme in Seth Meyers’s Manhattan duplex, combining terracotta with soapstone counters and cupboards in Farrow & Ball’s Off-Black.
Each week, join editor-in-chief Jessica Romm Perez along with talented creatives and designers from our community to explore how to create a home that tells your story.