Terracotta decor ideas conjure the sun-baked walls of ancient civilisations, and take inspiration from earthy tones. Evocative of North Africa to Italy and South-East Asia, this clay-inspired color is named from ‘terra cocta’, which in Latin means ‘baked earth’.
Its generosity of character means that terracotta has the ability to wrap its arms around your home with its all-year-round mood of warmth. This baked earth tone is sometimes interpreted with hints of burnt orange, chalky plaster pink or rusty reds, but moreover, it represents the richness of the soil from where it originates. Its depth of color means that terracotta is perfect for north-facing rooms, adding a glow to the darkest of corners and making spaces feel cosy. Richer shades such as terracotta and blood orange can bring a real sense of warmth to a space,' says Sue Jones, co-founder of Oka (opens in new tab).
George Miller, home designer at Neptune (opens in new tab), says the brand’s Burnt Sienna shade is ‘a versatile hue evocative of sun-warmed rooftops and terracotta planters with spicy earth tones that complement not only cosy spaces, but also light and airy rooms.’ For living room ideas that really pack a punch, consider painting your window frames and shutters a bright terracotta hue.
They add warmth and rustic charm to a scheme, making dinner time a relaxing experience. A mix of light and dark wood finishes create a beautiful contrast, while soft terracotta curtains add a romantic touch. Add personality to a terracotta scheme with pattern using bold geometrics, hand-blocked floral prints or ikat designs. Conjure the creative history of South-East Asia, South America and West Africa with a Tribal ikat vertical striped pattern wallpaper – this design is Mind the Gap (opens in new tab)’s take on a traditional pattern found in ancient civilizations throughout the world.
Patterned soft furnishings are central to this cosy country living room that so beautifully embraces terracotta decor ideas. Combine the warmth of terracotta walls with the elegance of an upholstered vintage chair in a chinoiserie-style fabric, such as this Tree Poppy design at Colefax & Fowler (opens in new tab).
Tactile finishes like velvet, wood and lacquered ceramic enhance the enticing feel of your terracotta decor ideas.
A bold accent chair and table lamp in a spicy terracotta hue, both from Oka, tone in beautifully with warm wooden furniture and add interest to an otherwise pared-back scheme. Evoke the relaxing warmth of evening sun on bedroom walls with an orangey terracotta shade – such as this Middle Buff paint by Little Greene (opens in new tab). Mirror the profile of original steel windows with a dark wood dining table and chair set, and paint exposed brickwork white to keep the space feeling light and airy.
Inspired by artisanal embroidery, offering a modern take on chunky stitching, this Perception fabric by Harlequin (opens in new tab) is here styled with a bold contemporary vessel for a dramatic effect. For a light, summery feel, contrast terracotta with a palette of white and off-white linen hues.
For richer, jewel-box interiors contrast a terracotta scheme with French Majorelle blues through to indigo and navy.
George Miller, home designer at Neptune, suggests taking a tonal approach by ‘choosing other earthy hues that tone down a scheme, resulting in a room that’s calm and soothing.’
While Stefan Ormenisan, founder and creative director of Mind the Gap, says: ‘Terracotta’s rich earthy tones pair beautifully with deep rust or orange for an eclectic North African-inspired interior scheme, or alongside blush pinks and pale stone hues for a fresh contemporary pairing.’