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Mediterranean Interior Design: Everything You Need to Know About This Colorful Coastal Style

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Inspiring images of the rocky coastlines, salty air, and olive and fig trees, Mediterranean interior design brings the flair of European beach life to the everyday. “Mediterranean style should evoke the beauty and elegance of Southern Europe, particularly Spain, France, and Italy,” says Jeff Andrews, a Los Angeles–based interior designer, founder of Jeff Andrews Design, and member of the AD PRO Directory. “Light naturals, bold pops of saturated color, and natural materials that evoke seaside landscapes are the base of this interior design style,” he says. To better understand this laid-back, old-world aesthetic, AD spoke with Andrews as well as David and Suzie Lucas, co-founders of the interior design firm Lucas, all about the look. 

What is Mediterranean interior design?

A Mediterranean-style home designed by Jeff Andrews.  

Photo: Tim Street Porter 

Mediterranean interior design is a design style inspired by the homes found throughout the Mediterranean region of Europe. As Andrews explains, it’s often linked to an aesthetic closely related to southern Spain, France, and Italy, though it is influenced by a host of countries that surround the Mediterranean Sea, including  Greece, Malta, Morocco, and Monaco. “The Mediterranean region is known for indoor-outdoor living, which translates to airy, breezy interiors and a heavy use of natural materials with rich moments of color, texture, and eclectic tile work,” Suzie explains. The style could be understood as a subset of broader coastal interior design; however, Mediterranean style interiors are often more colorful, rustic, and eclectic compared to other coastal design trends. 

A Mediterranean-style home will often make use of organic materials and textures, and though it is overall lighter in color palette, you’ll frequently find pops of bright hues. “I would describe [the Mediterranean look] as light, eclectic, and using natural materials with pattern and texture,” David adds. 

History of Mediterranean interior design

It’s likely no surprise that the history of Mediterranean design begins in the region that birthed the aesthetic: the Mediterranean. “As we began to travel and migrate from the Mediterranean region of the world to other parts of the world, the design styles favored by those people often come along with them, much like food and other cultural traditions,” Andrews explains. 

White walls, beamed ceilings, and eclectic tiles are all common in Mediterranean homes, like that of Jeff Andrews, pictured here. 

Photo: Stephen Busken

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