Use Tuscan colors to inspire your room color schemes with the warmth and beauty of the Tuscan countryside. Check out these, too:
In authentic Tuscan farmhouses, interior walls are usually painted white.
Now, just because Tuscans tend to paint their kitchens, bedrooms and living rooms white ...
... doesn't mean that you have to do the same.
So this page is about Tuscan colors straight from the exterior color palette of Tuscan villages.
By the way, Tuscany is only a 4-hour drive away from the South of France, but a Tuscan color palette looks quite different from French country colors. (Compare French country bedrooms to traditional Tuscan ones and you'll see exactly what I mean!)
Warm neutrals are the basis of any Tuscan color palette:
Next, add muted reds and deep, glowing yellows. These are essential Tuscan colors:
After that, add accent colors from Nature's own Tuscan color palette:
For metals, focus on pewter, copper, and/or antiqued brass.
In the original, rustic Tuscany decorating style, the color palette is almost entirely neutral. It consists of
However, even in Tuscany it's nowadays acceptable to put some color not only on your walls, but also on your furniture.
Here's a little eatery, the Osteria del Borgo in Micciano: The owner, Marcello, chose a mix of red, yellow and green for the rush-seated chairs and the tablecloths. (He also painted the mural of his village!)
In interiors, Tuscan paint colors can create the illusion of sunshine and warmth - even in the coolest, most functional city environment.
If you combine a Tuscan color palette with traditional Tuscan white walls, the white will make the colors look darker and more intense.
For example, the display cabinet pictured below would 'pop' much less if it were surrounded entirely by wood, brick, and straw colors. (In a traditionally Tuscan environment the wall would have been white but the cabinet would have been dark brown.)
If you decide to use Tuscan paint colors on your furniture,
Tuscan colors vary from town to town and from village to village, but usually only between different hues of brick red, peachy pink, light terracotta, and yellow umber.
There's the occasional sugar pink thrown in (as in the photo at the top of this page). Rarely is a house painted green, and I don't think I've ever seen a blue house in Tuscany.
Tuscan window shutters are either dark green ('hunter green' would best describe it, and you can go quite dark on the color), or (natural) brown. As an alternative, there's light bluish gray.
Tuscan villagers can be quite pernickety about what colors you can paint your house in "their" village!
A friend told me how, at the bottom of her tiny hilltop village in Tuscany, someone was building a new house.
The other villagers (40 when you counted all the kids) were nervous about the possibility that the newcomer would spoil the general appearance of their village. (If you scroll back to the color swatches near the top of this page, you get the general idea of their specific Tuscan color palette.)
Well, they got together and decided that they would have a say in the choice of Tuscan paint colors for the new house!
A chart with suggested color swatches was hung up in the Alimentari, the only shop in the village. Forty villagers flocked to the shop to tick their choice of Tuscany colors for the new house.
Which color did they pick? Here it is - photographed in situ, on the walls of the newcomer's house (Yes, he obliged. You don't mess with 40 people who all live, more or less, next door :-)
Not all Tuscan towns and villages have rendered, painted houses. Many have just the natural hues of local rock, brick, and terracotta roof tiles.
If this sounds a bit drab to you, it's because I haven't mentioned the flowers yet.
Geranium, star jasmine, roses, wine, oleander - sometimes even bougainvillaea - they all like it hot and sunny. And (except for the geranium) they'll climb all over your house if you let them. Climbing plants can go a long way in turning your house into a Mediterranean dream home.
Use the photo (right) as a starting point for home decorating in Tuscany colors:
Also, check out this little 'library' of color know-how (in partnership with Amazon):