I have a dilemma: I’m naturally drawn to sleek, Scandinavian-style interiors, but I also love more characterful, rustic elements – gnarled wood, mottled plaster, worn floorboards, that kind of thing. How to successfully combine the two is a bit of an ongoing quandary in our house redecoration, and something I touched on in a recent home-tour post.
I have a particular thing for rustic-looking tiles – and the more faded and cracked, the better. I’ve often found myself gazing wistfully at ornate-but-shabby tiled walls on my travels, especially in Spain, Portugal and Morocco, where I always seem to stumble upon them everywhere I turn. On one occasion I even spent hours trawling through boxes of vintage tiles at a flea market in Lisbon, before realising that EasyJet luggage allowances would thwart any attempt to transport them back to the UK.
With a house full of blank walls to jazz up, I’ve been pondering how to recreate the kind of thing I’ve seen abroad without detracting from the simplicity of the overall look. As always, Pinterest has come to my rescue. It’s awash with beautiful schemes that pair intricate tiles with minimalist furniture and fittings, including the stunning wall shown above (which happens to sit inside one of my favourite hotels, Casa Talia in Modica, Sicily). I’m now thinking about adding a tiled splashback or floor to our bathroom (I think it would look fantastic against a contemporary white tub), or perhaps going one step further and tiling the hallway or front garden. If I manage to pull it off, I hope we’ll end up with a house that has one foot in Scandinavia and one foot in the Mediterranean…
I’ve collated some of my favourite tile inspiration images together into a Pinterest board (below), so do head over and have a browse. And if you’ve managed to incorporate rustic tiles into your own home then please let me know!