The Idealist

Earthy and warm colour scheme: sandstone and iron ore

Soft, neutral colours and earthy tones have gained popularity for their ability to easily mesh with various colour schemes and styles of decor. We especially love the calming, simple feel that earthy, natural pigments can give your living room. But on their own, they can be a little bland. Adding beautiful reds, browns and oranges provides a warm feel that’s perfect for entertaining guests or relaxing with the family.

Colours

Team reds and browns with travertine and sandstone

As their name implies, earth tones are colours that draw inspiration from the beauty of nature. They range from earthy reds and browns to creams and oranges, and everything in between — all using nature as their muse. These tones will give your living room a particularly warm, fresh feel. Designers Guild has some great paint colours that would work well with this scheme.

  • Strawberry Jam: This deep red pigment meshes perfectly with lighter natural colours. It sounds too fruity for a scheme based on earth and nature, but its boldness makes it work. Try it on your walls for a splash of natural colour in your living room. It also makes a great accent colour for rugs and blankets.
  • Travertine and sandstone: These light shades can be used to complement each other subtly. These tones are great for hardwood floors, wood furniture, and natural fabrics. To complement them in turn, use dark browns and rich reds.
  • Flame red: This rich, orange colour is a perfect accent to darker browns and lighter beige colours. Use blankets, pillows and other fabrics to sprinkle it into your colour scheme. Accent it with light or dark browns to provide a light contrast.
  • Red velvet: A soft, deep red, this colour is ideal for accenting the others. Its darker, clay-like tone means it complements light stone and natural wood colours exceptionally well. It also goes great with earthenware.
  • Red earth, from Farrow & Ball has a warm earthy feel and should be used in smaller rooms to create the effect of a deeper terra cotta such as Terre D’Egypte which might be overpowering. This colour combines the finest qualities of red and yellow so is more forgiving as a hue for interior walls.

Furniture and Accessories

This look is all about the warm earth, natural minerals and dyes and the beauty of earth notes. As such it’s well suited to natural fabrics, wood, stone, earthenware and dark woods. Try jute or bamboo matting and natural tones to keep the look natural.

Accessories

For something warmer than matting, natural fabric rugs work well, but keep them low profile. Neutral colours teamed with colour or design accents work well here. This Daley natural flat weave rug with red fringe pulls the look off perfectly. It’s plain and understated bar a tassel on each corner (£120). Alternatively, this handwoven golden rug from Rajasthan has a modern geometric design, but is still understated and would bring warmth and comfort to any floor. Crafted from a blend of wool and cotton, it’s bountiful in quality and would fit many interior styles. (£199)

Furniture

From Swoon Editions, the Douglas Media Unit in Mango Wood (£399) shown is a wonderful fit with earth tones thanks to the beautiful tone of the mango wood it’s made from.

For seating, this Galloway Rustic Wood Rattan Tub Chair   (£494) with aged wood, rattan accents and taupe cushions go perfectly with earthy red colours. If you’re looking to add a splash of colour that fits this look, the Tania 4-Drawer Tricoloured Storage Unit (£108) combines a natural wood look with earthy orange and yellow shades. For an ottoman-style footstool (and additional open storage), this lightly coloured Astor Ottoman (£379) is a perfect combination of flair and function.

 

 

 

Need additional seating for guests that are statement pieces in their own right? These Shanxi Antique Stools (£95) are a beautiful piece of history – each one can be up to 100 years old. Sourced from the Shanxi region in China, they were used in everyday life and show the markings and wear of time. Perfect for modern day use as a side table, bedside table or stool. Finally, tie everything together with this gorgeous and keenly-priced Caliente Pendant Bamboo Light (£48). It’s a convenient, space-saving design that meshes wonderfully with this look.

  • John is a photographer and journalist from Manchester with a passion for street photography and modern art. When not taking photos, you can find him on a bike anywhere from Sardinia to Amsterdam listening to Zero 7.

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