Boasting a rich culture, coastal wonders, and idyllic views of the Mediterranean, Greece is one of the most desirable places to live in. Visually stunning villages where homes are haphazardly stacked upon a cliffside create a blue and white tapestry unlike no other. Within those homes are interior designs that are timeless, enchanting, and downright gorgeous. However, you don’t need to live in Greece in order to enjoy those aesthetics. There are a plethora of design choices that will allow you to bring the Greek home style into your own living spaces. From iconic color palettes to arched doorways, these design ideas will make it seem like “Zorba the Greek” is playing in the background at all times.
The fundamental color palette of Greek interior design is blue and white. It reflects the vibes of the Mediterranean sea and the pristine beaches. These colors can appear on everything from Greek rugs to upholstery. You may find many home exteriors throughout the Greek Isles featuring blue and white steps, doors, and pillars. Dashes of lemon yellow and olive green are also popular.
Consider introducing this color scheme through bed linens for a coastal bedroom with a pinch of Santorini. If your walls already happen to be white, you can simply throw in a blue and white geometric rug to achieve the Greek aesthetic.
2. Little or No Window Treatments
A number of interior design styles involve keeping window treatments to a minimum, and Greek home decor is one of them. Greece is awash with stunning scenery, so it only makes sense for the design style to leave windows as bare as possible to savor those views. Try sticking with light and sheer treatments or, better yet, none at all.
3. Olive Trees
Olive trees are a key aspect of Greek culture and economy. Inject that Mediterranean flair to your home by keeping a small olive tree as a houseplant. You can even grow one (or more) outdoors if you live in USDA zones 10 or 11. Otherwise, it’s best to keep the olive plant indoors — especially during the winter.
4. Olive Oil
Just like olive trees, olive oil is central to Greece’s culture, economy, and cuisine. You’ll often find lovely bottles of olive oil — sometimes filled with herbs or peppers for added flavor — in Greek kitchens. Displaying a bottle or two of olive oil will bring a taste of Greece into your home aesthetically and gastronomically.
5. Stucco Columns
Columns are as Greek as they can get. They are quintessential elements of ancient Greece and can serve both form and function. Columns are also common features in Greek revival architecture. To reinforce the Greek home style, aim to add a couple of stucco columns between rooms. You don’t even need to make any architectural alterations to your home. Simply placing a column on both sides of a doorway will do.
6. An Exposed Wall or Two
While it may seem rustic, showcasing a stone or brick wall can very well cater to a Mediterranean Greek-style interior design. Summers in Greece tend to get hot, and these features help in keeping the space cool. If possible, consider using the whitewash painting technique on an existing brick wall or two in your home.
7. Damask Fabrics
Among the most common types of fabric in Greek interior decor is a damask. While it originates from the Byzantine Empire and the Middle East, the fabric gained a lot of popularity in Greece and other European countries as well. Anything from bedding to sofa covers can welcome this design choice. Again, blue and white is the way to go regarding the fabric’s color.
8. Wooden Pieces of Furniture
Natural materials like wood are often the go-to option for furniture in Greek homes. Look for handcrafted artisan furnishings that are made from warm-colored wood. Simple and minimalist is always preferred but detailed carving on certain furnishings is also common in Greek home decor. Pieces of furniture in white are also very much welcomed.
9. Greek Decor Pieces
Maintaining a cohesive theme in your Greek-style home is key if you want to keep it authentic. Having said that, it’s the minor details that really tie the space together. These can include Greek-inspired decors such as busts, amphoras, sculptures, and anything else that alludes to Greek culture. Display these in various places throughout your living spaces including shelves, tables, and bookcases. But do be sure to appreciate the cultural significance of each item you curate.
10. Stone Flooring
Natural stone is a common choice of flooring in Grecian homes. It helps in keeping indoor temperatures low during the hot summers of Greece. Both modern and classic finishes can play into a Greek interior design. If budget permits, aim for marble or granite. Otherwise, engineered laminates that replicate the look and feel of natural stone will do.
One option that doesn’t correspond with Greek Mediterranean interior design is wall-to-wall carpeting. Stone or tile floors, on the other hand, feel more refreshing underfoot. If you live in an area where winters tend to get particularly cold, consider going for area rugs — preferably with blue and white patterning.
11. Blue Glass
Considering that Greek interiors place a lot of emphasis on a recurring blue and white theme, one element that can perfectly assimilate into the decor is blue glass. Its translucent nature reflects the natural light beautifully while adding visual appeal. Blue glass vases, for instance, tend to be rather inexpensive and can be a simple way to introduce this design choice into your living spaces. Blue stained glass windows are another excellent choice to consider.
12. Generous Amount of Throw Pillows
Much like Moroccan design, Greek home decor is all about maximizing comfort. And what better way to do that than with plenty of pillows? Grecian living rooms are known for having an abundance of throw pillows on every sofa. Consider filling a low couch with patterned pillows in — you guessed it — blue and white. You can also team them with light cotton or linen throw blankets for a truly comfortable and inviting space.
13. Low Tables
Seated meals in the living room are a typical part of Greek traditions — as they are in the Arabian Peninsula. Paired with floor cushions, a low table can provide the ideal setting for a cozy meal with family or friends. Shop for simple wooden tables with a natural finish. Three-legged tables are especially popular in Grecian homes.
14. Patterned Tilework
Whether on floors or walls, tilework has always been an integral element in traditional Greek interior design. Tile floors, for instance, would feature the traditional Meandros pattern (also known as the Greek key pattern). You can apply Greek-inspired tiles anywhere from a kitchen backsplash to a tub surround. Tiled floors in blue and white geometric patterns can also help in adding a touch of Greece into your living spaces
15. Arched Doorways
While a number of other Mediterranean countries are known for the famous Moorish arch, Greece opts for arches with a simple curve. Unless you don’t mind a bit of renovation to incorporate arched doorways, alternative ways to adopt this feature can include rounded bookcases or landscaping arbors. Should you end up choosing the latter, you can even take the Mediterranean design to another level by adorning the structure with a vining plant such as grapes.
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