Terrific Terracotta – A Surprisingly Versatile Color for Décor

Terrific Terracotta – A Surprisingly Versatile Color for Décor

You may have noticed a bold color that has steadily inched its way into a wide array of interior décor products and paint colors over the last couple of years. Terracotta is showing up in everything from small home textiles and accent items – to large statement pieces and even floor to ceiling color – because of its surprising versatility and the positive emotions it evokes. It is both ancient and modern, invigorating and comforting.

What color is terracotta?

A rich and warm earthy tone, we tend to think of terracotta as a deep burnt orange with a touch of brown. However, this color can actually range into shades of peach and pink with undertones of gray and tan.

What is the inspiration for the color called terracotta?

The name of this beautiful hue originates from the distinct color of a particular form of clay, and is an Italian word for “baked” or “cooked earth”. Its known use for decorating dates all the way back to cave paintings. Terracotta is timeless – and famous for its appearance in building materials found in places like the Tuscan region of Italy and the American Southwest. Its distinctive reddish tones result from the high content of iron found in the clay and how the mineral reacts with oxygen.

What is the visual effect of terracotta on mood?

Whether terracotta is a dominant color found on walls or floors, or it appears as more subtle hints such as home textiles or pottery, the effect is always eye-catching. Warm tones are known to evoke emotions of happiness, optimism and energy for many people; colors leaning toward the orange spectrum are especially cheerful and can actually reduce aggravation. Some even say reds and oranges help create an appetite, so they work perfectly in dining rooms and kitchens!

What other shades look good with terracotta?

An incredibly versatile color, terracotta blends beautifully with palettes featuring both warm and cool shades. Decorators love the flexibility they find with this color, as it enhances and fits beautifully within styles ranging from minimalist to eclectic. Paired with muted shades of white, mustard, green or blue, the effect is lush and touchable. Because terracotta is such an organic tone, natural woven fibers such as jute and sisal along with potted plants make perfect companions. Brass fixtures and furniture are particularly beautiful against a backdrop of terracotta.

And, while terracotta is a perfect option year-round, it especially shines in the fall season when complementary rich browns, reds, purples, oranges and yellows take center stage.