When in Rome

Home Styling Tips from the Eternal City

One of the best-known and most historically important cities of the ancient world, Rome’s prestigious history began in 753 BC when, as legend has it, the city was founded by the Demigods; Romulus and Remus. 

An essential worldwide trading port, and the seat of power for the entire Roman Empire, in its hey-day, Rome represented the pinnacle of art and culture, politics and commerce. With its outstanding architecture and design aesthetic being cultivated over thousands of years, it’s become the vibrant, beautiful, historic and fashionable capital it is today.

Thankfully, you won’t need a time-machine (or even a plane ticket) to capture the essence of Roman style yourself. With a little research, some creative inspiration, and some help from Johnson Tiles, you can recreate all the glam of Rome – at home. Here’s how:

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Bring the outdoors in… and vice versa

When the famous Italian love of food, family, friends, and hot summer days combine, you get a culture that is built around enjoyment of the outdoors. From the grandest piazza to the humblest patios, Roman outdoor areas are designed for seamless indoor-outdoor living.

Maybe Summer is the perfect time to finally take on that renovation, to knock down those walls and connect your living areas with the outdoors? Stackable wooden folding doors or glass sliding doors fit the bill perfectly, creating a wide expanse of combined space with a seamless transition. If your budget allows, replicating some of your indoor décor elements on the patio can help create a continuous flow, while using a versatile indoor-outdoor tile throughout can complete the look to perfection. 

Johnson Tiles’ Granito Charcoal tile – from our Stone Collection – is a perfect choice for the modern home, while those going for a more classic Roman look might like the marble-like effect of our Qwa-Qwa Sunset tiles.

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Cultural mash-ups

Rome might be the picture of quintessential Italian-ness, but that doesn’t mean it’s all red-checked tablecloths and Spaghetti. Throughout the ages, Rome has been a city of converging cultures and nationalities, and only became richer because of it. On a stroll through Rome, one can’t help but notice the exotic touches everywhere. Arabic-inspired mosaics, Greek-influenced artwork, Asian silks and ceramics – all highly prized in this ancient trade-city. Even today, as a fashion and design world capital, Rome’s most stylish citizens embrace eclecticism.

So, if you’re going for a Roman feel at home, the secret might in fact, be to expand your horizons and introduce eclectic international elements, too. Don’t be afraid to show of your favourite African sculpture, or that Japanese paper-screen you’ve been wondering where to position. Roman culture is all about being cosmopolitan, after all!

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Natural shades and tones to keep things subtle

With so much ancient architecture still standing, it’s no surprise that natural stone and ceramic materials are everywhere in Rome, contributing to that slightly faded, sun-kissed look that visitors fall in love with. Materials that emulate this look are masculine yet elegant at the same time, and add warmth and humble personality to a home. Terracotta was a favourite material for artists and architects alike, so why not introduce a few touches – or even an entire wall or floor in this vibrant shade? From the roof tiles to your favourite planters overflowing with fresh herbs to use in your next family feast, this colour is synonymous with the ancient world, and still works perfectly to this day.

It may not have been built in a day, but Rome has enough inspiration around every corner to last a lifetime! Take a lesson from this marvel of both the ancient and modern worlds, and you could end up with a home that has just as much timeless staying power as the Eternal City itself.