Tuscan Decorating on a Budget

Tuscan Patio
Tuscan Patio with Window Boxes. Photo: Federica Berselli

Dreams of sun-drenched days in southern Italy lead many homeowners to recreate the style of the area in their home. Large tiled homes with old world touches are springing up everywhere. But what if you can't afford Italy, the tiled home, or old world touches? You can bring the style to your home inexpensively with a few simple touches.

  1. Bring in the sun. Bring the colors of sunny Italy to your room with rich, earthy reds and oranges, warm muted yellow, or a creamy stucco.
  1. Lots of copper Copper pots and copper-trimmed baskets can still be found at thrift shops. Use them to hold flower arrangements, as storage, and as wall decor.
  2. And terracotta too! Look for terracotta pots and lots of them. Fill them with greenery to create an outdoor Tuscan feel in your room. Arrange them in groups of three or more!
  3. Old gates. At salvage yards or garage sales, search for old iron gates, windows or bits of the railing. Use these bits of metal to create rustic wall art.
  4. Grotto. Build a grotto with tall plants and a wrought iron archway in a special, intimate corner of the room. Check your local garden center for plant ideas, pots and archways!
  5. Tile. Discount and home improvement stores offer mismatched ceramic and terracotta tiles that can be arranged as a group on the wall or table. They can be used as coasters Or broken and used to make your own mosaic table top! Just add grout and tile to an old thrift-shop table!
  1. Wrought iron. Those old wrought iron accessories of the 60s are still available at thrift shops. They make wonderful additions to your Tuscan room!
  2. Fountains. To create the feeling of a courtyard indoors, install a fountain! A terracotta or stone-look fountain in the corner surrounded by plants and a small wrought iron table is a wonderful place to have breakfast.
  1. Window boxes. Hang window boxes on the wall or in your window. If you have a black thumb, add artificial geraniums. But if you can grow them, the real thing will add brilliant color to your home.

With a little imagination, a few pots, and greenery to bring the outdoors in, you can have Italy in your home - or a reasonable facsimile thereof! Have fun adding your own touches!