When the creeping chill of winter is poking long fingers through the letterbox and under the doors, the appeal of a bit of Mediterranean sun can’t be overestimated. Choosing warm, sunny colours for your stone tiles can make stepping into it feel like a treat – particularly if you’ve got underfloor heating!
Summer Shades in Winter
It’s easy to spot a Mediterranean influence, thanks to the distinctive colours. Deep ochre, vibrant yellows and luscious greens are all drawn from the landscapes of Tunisia or southern Italy. Think of olive trees, red hills and ripening lemons.
Unfortunately, some colours that look great under the hot sun turn anaemic and seem to fade in the pale light of a British winter. We recommend leaving the crisp whites, turquoises and azure blues at the beach, and reaching instead for richer colours, based on yellows not whites. Shades of yellow, red and orange transplant well and seem to multiply the sunshine as it falls through the window.
Main Colours and Accents
Choosing a colour scheme for your new stone kitchen can be daunting. Modern processed stone comes in almost any colour you can imagine, so narrowing down the choice can be difficult. Statement counters are popular in design magazines. Choosing a single beautiful piece of marble or a gem-coloured counter can really create a central focus for your room, drawing the whole together.
However, if you like to change your look regularly, statement counters can be hard to live with at home. If you’re attracted by the vibrant shades we have on offer, but don’t want to commit to a stone kitchen worktop in bright red or yellow, we recommend choosing a more neutral shade as your main colour, perhaps a delicate ochre yellow or a subdued terracotta, and adding your bright favourite as an accent colour in the stone tiles. Creating a mosaic or tile pattern is very much in keeping with the spirit of this theme, and allows you to make use of all your favourite shades.
Winter to Summer
Of course, your kitchen will be in use year round, and while you can only dream of the sun in January, in July the warm, hot light will be a reality. A Mediterranean colour palette copes well with changing light. Stone doesn’t fade under even the harshest sun, so it’s a good choice for exposed areas.
Stone is usually cool to the touch, so underfloor heating in the kitchen is a lovely, practical luxury. If you’re replacing a floor, installing heating is easier and cheaper to install than many people imagine. Stone tiles absorb heat well, radiating it out through the day, keeping your toes warmer for longer. Of course, when the hot August days come, you’ll be glad to feel cool stone underfoot – one reason why marble and granite are so popular in hot countries.