A color adjective, tawny describes something that is a mix of yellow, orange, and brown colors. A lion has a beautiful tawny coat.
Tawny comes from the Anglo-Norman word, taune, which means tanned. Although you might think first of sun tans, which do indeed produce tawny colors in light-skinned people (as long as they don’t go straight to lobster red), tan first meant the bark of an oak tree, used to cure leather. It’s from the look of tanned leather that we get skin tans and the word tawny.