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The Natural Beauty of Southwestern Style

Southwestern style décor brings a vision of deserts, cacti, Spanish haciendas, and bright, colorful Native Indian designs. This style is probably my second favorite, Mediterranean being first. At first glance, the two may even look similar. There is that Spanish element there, but that’s where the similarity ends. Southwestern style is a distinct style of its own, earthy, comes to mind. The style can be adaptable to other styles, but, I believe it’s more appropriate to say that other styles will adapt to Southwestern – it is that distinct.

By bringing the colors of the landscape indoors, you will capture the Southwestern palette. The desert is a very colorful world with the greens of cacti and succulents, the pinks and reds of cactus flowers and fruit, or the sunrise and sunset colors of coral, purple, and blue. Use greens and browns as the anchor colors. Then, combine a blue, like turquoise, with the red of a cactus apple. These colors are stunning together. Incorporate them into the fabrics, accessories, and walls of your remodel or design.

Southwestern style gives a sense of calmer yet stronger days gone by. A key element is “natural.” Use natural materials, like adobe, clay, and wood in every large feature: architecture, floors, and furniture.

  • Coarse textures are everywhere in the style. Dark leather, suede, and woven fabrics are used for upholstery.
  • Raw cotton and colorful wool in woven serapes, rugs, and blankets are used for wall hangings or as throws over chairs and sofas.
  • Simple ornate carvings embellish furniture pieces like armoires, cabinets, and tables.
  • Slate and terra cotta aren’t restricted to roof tiles; use them in walkways through the home and patio.
  • River rock, turquoise, and flagstone can beautifully accent entryways.
  • A chimenea, or wood-burning fire pit, in the corner of the main room or even on the patio, will add charm.

Lighting is bright during the day, with natural sunlight filling the room. Add plants native to the land, using terra cotta or hand-painted clay pots in window areas. Original art is best, but if budget is a concern, consider buying plain items and painting them yourself. Images of gecko lizards and Indian scenes are common.

Are you into going green? This style, especially in the Southwest, lends itself to many conservation uses. Be sure to check out how to add beneficial elements to your home build or remodel. Southwestern style is not only calm and inviting; it has a wide variety of color and beauty. Explore your options and don’t forget to keep it natural.



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