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BellaOnline's Southwest USA Editor

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Southwest Decor Colors

Guest Author - Debra Conrad

Southwestern style has become popular among home decorators across the United States. Once only seen in that particular region of the country, Southwestern homes are springing up all over. The design is cool, comforting, and meaningful. But what Southwest Decor Colors should you use?

What make this style of decorating pop are the colors. The variety of colors which make up the Southwestern decor complement each other and add its own special feel to any room in the house. Let’s begin with the color scheme.

Exterior Paint Colors


When we think of Southwestern homes, we first see the outside. The popular building material was adobe, thus the name of the traditional Native American home. Adobe bricks are made of dirt (earth), water, and straw. The homes made use of the available building materials at the time and worked well. The homes were kept cool in the daytime and insulated at night.

Adobe is still seen in the Southwestern region. For many, stucco was used to cover the adobe homes and provide a more maintenance-free exterior. The same inside climate was achieved so nothing fundamentally changed.

Interior Southwest Paint Color Ideas


The colors consist of earthy tones and hues that represent the landscape around them.

Cacti are prevalent in the Southwest. Their sage green color can be found dotting the designs in a Southwestern home.

Tan, the color of the desert sand is a basic neutral hue from which to work the magic of creating a Southwestern room decor. The color is clean and subdued. Starting with this shade, all other colors can be showcased.

Red is another popular color in the Southwestern scheme. This is not fire engine red or candy apple red. Actually it is more of a rust color, somewhere between the burnished terra cotta and the deep adobe red. It is warm and inviting.

Turquoise blue seems to stand out as not being particularly earthy but it is bright. It reflects water and life. Visit any reservation and see Native American beadwork that includes this color prominently among the others. As a wall color, the room is cooled off in an instant. A turquoise room is one with purpose that includes family-oriented gatherings.

Oranges and yellows also figure into the Southwestern scheme. Yellow is the color of the bright sun that brings its warming rays to the earth each morning. Orange hues can be seen in the landscape in flowers and blooming cacti.

With the basic palette in hand it is easier to craft each room using a variety of shades in balance with one another. Don’t overdo one color more than another or it will be immediately noticed. Use accent furniture and art to blend in lesser used colors. Balancing a room with southwest decor colors is important to the overall effect.
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Content copyright © 2013 by Debra Conrad. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Debra Conrad. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact BellaOnline Administration for details.

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