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Southwestern Style Decorating

Guest Author - Debra Conrad

Southwestern Style DecoratingThe Southwestern US style of decorating has caught on in other parts of the country. People longing for the vibrant color and simplicity of the Southwestern look have begun decorating their homes to match an ancient style rarely seen outside that area of the country.

Creative Commons License photo credit: CrashIntoTheSun

What is it that attracts us to the Southwest?

The climate here is very different. The air is hot but not as humid as other areas of the country. The desert landscapes are both beautiful and foreboding. Native American culture survives here on the land once dominate by their ancestors.

You could visit the area, but it is also worthwhile to bring a bit of the traditions of the Southwest into your home. To begin decorating in the Southwestern style, it is important to have a color scheme picked out.

Certain colors come to mind when thinking of the Southwestern culture. These brilliant hues are used all around a Southwestern style home. From turquoise to terra cotta, no Southwestern home is ever seen without them.


The key to decorating with many colors begins with choosing a color for each room. Other colors figure heavily in the decorating, but the wall color can differ to give each room its own character and feel. The living room, for example, could be painted burnt red or terra cotta.

Whatever color you choose for the walls, use other colors in the furniture, floor coverings, tapestries, and accents to offset the colorful walls. Since each of the colors in a Southwestern home mesh well, the biggest decision lies in how much of each color to use.

  • A tan couch would be accented by pillows with a terra cotta or rust color to them. Those who donít want such a light colored piece of furniture can simply flip the color scheme: rust couch with tan pillows.



  • Pay special attention to the kitchen. In a Southwestern home, the kitchen really is the heart of the home. I love to use the colors of food for kitchen colors. Red Chile peppers, eggplant, golden squash or corn, artichokes... these are the colors of the southwest.


Red Painted Walls
People envision many adobe huts all situated together when they think of the Southwestern landscape. Most adobe is covered with stucco to manage upkeep and repairs better. Your home doesnít have to be made of adobe bricks or stucco to exemplify the beauty and truth of the Southwest.

Creative Commons License photo credit: Andy Hay

For already existing homes, redecorating the inside of the home, will speak to your desires.
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Content copyright © 2014 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 Karm Holladay for details.

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