Interior Design Elements Summary for the Southwestern Style

The Southwest (Santa Fe) style evokes a homey feeling that is usually relaxed, rustic, and comfortable. There are four subcategories of Southwestern design:

The Western or Cowboy Approach

  • utilizes Old West memorabilia and horses
  • emphasizes this aspect of Southwestern culture

The Mexican Approach

  • uses Mexican imports including Mexican blankets and pottery

The Modern Approach

  • simply uses Southwest color schemes, as well as landscaping, to convey a Southwest atmosphere

The Native American Approach

  • emphasizes the art and culture of Native Americans
  • use of sand paintings, dream catchers, pottery, and Native American art

Southwestern interior design represents a blending of cultures, and a touch of each can be attractive, authentic, and inviting.

Evolving over time, this very popular style draws its inspiration from nature and the Spanish and pioneer settlers that populated the American Southwest in the 18th and 19th centuries. Any house can adapt to this casual, yet elegant, style. One usually begins by utilizing the colors and textures from the desert landscape and sky. Then, one can add the Mexican and Spanish elements of ironwork, textiles, and wooden carvings. Southwestern (Santa Fe) style follows the soft lines of the traditional adobe house, and seeks to blend in with its surrounding environment.

This style is known for its easy and relaxed lifestyle. It is a simple and affordable style to achieve, and represents a unique blend of the old and the new. By paying attention to details, one can succeed in creating a home that is warmly inviting, artistically pleasing, and ecologically sound.