Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Trend We Love: Modern Southwestern

By Home Contributor Paige Ronchetti

Modern Southwestern Decor (via Bubby and Bean)

Welp, it's the dead of winter. You want to know what I'm thinking about instead of how cold my toes are?


Specifically, the desert of the American Southwest, where it's warm, and sunny, and cacti pop up from the ground to say hello. (I'm kidding, I know they're not like groundhogs. But wouldn't that be cool?) I've been seeing a lot of Southwestern-inspired design lately so I thought this would be a good time to lean into that trend and enjoy some desert eye candy.

First of all, I love the color palette: earth tones, natural textures, bits of blue--plus I'm seeing some gold and brass sneak their way in (shiny cow skull, anyone?). Those last two might not fall under the umbrella of classic Southwestern style, but metallics are back in a big way right now and I think anybody who has that particular song in their heart should listen to it. A little sparkle never hurt. Aside from the neutral-heavy color palette, there's also an overall connection to nature with this style that's totally appealing. Animals show up all over the place, as do plants. Oh! And speaking of plants, if you're gardening-challenged then little cacti like the one above are literally the best thing you could ever get and I cannot recommend them enough. I've kept one alive for TWO YEARS.

As for working this cool stuff into your house, it's hard to go wrong with a leather chair or a big desert photograph. But if you want something a little bolder, or maybe want to blend Southwest with another style, I like focusing on the patterns:

The furniture and walls are so neutral here that the room really needs the eye-catching rug to feel interesting. The pillows add a lot of texture, too, and I like how they're a shout-out to the black in the rug. Without them there wouldn't be enough contrast, so that was a good call. (Bonus! The coffee table is gold. When can I move in?)

What's your favorite thing about Southwestern style? Who else is kind of feeling the gold cow? Do you have any similar items in your house already? Don't you wish we could all just hang out in the desert until spring?
I love how the southwest trend is still going strong - gaining momentum even. Although it's a pretty specific look, and not for everyone, it's a classic that, when given a modern touch, is one of my all-time favorites. Big thanks to Paige for sharing these gorgeous pieces! Now I'm even more excited for my annual Arizona trip in March. In addition to writing for Bubby and Bean as our Home Contributor, Paige works as an Interior Designer (check out her biz, The Room Kit) and blogs over at Little Nostalgia. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram



  1. I really love this trend, especially for little details around the house. It's also going strong in fashion, I just got myself a southwestern print burgundy cardigan.


  2. Love that rug in the last photo!
    My mother-in-law used to have this beautifully painted cow skull. It was teal and had a really cool dessert scene painted on it. While it would fit in nowhere in my home, I've always wanted something similar to really stand out.

  3. Love the cactus and the gold skull! I agree that it's a trend that is also a classic.

  4. When I was growing up, one of my aunts had her house decorated very much in this style - only way more extreme. There were skulls, cow print and woven rugs everywhere. It was an idea that she really ran with, which was admirable, but it has always made me sort of wary of south western home decor. I have to admit I love that gold skull, though.

  5. I have that pillow cover from Pottery Barn! I love everything you featured here, btw.

  6. Great post. I love the rugs -- colorful geometrics. And the buffalo / bison is cool. Back in my home state of South Dakota, the buffalo still roam in the southern Black Hills.

  7. oooo, that room is stunning!

  8. Thanks for your comments you guys! I agree - Paige picked some great pieces for this roundup!

  9. Yes! This is one of my favorite trends, too. That little cactus planter is great. Well put together pieces, thanks for the ideas :)


Thank you for commenting! We love reading your thoughts and we're grateful for your input. (All spam will be deleted.)