How to Design a Living Room With a Southwest Theme

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Designing a living room with a Southwest theme can include the colors of a Southwestern sunset, the shades of the desert, or any rich, earthy tones. Hardwood floors, colorful pottery and wrought-iron lighting also have a place in your Southwest-themed living room. Accessorize your floors, walls, and furniture with colorful Mojave rugs and Native American-style textiles to bring your Southwest-themed room to life.

Things You'll Need

  • Southwestern design magazines
  • Select warm hardwoods for the flooring in your Southwest-themed living room. Distressed or hand-scraped pine flooring with wide planks fits a more rustic Southwest décor, and the deep, rich shades of red oak, cherry, or mahogany work well with a more sophisticated Southwest design.

  • Paint the walls in shades of yellow, red, orange, or gold in honor of the Southwestern sunset. Combine the colors in horizontal sections on one wall to mimic the sky after the sun sets. Choose a warm combination of tan walls with rich brown leather furniture to bring shades of the desert into the room.

  • Arrange the furniture around focal points in the room, such as an oversize fireplace or a picture window. Cover areas of the floor with the muted earth tones found in Mojave rugs.

  • Hang a rustic wagon wheel or an elegant wrought-iron chandelier in the center of your living room. Place colorful ceramic lamps on side and occasional tables to bring more earthy elements into either a sunset or desert room design.

  • Pop a desert-style living room with turquoise and copper accessories, or compliment your sunset shades with silver or wrought iron.

  • Select large furniture pieces, like the entertainment center or wet bar, made from hardwoods with insets of studded leather or intricate carvings. Southwestern pottery, rustic metal wall art, and throw pillows made from Native American designs all contribute to the Southwest design style. You can bring your living room together with a few well-placed accessories that include some of your wall, furniture, and floor colors.

Tips & Warnings

  • Design your room around one special piece, such as a rug or wall hanging that depicts your idea of Southwestern style.
  • Stick to no more than three primary colors in your living room design, or the room could become overwhelmed. The patterns in the Mojave rugs and the Southwestern pillows can stand on their own; you do not need competing colors.

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