Use paint to create either a cool interior for Uruguayan gauchos or a bright splash that evokes Mexican folk art. Texture your walls with plaster if you own your own home, then either paint with a warm cream color for a sophisticated Latin space or a vibrant milk paint for semi-transparent walls in turquoise, fuchsia, tangerine or yellow. Add color to your room in a rented space by painting wooden furniture, like a thrift store dresser, chairs or bedside tables, in different hues, like chili pepper red or lime green.
From Mexican Talavera pottery to Guatemalan textiles or Our Lady of Guadalupe icons, decorating a guest room or master bedroom with Latin American decor doesn't have to be expensive. Online auction websites and crafting websites offer a host of colorful options for frugal do-it-yourself projects. No matter how you choose to spice up your room, the result can range from vibrant and fun to sophisticated or rustic. Color, texture and folk art can produce a cultural celebration on a shoestring.
- Paint, in bright shades
- Painting equipment: brushes, rollers, pans, stirrers
- Hammer or screwdriver
- Nails or screws
- Curtain hook
- Internet access
- Folk art
Cheap DIY Latin American Bedrooms
Bring Latin America indoors with native-patterned textiles. Serapes, woolen blankets and ponchos add color and texture and can serve as throws or window curtains. Use a length of Guatemalan embroidery (purchased from online retailers of South American goods, or from eBay) to sew your own pillows, or wrap remnants around picture frames and mirrors. Remove your closet doors and use a serape or patterned blanket as a doorway curtain, held aside with a mounted hook. Frame flea market Latin American coffee bean burlap bags (also available from online auction websites such as eBay) as a chic, low-key wall hanging, or use them with subtle black and beige ponchos to create a calmer, more monochromatic ambience.
Choose folk art pieces and religious items that will enhance the Latin American vibe you are creating. Rustic iron or aged tin travel souvenirs will coordinate with creamy walls and neutral textiles, while folk art crosses and Talavera pottery, again available from online retailers of South American goods, will bring dresser-top spots of color. Hang masks, set out religious votive candles or repurpose clay cookware as a jewelry dish or candle holder. Display an Our Lady icon, or tuck party store tissue-paper flowers around the edges of a mirror.
Highlight a favorite Latin region with a framed coin collection or a display of vintage postcards from, say, Buenos Aires or Oaxaca. Mount an artistic print of Havana or Peru, framed in rustic wood. Collect an assortment of coins, postcards, clay knickknacks or other keepsakes for display in a shadowbox.
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