Resources to Inspire a Southwestern Color Palette for Your Santa Fe Home

The living room of a home in Santa Fe

A Santa Fe home looking as if it sprang from nature, blending with the colors of the Santa Fe landscape.


Vibrant but mellow, exotic but homey, bold but soothing, the Southwestern color palette can lend an enchanting feel to your Santa Fe home. This is a design scheme that draws more from your own inspiration than from a rigid style guide. Just think of everything you love about New Mexico, and put that into your home.


Looking for Santa Fe real estate where you can create your own Southwestern color scheme? For over 50 years, Barker Realty has proudly served Santa Fe and our community, providing the highest level of service, expertise, and professionalism in Northern New Mexico. No matter your price point, no matter your desires, our brokers can help you achieve your real estate goals.



A Santa Fe home with an interior color palette that echoes the creamy sands, mellow terra cottas, and deep turquoises of the Santa Fe landscape.


Basic Principles of Southwestern Color

When it comes to the basic colors of a Southwestern-style home, homeowners and designers draw inspiration from the beauty of the natural environment and the traditional adobe houses of the area as well as Spanish influences from New Mexico’s colonial era. Color palettes reflect hues of the sunsets, sandy hills, and blue skies  It’s almost as if the home itself wasn’t built, it simply emerged from the ground, fully formed.


At the right time of day, the effect of those nature-inspired colors can be dazzling, as the orange glow of a late afternoon shines through the windows and colors your living room the same shade as the hills surrounding your home.


From there, we’re looking to add splashes of bolder color throughout. You have a lot of room to play with here, but if you’re looking for inspiration, consider the purples and greens of New Mexico’s flowers and succulents, the blues and whites of the noon sky, the native turquoise, or just check out some Georgia O’Keeffe paintings to spark the imagination.


Start with gentler matte colors for interior walls. Consider whites with a touch of sand or salmon, soft pinks and mauves, and sky blue. For furniture, drapes, and carpeting, you’ll get a nice contrast from earth tones like mahogany, terracotta, darker sands, and natural greens like cactus and forest green. Then, for accents, look for striking splashes of blue, turquoise, purple, white, and whatever else you like, to add some personality to your rooms.



A contemporary-stye Santa Fe home with Southwestern colors


Decorating for the Southwest

Benjamin Moore offers a beautiful range of colors for a Southwestern palette. You can find these paints just about anywhere or even order them online. The other features of a Southwestern look are up to you to find.


One of the greatest places in the world to find artwork to complete the look is the International Folk Art Market. Here you can find gorgeous pieces for your home while supporting native artists.


And of course, a Southwestern home looks incomplete without a few succulents and wildflowers. You can shop online for seeds and supplies from Plants of the Southwest.


Native rugs and blankets can also help to complete the look, giving your house a homey, warm feeling that calls to mind the pueblos and adobes of the indigenous communities of the region. We recommend Shiprock Santa Fe for authentic Indian textiles and pottery.


Bringing the Outside In

At the end of the day, it’s your home, and you should decorate it how you like. There are no set-in-stone rules. But you’re probably going to be happiest with the results if you take the stunning Santa Fe views into consideration. Check out the Santa Fe Opera House to see what we mean. You almost can’t tell where the natural landscape ends and the Opera House begins.


Just think of Mother Nature as your co-designer.