Traditional wild west bohemian desert style meets mid century glamour in the latest evolution of the Southwestern design trend. The desert landscape is trending up in home design and decor in a major way. Cities like Austin and El Paso are booming for new millennial home buyers and in California, you have the festivals in the desert driving much of the pop culture aesthetic. 

Here’s Our 10 Tenets of Southwest Glam Style: 

1. Indoor-Outdoor Connection 

This is  an area where we see the southwestern style evolving. Some of the midcentury glamorous aesthetic from Palm Springs creeps into the mix, seeing more sleek modern designs in the Southwest with large scale windows. On the flip side, we’re also seeing lots of tiny, rustic homes that sacrifice interior square footage in exchange for elaborate outdoor entertaining spaces. 

2. Floors and Countertops 

Another architectural feature that defines a desert glam is it’s flooring and countertops – expect to see lots of terra cotta, ceramic, earthy, patterned tile. Layered warm woods always work wonders in these environments as well, like in this photo from the lobby of the new Santa Monica Proper Hotel designed by Kelly Wearstler:

3. Desert Details in the Art

Wall art and sculpture is an excellent opportunity for you to bringing the desert textures into the space: you can get up close and personal with desert details in still life photography that you wouldn’t ordinarily get by staring at a larger landscape.

4. Colors of the Southwestern Landscape

Using the American desert landscape to draw upon color palette inspiration, realize you have a lot more variation than you might thing: Do you want to highlight the sandy, monochrome hues of the desert sand? (a very popular trend right now) or do you want to include the more saturated, hihg contrast of a swirling desert sunset?

5. Textiles and Textures of the Wild Wild West.

Layers in the desert are so important for a myriad of reasons: It’s how you create a lot of visual interest if you’re working with a monochromatic color scheme. It’s also how you keep a space contemporary and livable – versatile during the changing of seasons or day into evening. In the desert expect to see layers of hides and leather, layers of coarse and smooth, prickly cactus contrast with warm Pendelton blankets, macrame accessories.

6. Mid Century Lighting

Whenever you’re trying to infuse a space with a hint of glamour, lighting is going to be your best bet! In trying to bring some of that Palm Springs Rat Pack style into your boho desert den, consider some glamorous, dramatic lighting solutions.

7. Accessories:  Bringing in the Historical and Cultural Influences

Native American patterns, terra cotta pottery, lots of succulents, masks and baskets. The wild west is where hippies and cowboys collide. The intersection of Spanish, Native American, and, much later, jazz crooner influences. Using art and accessories is the best way to include these themes throughout your space.

8. Textured Wall Features

Using Eldorado Stone wall features, we gave this space its organic, unique deserty texture. Stone and tile wall features are a great way to bring the outdoors in and add some verticality to your space.

9. Emphasis on Sustainability

The very idea of an oasis: a respite from the endless desert, a place to rehydrate, rejuvinate, and unwind, invokes an awareness of sustainability. The area, also surrounded by wind farms and, quite often, expensive-to-maintain putting greens, is perhaps a more obvious and constant reminder of the need to conserve and of our dependence on the land. Homes in this region are being built smaller, single-story, with energy-efficient windows, and water-saving smart plumbing solutions. 


10. Lots of Succulents!

Always including plenty of succulents! We included this one towards the bottom because it’s kind of a given, don’t you think?