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Spanish-Style Decorating Ideas

November 25, 2014
The cultural aspects of a Spanish-inspired home interior make it a popular choice among Americans. Whether you love a Southwestern or Old World Spanish look, these design ideas will help you incorporate Spanish-style flair into your home.
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Mexican Textiles and Pottery

This Spanish-country style dining room (comedor) is adorned with Spanish-inspired elements, from the antique Mexican pottery to the colorful paintings. "The paintings above the shelf depict a Spanish matador whose heart has been broken by a senorita," says artist Carole Meyer. Carole draped ethnic fabrics on the dining chairs and also hung them on a traditional Mexican shelf, which adds texture and color to the informal space. The high ceilings, arches and thick walls are typical characteristics of Spanish-style architecture. The hand-painted pottery across the table and shelf adds extra Mexican flair. Photography by Carole Meyer

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Spanish Architectural Elements

This bright yellow bathroom is filled with Spanish-inspired design elements from top to bottom. The ceiling features wooden support beams, or vigas, which lay perpendicular to slender strips of wood called latillas. The carved corbels, derived from Spanish settlers, support the ceiling beams while adding a decorative element. The colorful Talavera tiles on the wainscoting draw the eye to the center of the room. Saltillo tile, introduced to Mexico by Spaniards, is a warm, environment-friendly terra-cotta tile flooring option best suited for warm climates. These elements, combined with the vibrant, old-fashioned clawfoot tub, make the space a cozy nook in which to relax. Design by Classic New Mexico Homes

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Traditional Mexican Accessories

"Inspired by a Spanish matador's Suit of Lights, the vibrant colors of this master bedroom are a joy to wake up to," says Carole Meyer. Details like the custom-made mirror cloth pillows and star-shaped recessed lighting give the room a magical touch. The weathered chair in the corner is draped with a huipil, a traditional Mexican garment. The embroideries on the huipil have specific meanings and reflect one's cultural identity. The round bedside table is covered with an African kente cloth and topped with an antique Mexican saint and silver objects from India. Carole placed weathered chests next to and at the foot of the bed for a rustic look. The dark iron candlestick lamps with red silk shades bring an elegant touch, and the custom-made arched headboard resembles doorway arches popular in Spanish architecture. Photography by Carole Meyer

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Spanish-Style Colonial Dining Room

Designer Catherine Smith of Casa Smith Designs wanted to draw the eyes upward in this Spanish Colonial dining room, so she turned the ceiling into an art canvas with a painting representing a formal garden. The ceiling beams, previously used for support, now add a decorative element to the room. The wrought-iron chandelier, imported from Spain, is more than 100 years old and adds detail to the room. "The quirky details highlight the artist's ability to manipulate iron into a delicate art piece," she says. The rich hue in the draperies is implemented in the dining chair upholstery and ceiling artwork, giving the space a regal look.

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