The key to most good design is “bringing the outdoors in”. What could be more colorful than the outdoors of the Southwest Region of the United States? Beautiful blue skies, adobe red earth and orange sunsets combined with an intriguing and colorful cultural heritage, lend themselves to a very specific, easily identifiable decor. Here, then, are ten ideas for bringing traditional Southwest decor into your home at Christmas time and putting it on your tree.
1. Kokopeli ornaments. What is a kokopeli? These decorations look like little hunchbacked elves and can often be seen playing flutes. They descend from Hopi Indian legend and serve as a symbol of joy, music and fertility. Indian natives prayed to the kokopeli for a bountiful harvest. Kokopeli ornaments can be found in many stores in the Southwest. Decorate your tree with an abundance of them for an authentic Southwest feel. For an economical hint, just buy one. You can trace it with the help of the kids. Make lots of them from paper or cardboard and decorate with vivid Southwest colors.
2. Speaking of Southwest colors, what could be more typically Southwest than turquoise? The native Americans in this region have traditionally made beautiful handcrafted jewelry from this stone. Be creative in using this color. You could make your own turquoise ornaments from fabric (bows) or paper.
3. Also native to the region is silver. Silver foil decorations would work on your Southwest-themed Christmas tree. Tin ornaments, reflecting the abundance of tin roofs in the region, would be appropriate, as well.
4. Indian bead ornaments would follow the Southwest spirit. Buy or make Indian bracelets to hang on your tree.
5. Now, to bring the outdoors in, gather up some tumbleweed. Tie up small bundles with ribbon and hang from the tree.
6. Cactus ornaments, store-bought or homemade, would look very cute on your tree and would really promote your Southwest theme. Look in crafts supplies stores for artificial cactus.
7. The Southwest region was heavily influenced by Spanish and Mexican culture. String chili peppers along your tree. The artificial ones may be found in party goods stores. You could also consider hanging real ones. Just toss them after the holiday! (Keep these away from young children and pets!)
8. While you’re at the party store, pick up some fiesta streamers. Your tree is really shaping up now!
9. Mini sombreros would work on this Christmas tree. Be creative!
10. To continue with the religious theme of the region, decorate your tree with angels.
There you have it! Enough ideas to keep you very busy decorating your Southwest-themed Christmas tree.