Finding Inspiration for ShowHouse Santa Fe 2016

ShowHouse Santa Fe 2016 Logo
It’s that time of year again when a group of designers here in Santa Fe collaborate to present ShowHouse Santa Fe.
This is my second year to participate and I am super excited about getting started on putting together the plan for the sunroom I will be responsible for. I decided to take you along for the process.

So, Let’s Get Started….

As you can imagine, one of the big questions I get is “How do you find inspiration or direction for a room when you first get started?” So, today I wanted to share with you the inspiration I’m using to design my space at ShowHouse Santa Fe.

ShowHouse Santa Fe 2016 Theme

Every year we designate a theme so that as the designers each work on individual spaces, the home still has a cohesive feel.  It also gives the visitors a great idea of how different designers approach and interpret the home and our theme.

This year our theme is EVERY THING OLD Mexico is NEW Mexico Again.


Having grown up in El Paso on the border of Mexico and traveled often to Mexico this theme really excited me because of the vivid colors and easy living that it would mean for the space.

Of course you have to get a feel for the space, so it started with visiting the space…

SHSF Before Images

Then the hunt begins for inspirational images…


Canyon Road Inspiration Walk

Rather than just jumping online, I first took a walk in the neighborhoods near the house.  The great thing was that it was the famous Canyon Road here in Santa Fe.  It was a great reminder of what makes Santa Fe so unique. Often we start to just get accustomed to our surroundings and need to take a look at them with fresh eyes. I wanted to try and see Santa Fe from the view point of those that visit or have just moved here.



With that breath of fresh perspective now I could jump online.


While google images is a good place to start, I love Pinterest and started a board to collect everything together so I can see how they relate to each other and might later be translated into some aspect of the room.


You can visit the Pinterest Board for this year’s ShowHouse Santa Fe and see everything I’m collecting up…


For me I started by recalling the bright vivid colors of the swirling ballet folklorico shirts that I was always mesmerized with as a kid. I love color and so pulling images of these beautiful costumes with their combination of colors in the skirts and the many layers of ribbons made me realize that this was going to be a great opportunity to use LOTS of color within a single space. (Something you don’t get to do very often)



I came across this beautiful talavera tile and was really drawn to the colors.

I also started searching other things I love about my vacations

Tequilla Sunrise

(SOURCE: Foodie Crush)

in Mexico to see what might pop out to me.  One image I came across was this Tequilla Sunrise.  What a great visual! This just instantly made me want to be laying on the beach in Mexico soaking up some sun.  This image was an instant connection to being content and breathing easy, a feeling that I definitely wanted for the room.

Armed with this unique combination of colors from the tile and the ombre effect of the cocktail, I knew I was ready to pull out my paint deck and locate some colors to pull into the room.  Here’s what I put together.

Benjamin Moore – Semolina, Tropical Orange & Venezuelan Sea

So, my inspiration board was started….
Inspiration Board SHSF 2016
Next, I decided to take an afternoon and explore the “Viva Mexico!” event put on by the various Visitor’s Bureaus of the different states of Mexico. It was being held at the beautiful Rancho de las Golandrinas (which is a real tongue twister and you have to really enunciate to just get it out)


Mmmm…. now I was really feeling “sunny”.
Sol and Luna from Illustrated Ink

(SOURCE: Illustrated Ink)

Well, my space is a sun room with big bright windows, I started thinking I might be onto something so I started searching for Mexican folk art and the word Sol or Sun.  That’s when I found these two beautiful illustrations from the Etsy store of Illustrated Ink.



Ooo – I had found a name for my room ….


In combination with the room’s name and the experience that I imagined having in the space, I was able to write my design statement that will guide the creation of this room.


A private bright place to connect your outer & inner world.  Greet the day and soak in the warmth el Sol (Sun) brings or close out the evening under the gaze of stars & la Luna (Moon).  A bright yellow envelope arising from deep red surrounds you in this room with large windows to a quiet garden corner. A deep seating area calls you to relax and unwind as you contemplate the world outside. A quaint writing desk implores you to connect to your inner world and those that matter to you most.


Now the work begins to locate the key furniture pieces that will give the room purpose….


Stay tuned, I’ll be sharing the whole process leading all the way up to the opening of ShowHouse Santa Fe in October.


Make sure and FOLLOW ME on social media to see when I post next. (I’d also love to here what you think about what I have started so far)
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If you are in the Santa Fe area and would like to tour ShowHouse Santa Fe 2016, I’d love to see you.  The Home Tour is the first two weekends in October (8th – 9th and 15th – 16th) You can get your tickets HERE.

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