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Spanish Modern is Timeless, Chic and Perfect for Southwest Homes

Timeless-yet-chic, this design aesthetic is a perfect fit for Southwest homes.

By John Roark | Interior Photography by Kevin Brost

Say “bienvenidos” to Spanish modern, a rising star in interior decor. With a focus on clean lines, a neutral color palette, layered textures and natural materials, this refreshing twist on classic Spanish is making its mark in Arizona as a soft segue from traditional Southwest style. “It’s a nice middle-of-the-road aesthetic,” says interior designer Lori Clarke. “The colors and the textures all speak to our spaces, the blending of the indoors and outdoors.” 

Rooms are welcoming with an uncomplicated, laid-back vibe. “I love the emotion when you walk into a Spanish modern home,” Clarke says. “There is so much character in a very quiet manner. It’s a powerful design but in a peaceful, calming way.”  

On the following pages, we present a taste of the Spanish modern decor.

Anything but fussy, the Bruz chair in Belgian oyster linen speaks of relaxation and comfort. 31.5″H by 36″W by 31.5″D. $7,200 (

Handmade of terra cotta with a matte black glaze, the Cusco Modern Textured Vase makes a curvaceous, low-key statement. 7″H by 12″W by 12″D. $80 (

The Fren Round Dining Table by Taracea serves up a satiny sun-bleached Fresno burl surface with a rustic abstract metal-finished base. Height 30″H by 63″ in diameter. To the trade (

Crafted in terra cotta with a matte black glaze, this statue’s regal equine silhouette brings interest to a tabletop, mantel or shelf. 28″H by 20.5″W by 8″D. $258 (

Bring a subtly rustic touch to kitchen, bath or bar with handpainted tile accents. Shown top to bottom: Tabarka Signature; Levantine 3; Rue des Rosiers 20. Inquire for pricing ( 

Clarke and Varin paired earthy geometric floor tiles with clean-lined furnishings in this North Scottsdale home. “Spanish modern is about  layered textures, natural materials, bringing the old and the new together,” Clarke says.

The Umberto eight-light chandelier is a symphony of clean-lined geometry in wrought iron in a brass finish. Black metal shades add a formal note of polish. 34″H by 32″ in diameter. $2,260 (

Created by hand in Mexico City, the Arzon Bench by Alfonso Marina combines two of the staples of Spanish Modern aesthetic: leather and iron. 18.5″H by 28.75″W by 21.75″D. $3,470 (

Using clay sourced from the hills in the San Bartolo de Coyotepec community in Oaxaca, Mexico, Oaxaca Black Clay Plates have a contemporary, 1-inch-high rim and a silvery-black finish reminiscent of honed stone. Available in 6″, 8″ and 9.5″ in diameter. $29-$37 (

Made in Arizona from rescued wine bottles by Refresh Glass and etched with artist Dyana Hesson’s drawings of native blooms, 16-ounce tumblers in gold, teal, amber and green glass are ready for service. Set of four: $55 (

Nothing says “come hither” like the Willow Daybed by Verellen, decadently upholstered in Boho Cream faux fur with an exposed wood base. 26″H by 74.5″L by 41″W. To the trade. (

Hand-tooled with stitched-edged details in Baja, Mexico, Vaquero Leather Trays are a stylish catchall available individually or as a set of three. Small: 2″H by 4″L by 4″W; medium: 2″H by 10.5″L by 8″W; large: 2″H by 15″L by11″W. $35-$199 (

Fashioned by artisans in Queretaro, Mexico, the sustainable Lomas Wall Hanging is a blend of woven raw cotton, natural fiber, papier-mache and dark wood. Available in two sizes. Medium: 33″H by 21.6″W by 4″D; large: 38.5″H by 36″W by 4”D. $850-$1,450 (

Balancing understated elegance with a dramatic silhouette, the Stella Black Console Table in oak features a wire-brushed cerused black finish. 32″H by 60″W by 16″D. $3,570 (

Add a relaxed, textural accent to your bedroom, living room or den. Made from 100% alpaca, this sumptuous throw is an open invitation to curl up with a good book. 51″L by 67″W. $1,088 (


Interior designers: Lori Clarke and Summer Varin, Lori Clarke Design, Phoenix,


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