Originally published in The Taos News, Tempo Section >>

by Mandy Sotello | January 25, 2021 Updated January 28, 2021

Authentic Old West Style


Is the Old West still in style? Of course it is: It never left, says two of the region’s most authoritative purveyors of all things southwestern.

Gabriel Abrums of Chimayo Trading Del Norte and Chris Ferguson of Tres Estrellas Design sat down with Enchanted Homes to share their perspectives on historical and contemporary southwestern home furnishings, and the ease with which these elements may be incorporated into your home regardless of your decorating style.

“When people come to Chimayo Trading, they are also seeing the ‘real’ Taos,” said Abrums, whose family has been in the business for decades. “Our location is one of the last holdouts of old New Mexico: a centuries-old settlement in the shadow of San Francisco de Asis Mission Church. It’s a natural backdrop for displaying the art, pottery, textiles, and furniture that we have available, and provides inspiration for anyone with a traditional Taos home to decorate.”

Fine art from the Taos Society of Artists, Taos Moderns and contemporary artists such as R. C. Gorman grace the walls of Chimayo Trading’s newly expanded space. Hand-hewn Spanish colonial and Territorial furniture are featured, but perhaps it’s the stunning collection of pottery that will ignite your imagination and become the focal point of your home’s decor.

Chimayo Trading is known for having arguably the best Native historic and contemporary pottery available for sale in the U. S. and, perhaps, worldwide. You may wish to select a single statement piece around which your room’s design will shine, or perhaps an assemblage of picks scattered throughout will serve as a unifying thread as the eye travels around your home.

With so many rooms at Chimayo Trading to explore, you’ll be sure to find authentic, quality Old West accents.

Tres Estrellas–”Where Taos’ past meets the present”–has in recent years become a mecca for those who wish to procure fine textiles and authentic furniture or artisan reproductions. Along with his wife, Carla Bogdanoff, Ferguson will guide you through a myriad of rugs, wall weavings and decorative serapes while educating you on the distinctive elements of each.

“Taos has been at the crossroads of commodities trading for centuries,” he shared, “which resulted in a cultural exchange unlike any other. The Navajo, especially, brought their textiles here to barter with others and then, of course, the Spanish arrived with their looms. In a nod to that, weavers in Taos Pueblo incorporated the two into what became known as ‘Rio Grande’ textiles.“

Each, he pointed out, has its own distinguishing patterns and dyes: marks of privileged origins or more humble beginnings, but all extraordinary in the fine work they illustrate. “The colors and from where they’re derived–vegetal, scale insects, synthetics–culturally link the history, artisans and their traditions,” Ferguson explained.

The value of each item will be the determining factor in how it is used in your home, whether as a functional item or “display only,” he remarked. “Our textiles span a wide range of price points but, regardless of how you choose to incorporate them, any of these pieces will complement the natural earth tones that are prevalent in Old West style.”

In addition to the historic furniture for sale, Tres Estrellas Design also offers custom reproductions thanks to furniture maker Jim Wiley. Using hand tools and aged wood, Wiley’s work will lend true southwestern appeal to your home.

Both Abrums and Ferguson agree that Taos represents a unique local market with abundant opportunities for procuring the finest of southwestern wares. And whether your residence is hard-edge modern or adobe charming, Old West style here is always relevant.

Visit our experts for knowledgeable and impeccable customer service, and let them guide you through your selection process. Whatever your ultimate design goal and decorating budget, Abrums and Ferguson will ensure your home echoes the finest in quintessential southwestern spirit.

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