Home Inspiration: How to Mix Patterns in Your Home
Don’t be afraid to try patterns to make a room pop, combining prints and patterns will immediately bring excitement to a room. Set small patterns against large ones, limit your palette and include one big solid piece to set the scene and theme of the room.When it comes to interiors, a lack of layers can be impersonal and uninteresting. While mixing colours and textures is often second nature for design enthusiasts, adding layers of patterns can be a bit more complex. While layering patterns will work great with walls, floors and upholstery, ceilings and accessories, take it easy when you are first starting out and experiment with pillows and smaller furnishings and begin working your way up. Follow our decorating tips on how to mix patterns the right way!
When it comes to interiors, a lack of layers can be impersonal and uninteresting. While mixing colours and textures is often second nature for design enthusiasts, adding layers of patterns can be a bit more complex. While layering patterns will work great with walls, floors and upholstery, ceilings and accessories, take it easy when you are first starting out and experiment with pillows and smaller furnishings and begin working your way up. Follow our decorating tips on how to mix patterns the right way!
Consider the 60/30/10 approach. Use 60 percent of your favourite pattern, 30 percent of a second pattern and 10 percent of a third pattern as an accent. When looking to mix patterns, odd numbers tend to look best. Try to use three patterns in a range of different scales, such as narrow stripes, midsize geometrics and bold florals. If you choose one pattern, such as polka dots, repeat this somewhere else in the room, even if the colour and scale change. Select the largest pattern first to serve as a starting point for other patterns, colours and accessories. Once you’ve mastered how to mix patterns, why not try five patterns.
Repeat Colours in Patterns
Repeating colours from pattern to pattern can help even the most unmatched patterns seem like they are perfect for each other. Accentuate underplayed shared colours in the patterns. Another simple way of repeating colours in patterns is the use of positive and negative fabrics. A positive printed fabric places dark motifs on a white or light coloured background. A negative printed fabric places light motifs onto a dark background. Using the positive and negative prints in the same or adjoining rooms is a quick and easy way to decorate with similar colours.
Edit Your Colours
Layering patterns involve four main elements: colour, scale, shape and texture. Arrange all of your possible choices and assess which ones will go best together. Once you have your main colour selection, start looking to add some contrast. Colours and particular shapes are easier to match, the difficulty comes when choosing the scale. When choosing your prints try not to choose more than one of the same scale size.
Primary Fabrics and Dominant Colours
Start with your favourite colours and themes, such as pink and floral patterns, and choose a multi-hued pattern that incorporates them. Make the dominant colour in the pattern match the dominant colour of the room by painting the walls or a specific area in a similar shade. Use your primary pattern in a big way, you want this is be noticed as soon as you walk through the door. For instance, use this pattern on curtains, a large sofa or duvet covers.
Secondary Patterns and Colours
Find flattering patterns that pull together the dominant colour and a few other colours from the primary fabric. Use these particular fabrics on smaller, secondary pieces of the room such as rugs, cushions and lamps. Continue to build the scheme until you have represented all of the colours from the dominant fabric somewhere in the room.
Keep it Simple
When choosing and looking to mix patterns, one method is to select more simplified versions of your primary fabric. If you love florals, make your primary fabric one that combines several different types of flower and use only secondary patterns with one or two similar flowers that are featured in the pattern. A large-scale print can be too big for a pillow or small room. Choosing a solid background colour on which a pattern is printed will pull colourful patterns together to create visual interest without complicating the space.
Use furniture finishes that coordinate with the colours in the room. For instance, if the room is furnished in predominantly cool colours such as greys or blues, use washed out and light finishes to compliment this. Repeat motifs beyond fabrics and soft furnishings. A patterned rug can be reinterpreted in a table, or the curtains and even on pillows. Another rule to keep in mind is large patterns work best on large pieces and small patterns on small pieces. You want to make sure the space is large enough to accommodate the pattern in its entirety, for instance, a wall or a large rug. A medium pattern is better suited to furniture and a small pattern it accents smaller pieces as small patterns can look busy when used in large amounts.
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