6 Surprising Ways to Mix Patterns
Learn the art of mixing and matching
Decorating is all about finding things that go together, but mixing patterns can be tricky.
Ever been in a store, looking at 2 things that both made your heart flutter and then wondered not only if they went with your overall decor, but if they actually went together? We’ve all been there.
You know your taste is on point, yet sometimes, patterns throw you for a loop, making you doubt if you even have this design thing down anymore.
But don’t worry, you haven’t lost your mojo! Breathe in, breathe out, and follow these tips next time you want to act as the marriage counselor for an odd design couple.
The golden rule
Just like in any room design, the key to playing with different patterns is sticking to a cohesive colour palette. Now have some fun using one of these different techniques:
#1 – Textured neutrals
Yes, patterns can be neutral! Select accents in hues such as white, black, grey and taupe, featuring patterns that are more textural than visual. Macramé, the classic knotting technique, is a fantastic example of a textural pattern. Mix and match them together for a look full of depth.
#2 – Geometrics
Geometric patterns are all. the. rage. Filling your space with different iterations is a piece of cake since geometrics are available in pretty much every shape and form, from pillows to lamps, wall art and decorative objects. In hues such as black and gold, they will spruce up a neutral decor and will pair well since they share a similar theme. Forget how bored you were in math class, geometry is actually the coolest!
#3 – Building on a bold pattern
Ever fallen in love with an audacious pattern and not known how to incorporate it in your home? Use it as the starting point to your design. If you’re using a bold yet classic pattern in neutral hues, think extra large navy stripes for example, keep to tones in the same family and don’t shy away from mixing in other patterns in similar colours. Fell for an especially busy and bright motif? Make sure other accents’ hues are directly derived from it and, to ensure your print is the star of the show, only include textural patterns in the mix.
#4 – The traveller’s space
Are you a lover of all things exotic and boho? Get inspired for your home’s decor by the busy markets of India or Morocco. Feel like you’re breaking all of the rules with the different patterns and colours? Make sure to stick to your theme by only selecting travel-inspired prints. No modern polka dots here!
#5 – The perfect couple
They say that opposites attract and we couldn’t agree more! In design, we play with complementary colours – hues that are completely opposite to each other on the colour wheel, yet pair wonderfully every single time. To use them when pairing different patterns, refer to the colour wheel and pick your perfect match, then select motifs that are repetitive and that do not include other colours, such as white chevrons on an orange background, or grey Greek keys on a teal fabric. Stop the patterns there and fill the rest of the room with understated accents so it doesn’t become chaotic.
#6 – The white canvas
If you’re a colour fanatic, the thought of going to the paint store to select the crispest white they have might sound like a waste of an afternoon. And to paint it on all of your walls, as opposed to using it just for trims and ceilings? BLASPHEMY! Well, think again: one of the most modern ways to enjoy the whole rainbow is to scatter accents in bright pops of colour against white walls, not competing with them in the least, all the while bouncing natural light and bringing the hues to life. In an open space with white walls, feel free to include as many patterns as you’d like, as long as they are anchored by neutral furniture.
Did we convince you to dare mixing patterns? How did you do it?
Show us on Instagram by using #bouclair or by tagging us!