Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Mixing Prints | Rules, Schmules

A lot of people are scared of mixing prints. And, as with most other things in design, the "rules" are more of guidelines, and at the end of the day, all that really matters is that it looks good to YOU.  If you don't believe me, and you're still a little scurred, here are a few of my tips:

1| If you're not sure if your prints match, try matching your colors. Monochromatic prints will definitely work, and luckily, most fabric lines produce several patterns in the same color, so the work is already done for you. 

2| Find a print you like, and then pull one or two of the colors to find a coordinating print. For example, try starting with a floral print, then add a geometric print in one of the colors from the floral print (i.e. stripes and florals or dots).

3| Think about the scale of the print. Usually, a small scale print pairs best with a larger scale print, and large, contrasting prints (and colors) work well, too. Lots of small scale prints can be too busy and can overwhelm the eye. 

4| When all else fails, don't think at all, just mix as you please!
image from The Hunted Interior
image from Interiors by Lisa Kahn
image from Project Nursery


  1. I love print mixing in the home! That first pic is gorgeous! However, I'm not always so brave when it comes to clothing though I guess the same rules would apply.

  2. I never liked mixing prints until Ms. Sarah Richardson & Rachel Ashwell proved me wrong. May or may not have a florals + polka dots + lace obsession with pillows.

  3. I've been toying with the idea of mixing prints, but haven't taken the plunge yet. These tips are definitely getting me in the mood to start mixing things up, though!


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