7 Tips for Mixing Prints and Patterns

Today, I’m excited to be back with the fabulous ladies of the Back to Basics Series to share 7 easy tips on mixing prints and patterns. For almost a year now, we’ve been sharing our best tips and tricks on all sorts of topics from creating flower arrangements to decorating mantels to a step by step guide on painting furniture. You can catch up on all the posts from this series here.

I’ll freely confess we use prints and patterns very sparingly in our home. In fact, when I was thinking about creating this post, I could literally only think of 3 posts that even featured prints or patterns. Our biggest use of pattern is the stenciled floor in one of the bedrooms. It’s been about a year since we completed that project and we still love it! The floors are holding up really well.

The other posts that featured pattern were the stenciled curtains we made for the dining room and the pillow shams we stenciled for the entry and the dining room.

Again, we still love both of these projects and are currently using them in our home. Most of the patterns in our home would be considered organic. For example, the stacked stone on our fireplace, the diamond pattern on the rug in the living room, the woodgrain of our hand-scraped walnut floors, and the basket style weave of the subway tile in the kitchen. What can I say, I’m a neutrals girl through and through so give me lots of layers of texture any day of the week!

That being said, I do have clients, family members and friends that ask for advice on mixing, balancing and playing with patterns and prints so I thought I would share these tips with you today. Here are a few pillow combination ideas from Amazon…(Affiliate links have been provided for your convenience. You can read our full disclosure policy here)

7 Tips for Mixing & Balancing Patterns:

  • Patterns look best when they’re united by a common color palette.
  • Neutral walls and floors offer a safe and easy backdrop to mix patterns.
  • Wall art, linens, rugs and other decorative objects can help offer doses of patterns and prints in your home.
  • Busy patterns add liveliness, while simple patterns convey a sense of tranquility in your home.
  • Three or more patterns can be used in the same room just be sure to leave a bit of “white space” with solids so the patterns have room to breathe.
  • If you’re using more than one stripe, make sure one stripe is narrow and one stripe is wide.
  • Create balance with patterns by visually distributing and/or repeating a pattern around the room.

Playing with Patterns – Florals, Botanicals:

Botanicals + Gingham

Floral + Stripes

Floral + Geometric

Floral + Damask + Stripes

Playing with Patterns – Stripes:

Stripes + Small Polka Dots

Stripes + Paisley + Small Polka Dots

Playing with Patterns – Checks, Ginghams, Plaids:

Buffalo Check + Small Floral

Gingham + Floral

Large Plaid + Pinstripes

Playing with Patterns – Houndstooth:

Stripes + Florals + Houndstooth

Playing with Patterns – Ikat, Geometrics, Toile, Animal Prints:

Ikat + Stripes

Geometrics + Geometrics + Stripes

Geometrics + Stripes + Toile

Leopard Print + Stripes

Now, remember, these are simply guidelines for you to consider. You’ll find there are many ways to mix and match patterns so be sure to experiment until you find the look you love best. I’ve shared a lot of neutrals in these examples but a good portion of these pillows come in different colors and sizes so you might find something that will work for you.

Be sure to check out what these fantastic ladies have to share…

See you guys back here tomorrow. I’ll share a French inspired flower pot makeover you’ll be able to finish in no time! Until then, *enter short code S*

Many blessings,


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One Comment

  1. Hey CoCo – Love your neutral textured color palette examples. So many people share your style and you have shown great ways to incorporate great fabric patterns into any room. Needless to say – The Queen Bee is the very best example LOL. Hugs to a fabulous day!

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