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4 Tips for Mixing Prints and Patterns Successfully

by Anna Godefroy

People tend to think they can't mix patterns, and yet some of the most stylish dressers mix patterns regularly. Mixing patterns is a way to show confidence and add an element of fun to your look. It’s a great way to showcase your creativity!

 examples of pattern mix and match outfits

Here’s 4 tips to help you mix prints and patterns successfully:

  1. Get to know your foundation prints. Start with classic, simple prints: stripes, polka-dots, and florals. Then, layer on a bolder print. For example, try a classic striped T-shirt with a more exciting geometric pattern layered on top. The lines in both patterns will compliment each other, and the simple stripe will act as a neutral.

  1. Choose patterns of different sizes. One of the simplest ways to mix patterns is to layer patterns with two different scales. Pairing a small-scale print with a large-scale pattern allows the smaller scale to work as a neutral. In this way, a skirt with a tiny floral print can work with a large-format plaid flannel for a grunge look.

  1. Embrace the power clash. You don't always have to match patterns. Mixing bold patterns like leopard print and plaid may seem like a fashion faux pas, but there’s a lot of power in selecting two prints that don’t share any commonalities. Anchor the look with a neutral item, like a black blazer or denim jacket.

  1. Use colour. When working with mixed prints, pay close attention to colours. Bold patterns in neutral colours, like black and white, can offset wildly different patterns in a more vibrant colour scheme. One strategy is to mix a monochrome pattern, like a red-and-white polka-dot, with a multicolour pattern that features the colour from the monochrome, like a red floral print.

Now go ahead and wear patterns! Please share photos on Instagram and tag me @laurenceprint :-)