Friday, January 20, 2012

4 ways to make pattern sing

Adding pattern to a room is one of the quickest ways I know to create excitement in decor.  A room without pattern is a dead room.  If you want to play it safe add your pattern in smaller punches, e.g., pillows, throw or small area rug.  Here are several quick and easy  tips to have you decorating like a pro. 

 Vary the type and scale of patterns used

Personally I would not have this many pillows in a row but the patterns really work well together.  Start with a large scale print in the colour scheme you want (floral above) and choose the others based on this. Note how the linear geometrics vary in colour and size - always a good formula.  The circular raised flowers in yellow play well with the larger floral and pick up on the colour of the larger geometric.

Keep the patterns in a tight colour scheme - complementary is easy

Sunburst eclectic living room
Caitlin Wilson via Houzz

This is a more adventurous use of pattern  when you consider the wall and the ottoman.  Similar to the last  arrangement, this one uses a large scale print as a departure point for the colour scheme.  A smaller and larger linear geometric is chosen  in complementary colours.   If you want to have a lot of energy add pattern to the wall in yet another pattern.  It's too much for me, but I'm pretty plain in my tastes!

 Break up pattern with a solid 

Punta del Este Beach House contemporary bedroom
 Z3 Diseño

This is a pretty intense pattern but it is played down by using white and a solid colour in pillows.  If the chest was painted white the pattern would be further controlled.

Play down colour, go neutral

Photography : Margaret Ryall

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