top of page

Interior Design Pattern Play - How To Mix + Match

Updated: Jul 27, 2022

If you've been snooping around the interior design world at all the past decade, you know that wallpaper has made a big comeback. Bringing back wallpaper has brought so much more color, texture and pattern into our homes. But it does not stop there... Oh no!

We are also seeing a lot more play in fabrics, accents, draperies and tile. The trick when using any kind of print or texture in your home is SCALE! But there is an art and a sciene to bringing balance to your space and marrying patterns and textures. You can't just throw together all of your favorite colors and patterns and call it a day. The outcome is rarely Pinterest worthy!

If everything in one room has similar size or scale, the room will look too busy. Or if you just have too much stuff without enough negative space, your home will feel cluttered. And both of these scenarios can leave you feeling anxious in your own home. No Bueno!

So how do you create the perfect balance in your home that combines different patterns and textures? Let's build a room together... layer by layer... so you can see how to bring an entire space to life with balance while creating a space that leaves you feeling peaceful, accomplished and encourages you to relax and enjoy your home!


Layer 1 - Start with 3-4 large items

Your first layer should include your largest furnishings. This can be your sofa, rug, coffee table, wallpaper, draperies, dining table, bed, dresser, desk, console table, etc.

Notice in the design I started, that I have 4 large items but they vary in scale. The coffee table and sofa are a solid color that grounds the space, the wallpaer has a large scale print on it while the rug has a medium scale print on it. You can already see that we have some balance in this room.

Layer 2 - Bring in 4-6 medium sized items to fill in large spaces

These can includes things like accent seating and tables, plants, draperies, art, accent lighting, small bookcases, nightstands, bar carts, mirrors, sculptures, etc. Let's unpack this second layer: not only have I introduced another layer of medium sized items - I also introduced a variety of new textures and patterns.

The accent chairs are velvet and they have a medium sized print on them. The accent table is a wonderful brass metal bringing another grounding element to the space. The drapes have movement in the design while also adding some additional colors to the palette and the acrylic rod brings in a new finish. The two ottomans create some extra seating and bring a fun print to the design... and who doesn't love fringe? Lastly the porcupine quill mirror finishes this layer with something unique and goes well with the casual safari theme that has emerged.

Layer 3 - Add your finishing accents using small scale items

This is the step that is easy to mess up. The wrong accents and your space can look cluttered, cheap and overdressed. This is your chance to put the frosting on the cake without making it too sweet. Make sure you are leaving negative space so your eyes have a place to pause and rest while they admire everything in the room. Too much and you'll give yourself and your guests a headache!

In the space above I added layers of accent pillows to the sofa brinigng in new textures and depth. I dressed the tables to fill in some gaps and adorn the space with great accents and finishes, plus these are always nice to glance at from across the room. In the adjacent room, I added a little bar cart for entertaining which can be used easily in both spaces. Lastly, when I sat back and looked at the space there was just a little something missing... it was a little more negative space on the left side of the room than I wanted... so I hung the decor on the wall, which also added an additional texture to the design.

You will also notice there are multiple finishes in this design that mix well together; acrylic window treatment hardware, brass chandelier, marble accents, glass bar cart, wood furniture legs and coffee table, metal side table, etc. Mixing textiles and finishes is a must to bring a space together. Too much of any one thing and we are back in the 90's, and as much as 90's fashion has made it's way back into modern day ... I don't think we want it's home design to return with it!

When designing a space I like to view the room from every angle and scan... this ensures that I have not missed any areas or left spaces neglected or unfinished. It also helps me to feel whether or not I have balanced the room well. It is easy (for some) to recognize when something just feels "off". But how to make it feel "right" is an artform all in itself.


So here is a little recap on how to mix and match patterns + textures and how to balance a space:

  • Start with 3-4 large items

  • Add in 4-6 medium sized furnishings

  • Fill in gaps with accents that compliment the space

  • Mix your finishes to bring cohesion in your home

  • Leave enough negative space to ensure that you do not create a cluttered look

And there you have it! I was going to say this is "easy peasy" , but I know for many it is not. It truly is a science. If you have trouble knowing which patterns can compliment each other or which finishes can be mixed and matched or how to add texture and depth to your space or how to bring your home into design heaven - CALL US, we can help!

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page