Prints, patterns and pops of color are making a Powerful comeback!


Patterns done right are a surefire way to take any space from boring to brilliant.  If you’ve been searching for a little pizzazz or to bring life into your home, punches of color and pops of patterns are the way to go and are currently on trend. The Power of Pattern speaks volumes!

Designers are using geometric patterns, prints and shapes in their work and utilizing it along with the curves of the furniture to turn a room into a piece of striking artwork, channeling influences from the design era of art deco. No longer does your artwork have to hang on a wall, but rather it can grace the space between your four walls giving way to an eclectic interior design.  Geometric and abstract prints, florals, damask, chevron, coral patterns, diamond trellis, Ikat, medallion motifs, bohemian and marble are just some of the patterns trending in the pages of designer magazines.  Bright, bold colors such as navy, emerald green, red, coral, turquoise, orange and purple are popping up in homes across the country. One of my favorite interior designers, Eric Cohler, dubbed the “Mixmaster”, is an expert at layering patterns, textures, and colors in his work providing a style that is elegant, artistic and inviting.

Introducing patterns in a room can be a daunting task so I’ve given you some simple tips to get started.  Begin by choosing 3 different patterns and keep them all in the same color scheme.  The patterns can be used throughout the room in your upholstery, area rugs, pillows, lamp shades, walls, artwork, etc. They can be multi-colored fabrics but chose a color that is similar throughout all the patterns you choose for a cohesive look.  If all the colors are the same but the patterns vary you’ll have a perfect combination of “wow”.

Avoid using the same scale patterns next to each other.  Choose a large pattern on the floor in the area rug and a smaller pattern on the throw pillows. When looking at size, the largest or dominant pattern will have the most influence in the room so typically you would display it on the bigger objects, say on the wallpaper, the upholstery of the couch or in the carpet.  The secondary pattern can be incorporated into the medium sized items like the curtains, chairs and benches.  And lastly the smaller accent patterns and prints will be integrated in the room on pieces such as throw pillows, ottomans or lamp shades.

When choosing patterns, consider first the size of the room. For small rooms choose large patterns in a lighter color with a light background.  The three-dimensional effect and large design in a monochromatic tone make the room appear larger while the soft background keeps the room light and airy.  Think large damask or geometric cirlces in a neutral color scheme. For medium sized rooms you can choose a brighter colored design with a soft colored background.  The large design in a pop of color against a neutral background adds depth and dimension while making the room appear larger.  Think of a quatrefoil print with the pattern in a vibrant blue against a beige or soft white background.  For large spaces, go all out and choose bold, dramatic patterns rich in color with a colorful background.  Go with a multi-colored print like large pink flowers on a black background with silver leaves. When choosing a pattern try and create a flow with the houses overall style.  If your home is contemporary or modern in nature you would tend to have stripes, geometric patterns, and clean lines while a traditional styled home would lend itself to floral patterns, toile or organic prints.

You can compensate for inadequate architecture in the room as well.  For example a vertical stripe in a curtain hung just below the ceiling raises the too-low ceiling height adding length to your walls.  To add texture to lackluster or damaged sheetrock walls, add texture paint and faux finishes.  Texture in design is equally important and can consist of wood, brick, leather, velvet, stone, plastic, linen, glass, stainless steel, etc. Mixing texture creates a fascinating energy and engaging dynamic. By adding pattern and texture, it can bring life to a room and with the choices on the market today of wallpaper prints and paint-on stencils, the design possibilities are endless.

Focusing on color, size, scale and texture enables you to combine complimenting patterns that will fit your decorating style and taste and liven up any living space.  And always remember you’re living in that room and walking into it every day.  Choose colors and prints that speak to you and fit your personal style.  If you smile every time you walk in, it’s a job well done!

Here’s a few examples of patterns and colors that are currently trending…

4 thoughts on “The Power of Pattern

  1. Hi Allison Kohmann

    Loved your article 🙂
    Specially what you talked about the three dimensional and large design in a monochromatic tone.
    These could be very useful in adding up a charm for your small living area.

    These things you talked about no doubt are making a strong come back.
    hope you could bring up some articles related to this matter.

    Have a good day.

    Shantanu sinha

  2. Great post! I agree that patterns bring life to any space! I am a concrete contractor and most of my clients opt to have patterned surfaces to create a unique surface. Will be sharing this blog post to my future clients to help them choose patterned pillows, rugs, etc. Thanks for sharing!

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