Mixing prints and patterns for a stylish you is an art. This guide reveals the best stylists’ tricks and secrets on mixing prints and patterns like a pro.
- Mixing Prints and Patterns – Yay or Nay?
- How to Mix Patterns and/or Prints
- Mixed Prints and Patterns Outfit Ideas
- Mixing Florals and Stripes
- Animal plus …
- Stripes and Plaid
- Floral and Plaid
- Stripes and Polka Dots
- Polka dots with plaid
- Camouflage plus Others
- Mixing Three and Prints/Patterns
- Try the Same Print, but Different Size/Color
- What Doesn’t Work When Mixing Prints and Patterns?
- Wrapping Up Mixing Prints and Patterns for a Stylish You
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Mixing Prints and Patterns – Yay or Nay?
Well, it’s an old fashion rule to only wear one print or pattern in an outfit.Just one print per outfit is so yesteryear. #fashiontrends Click To Tweet
Today, mixing prints and patterns is a modern way to look stylish. However, what is too much for one women, may be just right for another. When I wear a print or pattern I rarely wear just one. Somehow I do love to mix them.
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How to Mix Patterns and/or Prints
… without looking like you dressed in the dark due to an outage. Here is a list of the tricks to get the mixed print-pattern trend right to the spot.
- Polka dots of about the same size look great when the colors of the dots and background are inverted, or the dots have the same color, but the background has a different color. This polka dots on different color is a favorite next mix-and-match of fashion designers. The same applies for stripes. This type of mix is the easiest way to start mixing prints and pattern when you are new to it.
- You can mix all patterns when they are gray.
- Ground your prints/patterns with a solid color. If the print/pattern has black using black is foolproof. Otherwise the color that dominates the print is a good one to use.
- Mix prints/patterns that have several colors in common.
- Try to mix printed pieces which are in the same color scheme, but have different shades.
- Make sure the prints have a different size or they are the same print and size, but different colors.
- Only one animal print per outfit is foolproof.
- To look ageless in animal print choose it in its natural or close to natural colors and treat the animal print as a neutral paired with large floral print with or without stripes that pick up colors of the print.
- Try different geometric prints together that have common colors.
- Try florals of different size with common colors.
- Restrict yourself to two neutrals like black and white or white and blue.
Mixed Prints and Patterns Outfit Ideas
Here are some outfit examples for inspiration how to mix prints and/or patterns to look effortlessly stylish. They are ordered by type so they are easy-to-recreate from your own closet.
Floral and Stripes
Heidi Klum is a style icon who rocks the stripes and floral print look to the perfection. The typical combination is a striped top with a floral skirt. However, you can create the look also with other pieces as demonstrated below. More on styling floral print.
Animal plus …
Animal print behaves like a neutral. Thus, it is the easiest to wear with other non-solid colored clothing. Wearing a multi-color around-the-knee length summer dress with leopard-print mules is foolproof. Think Rihanna.
Mixing Stripes and Plaid
You can find more ideas how to style a pink plaid skirt at this link.
Floral and Plaid
Stripes and Polka Dots
Polka Dots with Plaid
Camouflage plus Others
Mixing Three and More Prints/Patterns
Going all the way donning more than two prints is high risk, high reward. Why? Because more than the match of two is difficult to pull off unless your way of dressing has an Eclectic Style attitude.
Mixing three or more prints in one outfit is easiest when all prints have the same two colors like the blue and white trend in the example outfit below. It also works when all prints/patterns are from the same color family.
Women with a luxury Bohemian Style may also get away with multiple prints in one look. Note that the first mentioned style may convey the message “I don’t care about the rules.”, while the second may read poverty, when it goes wrong.
The above example outfit is grounded by white. White occurs in all pieces and the pumps. Navy blue and white are both neutrals. Thus, they balance the abstract blossoms of the top.
Try Using the Same Print, but Different Size/Color
This approach is relatively easy, but has great style impact.
The outfit inspiration below uses the red of the floral print on black background, red background of the polka dots and the red stripes for grounding. In other words, you can use other colors than black to ground your look.
What Doesn’t Work when Mixing Prints and Patterns?
Before I wrap up the most important points, let’s quickly review the most frequent fashion faux-pas. You want to make sure to avoid them when you adopt the trend.
- Stay away from animal prints in non-natural colors with solids and/or other prints. This means don’t fall for fantasy animal prints. More on ageless style in animal prints.
- Never pair prints or patterns of same size that have nothing in common, but the size because it clashes them.
- Also avoid to create outfits that look similar to a quilted bed throw, and
- Anything too busy like hounds-tooth with polka dots of same size.
Wrapping Up Mixing Prints and Patterns for a Stylish You
Be creative, experiment. To obtain the most stylish results when mixing prints and patterns, try out everything with everything. Then go with what looks the best wrong. Make the mix the statement.
How are you mixing prints and patterns for a stylish you? Or do you wear just one print or pattern at a time? I’m just curious.
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Photos: G. Kramm
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