Do you find some rooms in your home a little on the bland side?
Do you find yourself appreciative of the rooms you see in magazines and
television, and wish you could achieve the same effect? The problem may be that
you do not have enough pattern in your home.
Texture is often overlooked. Pattern is not so much overlooked,
as feared! Many people are afraid to use pattern. They don't know how to mix and
match patterns, so they avoid them all together.
This can often result in a very bland, and uninspiring room.
This is a shame, because as a general rule it doesn't cost any more to buy a
fabric with pattern than a solid color. With pattern you get a lot more impact
for your money.
The frugal decorator is conservative with pattern only in the
large pieces, such as overstuffed furniture. Pattern does become dated faster
than solid colors. It is best to use it on items like pillows, throws, and even
area rugs, which can be moved, and wear out sooner.
There are a few basic rules to follow when mixing and matching
pattern. Keep these I mind, and you shouldn't have any trouble. Skilled
decorators are able to violate these rules and get away with it, but for most of
us we need to keep within these parameters.
Here are the basics
*All the patterns in the room should be easily distinguished
from each other. None of them should be similar to the point they look alike.
For instance, you do not want to use two large floral prints of similar color
near each other.
*Use a variety of prints, including floral prints, stripes, and
*Contrast the size of the design in the patterns. If you are
using a LARGE floral, add a fabric with a SMALL stripe or geometric print.
*Have a similar color in each piece of fabric. If one of the
main colors in your room is sage green and you want to bring out this color,
make sure this color is in each fabric piece that you add.
*Be aware that your eye CANNOT retain color. This is why
decorators ALWAYS work with swatches of color. Do what you can to have samples
with you of patterns and colors in your room when you go to buy coordinating
Sometimes you can snip little pieces of the fabrics and attach
to a card. Perhaps you can bring in a cushion. Even a picture helps.
*Save the receipt of the items you buy, and do not pull off any
tags. If it doesn't match, take it back. Give yourself a few days to decide,
especially if you like it. If your first impression is that you made a mistake,
you can take it back right away. If you like it, give yourself a couple days to
make sure. It is very common to change your mind.
Pattern makes a room more exciting, and gives it more character.
You can't go wrong with mixing three patterns, but most rooms will easily take
six or seven. This is why accessories make our homes look so good. Think of the
array of colors and patterns that paintings and quilts bring into our home.
Be a little more adventurous with pattern. It is a good
tool for the frugal decorator.