How-to Tuesday

I failed to mention this yesterday, but I have a new “schedule” for this blog. Rather than doing outfits everyday, I’m mixing it up. Monday is random day (thoughts, tips, tutorials, etc.). Wednesday is an outfit, and Friday is weekend links. Hopefully this will keep things a little more interesting (and keep me blogging – sorry for the long absence!)

Today I’m going to give you some tips on mixing patterns and textures. Most of the photos I’m giving as examples are pulled from my Pinterest board, so take a look at that for more inspiration. Also, each image below links to the original article/blog where the image was published, so click on them to see more.

1. Keep one subtle, make the other pop. This way one works as more of a solid than a pattern. For example, these two skirts have a pattern/texture, but they’re one color so you only see it when you’re close. It’ll add interest but it won’t clash. The same with the sweater—it’s a solid color with suble knitted patterns, so it still works with the bold floral pants.

black quilted skirt gold skirt sweater with floral pants

2. Mix patterns and textures that are the same color or in the same color range. Be careful with this one. The color needs to be a near exact match or different enough to look intentional. Also, keep the patterns or textures pretty different—don’t mix a small pink floral with a different small pink floral. Megan from feathers and Freckles wore this dress that mixes 2 ivory patterns—a pleat and a lace. This could easily be recreated with a pleated skirt and a lace top. The above outfit (floral pants) follows this rule well, too. Both the top and the pants are muted colors, and the pattern/texture of the sweater is very different from the floral of the pants.

lace top and pleated skirt

3. Mix patterns and textures that suggest the same season. Don’t wear an autumny tweed (olives, burnt oranges, browns) with a bright summery floral or, say, yellow gingham. Follow this lady’s example. She’s wearing a autumny tweed with floral, but the colors of the floral are more autumny as well—navy, mustard yellow, plum(ish) purple. The large size of the floral paired with the suble texture of the tweed also follow rule 1 nicely.

fall floral and tweed

4. Tweed/wool is a good place to start. Most tweeds have a subtle pattern or color variation that looks solid when you blur your eyes. Work with them as a solid and they’re easy. Tights are another fun thing to try. There are lots of options with patterns/textures, but most are just one color—try ribbed, dots, or lace. Lastly, scarves (or any add on accessory, really) are great. Pair a knitted scarf with a patterned top to add some texture, or add a floral or striped scarf (or purse) over a sweater or tweed to add pattern.

tweed and bird print patterned tights pattered scarf with tweed


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  • Hey! I'm Maggie, a graphic designer, crafter, devoted secondhand shopper, Doctor Who fanatic, and dog-lover. Stick around and explore!

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