Mixing prints by pairing contrasting pieces together from your wardrobe is a fun and creative way to add drama to your look. While mixing prints may seem like a random process (and it certainly can be), it can also be more methodological. Earlier this week, I created a mixed print look by pairing a striped top with an African-inspired print skirt. I initially paired this skirt with a blue ruffle asymmetrical top (found here). Later in the day, however, I transitioned the look for a different setting, an evening stroll along the Atlanta Beltline where I was exploring the newest art installations.
When mixing prints, I like to create a balance between clash and coordination. Often times, I find a common theme that connects the pieces – like shapes, colors, or patterns. I recommend experimenting in your wardrobe. At worst, you will not like the outfit, in which case you can always change into something different. At best, you will feel more confident in your ability to be a bit more daring with your wardrobe choices. There are multiple ways to approach mixing prints, but I offer the following tips, which provide insight into my process.
3 Simple Tips for Creating a Mixed-Print Outfit
1. Identify similar color schemes.
Identifying similar color schemes is probably the simplest way to approach mixing different prints. Simply put, your top and bottom may share similar colors, but the patterns are completely different. When you bring the pieces together, the look still flows well because of the link between the colors in each piece.
- Work with Clashing Patterns – Stripes and circles look really good together.
Stripes and circles create a balanced look and I am typically drawn to this pairing. For example, stripes and polka dots are classic. In my fist look, the connection is less obvious, but I still played on circles and stripes. There is a little black and white in my skirt, but not much. Instead, I experimented here with the stripes and circles and loved the way the two pieces looked together.
- Identify similar patterns.
This concept is similar to the first tip, but we are now experimenting with similar patterns. The look below is from a previous post where I identified a similar pattern between my skirt and top. When the pieces are brought together, they again create a balance between clash and coordination.
And voila! Mixing prints is not so intimidating after all. I hope you find these simple approaches helpful. Share your tips below!
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Love the mixed patterns outfits. They were awesome. Would never had thought to put different patterns together . Thanks for the 3 tips to guide me in making a great new look. Wow!!