Guide to Mixing Patterns

Love the look of mixed patterns, but not sure how to pull it off? This guide to mixing prints will help you demystify this fashion-forward styling technique so that you can confidently play with patterns and comfortably wear multiple prints!

Inspo Mixing Prints

Start with an Accessory

We used the bohemian print and bold colors of this scarf as the foundation for the rest of the outfit. The Ikat print in the blouse keeps with the scarf’s bohemian theme while the yellow pants add a pop of color to further complement the scarf. Finish the look with a bag in a boldly-hued color and a neutral sandal to create the perfect look for spring.

Mixing Prints
Look 1
Scarf: Aleah Geo Chiffon Scarf ($42)
Blouse: Wynn Ikat Blouse ($48)
Pant: Adora Skinny Jean ($88)
Shoes: ASOS Flock Sandal ($41)

Choose a Theme

Building your outfit around a theme gives you an easy-to-follow structure to help you choose prints that go together. We anchored this outfit around a nautical theme by taking inspiration from the rope print in the skirt. We then added other nautical elements including horizontal stripes and red flats to pull your whole look together. Be sure to incorporate simple thematic elements so that you create a look that appears chic and not like a costume.

nautical look
Look 2
Jewelry: Isabelle Tear Drop Cuff ($58)
Sweater: Thomsen Pullover Sweater ($54)
Skirt: Hellen Pleated Skirt ($108)
Shoes: J.Crew Viv flat ($298)

Play with a Color

Working within a single color palette provides consistency within a multi-patterned outfit. Here we chose two pieces in cool tones to build a creative play on stripes. Try a skirt with a contrasting waist band or a belt to create definition between the blouse and skirt.
playful stripes
Look 3
Jewelry: Cassy Chandelier Earrings ($28)
Blouse: Cathleen Tulip-Sleeve Blouse ($48)
Skirt: Iris A-Line Skirt ($58)

Shoes: Elated Flat by Steve Madden ($89)

3 Tips for Mixing Prints

1. Keep your jewelry simple and let the patterns be your statement.
2. Play with scale by trying two pieces with a large print, two pieces with small prints or one piece with a small print and one piece with a large print.
3. Make sure the prints are different enough that they don’t confuse the eye when paired together. Combine a loose print, like a floral, with a structured print, such as a stripe.

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24 Comments

  1. I hate to be disrespectful…but with the exception of the first example, the other two look like a kindergartner trying to dress themselves!

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  4. I want to place my first order but am afraid the clothes won’t be flattering. I am thick thru the middle.

  5. I just love the red, white, and blue spring jacket with the Polk-a-dot blouse! Are items like this available to be part of our stitch fix box? :-)

  6. I ALSO love the blue/ red stripe jacket and polka dot blouse with skinny jeans. I’m tall and long jackets work well with my body type. It would be great to have that jacket and blouse in my upcoming fix!

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  8. I agree with Tracy’s earlier post, Look 2 & 3 just dont work at all for me. I had always heard that a small pattern could work with a large one, but these are all large patterns that are just too much contrast in one outfit.

  9. In the above collage , the stripe blouse mix with a scarf , i just got a blouse that i sent back this morning , if you have a nice scarf to pair with that blouse i just sent back , id love to get both for my next fix pls ?

  10. Hi! I am just checking out this site for the first time. I like the striped top with the scarf in the collage. Would I still be able to get it?

    • Hi Sarah! The products shown here are actually not our product. This post focuses on street styles that we love and are inspired by. If you love that scarf, feel free to reference it in your notes to your stylist for your upcoming Fix! We may not carry that specific scarf, but we may have something similar!

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