How To: Mixing Prints & Patterns

In a year where it seems anything is possible- mixing prints seems a little easier of a task for people who have been intimidated by it previously. After all, if the snake print shoe fits- wear it to fight off whatever 2020 throws at you.

I’ll start you off easy and then we can work our way up to expert level print, pattern and color mixes.

MIXED NEUTRALS & POPS

Black dress with colorful accessories outfit

The easiest way to get into pattern mixing is to keep it limited to your accessories. I like a good solid color base like this simple black dress and then sticking with a color theme for the smaller pieces. I picked out two neutrals- a snake print sneaker and a leopard print belt- and two pops of color.

Think of animal print as a neutral. I know, but hear me out. Unless it is a print in a color that typically doesn’t occur in nature (I’m looking at you red and black zebra print shrug of the early 2000s), it is likely a print of neutral colors. If you are staying in the same color family, a theme you’ll see a lot here, you can play with print mixing.

Take a peep at the pop of color options. The colors aren’t all exactly the same- and that works! I pulled the yellow from the sandals into the bag and the pink from the bag falls into the same jewel tones as the purple and blue on the sandals. It flows naturally without looking like you’ve sewn a new bag and shoes out of your grandmothers curtains.

MIXED PRINTS & INVERTED COLORS

Classic black and white mixed print outfit

Print mixing for work? Also totally doable. I used classic cuts, prints and colors for this look to keep it from being a distraction. Tuck the top into the pants and opt for the black heel for a polished look or pick the metallic flat to add a touch of trend and comfort.

GRAPHIC TEE & ANIMAL PRINT

Band tee and leopard print skirt with neutral accessories outfit

If this graphic doesn’t completely overwhelm you- you’ve arrived in the world of mixing prints. I broke this one down into three full looks- casual, retro and edgy. Because there is so much going on in the skirt/top combo, I kept most of the accessories very neutral.

Remember the rule of animal prints being neutrals? This is where it comes in handy. You can virtually pair this skirt with anything. I went for a band tee to show just exactly how versatile it is.

If you want to wear this look to a festival or out running errands- go for the casual look. For a Fall date night or brunch, toss on knee high boots, aviators and that incredible green clutch- and because I’m a goth girl at heart forever, I created an edgier look that you can toss your hair up in a high bun with a scrunchie and rule the world.

When it comes to print mixing, there’s something for everyone. Use 2020 as a year to explore what’s unknown or unfamiliar- nobody is counting it anyway.

If you like this, you may also like: One Skirt Styled Three Ways

Pattern Mixing- Graphic Print

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Pattern Mixing- Similar Colors

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Pattern Mixing- Accessories

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