by Paul Semkuley | Every individual will have an opinion, good or bad, and decorators and designers are no different. Some feel that a room can carry itself based on the design of the room and the furniture, however I often find they usually end up laying flat. With these rooms that are devoid of pattern, it opens up scrutiny to a flat and uninteresting space.
Pattern is a great creative way to bring intrigue and novelty to any space. Most patterns are usually used on furniture by way of fabric in the decorative pillows; stripes with florals, zigzags and suzanis, both large and small scale. You can still have pattern on your larger furniture pieces, but mostly small scale and tonal which will add that needed texture to a space.
Firstly choose your first pattern as a large scale as it will dominate. Your second one should be half the size and contrasting to your first: if you started with a floral, then the secondary pattern should be a stripe or geometric. Your third pattern can be a smaller version of either pattern, so that it reconnects them all together. A fourth pattern could be a very small check, which will read almost like a solid.
Occasionally the pattern that you love the most is the most expensive one, so we often like to use the trick of using a solid fabric on the back of the pillow to keep in line with the budget, but still have the impact of the pattern in the room.
Pattern should not always be limited to the fabrics of a room. They can be used in a multitude of ways: a herringbone layout in your hardwood flooring, wallpapering your walls and alcoves with chinoiserie, painting the walls in stripes, and basket weaves in your tiles of your shower floor. However, not all patterns need to be busy, so for a simple and clean look, use ceramic subway tile and stack it in glossy and matte white, creating a modern and chic pattern.
Pattern can also be utilized in bookcase displays, by aligning the books together first by size,then by colour, you can instantly create large blocks of pattern by alternating the books standing, stacking, standing, stacking until you achieve a pattern.
Pattern plays an integral element when decorating. It can and will add so much more to the room. If you do dare to do a lot of pattern, push the boundaries, and make it a stunning and dramatic room. Take a chance and let it play on itself. It’s nothing serious … just pattern.
5 Tips to remember
• Use a minimum of 3 patterns
• Money Saver: Use a solid or different fabric on the backs of your pillows
• Mix different scales of pattern
• Use it in unexpected and unique ways; trims and bindings
• Add in solids and textures to balance out the patterns