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Home Trends: Clashing Colours and Patterns

We’ve noticed a refreshing move towards clashing colours and patterns in interior design. It’s a trend we can’t help but notice. A smart clash of colours and patterns is eye-catching in a positive, dramatic, fun, quirky or unconventional way. There is nothing negative about it – when done well, of course. A clash walks that fine line between Just Right and Too Much, but it’s something worth doing if you want to breathe fresh air into your interior space. We are always here to advise you on how to stay on the right side of that line – just get in touch – but in the meantime, here are a few basic guidelines.


A neutral colour palette for your walls is the perfect starting point. Natural and whitewash tones are the essence of simplicity in setting a backdrop for your colour and pattern clash. The drama comes with the addition of colourful accessories like bed linen, cushions and throws. By making the walls neutral, you give yourself more flexibility should you decide to change things up again in the future.


Use a colour wheel. Colours on opposite sides of the wheel often make for a perfect “complementary clash” such as yellow/purple, red/green, or blue/orange. Or you can look at a split complementary colour scheme where, in addition to the base colour, you use two colours adjacent to its complement. For example, a base of yellow complemented by red-violet and blue-violet.


If you want to “match and mis-match”, you can select bedding or cushions that feature different prints but are printed on the same fabric.


Use at least three patterns in a room, and on a varying scale. For example, a large pattern, a medium pattern and a small pattern; or one large and two different mediums for instance.


It’s best to use differing colours of the same intensity i.e. pastel and pastel rather than pastel and jewel.


Different patterns will often work together if they’re of the same hues.


To avoid an unbalanced look, distribute different patterns evenly throughout the room instead of concentrating the majority on one side of the space.


Pattern on pattern on pattern can be chaotic. So instead of placing too many patterns on top off each other, break them up with solid blocks of colour.

Even though colours and patterns can clash, they shouldn’t be in open conflict.

As we said before, there is a fine line between getting it right and going over the top. The hints and suggestions we’ve given you will give you a solid foundation to work from, but we’d love to catch up with you to discuss the topic in finer detail and make sure you get it just right. When you do, the results will be spectacular.

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