Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The Art of Layering Patterns

Patterns play an important role in interior design.  Patterns add color, depth, dimension and texture to any room or window treatment.  The scale of pattern may be small, medium or large in size and any patterns used in the same space must relate to each other in order to create a cohesive design.

When used properly, pattern can ground a design that shows two distinctly different shapes, scale and proportion.  The large bold orange striped draperies in this room anchor the small scale pattern in the floor coverings.  It allows the eye to see the design, color and texture as a whole and not as different distinct parts.
Designer Linda Allen
Believe it or not, pattern in design also signifies the shape of furnishings, lighting and accessories.  This particular design is very tonal with a pop of lime in the furnishings to ground the eye away from the multi-pattern ceiling treatment.  Take note of the chair back designs; they repeat the shapes in the mirrors, lighting, floor covering and the ceiling design.  This is a perfect reflection of using the shapes throughout a design to create an elegant and harmonious feel within the space.

Texture is created with pattern by directional movement and contrast.  These two designs use directional movement and distinct contrast in the black and white patterns.  Look closely at the Chevron design on the right.  Not only is it directional, it has a pattern within the pattern of a Greek Key design.  This adds depth and texture.

Think about how you use pattern in your designs.  How does it affect your design style?  Experiment with different scales, proportions, and colors to find the right balance for your next project and signature look.

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