Sharing my tips for the perfect pillow pattern & textile combinations! These tips will work for most patterns around your home – not just pillows!
Pillows and textiles are some of the easiest and more affordable ways to change the look in your rooms. If you’ve read my blog for more than a day, you know I have a serious throw pillow addiction! Today I’m going to be sharing how to choose pillow pattern combinations mix and match patterns like a pro!
One of the most common questions I get on the blog or social media is where I got my pillows. This also includes answers to how to mix patterns, where do I find fabric, what are my favorite pillow inserts…the list goes on. Needless to say, this post has been a long time coming!
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How To Mix & Match Pillow Patterns Like a Pro
Following are my favorite tips for creating perfect pillow pattern combinations:
- Pick a floral or botanical pattern (or similar vibe) with at least three colors in the pattern. This should be your foundation for the rest of your choices.
- Choose a large-scale geometric pattern (or stripe!). If my floral has a dark background, I try to go with a light background on this one, and vice versa. Should contain at least one of the colors in the floral/botanical.
- Pick a small-scale geometric pattern or solid. If solid, try and get a fabric with some texture (linen, velvet, etc.). Should contain at least one of the colors in the floral/botanical.
Real Life Pillow Pattern Pairing Examples
Below are some of my looks in action in our home so you can see how it works live in an actual space. Note: I make almost all of my own pillows, but I’ve affiliate linked to Etsy shops and stores that sell pillows in the same fabric as my own, in case you’re not a seamstress 🙂
The following from our master bedroom a few years back is still one of my favorite combinations ever!
Pretty simple, right?
A Few Other Throw Pillow Rules I Try to Follow
- I never buy square pillows smaller than 18″x18″ and I really try to stay no smaller than 20″x20″.
- In the past on our couch, I’ve always gone with a floral in 24″ squares, and then the other patterns in 18″, 20″ or 22″ sizes. This fall, I had four patterns, so I went with all 20″ squares. It’s really a matter of personal preference.
- On beds, I love to use Euro shams in back (26″ squares). I usually go with two on smaller beds and three on kings or California kings. Depending upon your headboard, a queen will need two or three. Just play it by ear based upon the bed you have.
- I love a full-looking pillow with only a little slouch. I always cut my fabric exactly the size I want the pillow to be, so with the seam allowance, the cover ends up being 1.5″-2″ smaller than the insert. But they still fit, and look great!
- It’s always fun to add in some colored piping if you know how (I don’t) or some ribbon trim to your solid pillows for a little more visual interest.
- Mixing textures helps to perfect the look even further!
How Do I Make A Throw Pillow Cover?
For those that are interested in making your own throw pillow covers, be sure to check out my throw pillow tutorial. It is such a money saver especially if you love designer fabrics like I do. I outline step-by-step the sequence to follow, so that even the newest sewer can be successful!
Where Do You Buy Throw Pillow Inserts
If you do give my throw pillow tutorial a try, or even if you typically only buy covers, I love the pillow inserts from Robey’s (I get the 90/10 blend) and Crate and Barrel. I’ve also had luck recently with these sets from Amazon when I need something quickly. Then If you need a down alternative (for those that are allergic or prefer not to use down), this line from Crate and Barrel works well. Also, HomeGoods carries a lot of clearance pillows with down inserts. If they seem full (even if you hate the cover) buy them! You can usually get them on clearance for under $10 which is a great deal! Just make sure they aren’t too slouchy.
For store-bought pillow covers, I always buy a 2″ larger insert. So if I buy a 20″x20″ pillow cover, I always buy a 22″x22″ pillow insert. For my homemade pillows found in the tutorial above, I always buy the same size of insert for the pillow I cut (since I don’t take out the seam allowance). So, if I cut a 24″x24″ pillow, I still buy a 24″ insert, since the seam allowance makes the pillow cover closer to 22″ square.
Any other throw pillow questions you’re dying to know?
Do you have any other tried and true tricks for mixing patterns, whether on throw pillows, in fashion or other areas? I’d love to hear your thoughts!
The older version of my fabric pairings is shown below for even more ideas. I know it can be a bit hard on your eyes because there are so many patterns together, but, I put together a few looks below that demonstrate these tips. You will find that if the fabrics come in multiple colors ways, you can even mix the large-scale geometric from one with the floral in another and vice versa! I tried to include a variety of color schemes to show you how it works. It doesn’t take a ton of effort if you follow the tips! Each row demonstrates a grouping of pillow I think would look great together! All sources are listed under the graphic, as still available.
FABRIC SOURCES: Blue and Green Floral Print | Interlocking Squares | Betwixt Water
Deep Gray Floral | Brown Riad Trellis Print | Teal Linen
Blue Floral | Navy and White Buffalo Check | Blue & White Strands Pattern
Cheerful Floral | Graphic Mist Pattern | Betwixt Spark
Colorful Floral | Pink Trellis | Red Hatch
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disclosure: some affiliate links used