Written by Hugh Metcalf

How to layer pattern in a bedroom

From curtains and wallpaper to bed linen and cushions, pattern is perfect for creating a cosy bedroom. Here’s how to layer prints to create a dreamy scheme.

Julia Brendel tribes fabric - goodhomesmagazine.com

Image: Julia Brendel fabrics 

Using a mix of prints to your bedroom scheme can really help it to feel cosy and comfortable. The modern approach to pattern is eclectic – rather than matching cushions to curtains and using the same print throughout, interior designers have pioneered a look which sees prints used in clever and unexpected combinations.

However, recreating this yourself can be tricky, so we’ve pulled together some easy starting points for you to start creating your own layered, patterned look in the bedroom.

Mix print scales

sainsburys home kanzo bedroom bed linen - goodhomesmagazine.com

Image: Sainsbury’s Home 

When coming up with your scheme, consider patterns in 3 categories: small, medium and large. Small prints usually offer more of a texture at a distance, with less clearly visible motifs until up close; large prints are character pieces, whether big pattern repeats or textiles made up of one image; while your medium prints are the middleground between the two.

There’s no rule of thumb on where these should be used necessarily in your bedroom, but for a richly layered look using pattern, think about employing these 3 scales in combination.

Tie in with plain pieces

tesco yellow country bedroom bed linen - goodhomesmagazine.com

Image: Tesco

When building out a bedroom scheme from a print, solid blocks of colour can help to unite and cement the colour palette you’ve chosen. However, these pieces don’t have to be plain and flat fabrics or finishes – textured textiles, for example, continue to bring pattern, albeit subtler than printed designs.

Create a cohesive collection

Julia Brendel tribes fabric - goodhomesmagazine.com

Image: Julia Brendel fabrics 

Mixing and matching patterns can be a tricky task, and it may take time to hone a collection that complements itself perfectly. As well as looking at scale, you can consider ways to use prints from the same designer or collection to good effect. This quirky, yet classic bedroom set-up using Julia Brendel fabrics uses the same print in different fabrics for the cushion, the headboard and the lampshade, while other cushions use the same printed motif at a different scale.

While there’s a mix of colours in this scheme, using pattern in this way helps to unite the look and build a sense of cohesiveness all together.

Play with reversible textiles

jd williams rooted bed linen and bed - goodhomesmagazine.com

Image: JD Williams 

Reversible duvets and pillows are pretty common on the high street, but rather than thinking of each side as two distinct looks, consider how you can style your bed to take advantage of this feature. A reverisble motif is often a different scale and a contrast colour, as on this duvet set from JD Williams, giving you the start of a secondary colour palette to complement the main duvet design.

We love beds styled with a folded back duvet – this allows the reverse of the duvet to play a part in the overall scheme, and also lets you make a feature of the bed sheet if you so wish.

Use monochrome as a base

George Home discovery collection bed linen - goodhomesmagazine.com

Image: George Home 

Creating a layered pattern scheme from a simple black and white palette removes the complexities of adding colour into the mix too. This scheme from George Home lets the monochrome do all the hard work in layering patterns, but introduces colour through a printed design on the bed linen.

Layer window dressings

missprint illumin8 curtain and blind colllection - goodhomesmagazine.com

Image: Illumin8 x Missprint 

Bedding isn’t the only place to layer textiles to great effect – think about your window dressings too. Double up on curtains and blinds for a more luxurious look – and be sure to check out our guide to layering window dressings to nail the look.


Mastered the perfect bed-scape by layering patterns? Let us know on social! Tweet us @goodhomesmag or post a comment on our Facebook page, or post a picture of your bed on Instagram using the hashtag #ThisGoodHome for your chance to be featured on our feed.



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