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Pattern Play: How to Mix Patterns

By Kali

Pattern Play: How to Mix Patterns

Patterns are just better together. On today's blog, we're sharing our tips on how to design a space that hits all the right angles with the perfect pattern blend.


Likely the most important thing to consider when combining patterns is proportions. When you're tiling both the walls and the floors of a space, it's important that they work together.

Fresh Exchange Basement Bathroom

This bathroom uses 2x6 field tile on the walls which is a perfect match for our Large Star and Cross on the floor.

Fresh Exchange Basement Bath

Tile Shown: 2x6 in Sand Dune with Large Star and Cross in Antique // Design + Images: The Fresh Exchange

The bathroom below uses field tile as a visual break between the Escher pattern that is on both the floors and the niche. Proportionally, the lighter feeling Small Diamonds are at eye level which allows for the Large Diamond in a bold blue to really stand out.


Tile Shown: Small Diamonds in Calcite with 4x8 tiles in Calcite and Large Diamond (on our secret menu) in Nautical // Design: Clara Jung // Image: Colin Price Photography

Alternatively, in some situations, you might want or need to have a smaller sized tile on the floor, especially in the case of a shower floor. Justina Blakeney's famous blue bathroom illustrates how using the same color can easily tie two different patterns together.

Bold Blue Bathroom

Tile Shown: 8" Hexagons and Mini Star and Cross in Adriatic Sea // Design + Image: Justina Blakeney

Mirror Shapes

For contrasting tile colors, mirroring motifs can help to visually tie your space together.

This bathroom below uses a star shape to tie these two bold patterns together. Also, if you want to use a more intricate pattern on both the walls and floors, consider using a white tile on the wall and a color on the floor to create balance.

Handpainted Tile Bathroom Floor Star and Cross

Tile Shown: Mini Star and Cross in Tusk with Starburst in Peacock // Design: In Honor of Design // Image: Rustic White Photography

Ali Hynek went starry-eyed for our tile and reflected the shape of her handpainted tiles with our Star and Cross for a cohesive look:

Custom Handpainted Fireclay Shower Tile

Tile Shown: Large Star and Cross in Daisy with a customized Vitoria // Design: Ali Hynek // Image: Becky Kimball

Sisters Justina and Faith Blakeney outfitted their parent's main bath with contrasting warm and cool-toned tiles, but their curved patterns tied the two elements together.

Contrasting Pattern Bathroom

Tile Shown: Ogee Drops in Nutmeg with handpainted Summit // Design: Faith Blakeney// Image: Justina Blakeney

Create Contrast

If your floor tile pattern is bold, balance it out with a subtle backsplash to balance your look.

A beautiful and common combination is tile on the floor and brick on the walls:

Brick Kitchen Backsplash with Herringbone Floor

Tile Shown: Glazed Thin Brick in Olympic with 6x12 in Gypsum on the floor // Design: Studio McGee // Image: Monica Wang Photography

Another popular pattern pairing is field tile on the walls and our handpainted tiles on the floor:

Handpainted Bathroom

Tile Shown: 3x6 in White Gloss with Kasbah Trellis in Neutral Motif// Design: Patti Wagner // Image: Meg Cooper Photography

Go for it!

Going bold with a pattern is fun, you just have to strike the right balance. We love the way these two field tile patterns are balanced out with a soft color story:

Bold Pattern Bathroom

Tile Shown: 3x9 tiles in Daisy and Sea Glass // Design: Claire Thomas // Image: Stephanie Todaro Photography

This bold bathroom's two patterns are tied together by a unifying color. If you're going for a lot of pattern, a visual break of a painted white or subtle colored wall can be grounding for the space:

Herringbone and Handpainted Tile Bathroom

Tile Shown: 2x8 in Tidewater with custom Elephant Star // Design + Image: Justina Blakeney

Want to play with patterns but aren't sure how? Simply call, chat or fill out our Design Assistance Form and one of our talented Design Consultants will get back to you shortly.

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