Mixed Prints

Mixing prints is not as difficult a trend to pull of as you might think, and when done right, can look thoughtful, fashion-forward and fresh. There are just a few things to remember to make sure you don’t end up looking like a frazzled mess. To help, I compiled some sartorial inspiration and tips for specific pattern pairings. Grab those florals, stripes, dots and leopards, ladies, we’re mixing prints today!

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Last week, Refinery29 posted an article asking if Olivia Palermo can make floral + leopard happen – and while Olivia is, as always, amazing inspiration, I’d insist that floral + leopard was already happening! A floral dress with leopard bag or shoes, floral shirt or floral pants and leopard shoe, or floral skirt and leopard cardigan or sweater work perfectly. In fact, I had this covered back in 2010!

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Stripes + floral is another easy mix of prints. A floral skirt and striped shirt, or even a striped tank and floral cardigan, can be a perfect combo. Let the floral piece make the statement and keep the stripes simple to be sure.

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I love leopard + polka dots. Essentially, leopard acts as a neutral (remember this, always), so isn’t tough to mix with other prints, like dots or florals.

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Stripes on stripes are pretty easy to pull off too – pair thin stripes with thicker ones for a foolproof look. Keep them on top or be bold and pair a top with a skirt.

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Whether they’re graphic, animal or watercolor prints, you can still throw them in the mix. Just put together pieces in a similar color or mood – maybe one more neutral and another more bold or contrasting. And if you need to, tie it together with a belt or neutral accessories. Or throw caution to the wind and wear whatever prints you like! You know what they say – if you obey all the “rules,” you miss all the fun (or at least, so says Katharine Hepburn).

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