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How to: mix prints

But when it comes to outfits that mix print and pattern, there’s a fine line between playfully unexpected and completely bonkers.

You can spot a mix-master at a hundred paces. She’ll be wearing a breezy I-just-threw-this-together outfit that radiates confidence and looks completely awesome, even though she’s wearing paisley and stripes at the same time. But when it comes to outfits that mix print and pattern, there’s a fine line between playfully unexpected and completely bonkers. Thankfully, you’re just a few styling tricks away from mixing and matching prints like a pro.

The most important principle when it comes to a successful print mash-up is to think in terms of colour, not pattern. Take Rachel Zoe’s glorious paisley and floral maxi dress: both prints work in harmony because they share a similar palette. You can also see this strategy in action with Tu’s bag and frock combination above. Thanks to their similar hues, the charming ikat-print bag is a sweet contrast to Tu’s swirling striped maxi dress.

Keep it graphic

If you’re a first-time pattern-mixer, opt for abstract prints in roughly the same scale – it’s a fact that graphic uniform prints are easier to mix than two polar-opposite patterns. Or make like Sophie Ellis-Bextor above and find clothing with the print mixing already built in. Tu’s “Africa” collection is crammed with lots of contrasting separates that celebrate the joy of #matchingnotmatching. Give it a whirl and let us know what you think!