How to design eclectic spaces with colours and prints?

A design guide to attaining a balanced visual


Colours add life to living, by reflecting people’s personalities and shaping behaviour through colour therapy. Every year, Pantone Colour Institute selects a colour of the year. This year, for the first time in its 22 year history of selecting a hue to represent the year ahead, it created a new colour. Named Very Peri, the dynamic periwinkle shade is a combination of blues blended with a violet-red undertone- a colour to symbolise the transformative year we’ve had and a new perspective looking ahead.


Today, there are an array of colours available at our disposal. With technological advancements, colours can easily be incorporated into the interior design scheme through various forms, one of which is prints. However, pairing colours and prints correctly and using them in appropriate proportions is the key to making or breaking a space. Here are a few tips and tricks to spruce up your interior spaces, while dabbling in prints, colours and patterns-


  1. Go to your colour wheel, take inventory of all the warm and cool colours available; look for complementary colours, monochromatic tones, secondary colours. Pair them as per your preferences.

  2. Know your options- Colours can be used in various ways- in solid tones, prints, and patterns. There is a range of options available for prints and patterns in every building material you can think of; be it tiles, wallpapers, fabrics, laminates or even textured paint.

  3. Pick one primary dominant colour, which could ideally be a neutral tone and pop it up with secondary and accent colours. This will help you tone down the space and provide a good ground for the play of colours.

  4. Remember to use colours through a balanced mix of solids, prints, patterns and textures in different elements of the space- furniture, decor and other features. Think of colours and prints for interior styling in soft furnishings, curtains, cushions, throws, rugs, trinkets, books, art pieces, photo frames, lamps etc. These accessories play a fundamental role in tying the whole space together.

  5. To create a mood board before implementing it on the space, collect your preferred colours—layer solid tones through patterns, prints, and textures. Use different materials to accentuate the layering.

  6. When layering patterns, it is best to combine prints in different styles and scales for the interior spaces.

  7. The key to a beautifully designed space spruced with colours is balance—of colour- neutral and accent, of prints and patterns. When all three are used in the correct proportions, the magic unfolds. If not, the space will be loud, overwhelming and tacky.


Keep the feel of the home interiors in mind. Regardless of the overall design sensibility, it is possible to incorporate colours and patterns in different kinds of design styles and ideologies. If the style is minimalist, one can use abstract prints and sophisticated shades. For a neutral space, the pop can be brought by placing a bright coloured chair or an eye-catching piece of furniture. Or, one could use a bold coloured sofa by a neutral wall and tone down the effect with some neutral accessories.


Remember that eclectic doesn’t mean randomly putting colours together; instead, it needs to be more thought through. But do not fear going bold with colours and prints, for that would make our lives and spaces mundane and monotonous. We can do wonders with this science and create harmonious interiors and temperaments with colours, prints, and patterns.


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