Mixing Prints

Mixing prints is one of my go-to tricks for keeping a look visually interesting. However, print mixing must be done with care. Mix the wrong prints, and you risk becoming a fashion disaster.

Mixing different prints within the same outfit is nothing new. It has become commonplace both on the runways and in street style. In fact, I mixed stripes and florals in one of the first looks I featured here back in early 2015.

In order to avoid a visit from the fashion police, just follow these two cardinal rules for mixing prints:

2 Cardinal Rules

1. Stick with the same scale

Here, I was able to combine not two but three prints successfully due in large part to the prints being similar in size. If the floral print was a tiny, dainty size, it wouldn’t have worked with this fairly thick stripes and medium-sized dots. If the scale of prints isn’t similar, the look is disrupted and one print will dominate inordinately.

2. Connect with color

The second reason I was able to make florals + stripes + dots all work together is that there is one color that flows throughout the patterns. In this case, the unifying color is black. You can spot it on the shoes, the skirt, and even the as an accent on the floral top. I then tied it all together with black sunglasses and a bag accented in black.

Does that make sense? If so, congratulations! You just received the equivalent of a high school diploma in print mixing with just those two easy tips.

Would you like to continue your print mixing education? Here are three of the best resources from around the web for getting that advanced degree:

1. Celebrity stylist Brad Goreski shares 18 tips for mixing prints here.

2. Fashion authority The Blonde Salad shares how to wear different patterns together here.

3. Cosmopolitan Magazine shares four tips for mixing prints here.

Bonus for today: Both this shirt and this skirt are frugal finds! The striped skirt is right around $100 while the floral top is less than $50 (with code “GREATSALE”). Even the polka dot shoes are on sale for about $150! The pieces are affordable while still maintaining great quality.

To shop even more frugal finds that will help take you from summer to fall, be sure to check out our roundup of the top 20 transitional pieces here. All pieces are less than $150. Most are far less than that!

Shop My Look

J.Crew top (on sale with extra 30% off with code “GREATSALE”) | Topshop skirt (here and here) | Semilla heels | Bao Bao Issey Miyake tote | David Yurman necklace (similar) | Jennifer Fisher bracelet | Ellery sunglassesOPI nail polish

Do you like to mix prints? Is this a look you might try? At these prices, you can afford to experiment. Just keep those two cardinal rules in mind!

Have a great week! Thanks as always for stopping by.


Photography by Ashley Cardoza



  1. monic says:

    I love mixing prints these are all so perfect together !


    1. Carrie says:

      So nice, Monic! Thank you.

  2. M says:

    Great look! Looks amazing

    Made in Mauve Bloglovin

    1. Carrie says:

      Thanks so much, M! I appreciate you stopping by.

  3. May says:

    This is print mixing perfection! I will NEVER be able to mix prints as well as you do, and omg, that’s a fourth print on the bag, technically, if you look at your outfit as a whole. So, so good!

    May | THE MAYDEN

    1. Carrie says:

      Hey May – you make a great point about the 4th print! 😉

      I really appreciate your nice words. Thanks for stopping by! Have a great day.

  4. Molly says:

    How adorable are you?! Love this look!


    1. Carrie says:

      Thanks a bunch, Molly! So sweet.

  5. You totally nailed it!! I love every single print going on in this outfit!

    xo Jen
    Skirt The Rules

    1. Carrie says:

      So nice, Jen! I really appreciate your kind words. Have a great day!

  6. Rachel says:

    Great look, you nailed the rules of mixing prints. so much personality in this out, i love it.


    1. Carrie says:

      Thanks so much, Rachel. I really appreciate that. I love mixing prints. 🙂

  7. Kathy says:

    Wow! Such a great mix of 4 different prints. I really love this look. Such great rules. I love to mix prints myself. I usually just hold things up to each other to see if it works. I will have to try using these rules as well now, especially when shopping online where I can’t just hold things up to each other.


    1. Carrie says:

      Thanks so much, Kathy!

      Well, kudos to you on having an eye for matching things. Maybe these rules will allow you to be a little more intentional about it online, as you mentioned.

      Have a great day!

  8. anna says:

    oh my goodness, this is such a fun combo. That skirt is everything. You look amazing, love. xx

    Fash Boulevard

    1. Carrie says:

      Thanks so much, Anna! I appreciate it. Isn’t the skirt fun? Such a steal too.

  9. Bella B says:

    You are the master of colour and prints! I have never been good at mixing prints, so I will try your pointers.


    1. Carrie says:

      I really appreciate that, Bella! I can’t wait to see what prints you mix.

  10. Michèle says:

    looks really really cool. especially the skirt

    1. Carrie says:

      Thanks so much, Michele! Isn’t the skirt cute? And such a good deal!

  11. Merritt says:

    I love how you’re always matching, no matter the outfit! I think you and I may have the same OCD tendencies to match. Looking adorable per usual!

    The Style Scribe

  12. Rozemarijn says:

    I love how you mixed all these prints! Have a wonderful day!


  13. Emily Jenny says:

    OMG your polka dot heels are to DIE for! Love this look. You master the print on print like no other.

    Emily Jenny

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *