Well, hello there! Thanks for stopping by my blog today… If you made it here from Erica’s as part of the Mad March Memories Blog Hop, you’re in the right spot.
If you stumbled directly onto my blog you are in for a treat, but you’ll want to stop now and jump right over to check out what Liz Jutila has to say on the Design House Digital blog. She’ll let you know exactly what you need to do to be
entered into a drawing for a Wacom Bamboo tablet, plus how to get this amazing collab kit:
Gorgeous, isn’t it? That’s 42 papers, and 44 elements, and you can get it FREE. (Seriously… go read what Liz has to say!)
I’m super excited to be sharing with you one of my favorite things to do in digital scrapbooking: How to mix patterns in your digital layouts.
As a predominantly “paper” style scrapper, I love to recreate the look of layers and layers of patterned paper. It’s something that can be very intimidating to some people, so I’m going to share a few tricks I’ve learned. I’ll tell you which rules to break, which ones you can bend, and which ones you need to follow, and hopefully we’ll have some fun along the way.
Rule #1: Don’t mix more than 3 patterns. BREAK IT.
I’m not saying you have to use more than three, but don’t let any number be your standard: I used 17 different patterned papers here. SEVENTEEN. But, by keeping them in very small doses, and in similarly sized strips, they don’t compete with each other or overwhelm the photo.
Rule #2: Choose one base color, and make sure it is in all of your patterns. BEND IT.
I’m not going to lie, this one can be a good rule to follow, and an easy one. Each of the five patterned papers has pink in it, so they all go together. Working out of the same kit ensures that they will coordinate, and it takes the guesswork out of it. But, if you’re ready to take it to the next level…
Why not try mixing patterns and colors that don’t match? With this layout, I used multiple patterned papers with no colors in common. The eclectic mix gives it a fun and fresh vibe, but it’s kept grounded by a central design and neutral background.
Rule #3: Some patterns are solids. FOLLOW IT.
The background paper here is actually patterned. Yep… not a single solid paper was used on this layout. It’s neutral, not because of the color (although grey is obviously a neutral) but because of the very slight tonal pattern that reads as a solid.
Rule #4: Only use one multicolored pattern at a time. BREAK IT.
Yeah, I’m all up in this rule’s face. Using multiple patterned papers, with lots of different colors in them is just plain fun. How to make sure it jives? Work out of one kit. All of the patterned papers (except the neutral ledger) are from the same kit, so the colors are spot on. It can be tricky to mix strong multicolored patterns, and there’s no shame in taking the easy way!
Rule #5: Mix together a large prints, a small print, and a solid print. FOLLOW IT.
This is pretty much a way to always guarantee your patterns will work together, because they will always have enough variety to make it interesting. Wanna know something tricky, though? I’m also following #3 here, and my “solid” paper is actually the pink polka dot strip. That’s right.
Rule #6: Pair linear patterns with floral patterns. BEND IT.
While I love a good floral print, this is not a cut-and-dried rule. Here, I’ve put three very graphic prints together: the plaid, the polka dot, and the gingham from the bow. I’ve balanced out the strong lines with the scalloped paper edge and rounded label, so it still works!
Rule #7: Use shades and tints, instead of matching exactly. FOLLOW IT.
If you’re hesitant in any way about mixing patterns, this is the way to start out. It doesn’t matter how many different patterns I use because they are all in the same color family, and it allows me to play with another pattern… the stitched circle background!
Rule #8: Give your eyes a break. FOLLOW IT.
I think this is by far the most important rule there is… follow this, and you can’t really go wrong. Let’s do a quick check of our rules again, and see how this layout fares:
- 13 patterns total… definitely bent that rule.
- Nope, no base color in every pattern.
- Yep, the grey stripe is my neutral.
- 3 multicolored patterns!
- Large + small + solid: Yes.
- Linear and floral… check.
- Shades and tints of every color on there!
But, even with all that going on, I’ve left plenty of white space so it’s not visually jarring. It works.
One last thing I’d like to share about mixing patterns… it’s so freeing! As digital scrapbookers, we sometimes get caught up in kit scrapping. Designers are so great at giving us everything we need in one tidy folder, that we might not even venture out of it. If you can learn to look at all of your supplies, and mix and match no matter the designer, or store, or even style, you will truly be maximizing your supplies! And isn’t that one of the best things about digital, anyway?
I hope you’ve enjoyed checking out my blog today! Feel free to browse around, and if you’ve been following me you might want to update your links… I’ve moved, you see. Before you venture on to the next blog on the list, I’ve got two more things to share with you.
First, I’ve got my own contest for you: Comment here, and I’ll put your name in a drawing for a guest spot on my Creative Team. You’ll get all of the kits I release in March, April, May, and June for free! FA-REE! Share this blog post (through Facebook, your blog, or Twitter) and “Like” my page on Facebook for even more chances… just leave an additional comment for each one here with a link, please. Contest ends Wednesday, Mar 14 at 11:59 PM MST.
Now, scurry along to Jen Allyson’s blog and see what she’s got to share with you. Don’t forget to take your secret letter… it’s
Like the supplies I used on my layouts? Click on the images for credits.