Described as funky and stylish, pattern on pattern is a popular term in the fashion industry. IT does not matter if you are building your wardrobe in the fall or in the spring season, you will want to follow a few fashion DOs. Pairing up bold designs and prints to create your own pattern on pattern look can be tricky, so please read through and learn how to embrace it.

The Pattern on Pattern Movement

Wearing pattern on pattern style clothing indicates that you are an out of the box thinker when it comes to making a brilliant fashion statement. It’s not for the faint of heart; however, and for those that believe that all of your colors, patterns and textures should match perfectly, this style may not be for you until you take on a different mindset. From florals and leopard prints to gingham and stripes, the combinations of pairings appear to be endless.

First, you will want to begin by choosing one piece of clothing and building your outfit around it this will give you a solid basis for your ensemble. Second, make sure your colors matchanother important factor in pattern mixing. Third, the hues should be unique in order to create visual depth and contrast.

Keep in mind that going too far with a pattern on pattern look can be a disaster, especially if you mix more than four patterns. Using the formula of three or less when it comes to creating this look can be the difference between stylish and disheveled.

No look is complete without accessories. However, your pattern mixing should be the focus of your outfit. That’s why you want to monitor the effect that accessories such as your shoes, watches, and even briefcases or totes are having on the rest of your look.

There are no limits when it comes to pattern on pattern, so try your hand at being different. However, remember that while this interesting trend can look chic, you should continue reading to find out how exactly to do it right.

#1. Glad to Get Plaid

The 90’s were significant for many reasons, but one of the most prominent movements that had an impact on the fashion industry was grunge music. While flannel is typically seen as something solely worn to keep us warm, it was instrumental for those who favored grunge music. Seattle, Washington’s roots run deep when it comes to flannel. However, it didn’t take long before stylists began to expand on those patterns. Mixing together plaid with dots and various colors can be eye-popping, on everything, from hats and shirts to pants and blazers.

Whether you are Mick Jagger, Ryan Gosling, Joseph Gordon-Levitt or not, blanket plaid is a brash and electric way to complete your pattern on pattern look. Large scaled patterns such as this bold plaid jacket mixed with a dotted collared shirt and brightly colored tie will instill confidence from the boardroom to a dinner out with your favorite date.

You can also brighten up your plaids with various colors and textures. Instead of the typical drab shades, you might try teaming them with corduroys in shades of plum or magenta. Another option is to go with a darker version of plaid stripes. However, instead of using it as a primary color, you can make it a brighter hue in the background. With such different and profound results, you may even start your own fashion revolution.

#2. Layer Your Leather

Leather pants, shirts, jackets, and even hats were the order of the day in the 90’s. It all started in the late 80’s when hair metal and long beards were huge, but leather grabbed a hold of 90’s fashions and would not let go.

Leather is making another comeback, and the creativity is already starting to show up when modern takes on a vintage style. Colored leather is extremely popular these days, which is a new take on an old fashion statement. Every color from blue to hot pink is showing up in leather clothing and it is being seen everywhere from nightclubs to the college classrooms around the country.

The idea of overlapping multiple colors to get a pattern on pattern effect is also extremely popular and people are even adding other fabric patterns to the interior lining of their leather to give it more character. You can expand on pattern on pattern mixing by pairing paisley leather pants with a printed shirt and tie. By using hues that go mesh, you can pull this mismatched look together.

#3. Fashion Sneakers


The 1980’s saw the birth of America’s sneaker obsession with the introduction of Air Jordans. Once the Air Jordan sneaker line took off, every NBA player marked their success by the size of their own sneaker deal. It was an American obsession that spilled over into the 1990’s. In the 90’s, pump technology added just the novelty Americans needed to fall back in love with sneakers, but the novelty wore off and sneakers went back into a niche market.

It is hard to pinpoint exactly when fashion sneakers started to make a comeback, but more and more supermodels are being seen wearing fashion sneakers than ever before. Of course, that contemporary theme of adding bright colors is in full effect to create a sneaker look that is definitely different. Another contemporary twist on sneakers is the change to shiny materials from the burlap-looking products that were popular decades ago.


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While basic white sneakers were the thing in the 80’s, that is certainly not the case anymore. Colorful patterns are being interspersed with stripes and other solids to turn sneakers into colorful fashion statements. Colors that would not normally match are being layers onto each other to create patterns that get people’s attention. From neons and vibrant blues to leopard prints and spots, your shoes can be the piece de résistance when pulling an outfit together. Now is the time to rev up your  footwear closet with some pattern mixing.

#4. Designer Sunglasses

Designer sunglasses were extremely popular in the 80’s, thanks in large part to the movie “Top Gun“. When the 90’s hit, designer sunglasses were so popular that retail businesses like the Sunglass Hut surpassed $100 million in sales by 1991. That is a lot of sunglasses, but then it all just seemed to fade away.


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Putting your finger on the exact moment when designer sunglasses came back into vogue is not easy, but there has been a revival in sunglasses that is hard to ignore. The contemporary spin on the newest sunglasses revival is that sunglasses are much more functional than they have ever been. The newest trend is to have a pair of sunglasses for driving, skateboarding, skiing, and riding your bike on a summer’s day.

Not only are sunglasses getting specific, but they are also taking on pattern on pattern looks that are definitely different. Large-framed sunglasses with patterned lenses are extremely popular, as well as glasses that have colored lenses shaded by streams of beads. It is interesting to see what people can come up with when they combine chandelier or pattern designs on eyeglasses to come up with something very original.


Funky fashion statements and 90’s style trends are starting to make a comeback and they are all been given a contemporary twist, the pattern on pattern trend.  Whether you chose to embrace it through these 5 ways or you find new better ones – it is really up to you. We cannot wait to see more and more brave gentlemen that are ready to stand out and be different.