Home Decorating Pretty as a Picture: Painterly Prints

Pretty as a Picture: Painterly Prints

For us, decorating the bedroom for the warm-weather months is the equivalent of pulling all those adorable, colorful, featherweight sundresses out of their long winter-closet hibernation, and using every conceivable excuse to toss them on—from a trip to the grocery store to afternoon coffee with friends and hanging out on the porch swing with a book and a glass of iced tea. Over the years, we’ve found a tried-and-true way to add a pop of effervescent personality to our bedroom design: painterly prints, in sunny (but never overly sweet) hues and brushstroke- and watercolor-inspired patterns that pair with everything from bright solid bedding to other patterns in complementary palettes.


Although Annie has been dabbling in painterly patterns for a while, she upped her design game this year after a trip to the art markets of Paris, where she spied some incredible watercolor paintings. The resulting printed sheets, duvets, and shams are exactly what our color-starved bedrooms have been craving. We love that we can pair a more subtle, delicately patterned sheet set with a bright, happy hue, like this throw and shams in coral:




Or we can let a bold print do the talking over a plain white background, like this rosy pink and orange duvet over white sheets, and a pretty, gathered bed skirt.




For a variation on the same theme, we put together this botanical print with a feminine, ruffly bedspread and sham, for the same impact in an even subtler palette.




When we want a more streamlined, urban look, we opt for a sharp palette of white mixed with one color in multiple shades, like this mix of a rich indigo matelassé coverlet and shams, bright white embroidered sheets, and a dreamy duvet in an eye-popping blue floral.




But some days, we just want to go for broke with color. In this version, we layered a cozy quilted matelassé coverlet, sham, and throw in two different, citrusy hues with white sheets. We topped them with a duvet cover and shams in an effervescent, multicolor pattern.




And sometimes we’re all about layering color and pattern. Check out this ingenious mix of a bright, Indian-style paisley with an Old World, sun-washed print on a white background. Pop it with a single bright color from either palette, and it’s a to-the-nth-degree bedding look that goes right to the edge, but never over the top.


Printed duvets, sheets, and shams have proven to be so versatile, with practically endless mix-and-remix combinations, that they’ve become a new staple of our bedding wardrobe. Stay tuned as the seasons turn, and we show you all-new ways to style these—and even more—printed bedding coordinates for year-round use.

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