Rebecca-Atwood-Living-With-Pattern-Book-Review-1Ever since Rebecca Atwood announced her book, Living with Pattern, I’ve been so excited to read it. Why? Because Rebecca is one of those designers who has that je ne sais quoi about her work – it’s always captivating and, crucially, effortlessly stylish, too. Yet, there’s nothing too try hard about her designs; rather, Rebecca breathes fresh new life into classic patterns, from polka dots updated to random splotched dots though to stripes with a marble twist. Several years ago, I covered one of her previous collections right here on the blog. Since then, I’ve moved to New York City and we’ve had the chance to spend some time together on numerous occasions. I’m pleased to say that Rebecca as a person is just as warm and inviting as her designs, so it’s a pleasure to be sharing a few of my favorite spaces from her new book her on the blog today. Click through after the jump to see more from Living with Pattern!

Rebecca-Atwood-Living-With-Pattern-Book-Review-2Let it be known that I long to have an open, wooden staircase (as seen above) with a carpet laid up the centre. (Well, I long to actually own a home but that’s a whole separate blog post that’s on my list to write!) I like how the trio of patterned rugs tell a subtle color story by alternating from faded to saturated and then back to faded as the eye is naturally drawn up the stairs. I’m kicking off this post with an entryway space as it seemed fitting for the structure of Living with Pattern, which begins with ‘Primer’ as it’s first section. Rebecca talks the reader through how to understand your decorating story and relationship with pattern, how to use pattern, color and texture in unison and how to start telling your pattern story.Rebecca-Atwood-Living-With-Pattern-Book-Review-3Next is ‘Home’, where Rebecca takes the reader through use of pattern in each room of the home. Personally, I loved the bedroom chapter because I love it when I see people who are brave with the decorating choices in this space. Flashes of graphic or bold pattern add so much character to a sleeping space and can transform an unmemorable bedroom into a knockout space. Throughout all six chapters in this section, Rebecca has helpful pull out sections that show the reader how to make each approach to pattern their own. This sense of personalizing with pattern is something that I talk a lot about doing with color, so it really resonated with me.Rebecca-Atwood-Living-With-Pattern-Book-Review-4The third and final section of the book includes a series of step-by-step DIY pattern projects, including marble wall art and an upholstered headboard. I love that these projects make it easy to try your had at personalizing your space with pattern right away!Rebecca-Atwood-Living-With-Pattern-Book-Review-5Finally, I thought it would be useful to share Rebecca’s top five tips for pattern mixing as I think they are spot on:
1. If you are new to pattern you can dip your toes into it by using a limited color palette to tie all the styles together.
2. Mix and match the scales of patterns to keep things fresh and unforced.
3. Use bigger prints on areas you wish to draw the eye towards and then smaller print on the areas of the room you want to recede.
4. Around 40-60% of a room should be patterned.
5. Have fun! Pattern is a great way to tell your personal story in a space.
There’s something timeless about Living with Pattern, so much so that I know it will stand the test of time and I’ll be referring back to it for inspiration in many years. Which of these spaces from the book do you find most inspiring? How do you like to decorate with pattern in your home?Rebecca-Atwood-Living-With-Pattern-Book-Review-6 // Photography by Emily Johnston and published with permission from Clarkson Potter.


Will Taylor

Will lives in NYC and is an interior design author and content creator. He's been blogging about his love of design, style and travel since 2009. His #MakeYouSmileStyle approach to decorating and dressing has inspired over one million Instagram uploads to the hashtag from followers across the world.


  1. I didn’t realise Rebecca had a book out! Thanks for sharing these images, I really like the headboard print.

  2. Felicity Day Reply

    I remember discovering her work through that blog post on her pillows you did years ago!!! Always trust your book review posts so I will definitely get this one! Enjoy your day! xo

    • @Felicity – Love that! Kind of you to say; thanks for always being a supporter of the blog and the books that are featured here, it really does mean a lot.

  3. I think this will be useful for me as I’m terrified of bringing too much pattern into my home….worry it will give me a haadache…these rooms do you good so maybe I will…

    • @Barbara – I think you will feel really inspired by it, Barbara. Rebecca really breaks pattern down and makes it feel much less intimidating! 🙂

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  5. That bolster pillow in the last picture is everything. That’s the way I like pattern. Just a quick hit that opens your eyes and makes you smile. The color and texture are amazing.

  6. Great review! I agree that having patterns around looks like your life is organized. It feel so good!

  7. Dear Will! Thank you for this review. I love fabrics and patterns, but so not confident with where to start. I will get the book to start my pattern journey :)))) love your blog!

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Hey, I'm Will

Welcome to Bright.Bazaar, my make-you-smile style corner of the internet. I’ve been sharing my love of beautiful design, feel-good homes, everyday style, inspiring travel and, pretty much everything in between, since 2009. As well as working as a content creator, I write interior design books and edit a bi-weekly e-newsletter called Smile Mail. I live in New York City with my heartmate and can often be found listening to Madonna’s Confessions album and dreaming up my next home renovation project.