Interior Design

Designer Flora Soames explains how to attain a classic British aesthetic – with mixed textiles

The fabric expert shares how to mix and match patterns so you can bring this quintessential style into your home – wherever you are

The Pavilion Collection by printed textile designer Flora Soames
(Image credit: Simon Upton)

There is a certain allure to British style, which has endured over the centuries – but Flora Soames is ensuring it will continue for years to come. With its timeless but nonetheless contemporary ambiance, this look is celebrated in interiors far beyond Britain's shores. But what is the secret to its style? 

Flora's eclectic designs epitomize all we love about this style – from her audacious fabrics to ornate wallpapers. Here, Flora, who releases her Pavilion Collection today, shares her interior design tips – and how to achieve the look through printed fabrics. 

Flora Soames with her daughter in the garden

Flora with her daughter, Lily Hope

(Image credit: Simon Upton)

How to curate a classic British style with patterned textiles

There is an un-precious quality to a naturally British aesthetic, with a sense of nonchalance where not everything needs to sit alongside each other in perfect harmony. A brave approach to color and pattern is a key part of this – that and mixing old with new,' Flora explains.  

Perhaps the perfect place to search for bold patterns is with the Pavilion Collection, which draws inspiration from authentic 1930s samplers. 'We have chosen to promote this collection alongside the Houghton Collection Sassoon wicker lounger since I feel this is a great marriage championing the glamour and nostalgia of a certain period,' she adds.

The Pavilion Collection by printed textile designer Flora Soames

(Image credit: Simon Upton)

'I feel this is a great marriage championing the glamor and nostalgia of a certain period. I did also have one eye on the decadence Slim Aarons captured in his work. The crispness of the stripes and the corresponding Tree of Life Serpentine Grove, with their distinct color palette, lend themselves brilliantly to a romantic English garden or exotic poolside location,' Flora adds. 

Flora's pattern mixing secrets  

The Pavilion Collection by printed textile designer Flora Soames

(Image credit: Simon Upton)

While we're ready to embrace Flora's tips, we know that pairing old and contemporary prints is a risk. However, as the designer reveals how to mix patterns in a room, it's one that we are certainly willing to take. 

'I like to look at patterns thinking what associations and memories they conjure. This is at the heart of our collection of fabrics,' Flora begins. 

'An interior is meant to feel something – and by that, I do not mean challenging. A very satisfying and structured stripe, alongside an old-fashioned blousy print, can all be made to sing if there is that balance between bold and the more subtle,' she adds.

The Pavilion Collection by printed textile designer Flora Soames

(Image credit: Simon Upton)

'There are countless layers to turn to achieve this; it is just about making sure there is not a total overload of the senses – not every piece needs to take center stage.'

Plus, if you're worried that an overflow of color will interrupt your minimalist scheme, Flora reassures us that it remains possible to combine patterns without impacting a pared-back style. So, we can rewrite all our minimalistic bedroom wallpaper ideas and inject some botanic beauty into our scheme. 

The Maud Slipper Chair in Plain Stripe Emerald

The Maud Slipper Chair in Plain Stripe Emerald from The Pavilion Collection

(Image credit: Simon Upton)

'I do not think color or pattern need be sacrificed in a minimalist home. The same rules apply, and it is about being mindful of structure, form, and a tailored quality to the designs you are bringing [into the space].' 

The Pavilion Collection by printed textile designer Flora Soames

(Image credit: Simon Upton)

After a tutorial from the expert herself, we have no reservations in filling our homes (and gardens) with the Pavilion Collection throughout the rest of the summer. 

The Pavilion Stripe Umbrella is £1260 ($1739), and the Serpentine Grove is £1300 ($1793). 

Megan Slack
Megan Slack

Megan is a News Writer across Future Plc's Homes titles. She has a background in national newspapers in the UK and has experience in fashion and travel journalism, which she previously practised whilst living in Paris and New York City. Her adoration for these fashion capitals means she particularly enjoys writing about upcoming styles and trends for Homes & Gardens. Megan also loves discovering vintage pieces in her spare time, meaning her decor is largely influenced by the beauty of the jazz age.