Toile is the traditional print that's making a modern-day comeback – here are 9 pieces to shop the rustic style

Toile design is having a moment in design right now, and this cheerful style should absolutely be on your radar

A selection of toile designs
(Image credit: West Elm, Target, Ruggable)

Toile designs might remind you of period dramas, but this traditional pattern is making a comeback in 2024 and brands are recreating beautiful versions of this old-fashioned print. Everywhere you look, you see repeated patterns of toile on wallpaper, rugs, and even duvets, showcasing rich designs with a prominent attention to detail. 

So what exactly is toile? Well, toile is a French word meaning ‘linen cloth’ or ‘canvas’, and the type of fabric first rose to popularity in the mid-1700s. Essentially, toile simply refers to a pattern repeated on the fabric, and most of the time, the pattern depicts a highly complex, detailed, pastoral scene with colors like blue, green, or red over a white or beige background. 

And with this rising interior design trend, many designers and decor brands are putting their own spin on the look, from floral motifs with textured details to easy coastal-inspired designs.

Bathroom decorated with toile wallpaper

(Image credit: Little Greene)

Take famed interior designer Sheila Bridges, who most recently created a Harlem toile pattern that has been inspired by her own heritage. ‘As an African-American living in Harlem, I have always been intrigued and inspired by the historical narrative of the decorative arts, especially traditional French toile with its pastoral motifs from the late 1700s,’ says Sheila. 

‘I'm entertained by the stories these patterns tell and the questions they sometimes raise. But after searching for many years for the perfect toile for my own home, I decided that it quite simply didn’t exist. I created Harlem Toile de Jouy initially as a wallcovering but then expanded the collection to include fabrics, bedding, plates, glassware, umbrellas, and clothing. This design lampoons some of the stereotypes deeply woven into the African American experience.’

As you can see, toile can encompass pretty much any repeating scene, as long as attention to detail and nature-inspired prints take center stage. Take a look at my favorite options to make decorating with toile an absolute breeze.

While the initial look of toile design might seem a bit stuffy and traditional, it’s actually a wonderfully chic option to decorate your home with. You can find toile wallpaper, bedspreads, rugs, and so much more, but even subtle coasters and blankets can help you bring a touch of it to your space. No matter whether you want something more traditional or a unique take, there’s a toile option out there for everyone.

Nikhita Mahtani
Style Editor

Nikhita is the Style Editor for Homes & Gardens, making sure our home-savvy readers are always aware of the latest trends and deepening their knowledge of classic design. Nikhita graduated with her Master of Arts in Magazine Journalism from New York University, and has spent a decade in interior design and shopping roles at shelter publications ELLE DECOR and Domino Magazine.