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Tribal Patterns Take Interiors by Storm


Tribal trends from African inspired interiors

Tribal patterns and prints are a super-hot and increasingly super-chic trend for Interior Design in 2014.  Usually, interior trends follow fashion trends so we can certainly give a nod to the runway for updating these patterns and giving them a contemporary spin in both neutrals and vivid colors.  Pantone has named this design movement “Tribal Threads” and it is prevalent for the Home Interiors forecast for 2014.  They say:

The colors in this palette are as varied as the tribal diversity they represent, yet they construct a universal linkage of artistic appreciation rooted in personal expression.  Color combinations may be disarmingly simple or as complex as interwoven threads.

Thankfully, you don’t have to travel far to bring home the earthy, globally-inspired pieces to your home.  This tribal patterns trend is all about color, pattern and geometric shapes so whether you love color or prefer a more subtle modern version of the African-inspired designs, consider incorporating the following pieces into your home’s design.

Tribal Patterns Trend: SOFT NEUTRALS

Tribal Patterns on  Bedding from Anthropologie

Tribal is all about the pattern, especially geometric patterns. Anthropologie brings tribal influences to many housewares, including this arrowhead-flavored bedding with a soft and versatile color scheme. I especially love the pink!

African Inspired Fabrics and Tribal Pattern Textiles

African Tribal Pattern Inspired Fabrics and Furniture

West Elm has come out strong with wonderful pieces that showcase an elegant African flair. Their designs showcase variations of printed textiles and updated animal prints.

Tribal Patterns for Indoor Rugs by Loloi

A fresh take on nomadic, Moroccan inspired rugs, the Sahara from Loloi Rugs makes a stylish statement. A design trend doesn’t mean you need to transform your home entirely to one look. This room vignette showcases how you can incorporate these warm, earthy prints into your existing design as stylish accents.

Tribal Pattern Wall Treatment Finish

Of course, if you love the style – embrace it! These walls feature a woven tribal patterns tapestry pattern treatment from the über-creative Wall & Decò.  It is especially lovely when mixed with striped patterns and set within a rustic yet elegant space.

Tribal Patterns Trend: VIVID COLORS

Fashion Inspired Tribal Patterns Threads Interiors

Runway to Roomway! You can see how fashion does indeed influence home interiors in this dark and colorful room by Anthropologie.

Fun Bright Colors in Kitchen | Tribal Pattern Trend for Home Interiors

Fun and bright housewares with an updated take on African tribals patterns are perfect for the young at heart. These are offered by West Elm.

Baskets and Lamp Shades | Tribal Pattern Trends from World Market

True to their name, World Market also offers a variety of these graphic designs bursting with color. The vivid hues will spruce up your home and bring a welcome dose of pattern! I could also see these being transformed into DIY shades for an overhead light fixture.

Vibrant and Eclectic Design with African Inspired Tribal Patterns

Traditional and Tribal Pattern Design Mix | Home Interior Trends

Designer Kim Salmela brings travel-inspired designs to her home furnishings line.  Exotic patterns mixed with the layering of patterns describes her global aesthetic perfectly. Here, she creates a thrilling (and riotous) blend of tribal designs with both traditional and eclectic interiors.

There is a certain culture and mystery to these designs that make the geometric patterns so intriguing! It’s also a fantastic way to incorporate nature and texture into your surroundings. Tribal patterns are not necessarily a “new” trend as the African-inspired designs have been around for centuries. It’s the mix of these historic designs with new design influences that make the look so timeless.

For the color palette, you can use rich reds, warm oranges, yellow mustards, natural greens, browns and blues as well as both black, white, grays and creams – but as you can see, it’s easy to interpret the colors for your style.  Hope you’ve enjoyed the stroll through this vibrant and organic tribal patterns design trend – and let us know if and how you would incorporate it into your own spaces in the comments!


  1. Beautiful post. I am more in love with my African travel treasures than ever. And, yes, I am wearing a cheetah print sweater.

  2. Sigh. I can’t pull off a cheetah print sweater, Debbie, but definitely CAN pull off some of these patterns in my home. Would love to see how you’ve incorporated your travel treasures from Africa!

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