Home Ideas: Polka Dot Decorating With a Tasteful Twist

Many people start to squirm at the mention of polka dots. They simply don’t like them or they associate them with little girls and dresses and never think that they could be used in a serious decorating scheme. In recent years, polka dots have made something of a resurgence and are now gracing a variety of walls in homes and businesses around the world. Polka dots can be trendy, sophisticated, and even edgy when done right. Here are some tips for making polka dots work for you.


Polka dot curtains can be a great way to add color and interest to any room. This works especially well with shower curtains, but is suitable for any space. Sometimes white curtains with bold polka dots are the way to go while bold curtains with subtle polka dots work in other places.

Play With Polka Dots Sizes

Large polka dots come across as bold and sophisticated and sometimes playful depending on the color. They are a great way to grab attention and to spice up a bland wall. Smaller polka dots tend to have a calming influence on a room. They are interesting, but not overwhelming.

Play With Density and Patterns

The density of the dots can impact how a room feels. Dense polka dots feel more sophisticated and formal while sparse polka dot designs tend to feel more casual and playful. With sparse polka dot patterns, you can also play with regularity so that the dots are not in any particular pattern, but rather are more randomly situated. The random approach also helps to lend a casual, comfortable feel to a room.

Change Colors

Polka dots don’t have to be all one color. Using multiple colors of dots can make a room feel bolder and more interesting. Using multiple dot colors works especially well when only one wall has dots and acts as an accent wall. The color that goes behind the polka dots is just as important as the color or size of the dots themselves. Think of the background color as the palette upon which the dots will be placed so that it helps to draw viewers to the dots, but doesn’t detract from them.

Mix Patterns

Polka dots go well with other patterns, like stripes, and even with other shapes. You can do one wall in dots and the others in stripes. You could do one wall in dots and another in triangles or you could mix and match shapes on the same wall.

Subtle Artwork

If you don’t want to go overboard with polka dots, then think about incorporating them into a piece of artwork or picture that hangs in a room. These wall hangings can be great DIY projects as they are quick, easy, and inexpensive to create.


Another subtle way to get polka dots into a room is on pillows or other linens. You can purchase them ready-made or create your own with paint or other material. Small pillows tend to work better for this, but you may find a use for large throws, rugs, or large pillows. Polka dot bedding, like that offered at http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/store/s/polka-dot-bedding, is particularly eye-catching.

Try It

You can’t know how great polka dots will look in a room without trying them out. That said, testing a design as simple as polka dots is as easy as printing out a few test pages on your home printer. Move them around the room and to different rooms to figure out what design idea suits your tastes best.

Lisa Carnes is always looking for new ways to spruce up her condo. An avid writer, she also shares what she finds in an effort to help others that are looking for inspiration. You can find her articles on many of today’s home improvement, garden and cooking websites and blogs.

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