How And Where To Use Checkerboard Patterns In Home Décor

Over the past few years, checkerboard patterns have made their way into interior design. Though some people may think decorating the home with checkered prints makes for an unusual design, the print is growing in popularity, notes interior Designer Tim Neve from Living Etc. "Nowadays, checks are popping up on products everywhere – from textiles to ceramics. It means you can choose to add a small dose of it to an interior, or really make a graphic statement depending on the scale of homewares you choose."

Checkerboard patterns don't always involve black-and-white checks. To work with checkerboard print in a more modern way, gingham patterns featuring shades of red, brown, and cream are the way to go. When utilized properly, checkerboard patterns could work in any room alongside a variety of aesthetics, as David King of Home Union told Architectural Digest. "It's timeless in the true sense of the word. You can put it in a farmhouse or a super modern house that has no color, and then all of a sudden there's checkerboard in there." Here's how to style with checkerboard patterns at home. 

Use black and white checkerboard prints

Go bold by incorporating black and white checkerboard patterns in the home. Interior designers prefer black and white home designs due to the timeless chicness of both colors paired together. "People choose black and white because it's clean, clear and bold. Because it uses two ends of the spectrum, it creates drama through contrast. Just as in fashion, in interiors the combination feels sure and sophisticated," Ethan Allen interior designer Joanne LaFauci told Orlando Sentinel.

Black and white checkerboard patterns are versatile and cozy at the same time, according to Trendy Home Hacks. To not overpower a certain room with checkerboard patterns, go subtle by placing a black and white checkered rug on the entryway floor. Doing so will add a pop of pattern to an otherwise overlooked space. It could serve as the focal point before stepping into the living room. For those who have a plain colored entryway bench, toss some cotton black and white checkered pillows on top, or purchase pillow covers like this Fairley Gingham Cotton Throw Pillow Cover from Wayfair. Hang framed pictures above the bench featuring black and white designs, or go country by hanging up a wooden plaque with a catchy phrase. 

Using neutral tones with checkerboard prints

Keep the color palette and prints within the home neutral when working with checkerboard patterns. Since many people enjoy the freshness of the outdoors, decorating the living room and kitchen in shades of beige, cream, and green will add flair. "We now want to channel that feeling in our home too, with warm, cozy shades inspired by the natural world," advises Crown senior designer Justyna Korczynska in Home & Gardens.

Establish a warm living environment by having checkerboard patterned area rugs in tan and cream alongside white sofas in the living room or dining room areas (via The Chalkboard). For a clean look, mix and match patterns of checkerboard print and striped towels and washcloths together to place inside of a bathroom. Neither pattern overpowers the other if colors are kept light. This Geometric Bath Towel Set from JcPenney's has both neutral colors and neutral prints that'll work for any occasion and season.

Add ceramic checkerboard decor to space

Liven up a space by supplying the area with ceramic pieces that feature checkerboard patterns. One way to go about creating a checkerboard piece would be to DIY one, as demonstrated by Me & Mr. Jones. After finding a potted planter, buy square stickers from a craft store to place all over the planter. Once the squares are settled onto the planter, use spray paint to cover the whole ceramic. Painter's tape should be applied around the planter to avoid any splatter. Use tweezers to remove the squares after spraying the paint. Cover the ceramic with a matte gloss coat after it has dried.

A small black and white checkerboard printed bowl like this Courtly Check® Hand-Glazed Steel Pot Planter from Wayfair would look pleasant nestled on top of a brown wooden bedside table with a lush green plant inside of it. Work with rich tones against the brown wooden bedside table by painting the walls an evergreen color, and placing navy blue bedsheets with a dark gray comforter on the bed. For those who prefer the old-fashioned country chic aesthetic, gingham ties everything together. Work with dishware ceramics by placing this Black & White Gingham Stoneware Pitcher from Amazon on top of a kitchen table with a matching black and white gingham tablecloth underneath for extra effect. If that sounds too "matchy," place the pitcher on top of a red, blue, or yellow checkered patterned tablecloth instead.

Work with other patterns

Though checkerboard pattern could look bombastic on its own, it pairs well with other prints. Take color, scale, and mood into consideration before working with multiple prints, as noted by The House That Lars Built. When decorating a kitchen in checkerboard patterns, keep the walls a solid color. For those who want to go bold, paint the walls a bright, cherry red. Hang small, patterned gingham checkered blue curtains on the kitchen windows. Purchase and display dishware designed with large yellow and green flower prints. Utilizing the bright colors will enable the kitchen to feel welcoming and open. The checkered and floral patterns look playful and fun mixed decorated together.

Spice up one of the home's bathrooms by using checkerboard patterns and polka dots. Retile the floors in black and white ceramic checkerboard. The shower curtain, towels, washcloths, and bathroom rugs could all be black and white polka dots. The geometric difference between squares and circular prints adds a sense of layering and texture to the space. Keep walls neutral, but add a framed colorful painted picture to the wall as a subtle focal point. The approach is simple, but sleek.

Incorporate checkerboard patterns in nurseries

For parents who may need some insight on decorating their baby's nursery, checkered patterns add a classic, cozy feel. Why not make a nursery designed with checkered pale blue accents, as shown by House With Home? An effortless way to go about decorating the room with checkerboard patterns would be to install pale blue checkered curtains on the window. Purchase crib bedding of the same design. Parents could keep the bedding white, but add a pale blue checkered baby blanket over the crib or on top of a rocking chair as an accent.

Tie pale blue checkered ribbon around the necks of the stuffed animals to stay with the checkerboard aesthetic. Soft blues are common and simplistic to work in any room, and evoke an essence of serenity, delicateness, and calmness. The baby needs to feel at peace and safe in their bedroom, so design plays a part in establishing mood and comfort.

Parents could also consider playing around with shades of pink checkerboard patterns in room design (via Unique Baby Gear Ideas). Carnation pink checkerboard valances would look amazing on the windows in the nursery. A soft throw rug patterned with pink checkerboard patterns could be added into the nursery along with a matching bedroom chair. Keep the rest of the room neutral, or use pink checkerboard wallpaper (via I Spy Fabulous). 

Tile floors with checkerboard

According to My Home, tiled floors with checkerboard patterns don't have to look antiquated. Tiled flooring could entice a sense of whimsy and produce a fancy, modern, or farmhouse-inspired vibe within the home. One way to use tile in the home would be to design a kitchen backsplash in shades of gray and charcoal checkerboard patterns. To tile the full kitchen floor, stay with porcelain tiles for durability. Be unique rather than using black and white tiles by finding tiles in pastel shades of blue, green, or yellow to evoke quietness. Rather than stay with typical checkered tiles, go with hexagonal and octagonal designed tiles that could be shaped into a checkered pattern.

Feature bold colors with checkerboard patterned tiling (via Daltile). Red and white tiled checkerboard flooring patterns would look great in an Asian-inspired home aesthetic. Blue and white tiled checkerboard flooring could be featured in a South of the border, or Mediterranean-styled home. If you're going to go with bold checkerboard patterned tiled flooring in the kitchen, stay with neutral granite countertops and plain colored walls. For the living room, install diagonally designed checkerboard patterned tiling to highlight oversized furniture and downplay unevenly shaped walls. 

Work with checkerboard wallpaper

Before going ahead with checkerboard-designed wallpaper, think about utilizing bold and bright colors, according to These Three Rooms. Bold checkerboard patterned wallpaper could add personality to a room depending on the mood you'd like to convey. Red and orange checkerboard patterned wallpaper in the living room would feel energizing and exciting. To enhance feelings of productivity or stillness, blue or green checkerboard patterned wallpaper in an at-home office would work in the environment. Layer patterns by having statement walls. Enhance a small room by having one wall in colorful checkerboard patterns. The remaining walls could be in different patterns such as stripes, florals, or spheres.

Complete a checkerboard bedroom wall painting project by hand (via Classy Clutter). For those who would rather do with neutral tones than bold shades, stay with tans and creams. Use painter's tape to create even squares on the bedroom walls. With a paintbrush and paint roller, color in the squares with tan paint. After the tan paint has dried, color in the remaining squares with cream-colored paint. Two to three coats of paint will cover the former paint color. Take off the painter's tape once everything has dried.

Add height by utilizing checkerboard patterns on ceilings

Having a checkerboard patterned ceiling will draw attention to the eye because it acts as a focal point by being an extravagant statement piece. Complete a DIY project by making your own checkerboard patterned ceiling by first measuring how big the squares need to be, noted by Not Just a Housewife. Use a laser measuring level with adhesive strips to pencil in straight lines. The top part of the ceiling's molding could act as a straight edge to trace a line across when beginning.

After lines have been marked in pencil, use painter's tape to construct squares by placing it slightly under the lines all over the ceiling. Use a pencil to mark "X's" on the squares that'll be painted the darker color. Go towards dark gray tones, burgundies, or bronzed colors for effect. For the lighter-colored checkers, go for paint shades in ivory or cream. Paint the squares with a paintbrush or rolling paintbrush, and paint over the painter's tape as well. Within 24 hours, take the painter's tape off the ceiling. Be sure everything is dry before removing the paint so as not to smudge anything.

Decorate for all seasons with checkerboard patterns

Black and white checkerboard print could work within the home for all seasons, as said by Craft + Sparkle. You can achieve a variety of seasonal designs by working with black and white checkered plates, table runners, ribbons, and wreaths. For an Easter party, place mint green plates on top of a black and white checkerboard patterned tablecloth on a dining table. Gather plastic pastel Easter eggs and place them inside glass bowls on top of the table. Don't forget to purchase black and white checkered napkins as well. Pastel shades look bright against black and white shades.

Go for a watermelon picnic theme during the summertime by buying watermelon plates and cups to have on top of a black and white tablecloth on the patio table. Have a few black and white checkerboard patterned pillows around the patio table for guests to sit on. For fall, grab a wooden palette and place a wooden bowl filled with faux white, orange, and brown pumpkins on top of a black and white checkerboard patterned table runner on top. For winter, tie black and white checkerboard patterned ribbons around the tops of lanterns and place them on top of outdoor side tables. Wrap the ribbon around Christmas trees, or around Christmas wreaths to be festive. The black and white may seem nontraditional, but the colors and checkered patterns mix well with green and red.

Introduce funky checkerboard elements

Want to decorate a bedroom with funky checkerboard patterns? Think about either going subtle or all out. For people who'd rather incorporate a few designs here and there, hang paintings featuring checkerboard patterns on the walls, such as this Retro Pop Art Cherries on Warped Checkerboard Pattern Poster from Society 6. It would look impressive above a desk. Play with warped checkerboard patterned designs by placing this Wavy Checkerboard Pattern Rainbow Desk Mat from Society 6 under a computer desktop keypad. Keep the rest of the walls and furniture in neutral tones so the painting acts as a feature piece. Stay with the idea of having wall art and go retro by hanging this checkered Rubik's Cube Neon Sign from Happy Neon on a bedroom wall.

Having a nightstand in the bedroom is suitable for people who want things within easy reach at night time. Check out this green Checkerboard Table from Apollo. For additional lighting, purchase a neutral-colored lamp so the checkerboard table acts as a statement piece. Go the extra mile by purchasing decorative checkered bowls or checkered glasses to keep on top of the table. Match everything to green to stay cohesive with design colors. Incorporating a side table or dishware is a subtle way to have a checkerboard pattern in the bedroom.

Play with checkerboard patterned furniture

Playing around with patterned furniture doesn't have to be hard, advises Our Fifth House. Only purchase furniture with patterns that are appealing and could be worked into a certain style. Check out furniture stores or secondhand shops to find a colorful checkerboard patterned chair, like this Adetola Twin 64” Wide Faux Leather Cushion Back Convertible Sofa from Wayfair.

Think about scale as well because checkerboard patterned furniture could have both large and small checks. Couches with small, checkered patterns add a hint of subtleness by introducing patterns to the living space. Work with neutral patterned designs such as animal print amongst checkerboard patterns. Go for a leopard or cheetah print side table next to a tan checkered chair for an at-home office. Work with a variety of textures as well. Leather furniture could act as a grounding point and looks masculine. A leather couch could do with a few checkered throw pillows on top to tie along living room space in a fresh, no-fuss way. 

Decorate with an actual checkerboard wall hanging

Since checkers are a popular board game, why not craft a real-life checkerboard to keep as home décor, per Thistle Wood Farms? The life-sized checkerboard could be made in a few steps. Purchase a wooden panel board that measures four feet by four feet and 16 one by two pine boards. Don't forget to also buy 24 round discs and 96 small magnets as well. Paint the wooden panel board white. After the white paint has dried, gather the 16 pine boards. Eight pine boards will be rowed out vertically and the remaining eight pine boards will be horizontal. Once everything looks even, nail the pine boards onto the checkerboard.

Painter's tape will act as a guide to tape off parts that need to be painted. Use the painter's tape horizontally and vertically to create 16 lines. Use gray paint on every other square. Wait a day to take off the tape to ensure everything is dried. Paint 12 discs dark blue and 12 discs light blue. Small magnets will be glued to the back of the discs. Glue small magnets to the back of each check as well. Make sure each magnet has a match to a disc. Glue sturdy string onto the back of the checkerboard and hang it on a kitchen or living room wall. Another way to display the checkerboard would be to stick it on a metal bookcase with magnets. The choices are limitless, and it's a grand statement piece.