Gingham Home Decor Ideas

Gingham, along with its friends seersucker and madras, are fabrics that seem to define the summer. But unlike the others, gingham easily transitions through the seasons, and it always looks crisp and classic. Gingham also works with just about every design style, so whether your space is traditional, preppy, beachy, or modern, this versatile pattern will be a welcome addition to your home decor.

A Little Gingham History: Although the gingham we know and love is a decidedly checked pattern, it actually got its start as a striped pattern in the 17th century. In fact, the name originates from the Malay adjective genggang which means striped. But it was when the fabric was woven into that trademark check in the 18th that gingham’s popularity surged. Since that moment, it’s nearly always been a staple in the closet and in the home. You can recognize gingham by its made up of horizontal and vertical stripes of the same color on a white background with even checks.

The pattern has a long list of celebrity endorsers. Katherine Hepburn wore a gingham dress in The Philadelphia Story, Judy Garland’s Dorothy wore a blue gingham dress throughout the Wizard of Oz and Marilyn Monroe wore gingham capri pants on the set of Niagara. Of course gingham isn’t just for the ladies, Sean Connery as James Bond, wears a blue and white gingham check shirt with his swimming trunks in From Russia with Love, and again in Thunderball.

Gingham is so ubiquitous that it has spawned entire Instagram accounts: “ThatJcrewGinghamShirt” documents men (and a few women) sporting the same J.Crew gingham button-down. Our designers like to say that if you like it in your closet, there’s a good chance you’ll like it in your home. Here are a few of our favorite ways to bring a little gingham into your life.

Gingham Ottomans

In the home of interior and textile designer Caitlin Wilson, a pair of her Ava Cocktail Ottomans create an eclectic juxtaposition under the gold-framed glass console table and wall of luxury ads in gold frames. Take a tip from her design and upholster a couple of ottomans or stools in gingham and then stash them under a console or in the corner for a pop of pattern and extra seating.

Gingham Window Seat

A cozy window seat in a sun-drenched farmhouse is just the right place for this bold checked fabric. The upholstered seat and throw pillows give off a refined rustic vibe. Small spaces like a window seat, and accent pieces like benches and slipper chairs, maximize the impact of gingham.

Gingham Nursery

Baby blue gingham wallpaper sets a playful tone in a boy’s nursery. Blue wainscoting maximizes the impact of the pattern (and keeps it from looking like too much). A blue pineapple chandelier and car print keep the space whimsical, along with the contrasting throw pillows and area rug detail.

Gingham Kitchen

Paired with warm walnut cabinetry and an unfussy dining set, the Belgian gingham window treatments in this kitchen add to the space’s cozy, welcoming vibe. To make the most impact, try highlighting gingham as the only pattern in the room.

Gingham Wall Art

All-white, coastal-inspired kitchens can feel a little bare without any pattern or texture, which is why these woven chairs topped with gingham throw pillows are such key pieces. Another fun way to incorporate gingham into your home decor is through placemats and a table runner. Any of these options are great, budget-friendly ways to test drive a look before committing to something like custom window treatments.

Gingham Kids’ Bedroom

A third-floor children’s bunk room in a gabled space is just right for cheerful gingham in red and blue. The bedding is a mix of a larger check print on the comforter and sham, and a small gingham print on the sheets. The preppy print is a perfect fit in this beachy Hamptons vacation home, and it’s great for both girls and boys.

Leave a Reply