Photoshop users can save a lot of time and create beautiful designs by using patterns. Photoshop’s presets (like brushes, styles, patterns, custom shapes, and gradients) are highly-powerful tools when used effectively.
Whether you are creating your own custom patterns or using pre-made Photoshop patterns that you’ve downloaded for free or purchased, having an arsenal of patterns at your disposal will allow you to quickly create high-quality work. Patterns can be extremely useful for a variety of different types of design including websites, business cards, flyers, posters, and much more.
Patterns are often used as backgrounds. Sometimes more subtle patterns are used to give a background some texture or character as opposed to just using a flat, solid color.
In this post, we’ll showcase over 50 sets of free Photoshop patterns for your own use. I think you will find them to be highly useful for quickly giving great effects to your designs in Photoshop.
And if you like free resources, please see our post on free SVG pattern generators.
Free Photoshop Patterns
Most of the resources featured here will come in .pat format, which is the file format for Photoshop’s pattern presets. These patterns are ready to use right away. Some of the resources come in png or jpg format and if you want to make use of Photoshop’s pattern presets, you’ll need to save these images as patterns. Don’t worry, it’s easy, and we’ll show you how to do it at the end of this article.
Minimal Web Patterns
This collection of 12 patterns will make it easy to add subtle texture to your designs (perfect for backgrounds).
Dark Subtle Patterns
This set of 10 patterns is similar to the previous set, except they are dark instead of light.
Carbon Fibre Patterns
These 4 carbon fibre patterns are also an excellent choice for dark backgrounds, just not quite as subtle as the previous set.
Simple pixel patterns are a great choice when you are looking for a subtle background pattern. Every web design should have some quality pixel patterns in their pattern library. This pack includes 28 dark and light options.
With this collection of 20 patterns, you’ll have access to some nice simple patterns that can be used in many different ways.
This pack of 2 patterns is unlike others that you’ll find. They may not be as versatile as some of he more subtle options, but in the right situation, they can be extremely useful.
This detailed, illustrated pattern features wings and shields.
This spade shape adds some nice detail and texture that could be effectively used within your own designs.
This unique pattern has somewhat of a fire-inspired look.
This set of 3 patterns includes the same design in a few color variations, including the black & white pattern shown below.
Floral patterns are common, but this one has a different look.
What the Hex
Want a geometric pattern that could be used in a bold or subtle way?
Greek and Roman Patterns
This set of 6 patterns includes different shapes and elements inspired by Greek and Roman designs.
This unique pattern combines shapes, lines, and color.
This fun pattern is very different than what you’ll find elsewhere.
Double Bubble Dark Pattern
If you like geometric patterns, you’ll love this one.
Who doesn’t like donuts? You can easily incorporate donuts of different colors into your designs with the help of this resource.
Y So Serious Light Pattern
Another geometric pattern that could be used in several different ways, including as a subtle background.
This one puts an interesting twist on a typical diamond pattern.
Charcoal Demask Patterns
These patterns (set of 2) are awesome for backgrounds, especially when you’re looking for a vintage effect.
Here is another beautiful geometric pattern that makes an excellent background.
An interesting and colorful set (3 included) that may be appropriate for your fall-inspired designs.
This pattern has a cool metal effect.
Gears and Cogs
A different option that may serve as an effective background (3 included in the set).
Like pixel patterns, grids are also exceptionally useful for web design backgrounds. Here you’ll get 20 grids that give you a wealth of options.
These (5 in the set) can also be used to create subtle patterns for backgrounds.
Seamless Distressed Diamond Pattern
This is a fun diamond pattern that will add a touch of grunge to your next design.
Baroque Collection Lite
Stylish repeating baroque patterns (set of 19) can be very useful for vintage designs.
Free Seamless TV Noise Patterns
These 10 patterns are excellent for backgrounds and abstract effects.
More baroque patterns (23) are available here.
Simply Floral Patterns
An interesting set of 4 patterns with a sort of abstract floral design.
Nature-inspired designs can make use of these grapevine patterns (pack of 5).
We Like Striped
This set (30 included) is another option for subtle patterns to be used by web designers.
A simple striped pattern can be extremely useful, and this set (6 included) takes a slight variation by adding some texture.
Dots can be subtle or more dominant, depending on the contrast between the dots and the background. This set of 29 patterns will give you plenty of choices.
An intricate, hand-drawn style pattern.
Swirls always seem to be useful.
This playful triangle pattern features different shades of gray.
If you’re looking to replicate a plaid pattern, this set (3 included) can make it very easy.
Simple Geometric Pattern Set
This pattern created with triangles comes in 3 different color variations, including black & white.
A pattern with interesting geometric shapes that is sure to play tricks on your eyes (3 variations).
Handmade Paper Pattern Set
Another set of 7 paper patterns, including several colorful options.
A set of very rough and grungy repeating textures (9 in the pack).
Fun and abstract waves pattern for your projects.
Ground Texture Patterns
A variety of different textures are used in this set of 15 patterns.
Tread Plates Patterns
Metal patterns are always great for backgrounds, and this set includes 8 nice tread plate patterns.
Light Rock Patterns
More textured patterns (8) in this set.
This pattern set (5 variations) is useful for creating your own abstract backgrounds.
Metal Mesh Patterns
More metal patterns (14) for awesome backgrounds.
Mottled Painted Floral Patterns
These 16 patterns are reminiscent of bright, colorful, wallpaper patterns, blotchy paint, or dress fabric.
A set of 12 patterns made with various vector shapes.
Paper Pattern 2.0
A beautiful, repeating paper texture pattern.
21 subtle scanline patterns that can be used on top of your photos.
Dark Metal Grid Patterns
A great choice when you need a dark metal background (8 in the pack).
Light Metal Grid Patterns
The same thing, just in a lighter version.
A beautiful set of 11 plaid patterns.
Geometric Escher Pattern
This pattern was inspired by M.C. Escher and comes with 3 versions in the free download.
How to Create a Photoshop Pattern Preset
If you’ve downloaded one of the files that comes in JPG or PNG format but does not come with a .pat file for Photoshop, you can easily save the pattern as a preset.
First, one the image in Photoshop.
Next, go to Edit > Define Pattern, which will allow you to save the image as a pattern preset. Enter a name for the pattern and click “save”.
Now you have a pattern preset that can be used at any time. To use it, select the paint bucket tool, select “pattern” in the top toolbar, and then choose the pattern that you’ve just saved. Now when you use the paint bucket it will apply the pattern instead of a color.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a .pat file?
.pat is the file format used by Photoshop for pattern presets. With the help of presets, patterns can be easily used and re-used in your designs.
Can I use Photoshop patterns in other software?
.pat files are proprietary for Photoshop, so they will not work in other programs. However, so other software and apps have their own functionality for seamless patterns. To maintain the most versatility, save your tileable image in PNG or JPG format.
How do I save a pattern?
If you have a tileable image (meaning that it can be repeated without visible seams), you can easily save it as a Photoshop pattern preset to re-use the pattern in the future. To do this, go to Edit > Define Pattern. Give the pattern a name and save it.
How do I add a pattern to my design?
To use a pattern that has already been saved or installed as a preset, use the paint bucket tool. In the top toolbar, change ‘foreground’ to ‘pattern’ and then select the pattern that you want to apply.
How do I install Photoshop pattern presets?
The easiest way is to have Photoshop open, and then double click on the .pat file wherever it is on your desktop. Photoshop will automatically install it.
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