Some of you may be wondering- What is Maximalism? A few years ago, we saw a huge push for people to go for a minimalist lifestyle. It encouraged people to be happier with fewer things, and focus more on enjoying a lifestyle, rather than material possessions. As you can imagine, maximalism is the exact opposite. This is the celebration of having a home that’s bright, busy, and full of the collections that make you happy. Obviously, maximalism is nothing new. It has been around for a very long time, reaching way back into the depths of our childhood memories. We all know at least one family member whose home was magically filled with lots of things, while simultaneously being a bit over the top. Here at Inspiring Home, we’re bringing you some of the ways to bring maximalism to your home.
15. Blending Multiple Design Styles
The great thing about maximalism is that if you like more than one interior design style, you don’t have to choose! Blend two or three styles together to your heart’s content. Most of the time, you’ll see people who have a bohemian vibe mixed with an eclectic personality. Or, they’ll revert back to some of the classic European styles mixed with modern day pop art.
The idea of maximalism is to bring together everything you love without feeling restrained by staying within the lines of the rules of one style. Or, you could completely throw out the rules of what people say should or should not be in a certain category. What’s more important is that you love your space, and that you’re having fun.
14. Busy Walls
With many other design styles, it’s popular to just have one or two pieces of statement artwork. However, in maximalism, it’s a lot more common for you to see a gallery wall. Others might have a mural painted to cover the entire wall so that the entire thing is a scene that’s interesting to look at. The point is to never leave your walls completely bare. If you’re going for a maximalist style, trying to make your walls as busy as possible.
13. Lots, and Lots of Items
Since maximalism is the opposite of minimalism, you obviously want to have a lot of items in your home. This works perfectly for someone who is already a collector. Instead of having your items put away in boxes in the attic, bring everything out and put it on display. Sometimes, the idea of having too much stuff in your home can feel claustrophobic. And a lot of people also don’t want to give the impression that they’re a hoarder. But there is a way to display an abundance of items (like in the photo above) in a way that just makes sense. If you’re having trouble, take the time to rearrange your items until it feels just right.
12. Lots, and Lots of Color
You’ll almost never see a neutral color palette in a maximalist home. Maximalism is all about color. And you don’t have to stick to just one or two colors, either. Go crazy with a rainbow, if you really want to. Or, like in the photo above, you can take one color and totally expand upon it, like an all-pink space. Some designers will also organize their belongings by color, so you can see every color of the rainbow seperately.
11. Embrace Kitsch
The definition of kitsch is “art, objects, or design considered to be in poor taste because of excessive garishness or sentimentality, but sometimes appreciated in an ironic or knowing way.” Maximalism is almost always full of kitschy artwork. You might be totally aware that something isn’t “cool” or on-trend with the current moment, but you don’t care. As long as it makes you happy, that’s all that matters.
Instead of just having a single piece of artwork hanging on a wall, consider a layering. This can happen on top of the mantelpiece, table top, or even on your floor. Layering really gives a lot of depth to style, and it also gives you an opportunity to fit more pieces in one place. This works out perfectly if you have a huge art collection and you’re not really sure what pieces you want to use.
Something you see a lot in maximalist homes is nostalgic themes. This could be nostalgia for a certain time period, or just a sense of bringing back joy from your childhood. You don’t necessarily have to harken back to a time that you were alive for, either. Plenty of people love to have vintage nostalgia from a time they admire, even if it was over a hundred years ago. For example, you might want to feel like you live inside of a Dark Academia home that feels nostalgic to the Victorian era. It’s really up to you.
8. Embrace What You Love
One of my favorite aspects of maximalism is the fact that it’s really all about embracing what you love. You don’t have to be embarrassed about your quirky hobbies or collections. Just embrace the things you love, and surround yourself with them at home. For example, it’s common to see doll collections, memorabilia, and other collectibles in a maximalist home. As long as you’re putting these on display with care, it doesn’t matter if you have a lot of things.
7. Don’t Forget the Ceiling
Most people paint their ceiling white, because it helps to reflect the light and makes everything feel bigger and cleaner. However, people who go for a maximalist style will often paint their ceiling a bright color as well. This can create a more enclosed, cozy feeling in a space. Sometimes, people will even paint murals or patterns on the ceiling, too.
6. Bold Graphics
One of the most common types of artwork you see in a maximalist space is bold, bright, colorful graphic prints. Wallpaper might also be in big, bold graphics. There’s no such thing as being too overstate, here. A great place to look for original graphic artwork is on Etsy, where you can support the world of independent artists.
5. Repetitive Patterns
Something that you see a lot in maximalist homes is repeating patterns. For example, most people would only have an accent wall with a pattern, or only use it on a bedspread. But for a maximalist, they can go over the top and use the same pattern on a bedspread, wallpaper, and pretty much everything else in the room. If there is a particular pattern that you’re in love with, don’t worry about using it too much if you’re going for a maximalist style. There is no such thing as too much.
4. Decorate Using Unique Statement Pieces
In most maximalist homes, you’re going to see a lot of statement pieces that you may never see anywhere else. For example, it wouldn’t be that strange to see a statue of Elvis standing in the middle of someone’s living room if the rest of their house is maximalist. They might also have taxidermy, or anything else that would normally be in poor taste. The point is that everything is a little bit kitschy in weird ways, but it all is unique and makes a statement.
Most maximalist homes have something that makes you go, “wow.” If this sounds like something that’s appealing to you, don’t hold yourself back from purchasing over the top items at your local antique stores or trade shows. Incorporating souvenirs from your travels can also be a great way to show your personality with sentimental items.
3. Mixing and Matching Colors and Patterns is A-Okay
With other interior design styles, you’re restricted to a certain color palette. You also might only have a few options with wallpaper prints that fit the style you’re going for. However, with maximalism, you can make pretty much any choice you want. Mixing color palettes and patterns is all part of the style. So if you love a lot of different things, you really don’t have to choose. Your space can look like a rainbow of variety.
2. Comfort Is The Most Important Thing
The great thing about maximalism is that comfort is usually the top priority. There’s no need to buy furniture that only looks fancy for the sake of looking stylish. Maximalists want to be able to go into their space and feel comfortable for a very long time. They want to be able to sit and be surrounded by all of these things that they love. For some, that might be a more Bohemian style of putting cushions on the floor. Others just might want a huge couch that people can sink into while I watch TV. Don’t feel too obligated to buy something because you believe it’s the newest trend or that it would look the best. Instead, focus on what you can afford and what is going to last you a long time.
1. Try to Make People Smile
Last but certainly not least is maximalism makes people smile. The goal of your space should be to make everything bright and cheerful. When people walk into a maximalist room, they will often be taken aback by how much stuff you have in there. While it might be off-putting to the people who subscribe to minimalism in their own home, they can’t help but still feel curious. All of the objects in your home are going to be a conversation starter. Your guests might ask questions about the objects that really stand out to them. And this gives you an opportunity to explain stories that might make someone laugh and smile even more. At the end of the day, we should try to do no harm to others and try to make the world a happier place. So if that’s your goal with putting maximalism in your home, I truly thank you and wish you good luck.