What is Maximalism in Interior Design?
There’s a new design trend that’s starting to emerge and it’s one that’s growing in popularity. Let us introduce maximalism. If you’ve been following interior design for a while, you’ll know that there has been a lot of focus on minimalism. Clean lines, soft colours, minimal furniture and accessories are just some of the things that spring to mind.
The concept of maximalism is a very different take on styling our homes. Rather than minimal it’s the complete opposite. It really does take everything to the max. Everything that you know about minimalism is turned on its head. Soft colours are now bold, minimal accessories are replaced with an abundance of ‘things’ and mismatched furniture and soft furnishings are in.
The idea behind maximalism in interior design is to create a space that is unique to you, allowing you to style your room in a new, unique and interesting way. It is a style that allows you to be as bold and daring as you wish. Although designs around the maximalist style are intended to be excessive, the space that you put together is more a collection of carefully curated things that represent you.
So, if you’re up for the challenge of bringing out your creative side, take some inspiration from maximalist design and let your personality shine through with the following elements:
- Lots of layers
- Repetitive patterns such as abstract, animal prints or florals
- Bold, bright, rich colours
- Statement pieces that are completely unique
- The combination of colours and textures
- Plenty of items such as artwork, books and statues placed in multiples around the room.
Blending of styles
Curating a maximalist room is an interesting task. You can bring together a whole collection of items such as rugs, wallpaper, artwork and photos, building the room around different colours, patterns and pieces of furniture. Each layer that you add should tell a story of your home and the people in it.
Before you go rushing off and buying anything and everything that you want to fit into your space, you still need a plan to get the maximalism look just right. The best way to do this is to start with a single couch or sofa and style it with a combination of cushions and throws to get to know your style and what you like. Don’t limit your choices and don’t worry about matching colours, styles or fabrics. If you think it looks great that’s all that matters.
Maximalist interior design can sometimes look cluttered so try to keep this in mind when placing accessories. Start with items such as books, cushions and plants. You can then place your favourite object on the top of your book stack. The whole concept is about adding a few choice pieces at a time. For homes with lots of accessories you could use a bookcase to create a sense of order.
Make a Statement through Colour
As you start to research more into the maximalism theme to gain a deeper understanding of what it is, you might decide on tackling an entire room, treating it as a blank canvas means you can really go to town and put your stamp on it. Start with the basics which is always the colour scheme. There are no rules when it comes to choosing a colour for a maximalist designed space - just lots of it. So be creative, draw inspiration from different sources that you like, use your imagination and make it you. Patterned wallpapers, coloured prints, pictures and vases of flowers or plants are all great for this theme. When it comes to interior styling, there are no rules, it will just take some skill and a little patience to judge what elements work.
That said, you want to keep a certain degree of consistency in colours. Where you want to use a statement shade, no matter how bright or bold this may be, build the room around this colour. Where will the statement colour appear? On a feature wall? Printed on some bold wallpaper or as a piece of furniture? Once you decide, then you can piece all of the other elements in the room together around this dominant colour.
The Old and the New
When it comes to maximalism, anything goes, absolutely anything. So, you can blend the old and the new, Victorian meets contemporary, combine styles, eras and themes to your hearts content. The most important thing to remember is to create a look that you like.
A Huge Canvas
One of the great things about this style is that you can treat each room as a huge blank canvas with every surface representing a blank page to make your mark. You can clash patterns and textures on the walls and floors (rugs), contrast fabrics and colours, add layers, embellish as much as you wish and proudly display all of your collections and ornaments.
Whichever room you are testing out with the maximalism theme make sure that you have a striking focal point, whether this is a sofa, a bed frame or even a vibrant splashback in the kitchen. Remember what we said about colours? A brightly coloured couch could serve as the focal point with everything else tying into this central item.
There’s a danger with the maximalism style that the room can look more disorganised and messier than interior design chic. While that’s great to a certain degree, it’s important to bring a sense of consistency and order. To do this, try to connect pieces in the room, linking them by colour or pattern. These connections not only add a touch of consistency they can also help to draw the eye from one piece to the next.
Lived in not Cluttered
While maximalism will encourage the use of accessories, you don’t want the space to look overly cluttered. It’s important to bring a sense of order to the room. Add a museum worthy display case for your treasured possessions and souvenirs rather than placing them around the room. Organise your collection of books into a bookcase or showcase your favourite ornaments on a sideboard.
Become a collector of things and you’ll be well on the way to a maximalism paradise. This style is all about displaying souvenirs, treasured possessions and mementos. Whether it’s a collection of glassware, antiques or trinkets that have been passed down through the generations. Create a sense of curiosity with the items that you place in the room.
Maximalism is all about personalisation over perfection. There’s no ‘wrong’ way to inject this style into your home. There are no rules. All you need is a little imagination and an interest in creating a truly unique space that is a reflection of you and the people in your home.
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