How to Master the Maximalism Design Trend
After years of minimalism reigning supreme, it’s time for maximalism to take the spotlight! Minimalist spaces (which pare everything down to the bare minimum) may be pleasing to look at, but feel unattainable. After all, how many of us live in impeccably designed, spotless homes? In contrast, a maximalist home is full of colors, artwork, interesting objects, and unique furniture that make the space feel warm, inclusive, and like someone actually lives there! Intrigued? Read our favorite tips for mastering maximalism (without going overboard) to create a fun, well-balanced home that truly reflects you!
What is Maximalism?
Maximalism promotes utilizing your space boldly through the use of repetition, mixed patterns, vivid color palettes, and special possessions. This design trend is not afraid to mix-and-match different eras and styles for a truly unique look.
Many people incorrectly think maximalism is overstuffing rooms with stockpiles of stuff. While this style does embrace the concept of excess, it doesn’t encourage hoarding! Look closely at any maximalist space and you’ll see that the collections are well-curated and the design choices are intentional. To make a successful maximalist space, you need to fill it with meaningful belongings, such as objects you bought while travelling, vintage family photos, or beloved antique store finds. The perfect way to display these treasured memories is with custom framing. To embrace maximalism style, choose colored, textured mats and mix your frame choices. You will find a huge range of mat and frame combinations at your local FastFrame store. Our designers can assist to create the perfect custom framed pieces to suit your style.
● Use bold colors
● Add lots of layers with different textures and hues
● Repeat motifs and mix patterns (especially florals, animal prints, and abstract designs)
● Display statement pieces and unique possessions
● Curate collections with multiples of items (like books, vintage objects, or artwork)
● Blend eras and styles
Start With Your Walls
Browse through photos of maximalist spaces and you’ll notice one thing they all have in common—fun walls! We think an eclectic gallery wall is the best way to dip your toe into this trend. Don’t be intimidated—maximalist gallery walls are actually the easiest type of display to create because there is no wrong answer! You can mix-and-match styles of artwork, types of frames, and color palettes and it will still look good. We especially love mixing custom framed artwork, shadow boxes, and canvases with unexpected elements like masks, mirrors, plaques, and even small shelves.
To fully achieve the maximalist look, we recommend custom framing your artwork so you can choose different handcrafted mouldings and experiment with mat colors and designs. Don’t be afraid to go bold when choosing your artwork and frame combinations! Try an abstract print in an ornate gold frame or a traditional oil painting in a floater frame with a vivid hue. Custom framing also allows you to create your own shadow boxes with cherished objects (like antique medals or a special jersey) that will add depth and interest to your display.
Give your walls even more oomph by painting them a vivid color that feels bright and energizing, like a zesty yellow or eye-opening orange. If you’d like to introduce more patterns into the room, install peel-and-stick wallpaper on an accent wall. Try a lush botanical print with lots of greenery or a bold floral with vintage vibes.
Maximize Your Furniture and Accessories
Because maximalism incorporates so many different styles, you don’t have to buy a bunch of new furniture to try the trend—phew! You can make your current pieces work by adding in the right accessories. If you have a simple grey sofa, layer on pillows in vibrant colors and eye-catching prints and toss on a throw blanket with a chunky texture or beautiful pattern. If your furniture still has a few good years left but could use a facelift, consider swapping out the legs for a more interesting set or having a slipcover made in a fun fabric.
If you want to purchase furniture and accessories, start by browsing antique stores and consignment shops to discover unique pieces with history. Vintage items feel more special and they’re good for the planet! But whether you purchase new or vintage, try to step out of your comfort zone by experimenting with color and pattern. If you’re new to maximalism, we advise purchasing smaller statement pieces at first, like a bold accent chair rather than a funky sofa. If you end up loving the trend, you can always move on to larger pieces!
Maximalism involves lots of layers, so don’t forget to fully furnish your rooms with pillows, curtains, rugs, and lighting! Have fun picking out pillows—they’re the easiest thing to swap out when your room needs a refresh. Consider layering window treatments to introduce more colors and patterns into the space. Try Roman shades in a vivid hue or sheers combined with statement-making curtains. You can also layer rugs to add texture and up the cozy factor. We particularly love combining a larger natural fiber rug with smaller patterned rugs or a traditional rug with a sheepskin on top. Make sure your room has plenty of lamps for a cozy glow you can’t get from overhead lighting.
Lastly, don’t forget to display the treasured possessions and decor that really makes the space feel like you! We especially like maximalist spaces with lots of unique art, books, plants, and interesting collections that beg for a closer look.
We hope you’ve enjoyed our top tips for creating a maximalist space that is warm, fun, and unique! Custom framing is key to getting this trend right, so be sure to stop by your local FastFrame store to start your maximalism journey today!