The Ultimate Guide To Maximalist Decor

Maximalist style is about abandoning all decor principles and running wild with patterns and colors. According to Vogue, lovers of this style do away with rules and perfectionism. They love filling spaces with textures, art objects, and decorating knickknacks. Rooms often feature bright wallpaper, velvet pillows, pendant lamps, and other elements. Contrary to popular belief, maximalism is not about cramming your place with excess stuff. Maximalists often focus on how to maximize colors, adding repetitive patterns, and one-of-a-kind showstoppers. They look for bold designs, striped upholstery, eclectic wall art, and solid hues in a space.

However, decorating a home with a maximalist style is not about how much decoration you can fit into a space. Instead, it's about how many patterns and colors you can blend attractively. One should fill their home with items that are significantly cherished. Check out this ultimate decor guide for more tips on decorating your space with maximalist style.

Display your treasures with open shelving

According to Vogue, maximalist design is not just about filling your space with "stuff." While it is a decor scheme that goes to the max with its elements, maximalism is most meaningful when you decorate with items you love. To capture the essence of maximalist decor, use open shelving to display your unique artwork, books, and keepsakes. Instead of a traditional enclosed bookcase, opt for floating wood shelves or ones painted to match the existing wall color. For additional visual texture, use a pair of ornate brackets to secure your shelves.

This type of shelving is perfect for displaying the collectibles you cherish and making a space feel larger. According to Business Insider, open shelving and maximalist style create an ideal design combination in smaller rooms. Layering different colors, textures, and patterns in a room creates a feeling of coziness and visual interest. This setup provides decoration and increased storage capacity.

Add touches of gold

Maximalist style is all about embracing bold elements in your interiors. Upon entering a room, the eye often seeks a visual focal point. Nothing delivers an impact better than shiny pieces. According to Country Living, pops of gold and texture are popular elements in the maximalist design. They effortlessly add shine, excitement, and joy to a home.

Search for bronzed hand sculptures, gold planters, metallic fruit, and vintage treasures for your living space. When finding decor elements to display on your shelves and tables, consider mixing metal finishes with splashes of gold. You can also use metallic gold spray paint to update your existing decor. This tip will provide a glamorous touch and add something flashy to your space. Shiny gold light fixtures, mirrors, or statues are perfect pieces to layer into your look. Add a bit of sparkle and achieve a maximalist style in your home.

Blend fabrics and prints

Maximalist style is about blending disparate elements and celebrating a "more is more" philosophy. To achieve the look in your home, pair wild patterns with solid colors or add pieces with texture. As designer Chad Graci said in a conversation with The Spruce, "Maximalism wants bold, bold, BOLD. Pattern, color, scale, and drama are all working together to be noticed and that, in a way, makes this style work."

For example, if you are decorating a living room and already have a sofa consisting of a solid color, consider adding accent chairs with a bold floral pattern or complementary tones. You can also spruce up your dining room with a tufted leather sofa placed on one side of your dining table. For dimension and movement, add an accent rug with a whimsical pattern. The goal is to create visually intriguing combinations of colors and patterns intentionally.

Go bold with decorative lighting

When selecting light fixtures for your space, don't be afraid to go bold with your lighting choices. As lighting professional Valentina Gori said to Homes & Gardens, "thoughtfully placed, cleverly designed and carefully crafted," lighting will significantly impact a home. The addition of unique light alters a room's appearance since they often introduce texture and movement. They are ideal for creating boundaries and filling negative space.

You can opt for hanging light fixtures such as sculptural lighting, elegant chandeliers, or more conventional pendant lighting over a dining table or living room. Table lamps are also an ideal choice for a maximalist look. You could also pair complementary lights together to provide belonging and cohesion. Be wary of the color choices, material, and overall design. You want to create something pleasing to the eye. Incorporating lighting that brightens up a space in a meaningful way will make your maximalist design thrive.

Group houseplants together

Creating the green oasis of your dreams is possible in a maximalist home. Just make sure to decorate with all of your favorite plant varieties. You can effortlessly elevate the look by pairing plants with different colors and shapes. Adding natural elements to your home is calming, but it can also brighten your space and make it feel alive. According to Country Living, certain species like English ivy and spider plants can even remove toxins from the air.

To add houseplants to your home, consider creating an indoor planter with combinations of moth orchids and ferns or white peace lilies and a peacock plant (via Balcony Garden Web). If you have the space for more than one planter, achieve a maximalist look by setting three or four plants side by side and grouping them in clusters. While the planters could be complementary in shape and color, the plants can be drastically different varieties. Each new leaf adds a fun burst of texture. 

Create a floor to ceiling gallery wall

Make a statement in your home with a gallery wall that stretches from the floor to the ceiling. There are no boundaries in maximalist decor, so covering a large wall with a collage of pictures is a great way to elevate the look of your space. Combine a mix of frame colors, styles, and shapes to keep the wall from looking too perfect. The more organically you place the frames on the wall, the more cohesive it will look. According to Domino, you should start your gallery wall with a focal point and build the rest of the look around it. When finalizing the wall, avoid too much symmetry by staggering the frames in different directions and shapes.

The items you choose to frame are equally as important as the frame color and material. The pictures and prints you select should represent your personality. A maximalist-inspired wall will combine family photos, drawings, paintings, and prints stylishly. Add a few favorite landscape scenes or silhouettes for a vintage vibe in a contemporary space.

Find cohesion in the furniture

When decorating in the maximalist style, little focus goes toward finding matching furniture sets or accent pieces. Instead, you should pay attention to filling your space with pieces you love. However, your furnishings need to have some balance. Avoid placing uniform furniture pieces in your living room. It's best to blend furnishings from different eras and design styles. 

According to Matter Brothers, try to decorate with "buddy" furniture items. Instead of putting vintage decor on one side of the room and new pieces on the other, give each item a buddy to balance the room as a whole. This tip will help create a cohesive look and bring disparate objects together. If you have a vintage dresser, pair it with a contemporary mirror or neutral landscape print. To complete a guest bedroom, furnish the bedside with a mid-century modern end table. A sleek and streamlined lamp is a possible finishing touch.

Use wallpaper to impact a room

Using wallpaper to decorate your space is an ideal opportunity to create a focal point in the room. Choosing the correct pattern and color will make your home feel warm and inviting. Plus, it can spark conversation with your guests. According to MyDomaine, a wallpaper-covered accent wall can make a space feel alive and create a visual impact. If one is not enough, consider covering all four walls in a room to increase the drama.

No matter how many walls you choose to wallpaper, the pattern and color are essential. If you already have a color palette, aim to keep the wallpaper complementary. This tip will create more uniformity and cohesion in your overall design. Wallpaper can introduce movement, dimension, and character into a home. Choose from classic stripes, funky geometric patterns, or various bold color combinations to make a statement in any space.

Repeat patterns on different elements

Want to know the trick to thoughtfully adding a pattern to your home? If you glance around the room, look for what is missing. Maybe an ottoman, rug, or a small coffee table. Once you decide on a piece, find one with a bold pattern. As Penny Morrison said to Home & Gardens, "I'm a big believer in walking into a room and letting it tell me what it needs in terms of both color and pattern."

You can incorporate patterns into your living space by adding blankets, wallpaper, pillows, or rugs. These decorations come in many fun designs and colors to complement any palette. Some pattern options for a maximalist style could be animal print, gingham, striped, floral, plaid, paisley, or geometric. Do not hesitate to pair clashing patterns in the same room or use repetitive patterns. There are no rules in a maximalist home!

There is no limit to the amount of books

Are you an avid reader or book collector? If you love decorating with books, you might gravitate toward creating a maximalist book space. Books of all titles, colors, and sizes are welcome in this design element, and there is no limit to how many books you can display. Aim to create visual balance on the flat surfaces in the room, whether it's a shelf or table. You can design the perfect reading nook filled with all the titles you adore or load up coffee tables and bookshelves.

While vertically arranged books are a practical setup, One Kings Lane suggests stacking them horizontally for a decorative look. No stack is too high for a maximalist home. Decorating with books is a chic way to showcase your passions and interests. Towering book stacks are ideal for balancing positive and negative spaces in a room.

Display your personal collectibles

If you are an avid collector, consider turning your treasures into a decorative statement by sprinkling unique pieces around your home. According to The Spruce, you should attempt to find ways to include common items in uncommon places. For example, if you have rattan furniture typically used to decorate an outdoor space, bring it inside your living room to make a statement. Or, use a world map as a window shade. Items like books, trinkets, vintage pitchers, souvenirs, and statues fill gaps on shelves and adorn tables. These personal finds are ideal for adding visual interest to a space. You can check out online stores or visit your local vintage shops or flea markets for pieces.

The maximalist style is about putting items together intentionally. Be mindful of the pieces you choose to display and focus on your selection of collectibles. They should ideally convey meaning and serve a purpose in your home.

Layer textiles for soft features

To incorporate maximalist design techniques softly, consider layering in textiles such as pillows, blankets, curtains, rugs, or tablecloths. For a successful maximalist look, decorate a room with a vibrantly colored accent rug. According to The Spruce, decorating with rugs introduces warmth and texture to any space. For example, wool and jute materials complement each other perfectly and add intriguing detail to a room.

If space allows, consider layering two rugs of different materials on top of one another. This tip elevates the contrast in the room and adds a bit of additional detail. Pillows with textured elements and fun patterns are other intricate details to consider. If you have an overall solid color scheme in the room, introduce dimension and break up solid colors by adding plush pieces with patterns. Shifting one's focus to these softer accents may be just what is missing from your maximalist look.

Build a colorful foundation

The idea behind the maximalist style is that anything goes, so be generous with your color choices. The key to the maximalist design is to allow your personality to shine in your decor choices. A person entering your space should be able to get an idea of who lives there. According to Sherwin-Williams, a basic color palette of neutrals like beige, white, or gray is a great starting point. Layering darker hues and rich colors will bring your space to the next level.

If you love a specific color palette, go with your gut. If your room is a blank slate, consider adding some deeper tones. You can use a blend of different colors, as long as they complement each other. Orange, pink, blue, and green work well in harmony. The ultimate goal with color is to balance the shades, tones, and undertones in a room.

Mix the old with the new

Maximalist style is about defying the expectations of typical interior design. To achieve a beautiful look, add decor from multiple different eras. Your space should not look like it's from a specific time. Instead, it should feel like an effortless mix of different decades and places in time. Balancing vintage and modern pieces is critical to creating a maximalist environment. According to A-Street Prints, mixing vintage and contemporary items will prevent you from adding too many elements from a singular style. It will also help you select vibrant focal pieces for your space.

Be intentional with your furniture selections. Aim to add pieces to your home with sleek, streamlined edges and soft, curved lines. Add circular or butterfly-shaped mirrors above vintage dressers or French-inspired armoires in your bedroom. Bring balance to the space by pairing antiques with mid-century modern or Art Deco-inspired end tables. Create a visually-appealing room by mixing different color tones and materials like metal, wood, and glass.