Trends We Love: Maximalism

You’ve been hearing about its understated cousin, minimalism, for what feels like years now. Minimalism was a no-fuss, simple lines, and neutral colors kind of look. And no wonder it was popular; minimalist furniture is akin to a plain white T-Shirt: practical, no-fuss, and never out of place or out of style. But minimalism can be—admit it—a little boring. Sure, a room of white and beige furniture might be failsafe and ever-chic, but what does it really convey about your taste? In today’s political and cultural climate, the time for playing it safe and staying quiet has come and gone. In this spirit of bold action and loud declarations of personality, Maximalism has come to play. 

Maximalism is all about color, rounded lines and circular shapes, and eye catching décor. Paint trends are all about bold walls, especially dark, greyish-blues and earthy browns and oranges. Blacks and edgy jewel tones are also a popular choice, especially for kitchens and bathrooms. We’re seeing a resurgence of wallpapers, but—fear not—these are not the peeling floral prints your grandparents used to have. Geometric and art-deco patterned wall-papers are in.

For décor, we’re seeing a continuation of the boho trend with lots of greenery, wood, and patterned fabrics. Printed boho posters are in, especially those that feature softer, curved lines. For maximalist art, think baroque, but with a twist. Instead of buying a Rembrandt print, think more Yayoi Kusama. Loud prints, colour contrasts, and sensory overload are the bread and butter of maximalist art. 

In terms of furniture, achieving a maximalist aesthetic is all about big, rounded lines and bold colours: think 70s furniture, but less frantic. Maximalism relies on colour coordination and a keen design eye—far more than minimalism: after all, anyone can find a decorative pillow to match a beige couch. For best effect, we’re seeing a maximum of two main “base” colours combined with two contrasting accent colours: for instance, a dark blue base combined with pale pink accents. 

We love maximalism because it’s all about personality and bold decisions. It expresses confidence, individuality, and a desire to lead the pack or do things differently. Maximalism can also be incredibly inspiring, as various colours have been shown to spark certain moods. For instance, blues are calming, reds and violets can boost energy, greens and yellows are shown to uplift people’s moods. Maximalism has the potential to jumpstart your creativity or boost your happiness by bringing colour into your living or working space. 

Study results shown in article by Milena Damjanov.

Read this article and more in our April 2019 newsletter