A 2017 report by IKEA on Life At Home revealed that people are feeling pressured to live minimally. How strange, that society is dictating a simpler lifestyle to free us from stress, but the pressure to live that lifestyle adds stress! Minimalism has long been favoured by the Japanese and Scandinavians, driven by brands like Muji, Marie Kondo and others. And while there are certainly great merits in simplifying things to create headspace and free yourself from emotional clutter, it is often not practical to have this minimalist dream home. It certainly is not possible for me! And that is where Maximalism comes in – the movement that says, enough is enough, we can’t streamline things anymore! Ultimately, your home is just that: YOURS. We surround ourselves with the things that we love, that bring us comfort, and that make us happy. I will always be the poster child for the freedom that decluttering brings, so let’s not confuse clutter with maximalism. But where minimalism proposed less is more, maximalism says that it’s really okay to have more – so stop feeling guilty about it!
Here are a few of my favourite maximalist styles.
#1 // Modern Victorian
I came across these images recently while researching a new design concept and oh my goodness; I fell in love! How deeply delicious and decadent is this?! A far cry from Scandi-inspired interiors, it celebrates old-world detailing and beautiful prints. Pretty pretty pretty! It’s all about bold colour, large patterns and really celebrating beautiful vintage furniture and decor. So, go big and go home with oversized floral wallpaper and rich velvet.
How totally gorgeous is this sofa by Anthropologie?
Uber sophisticated styling by the very talented Emily Henderson.
Rich colours and oversized wallpaper by Surface View
An industrial landing draped in vintage wallpaper by William Morris.
#2 // Chinoiserie
I have a special place in my heart for Chinoiserie. I don’t know if it is because I lived in Hong Kong for many years or if it is the colonial influence from my time in the UK, but I love the delicate patterns and rich colours. Not many people know this, but Dutch Delft was inspired by Chinese blue ceramics. Get the Chinoiserie-look with some pretty blue-and-white collections, colourful florals, elaborate wallpaper and pretty Asian prints. De Gournay have made modern Chinoiserie into the art form it deserves to be – have a look at their website for some serious Asian masterpieces!
Gorgeous tropical-inspired Chinoiserie by De Gournay
Hannah Cecil Gurney via House & Garden
A small Asian corner by Alex Papachirstidis
Bright cobalt floral wallpaper in a kitchen by Andrea Schumacher Interiors.
Another masterpiece by De Gournay
Even a walk-in closet can have a pretty focal – via Domino.
Fashion icon Tory Burch’s home via Vogue
#3 // Eclectic
I don’t like using the word because it feels lazy, like you couldn’t be bothered to figure out what style it really is. But even after a lot of research, there isn’t a better word to describe a style that draws from many inspiring sources and design eras. It’s when you like a lot of different things and choose to put them together. Most homes have an eclectic element to them because it’s quite rare for someone to decorate their home strictly in accordance with a single design principle. Eclecticism produces unique and interesting interiors that really embody the personality and taste of their creator, so here’s to your eclectic interior!
A warm and inviting interior by Old Brand New.
A wild mixture of prints, patterns and colours via Sara Hakwiscombe.
Moroccan flavours with ranch and tropical elements, via Nuevo Estilo.
A fabulous collection of artwork and textiles, via Design Files.
I’d love to know what your favourite maxi style is – let me know in the comments below!