10 Ways to Master the Maximalist Decor Style

When it comes to home decor, the focus over the last several years has been on minimalism. But what if the sparse look of minimalism isn't for you? Enter maximalism, the opposite.

green Photographee.eu/shutterstock

When it comes to home decor, the focus over the last several years has been on minimalism. But what if the sparse look of minimalism, or living in the best cities for minimalist living, isn’t for you?  Enter maximalism, the opposite. Maximalism mixes colors, patterns and textures for an eclectic style. Here are 10 ways to embrace the maximalist decor style.

Here’s our collection of 100 cheap decor ideas that look expensive.

Think Small Doses

While it’s called maximalism, there is such a thing as going overboard. Before you get started, start with smaller spaces such as a breakfast nook or powder room and work your way out. Going too big too fast can be overwhelming. Check out the top home home décor pieces from Target to get started.

Go Bold on Walls

If you’re into the maximalist decor style, don’t be afraid to go big with color. This is the time to try that trendy purple you’ve been eyeing for an accent wall or paint a room black. It’s also the perfect way to try out the cluttercore trend.

Print and Colored Furniture

Don’t be afraid to experiment with furniture in different colors and patterns, just be sure to stick with colors in the same family. Think a green couch in a fun leaf print next to a bold yellow arm chair. Not everything has to match perfectly, in fact, it really shouldn’t be matchy-matchy.

Use Bookshelves as Art

The maximalist decor style is all about mixing various textures, so use your bookshelves as pieces of art. Stack some books and top them with a small flower vase. Display favorite framed photos on the shelves. Have a favorite small sculpture or favorite plant? Mix it in with other items on your shelves.  Shelves should be used for more than just books.

Mix and Mix Pillows and Throws

Since maximalism is about mixing and matching colors and textures, go ahead and pick out a mixture of pillows and throws in various styles. They don’t have to match—the point is to have an eclectic mix of your favorites.

Try Something New

When shopping for a room, consider starting with a smaller piece you wouldn’t normally choose such as a lamp or a small rug in a different pattern or color. Small items can change the look of the space without being a big commitment. As you get more comfortable with maximalism, it’ll get easier to spot items that are the perfect addition for your collection.

Tell a Story

The maximalist decor style is perfect for putting the spotlight on a favorite piece. If you have a beloved item that has been passed down in your family, display it front and center. Important, loved pieces help give the space a story.

Use Symmetry

While mixing textures, colors and patterns is essential, you will need to keep symmetry in mind. When mixing various styles, try to find a link between each piece that you bring into a room. Mix colors and patterns that will draw the eye from one piece to the next. For example, layer long curtains with a vertical patterned wallpaper or have on color that appears in a majority of your decor pieces.

Gallery Walls are Your Friend

A gallery wall and maximalist decor is a match made in heaven. Give the room a story with a well-curated gallery wall that mixes favorite photos with pieces of artwork and signage in a mix of colors and materials.

Love What You Display

While the maximalist decor style is about boldly mixing various pieces, make sure you love what you have. If you don’t like animal prints, don’t use them. Not a fan of a certain color? There are no rules saying you have to use it. Bottom line: You want your space to feel like a reflection of you.

If you let astrology rule your home decorating choices, this is what it will look like.

Popular Videos

Rachel Brougham
Rachel Brougham lived through a major home renovation in 2019, knows the ups and downs of home improvement, and loves sharing tips with readers. A veteran journalist of both print and television, she’s won several awards for her writing and has covered everything from the environment and education to health care, politics and food. She’s written for several publications beyond newspapers including Bob Vila, Taste of Home and Minnesota Parent, and she currently writes a weekly syndicated newspaper column. Her memoir, Widowland, about the sudden loss of her husband, was published in 2022. She specializes in everything from home decor and design to lawn and garden, product reviews and pet care. When she’s not writing, you can usually find her tending to her garden (both vegetables and native plants), playing with her dog, watching sports with her family or getting some exercise. A native of Michigan, she currently lives in Minneapolis. An avid user of Instagram, you can follow her @RachBrougham.