Today we’re talking all things minimalism vs maximalism! So if you get excited by exploring different interior styles this ones for you. We’ll also take a look at a few examples of how a little bit of maximalism (if there is such a thing!) can have a big impact in even the most minimalist of spaces.
It seems like after a long period of minimalism taking centre stage in interior design, we are seeing an exciting resurgence of maximalism that helps us to express our personalities in a big way at home. This detailed, character filled project by YSG Studio is testament to the skillful eye of the designers who have managed to bring together an eclectic mix of elements that collectively work together to create a unique experience for the clients and their families.
Another one of our favourite designers who loves to inject some bold maximalism into his projects is Greg Natale. His project in Mosman uses layers of texture and pattern to create a space that feels luxurious, and also has a sense of joyfulness that makes you want to sit and take it all in. And lets face it, who doesn’t need a sculptural gold chair in their sitting room?!!
So, what exactly is Maximalism?
To get us started, let’s look at the types of elements that make up a maximalist interior. While most of us can wrap our heads around minimalism, maximalism can be a little trickier to define. If you’ve ever heard the term ‘more is more’ that pretty much sums it up. Bold colour, clashing patterns, big statement pieces fighting for your attention, saying ‘look at me, I’m gorgeous’! And then add another layer on top for good measure. Include beautiful collections of books, vases, lamps and artwork and you are beginning to see where we can going with maximalism. Nothing is hiding in a maximalist interior, it’s all on display and asking you to fall in love with each and every piece you might be drawn to.
No stranger to maximalism, American Designer Kelly Wearstler, embraces artistry, craftsmanship and historical influences to create a richly layered interior in this boutique Austin Proper hotel. Who knew checks and leopard print could work so well together?!
One of the best things about Maximalism is that it tends to create a sense of fun. Bold colour and mixed materiality bring energy to this quite formal living room, designed by Flack Studio. Large, oversized sculptural pieces can add a little ‘Alice in Wonderland’ feel to any space! It’s also such a great way to combine special pieces that you’ve spent a lifetime collecting – let your personality and creativity shine through in your maximalist spaces.
So, let’s talk Minimalism
While it’s easy to think of minimalism in its extreme state (yes, I’m talking zen rock gardens and empty rooms), it’s otherwise defined by its clean lines, calm colour palette and LOTS of storage to keep any clutter at bay. Minimalism can be as simple as a butler’s pantry or as complex as a set of perfectly curated pieces composed to slowly draw you around a room and leave you in a state of ‘ahhhh’.
For a lot of us an uncluttered space helps to restore balance in our hectic lives. The simplicity allows our brains to let go and feel a deep sense of well-being. Using design elements such as symmetry, proportion and balance, minimalism can help restore energy simply by allowing you to rest + reset.
Minimalism can still feel warm and cozy such as in our Broadbeach Apartment Project with the simple bedding layers and minimal styling. Symmetry and balance of elements leaves this bedroom feeling like a beautiful space to rest at the end of a busy day. Minimalism was also embraced in our Woolstore Apartment ensuite, with the clean lines, natural tonal scheme and simple addition of open shelving to showcase the clients shoe collection.
The minimalist space designed by Alexander & Co for their Pacific House project, uses negative space beautifully to create a focal point with minimal detailing. The skylight, wall lamp, windows and chair all work to draw your eye to the curved table and bench seat. I could definitely start my day with a morning coffee here!
What if I can’t make up my mind?
If you can’t decide if you are a minimalist or a maximalist, you aren’t alone! Lots of us are drawn to the idea of minimalism but can’t help incorporating a little bit of drama into our homes! Whether it be a mix of patterns, bold injections of colour or a collection of your favourite ordainments that you’d like to see every day rather than packing them away – we say embrace your inner maximalist!
Bold velvet chairs and wallpaper on the ceiling in our Ascot project have created a luxury space where minimalism and maximalism coexist harmoniously. The wallpaper on the ceiling adds an element of playfulness to what is otherwise quite a formal space.