Maximalist Style: Guide to a Colorful, Multi-Pattern, Playful Home

Saffron Marigold - Updated: October 27, 2022

Maximalism has been on the rise in recent years, and we’re all for this explosion of pattern, color, and texture. Whether you’re a maximalist by default (looking at you, passionate collectors and shopping enthusiasts!) or you gravitate towards a home abound with ornamentation, we’ve got a few ideas to help kickstart your maximalism decor journey. Similarly, take a look at our global style design guide for more inspiration on eclectic design.

What does being a maximalist say about you?

If you enjoy maximalist interior design, you love patterns, colors, and treasured objects. You find joy in collecting and displaying meaningful items–whether it’s books, pottery, plants, figurines, photographs, vintage cameras, or even linens from around the world.

A preference for maximalist decor over minimalist decor means you thrive when you are surrounded by excess. Organized (or disorganized) chaos energizes you, and you love to make statements when it comes to design. You also enjoy comfort, but you are not afraid to experiment and explore off the allegorical beaten path.

Photo: Mary F. Saunders

Where did maximalism come from?

Many designers believe that the maximalist style we know today comes from the Victorian era, which was comprised of luxurious fabrics, treasure-filled rooms, and ornate furnishings. Most furniture was fashioned out of solid wood and either painted, gilded, or carved with nature motifs like flowers and leaves or other ornamental motifs.

Today’s version of maximalism has been upgraded with more saturated colors, contemporary prints, and more layers. In-style accessories and slimmer furniture replace bulky Victorian units, but they retain the passion for ornamentation and extravagance.

Mix and match patterns and bold colors

While some of us thrive in a hectic eclectic environment, not all maximalist themes have to be helter-skelter. In fact, repetition of the same color or motif will help you stick to a (somewhat) cohesive idea. Below are some color stories that may inspire your maximalist vision board.

A blooming garden

There is never a shortage of florals linens, and for good reason! From Mid-century-influenced prints like Dahlia Daydreams to Art Nouveau inspired patterns like Enchanted (CP), it’s easy to set your maximalist interior foundation with multicolor flowers.

Eclectic maximalist

Eclectic maximalism is akin to a global style home. Your choice of patterns may reflect your favorite travel destinations alongside mementos from your adventures there. Customer favorite Mosaique Bleue is a fantastic base with its kaleidoscope of colors–chocolate brown, cyan blue, apricot, and rich cream. Anchor patterns with a solid (ish) print from our Dreams of India collection such as Shimmering Goldstone.

Country cottage to the max

Delicate florals in sweet colorways like china blue and white are quintessentially cottage. Crank up your cottage home fantasy and mix botanical prints like English Gardens, Ivy Lace, and Tropical Garden for a lush, maximalist home.

Moody maximalism

Dark reds, purple, deep green, woody tones, and other rich colors make up dark and moody maximalist homes. Try unexpected combinations like Orange Blossom and Mystic Amethyst in the spirit of maximalist courage.

Vintage maximalism

If you plan to show off antiques and upcycled furnishings, vintage-inspired patterns will give your interiors that extra special something. Lean on collections like Woodland Ferns, Moonlit Taj, and Dragonfly and Lotus. For a warmer color palette, try Orange Blossom, Versailles, or Enchanted – Ivory.

Show off your personality with your decor

At the heart of the maximalist aesthetic is the individual. All the extra decor, travel keepsakes, and unique furniture should show off your style and tell your story.

Travel mementos

Whether you collect jars of sand or novelty postcards, allow guests a glimpse into your life by displaying your souvenirs.

  • Personalized maps
  • Travel journals
  • Printed photos
  • Cultural artifacts
  • Postcard gallery

Handmade items

Are you a DIY enthusiast or someone who appreciates all things handcrafted? Support independent artists and beautify your home at the same time with exclusive works of art.

  • Quirky lampshades
  • Graphic rugs
  • Custom digital prints
  • Handmade flowers, baskets, linens

Repurposed treasures

You might find that you enjoy maximalist style because it’s a way for you to find a new purpose for old or would-be discarded items. When you repurpose furniture or decor, you’re designing a home full of character, which is really what maximalism is all about.

  • Repurposed furniture
  • Antique mirrors and gilded frames
  • Themed apparel (e.g. costumes, cultural wear)
  • Re-painted tables and chairs

A Boho maximalist bedroom

A maximalist bedroom with a Bohemian spirit is filled with tactile pieces like plush quilts, saturated colors, and natural materials like wicker.

A bedroom with a large bed with a wooden and wicker headboard and colorful throw pillows and blankets on top
Photo: Early Settler

Get the look: Maximalist decor ideas

To achieve a look similar to the photo above, choose bedding from Dahlia Daydreams and layer with a Jaipuri Razai quilt or quilted bedspread draped across the bottom half of your bed. A plain gray sheet set grounds both floral patterns.

Dahlia Daydreams ~ Pink Floral Romantic Duvet Cover Dahlia Daydreams ~ Pink Floral Romantic Duvet Cover
$233.74 - $249.99
SALE: up to 20% off
Enchanted - Ivory ~ Jaipuri Razai Quilt Enchanted - Ivory ~ Jaipuri Razai Quilt
$299.99 - $324.99
SALE: up to 10% off
Light Grey Organic Cotton Percale Sheet set Light Grey Organic Cotton Percale Sheet set
$152.00 - $184.00
SALE: 20% off

The finishing touches

Don’t forget to dot your room with curios and more tactile pleasures like woven rugs and macrame hanging planters.

A Chevron print rug with pink, gray, and blue
Burke Decor

Priti Rug in Ivory by Loloi

A man out of frame holding a terracotta potted plant in a macrame hanger
Bloomscape

Macrame Plant Hanger

A wicker headboard on a bed with white and black bedding
Wayfair

Vilmar Headboard

Three red carved animals with batik designs
World Market

Carved Wood Batik Safari Animals Set of 3

Modern maximalist living room

Maximalism tends to favor vintage styles, but a modern maximalist interior is indeed possible. Choose solid color furniture and muted rugs then accessorize with color.

A living room with a gray sofa, pink and black throws and quilt, and plants on shelves in the background
Photo: Vevano home

Get the look: Maximalist decor ideas

If you want to use pink as an accent color, we recommend a Dahlia Daydreams curtain with a coordinating pink bedspread you can use as an extra throw on the sofa. Incorporate other florals into your sofa pillow covers for max color.

The finishing touches

Pastel tones or matte finishes speak to Dahlia Daydreams and your modern maximalist living room.

A black table lamp with a grooved base
Oka

Vitruvius Table Lamp – Matte Black

A picture of a variegated pink and greeen calanthea flower in a blush pink pot on a wooden table
Proflowers

Calathea Stromanthe Triostar

A cream and gray rug with a fringe tassel and geometric design
Boutique Rugs

Pottersville Area Rug

A patio with sage green and pink tables in the foreground and an off-white L sofa in the background
West Elm

Amigo Modern Octahedron Coffee Table

Bold and bright maximalist kitchen

A maximalist kitchen will use a mix of retro and contemporary styles. One way to transform a kitchen instantly is by making over your floors or walls with graphic tile or wallpaper, respectively. Keep cabinets and chairs a solid color.

A picture of a colorful kitchen with a brown and white dog in the foreground
Photo: DigsDigs

Get the look: Maximalist decor ideas

If you’re not up to replacing your wallpaper, there’s other ways to make a big impact with decor. Try the Enchanted – Ivory curtain panel to create a focal point, or cover a petite window with the Orange Blossom valance. Another idea instead of wallpaper? Hang up reusable tote bags or aprons in a row to cover up a bare wall.

The finishing touches

Gather up retro-inspired and colorful decor like wall hangings, clocks, and canister sets.

A wall gallery set of eight colorful prints in varying sizes
Unratio

Maximalist Gallery Wall Set of 8

A retro teal kitchen clock and timer
Amazon

Bai Retro Kitchen Timer Wall Clock

A set of canisters with the bottoms dipped in color
Crate and Barrel

Maeve Complete Canister Set

Four red metal chairs staggered in two rows of two
Wayfair

Lilian Slat Back Stacking Side Chair

Moody maximalist bathroom

A dramatic maximalist bathroom is oh-so-chic and easy to actualize no matter the size you’re working with. Jungle and botanical wallpapers are a popular choice in this realm of design, as well as single-color cabinets in unexpected colors.

Picture of a bathroom with a pink vanity gold frame mirror, gray walls, and floral wallpaper
Photo: Shelterness

Get the look: Maximalist decor ideas

Don’t want to commit to a wallpaper? No worries–use a shower curtain or sheer curtain instead to create a large, floral panel to make your bathroom more intriguing. Our top recommendation is Enchanted – Blue for its rich blue ground and multicolor blooms. Luxe soaps and candles add grandeur to your moody bathroom.

The finishing touches

Replace or repaint your vanity in a dramatic color like pink or black to set the moody maximalist ambience. Find more ideas to update bathrooms here.

Dark gray and black bathroom cabinet with golden handles and faucet accessories
Vintage Tub

Cora Solid Oak bathroom Vanity

Rectangular mirror with gold frame and back
Moon Mirror

Brass Gold Rectangle Mirror Modern Tilting Pivot Bathroom Vanity Mirror

Rectangular, navy blue rug with diamond pattern in blue
Anthropologie

Misona Bath Mat, Navy

Three gray wicker baskets
Michaels

Whitmor Rattique Nested Storage Basket Set

Eclectic maximalist dining room

Maximalist tablescapes are so much fun, and you can redesign your dining room to enjoy this aesthetic every day. Table covers, centerpieces, candles, cloth napkins, bar carts–more is more when it comes to maximalism.

Dining table with table setting of floral table runner, flower centerpiece
Photo: Pender & Peony

Get the look: Maximalist decor ideas

To replicate this look above, you’ll need floral dishware and linens in warm palettes such as Orange Blossom and Versailles. Use a bar cart to display curios, hold extra dishware, or store your liquor collection.

The finishing touches

Accessorize with amber glass holders and a show-stopping centerpiece like a golden swan planter.

Floral salad plate set arranged in two columns of two
The Met Store

Redon Bouquet of Flowers Salad Plate Set

Golden swan planter
Z Gallerie

Swan Planter

Brassy gold bar cart with a handful of items on top and below
All Modern

Apprentice Metal Bar Cart, Brass

Amber glass candle holders
Cb2

Ezra Amber Tea Light Candle Holder Set of 6

Dark maximalist office

Similar to the dark academia aesthetic, dark maximalism highlights jewel tones, rich metals, and an old world style. Brighten up a dark maximalist office with light-filtering curtains and block printed throws.

Office with teal walls and golden accents throughout
Photo: DigsDigs

Get the look: Maximalist decor ideas

Do you feel drawn to the teal walls in this inspiration photo? Try Jeweled Peacock, our turquoise and gold curtain panel to capture the above color story. Combine with Dragonfly and Lotus for more privacy and repeat the gold accent throughout the room.

The finishing touches

Line your shelves with books and charming figurines, taking care to mix wooden and metal elements.

Oka

Subura Table Lamp – Gold

Oriental Trading

The Lenox Globe Antique Finish

Etsy

Lot of 50 Antique Old Vintage Books

Grayson Living

Villa & House Palfrey Statue by Bungalow 5

Maximalism is living by the motto “More is more is more.” If you want to go the complete opposite of the design spectrum, take a look at our Japandi style guide for a minimalist, rustic home.

Shop All Collections