For the past decade, minimalism has ruled in fashion and home design. But since 2020, there has been a rise in using maximalist designs to the point where experts are telling that maximalism is back and that minimalism is dead. Just like minimalism, there has been a driving factor for maximalism. The factor is the current global pandemic.
Why Minimalism Took Over
But before discussing why maximalism is going back on track, we should at least know why minimalism has been the norm for a few years. Mostly, people chose to have a minimalist style before because it only focuses on essentials. For home design, minimalism serves as a break from a world that is already noisy.
Another reason why minimalism took the world by storm is that originally, it was a statement against overconsumption, a break from the norm of buying unnecessary items. However, years went by and minimalism has been associated with being sophisticated that only the elite can have, becoming the culture that it once tried to break.
COVID-19 and Maximalism
It was told earlier that minimalism is a break from a world that is already noisy. But in the first quarter of 2020, the way people live changed drastically and never looked back since. Before people are constantly going out but now, almost every meeting is done through online means and everyone’s home is no longer a safe haven but a burrowed nest.
Everyone has been mostly in the same space for almost two years and because of this, homeowners wanted some joy while staying inside the house. Instead of staring at a plain white wall, people began going back to designing their homes with more color, texture, and color pattern. Even before the pandemic, maximalism has been the counterculture to minimalism, it just happens that COVID-19 became the final nail in the coffin.
Style, just like fashion, can be considered as a reflection of one’s culture and the pandemic shifted ours. If you’re wishing to have a maximalist style for your home, it will be an easier task because Filipino culture is inherently maximalists.
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Maximalism in the Philippines
Here in the Philippines, our culture is leaning more towards maximalism and expressiveness. According to Prof. Felipe M. De Leon Jr., National Commission for Culture and the Arts chair, “the common Filipino is a maximalist, filling up every available space with forms and things. It springs from an expressive exuberance deeply rooted in emotional sensitivity and the strong urge to connect.”
And according to an Urban Planning and Architecture Design for Sustainable Development study, “the typical Filipino home has every wall covered with paintings, photographs, and assorted memorabilia. Every nook and cranny in a single room must have something. A veranda cannot have just one table and two chairs; it must also have an altar and so another table, plants, the banga (Filipino earthen jar), and a small rocking horse if possible (Lorenzo, 2015)”.
How to achieve a Maximalist Look for your Home
Maximalism is the complete opposite of minimalism as you need to use colors, repetition of patterns, and texture in a proper manner. The fine line between maximalism and complete chaos is balance and continuity. To achieve this look, you should throw the saying “less is more” out of the window.
On the other hand, there could be a possibility where you can clash two opposite styles of furniture when designing a maximalist space. It’s kind of a contradiction to the rule of balance and continuity but for some reason, it blends with each other. Sometimes, you don’t need to have a perfect match to make a style match perfectly.
Cheerful, bright colors also define maximalism. When going for a maximalist color, you should not go for neutral tones and play safe. Instead, you should experiment and try bold colors that match your personality. Colors don’t only come in paint color, make sure you make the space alive by adding accessories complementing the wall.
Strategic layering is also important when it comes to maximalism. It does not matter how many decorations or furniture you add to a space, the question that you should ask yourself is if you can layer them in order in a way that balance and consistency are maintained. So when choosing decorations, don’t restrict but strategize.
The restriction should be avoided when trying to achieve a maximalist style, but so is inconsistency and impulsive buying. You’re trying to make a space more you when achieving a maximalist look. Maximalism is not scrapbooking where you can just pick random objects and stick them on your wall.
Should you hop in this trend?
If you’re considering to be a maximalist when it comes to home design, you should think if the style matches your personality. Having a maximalist home is usually easier for extroverted individuals because the style itself is expressive, extravagant, and is relying on loud energy.
And just because maximalism slowly crawls in the design of homes nowadays, it does not mean that you should automatically refrain from everything that’s minimalistic. If you are a person that does not like buying items for the sake of aesthetics, then you do you. Both minimalism and maximalism have their perks and downsides, you just have to find what suits your lifestyle best.
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Is Maximalism Interior Design back?
With the way that the world shifted, maximalism certainly is back. You can say that the world is slowly getting back to normal despite having the Omicron variant, but you should not say that maximalism will not last the moment COVID is gone. For sure, life even after the virus is gone won’t be the same, creating a culture that is way different than it used to.
Minimalism is heavily associated with millennials. Now that the older Gen Z’s are a part of the workforce, there is a possibility that a style shift will happen. And now that they’re the generation that sets the trends, you can say that the maximalist movement will just keep on growing.
Yes, maximalism is back! Although, you should know that this doesn’t mean that minimalism will fade away in an instant. The true minimalists who purchase only their essential needs will stay because minimalism is not only a trend. For some, they consider it as a lifestyle and as the correct and ethical way of living.
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