The adage “Less is more” sums up the popularity of midcentury modern’s minimalist look in home furnishings over the past 10 years, but now the pendulum is swinging in the opposite direction. It’s not just lighting and furniture experiencing a Maximalism revival, either. The trend was also highlighted by fashion editors at Women’s Wear Daily (WWD) during Milan’s Fashion Week in February 2021.
“Companies are now looking to elevate practical overcoats by looking back to 1980s oversize bomber-style puffer jackets and ’90s cocooning silhouettes,” the WWD article points out, adding that another runway collection gave a nod to “mountaineering style from the ’80s, such as velvet puffer jackets splashed with sequins, teddy bear drawstring jackets in leopard motifs, and padded fake fur shearling coats” and oversized silhouettes.
Similarly, iconic fashion magazine Vogue predicted a year of “Bridal Maximalism” in its January 2021 UK edition. Since people were forced to limit their socializing in 2020 – with nearly all formal weddings and events cancelled – there is a universal pent-up desire to get dressed up in a way that commands attention and expresses individuality now that social restrictions have eased.
Why Is Maximalism Happening?
While the year 2020 was all about quarantines, isolation, and the necessity of not inviting friends or family inside the home, the next few years are expected to usher in a period of extravagant at-home entertaining as more Americans become vaccinated against COVID. This optimism, as the spread of the virus lessens, is evidenced by homeowners now seeking bright colors and whimsical designs for their walls, furniture, and lighting.
As the more upbeat mood of 2021 leads to a design exuberance in fashion and home décor, there is a new generation of affluent homeowners and apartment dwellers who were too young to enjoy the flamboyant styles that defined glamour in the 1980s and ’90s. Growing up as fans of the TV and pop culture phenomenon of Keeping Up With the Kardashians, however, Gen Ys and Millennials are now seizing the opportunity to express themselves in opulent style without any throwback tackiness.
How to Do It
The most important thing to keep in mind when bringing a little more extravagant design oomph into the home is to practice restraint. Unlike the 1980s and 1990s – where the motto could easily have been “too much is never enough” – today’s modern take on Maximalism suggests splurging on one statement piece per room.
If you’re drawing attention to the ceiling with a unique chandelier, be more understated on the floor with an accent rug in a neutral palette. Patterned wallpaper is making a comeback, but it needs furniture in solid colors and classically shaped table lamps to balance the look.
Conversely, if you want to refresh your décor without investing in new furniture, splurge on distinctive lighting pendants, floor lamps, or lighting fixtures to add a glamorous touch to the room.
The most popular area in the home to experiment with Maximalism is in the powder room. Since this is a small space and typically on display for guest use, it’s easier to go bold with luxury materials such as marble countertops, gilded mirrors, and gold-finished faucets because there is not as much square footage to cover as with a master bath. Many interior designers today are using eye-catching wallpaper patterns or rich black-and-gold color combinations – especially in lighting fixtures – that evoke the Golden Age of Hollywood of the 1930s to the 1950s.
The second most common area to indulge in Maximalism is the living space where you entertain guests. For this sitting area, designers may opt for lush drapery and upholstery while grounding the walls in a deep solid color like navy, burgundy, or saffron. The silhouettes for table lamps and lighting fixtures are larger in scale to hold their own against the other attention-getting elements of the room without getting “lost.” Mirrored cabinets and tables like this one are a Maximalist touch that up the glamour quotient, as do large framed mirrors like this one.
No matter which area you want to update with a splash of Maximalism, LightsOnline has glamorous lighting, mirrors, and furniture pieces to make an unforgettable design statement in your home.