30 Ways to Rock Maximalist Style in Your Bedroom

Move over, minimalism. The new design mantra is all about going big and bold. Simply put: more is more.

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March 06, 2020

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Bold Color

Say goodbye to neutrals and hello to vibrant, dramatic color. Maximalist style is bursting with color, from deep jewel tones to bright neons. Don’t know where to start? Punch up your bedroom with a sapphire blue or emerald green statement wall. Or add bright coral or lilac throw pillows. Think about what color makes you happy and create a color palette for the space around that color. The Coolors generator is a great tool for creating bold color schemes.

Bold Patterns

Maximalism isn’t just about bold color. It’s about bold patterns and pattern mixing, too. Polka dots, stripes, florals, plaid — anything goes. Well, almost. To make sure your pattern palooza looks cohesive but not crazy, choose colors from the room's dominant pattern and riff off those colors for other decor in the space. For instance, in this bedroom, the green headboard and lilac throw blanket play off the greens and purples in the wallpaper.

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Bring Back the Baubles

Gone is the era of minimalism and stark, sterile spaces. Maximalism is all about displaying things that serve absolutely no purpose other than to make you smile. It’s happy clutter. If you’ve embraced minimalism for so long that the idea of bringing in stuff sounds overwhelming, try just one bookshelf with fun knick-knacks and books.

Lots of Art

What’s that rule about keeping art at eye level? Well, forget it. New rule: cover the walls from floor to ceiling with art that makes you happy. And don’t worry about the frames matching either. Mix it up with ornate, antique gold frames, modern, dark wood frames and white-on-white matted frames. Create a fun gallery wall with funky prints, abstract watercolors and random paintings from the thrift store. Personalize it with printed Instagram pics and travel photos.

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Especially Funky Art

We’re not saying goodbye completely to midcentury modern in the new decade — especially retro art prints. 60s prints are big right now, from flower power daisies to whimsical tulips. And art with bright, almost-neon colors are trending, too, such as this canvas painting.

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Bold Wallpaper

Wallpaper is back, baby! If you really want to go all-in on maximalism, play with funky, fierce wallpapers. Don’t be afraid to mix and match. Use a smaller print for the walls and a bigger print for the ceiling or a statement wall behind the bed. And if you live in a rental, opt for removable wallpaper — just peel and stick. And then peel off when you want to remove. It’s like magic. Urban Outfitters has tons of great, removable patterns to choose from for less than $50 per 48” x 24” strip.

Global Influence

Maximalism samples from tons of styles and decades, but there’s definitely a heavy global influence in maximalist decor, from art to furniture. It’s not the girly, boho-chic style that dominated the 2010s, but a more sophisticated hippie look that’s interwoven with other design styles in a space. And one of the easiest ways to add global style to your bedroom is with rattan furnishings such as a reading chair, bedside table or this gorgeous peacock headboard.

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Florals on Florals

Flower motifs are definitely a big part of maximalism. And it’s an easy pattern to mix. When layering floral prints in a room, choose prints in varying sizes. This bedroom uses a smaller print for the wallpaper but a larger floral design for the curtain behind the bed and matching throw. Also, choose patterns in different artistic styles. The floral wallpaper is a monochromatic print while the textiles have a more abstract, watercolor look. This variety of style and design gives the room a cohesive, intentional look. Too many similar florals can clash and just look messy.

Sample All the Styles

Maximalism is like one big style buffet, sampling the very best from every decade and genre. Mix Art Deco with Rococo. Pair Scandinavian modern with Art Nouveau. This bedroom pairs midcentury modern pieces with Asian accent furniture. It’s more about telling a story than sticking to one specific theme.

Geometrics. Lots of Geometrics.

One of the easiest ways to mix patterns in a room is with geometrics. And it doesn’t have to be a giant statement area rug. You can add small geometric pieces to a room, too. While this bedroom has a bold, pink geometric wallpaper, it also has subtle geometric decor such as the sculpted lamp base and throw pillow.

Bold Textiles

No more boring, basic solids! Your bedroom isn’t a capsule wardrobe so have fun with the fabrics. Put some personality into throws, rugs, curtains and shams. Abstract prints such as geometric and watercolor designs are a great place to start for textiles and bedding. They add color, but won’t clash with more detailed, specific prints on wallpaper or art.

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Back in Black

The 2010s were all about crisp whites, cool grays and soft beige walls, but the trends are changing to deep, rich color with tons of black. Yep, black walls. There’s a design myth that dark walls make a space seem smaller, but that’s just not true — especially if you pair dark walls with light decor. This bedroom riffs off classic black-and-white gingham in the bedding and the pops of white, along with a bright pink throw, create a balance of light and dark. It doesn’t seem moody at all, but instead feels fresh and cheery.

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All the Books

Don’t tell Marie Kondo, but maximalism is all about keeping things that bring you joy — even if it’s a ton of books that you haven’t read in a while. We’re not saying this is permission to hoard everything, but it’s OK to keep a wall of books. Typically, built-ins for books would go in the living room, but we’re loving the dramatic statement it makes behind the bed in this room.

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Go Glam

No hate on minimalism and modernism, but there wasn’t much room for glamor in those style trends. Maximalism can be extremely luxe (while still being tasteful) with a chandelier or gilded frames. And you don’t have to break the bank to have glamorous accessories. Swap out your bedside table lamp for one with a brassy, gold base. Or change the hardware on your bedside table to something more ornate. Basic mirrors with metallic gold frames will always make a room feel fancier.

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Add Some Whimsy

The minimalist movement was so sterile that rooms often looked really serious. Even kids’ rooms! But maximalism isn’t serious at all. There’s room for tons of whimsy such as this dreamy, fairy-like bed frame. If you don’t have the budget for major furniture swaps, you can add whimsy on a small scale with playful knickknacks like gold hedgehog bookends or a pink flamingo print.

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Layer Textiles

If you have a small bedroom without space for tons of decor or art, you can still have bold, max style by layering textiles on or around the bed. Instead of just a comforter, add layers of color and pattern with throw blankets, plush pillows and a statement rug under the bed.

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Vibrant Rugs

Like other textiles, rugs are a great way to add color and pattern to a room and they can anchor the loud, in-your-face style that is maximalism. In this bedroom, the vibrant shag rug unifies the other colors in the space, from the bright yellow bed frame to the green patterned wallpaper to the rainbow books on the shelves.

Shine On

Matte was big in the 2010s, but maximalism is all about lacquer and shine. Change out your dresser or nightstand for a bright, shiny piece. If you’re on a budget, swap a ho-hum lamp base for something glossy and colorful.

More Velvet

Rich, luxurious velvet started trending in the 2010s, and we’re happy to report that, under the new rule of maximalism, it’s here to stay — especially in colors like marigold and chartreuse. Jewel tones are also a solid choice for velvet, from sapphire blue to emerald green to ruby red. Those colors were made for velvet.

Swap Your Pinks

Soft millennial pink dominated the last five years, but if you’re still on the pastel wagon, it’s time to trade it out for dramatic magenta. This hot color is going to be everywhere in max style, from art to textiles to lacquered furniture. It pairs really well with navy and even cherry red.

Add More Plants

If you’ve relegated your house plants to the living room, bring them into the bedroom, too! Foliage adds great dynamic layers in design plus some houseplants have been proven to purify the air and help you get better sleep.

Pop of Neon

Take inspiration from the recent neon trend on the fashion runway and add some bright accents to your space. Neon colors work well in small doses such as a bookend or lamp base.

Lots of Lamps

Max style 101 is layering more textiles and knickknacks into a room, but you should also layer in more light. If 2019 had #PlantLady, 2020 has #LampLady. The more lamps the better. And there’s no need for matching lamps on each bedside table. Try mismatched styles in funky colors or retro shapes.

Add Groovy Accents

While the 50s and early 60s dominated the 2010s, the new decade is all about groovy late 60s and 70s. Mushroom lamps are in. Shag rugs are in. The groovier the better. But you don’t need to turn your entire bedroom into a retro farce. Pair thrifted pieces with new pieces and retro pieces with modern pieces. These 60s throw pillows are a great accent without going full-on Brady Bunch.

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Paint the Ceiling

Max style doesn’t stop with the walls. The ceiling is fair game for painting, too! We love the combination of airy, prairie-style floral walls with a bold, fuchsia ceiling in this bedroom.

Or Wallpaper It

And you can also wallpaper the ceiling, too. Yes, really. All bets are off with maximalism. Though if you choose a loud wallpaper for the ceiling, you don’t want to clash with a loud wallpaper for the walls. This bedroom uses a textured-but-subtle wallpaper for the walls while going all out with a geometric print on the ceiling.

Try a Mural

When you think about murals, you probably think of street art or a wall at a daycare center. But hand-painted murals are a great way to add personality to a bedroom. We’re obsessed with the celestial horse mural in this bedroom. It’s gorgeous and furthermore it’s unique to the homeowner.

Add a Statue

Yes, really! If statues make you think of mansions in '80s comedies, you’re not wrong. But there’s a difference between tacky and a statement piece. This bedroom features a modern statue in a corner too small for a reading chair or floor lamp. It’s subtle and doesn’t distract from the rest of the space.

Hang a Tapestry

Your bed can only handle so many piles of pillows and blankets before it looks like you’re drowning in throws; so, if you love layering textiles, swap out flat art for textured tapestries and wall hangings such as this shaggy, tasseled hanging.

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Most Importantly: Make It Yours

The thing to remember about maximalism is that it’s all about personalization. There’s no right or wrong way to do it. It’s about what makes you happy. Start with a thrifted piece or DIY you’re proud of or a family heirloom that makes you smile and you’re guaranteed to create a bedroom filled with warm fuzzies and style that's unique to you.

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