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More Is More · An Ode To Maximalism

Roundup

There’s a renewed love for all things MAXIMALIST in the air at the moment. Whether it’s our interiors columnist Lauren Li sharing her insights on the new Scandi-style, or our friend and collaborator David Flack singing the praises of Milan’s over-the-top interiors, everywhere we look, we’re seeing great enthusiasm for layered, eclectic interiors full of rich colour and detail.

Indulge us as we take a juicy, inspiration-fuelled trip through the TDF archives, with this round-up of our favourite rooms, where texture, pattern, colour, and curated collections reign supreme. Not a bare wall in sight!

25th June, 2018

The incredible home of William and Johanna White of Fabulous Mrs Fox, in Brunswick Heads. To left – a portrait of homeowner Johanna with her much loved pooch, Toffee. Photo – Eve Wilson. Production – Lucy Feagins/The Design Files.

The amazing entryway to the most MAXIMALIST of them all! Sandra Powell and Andrew King’s St Kilda home. Three men sculptures by Daniel Lynch aka Junky Projects. Photo – Eve Wilson. Production – Lucy Feagins/The Design Files.

The Brisbane home of stylist and photographer Kara Rosenlund and her husband Timothy O.  Above – kitchen. ‘Our kitchen is filled to the brim with old, loved, weathered and worn utensils and crockery,’ explains Kara. Photo – Eve Wilson. Production – Lucy Feagins/The Design Files.

Looking out to the hallway in the master bedroom of artist Greg Irvine’s South Melbourne home. Greg’s collection of fabrics, hats, vintage suitcases, decorative boxes and accessories are neatly displayed in open shelving. Greg says, ‘My rule is if I can’t display it, I don’t own it’.  Photo – Eve Wilson. Production – Lucy Feagins/The Design Files.

Greg Irvine’s sitting room (and his entire house) is a great example of displaying collections consistently. Photo – Eve Wilson. Production – Lucy Feagins/The Design Files.

A guest bedroom featuring a collection of miscellaneous artworks in Greg Irvine’s home. Photo – Eve Wilson. Production – Lucy Feagins/The Design Files.

Chrissie Jeffrie’s Sydney apartment, making great use of colour and layers. Neoclassic sofa covered in ‘Bera’ linen cerise,  Alex Lawler table and artworks by Clare Milledge. Photo – Nikki To for The Design Files.

Sibella Court’s studio and office above her shop.   Custom made wall to ceiling shelves to house her extensive library, which she references daily for inspiration. Photo – Sean Fennessy. Production – Lucy Feagins/The Design Files.

 

Alice and Lucy Oehr’s living room.  Kidney-shaped table from Ebay, Alice Oehr printed cushions, paper tiger head by French brand Petit Pan purchased from Ganim Store, faceted ceramic planter on table by Beneath the Sun. Photo – Eve Wilson, Production – Lucy / The Design Files.

Interior designer Peter Curnow and his partner artist Gavin Brown’s living room. Carved chair is 18th century French with silk damask covering and collection of18th-century tapestry cushions. Damian Hirst diamond dust scull print bought at Hong Kong Art fair. William Scott lithograph print rescued from a dumpster. White Rosenthal vase in a neon display case. Photo – Eve Wilson. Production – Lucy Feagins. Assistant Styling – Nat Turnbull.

The Albert Park home of Lynn and Geoff Clay. Dining area featuring Australian stripped dining table and Thonet chairs. Artwork collected by the couple from overseas and local markets. Photo – Annette O’Brien. Production – Lucy Feagins/The Design Files.

The incredible mid-century Melbourne home of Martin and Louise McIntosh, founders and owners of Outré Gallery! Salon hung artwork on the wall of their front room/record room includes an early 1960’s original MAD magazine illustration, a 1953 abstract by Danish artist Mogens Lohmann, an original 1967 Men’s Adventure Surfing cover illustration, contemporary self portrait in top right by US artist Charles Schneider, and George Nelson Eye clock. Photo – Eve Wilson, production – Lucy Feagins / The Design Files.

Lucy Feagins
Monday 25th June 2018

It’s all about de-cluttering these days, isn’t it?

In these Marie Kondo inspired times, we’re forever clearing out the old to make way for something new. And there’s a distinct sense of guilt that comes with holding on to ‘too much stuff’.

Well, today, we’re indulging the maximalists. Because, as we see time and time again in the homes we photograph, the most inspiring spaces are those with bold character and personality – homes that stand out from the crowd, and leave a memorable lasting impression.

Here are some simple ideas to make ‘more is more’ your mantra.

Display Collections Consistently

Let’s face it – unless you’ve got a particular knack for it, achieving the ‘more is more’ effect without looking messy can be tricky. Filling a space with indiscriminate ‘stuff’ is not necessarily the goal here, and collections can look a little cluttered if they’re not curated tightly. Create consistent displays by choosing all one type of object, colour or material to bring some method to the madness! 

Utilise bookshelves

Bookshelves are your best friends when styling any space. Not only do they offer ample display space for your artfully arranged bits and bobs, but they can also be a statement feature in themselves, when filled with the stuff they were made for: books, of course!

If you’re going for a more eclectic (or practical!) look, arrange books at random, mixing heights and styles to create a wonderfully mishmashed library. If you’re still looking for a little refinement, organise books according to colour or size. Amp it up with some snazzy bookends, like these snazzy OYOY ones

Cluster artwork

The problem of having too much art isn’t really a bad one to have. But, if you’ve found yourself with more pieces than walls, consider consolidating your collection in a ‘salon’ style arrangement, to create a gallery-style effect (more on this here!).

Layer up!

Maximalist decorating doesn’t happen overnight. Transforming a blank space into something more eclectic is all about adding incremental layers.

Start with the basics – seating, a coffee table and some shelves in a living room – and build up from there. Add soft layers next –  cushions and a throw rug, perhaps – then move on to art / wall hangings, book stacks and tchotchkes (aka knick knacks!).

Working in ‘layers’  encourages a critical eye, allowing you to edit as you go and see know exactly what works and what doesn’t in the process of adding and subtracting.

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The Design Files acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the lands on which we work, the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation. We pay our respects to Elders past and present.

First Nations artists, designers, makers, and creative business owners are encouraged to submit their projects for coverage on The Design Files. Please email bea@thedesignfiles.net