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Designing for Real Life: The Undeniable Allure of Undone Maximalism

Designing for Real Life: The Undeniable Allure of Undone Maximalism

As interior design enthusiasts, we tend to spend a lot of time online, searching for the inspiration and products that will make our vision come to life. While good-intentioned, this often creates unrealistic expectations that leave us chasing after perfection that just doesn’t exist in real life. Because whether we like it or not, real life leaves marks. A smudge here, a spill there, a hole in the wall over there — are all unmistakable signs of a home genuinely lived in. Unfortunately, we don't often see this online, which can make us feel like we're falling short. The good news? Undone maximalism is here to rewrite that narrative. This refreshing (and long overdue) design approach embraces authenticity and the genuine beauty of our lived-in homes, over meticulously curated showroom aesthetics. So, if you're tired of feeling "less-than" for having a home that looks like people genuinely live there, get ready to welcome a design trend that not only accepts but celebrates the unique character of your home.


Mix and Match Colors:

Undone maximalism is about sidestepping safe (and boring) design choices and embracing unexpected color combinations that breathe life into your living spaces.  The only rule? There are no rules. Feel free to pair a rich burgundy with an unexpected pop of mustard yellow or a luxurious emerald green with the softness of a dusty pink. And don’t be afraid to apply these color combinations in unexpected places like ceilings, cabinetry, floors, or even tapestries to add a playful touch to your design. Want to take it a step further? Layer in different textures and materials like a comfy velvet sofa next to a sleek metal coffee table – for that perfect blend of coziness and modern flair.


Highlight Quirks and Imperfections:

Forget the notion that interior design needs to be perfect to be appreciated because undone maximalism is all about celebrating the lived-in imperfections that make your house a home. Whether it's a rogue slapshot dent in the wall or cracked concrete floors, these quirks create the character that we love so much in older homes. So, instead of stressing over your sub-par drywall-patching skills, add even more texture and make those imperfections intentional with techniques like lime washing. And those cracked floors? A little painting or distressing will transform them from an imperfect eyesore into a weathered architectural feature worthy of a New York City loft. Apart from cultivating unique designs, embracing imperfections alleviates the stress associated with everyday mishaps — so you can stop crying over spilled milk and use it as inspiration for your next design project instead.


Embrace Your Stage of Life:

Beyond aesthetics, undone maximalism urges you to design a space that embraces the realities of your daily life. So, take a realistic look at your daily routine and pick furniture that not only catches your eye but also serves a purpose. For lively households with kids and pets, consider cozy seating made with durable materials. And don’t be afraid to set up zones that sync with your lifestyle — be it a snug reading nook, a family-favorite entertainment zone, or a dedicated workspace for late-night study sessions. By focusing on blending practicality with design, undone maximalism encourages you to break free from cookie-cutter design and be unapologetically yourself.


Curated Collections with Personalized Décor:

There’s simply no better way to add character to your home than by turning it into a living storybook of your life journey. Display curated collections with sentimental pieces and items you’ve gathered during your adventures. If you’re a budding photographer, consider displaying your collection of vintage cameras on a gallery wall along with some of your favorite shots. More of a traveller? Create a display of framed postcards from your favorite spots. Whatever your interests, focus on quality over quality. Each piece should seamlessly blend into the overall vibe to create a cohesive narrative and a personal connection.

Whether you lean towards minimalism or embrace the maximalist vibe, undone maximalism is all about diving into the realness of life and easing off the pursuit of perfection. Because our homes are meant to be lived in, not just looked at. So, embrace the charming quirks of your home, design spaces to suit your family's needs, and curate collections that tell your unique story — after all, if you can’t be yourself at home, where can you?

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