Lockers, Paint, and Zoning: 6 Ways to Make the Most of Your Tiny Space


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Feeling a bit cramped, but love the maximalist look? We’ve got the best ways to go big without feeling cluttered.

While the tiny house, tiny apartment, tiny footprint movement is still definitely upon us- designers are starting to up the ante by incorporating the new maximalist trend into the less than cavernous spaces. Marie Kondo may be cringing, but we’re absolutely here for this inclination to make the maxi most of whatever space you’ve got.


1. Lockers and Multipurpose Storage

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While multipurpose storage is always a great shout anytime you’re looking to make the most of your space, we can’t get over how incredible and versatile lockers are. “I think many people gravitate towards lockers because they’re not only a piece of timeless design, but they’re incredibly durable… giving people the option to create a statement piece out of functional storage.” Say the experts in all things storage at Premier Lockers, one of Australia’s favourite retailers. Lockers offer the same shelf based storage that other systems do, but won’t cramp your style. Pushing that maxi feel? Snag some metal lockers and hang your favourite memories on them with magnets. Turning your storage into a living scrapbook.

2. Pictures, Frames, and Art

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Choosing to mix different art is one of the things that really makes maximalism work. From darker and bold silhouettes to fine lines or mad slashes of colour. Blending different styles and periods is a great way to get that carefree yet curated style that maximalism is centred around. For a visual punch to the mouth without smacking your wallet, pick up cheap art pieces in contrasting frames at charity shops, then dip paint half of them in your favourite pop colours. Creating the most meta art installation you’ve ever seen without completely destroying your budget.


3. Negative Space

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Clever use of negative space is what really separates maximalism from hoarding. Intentionally creating small spaces with absolutely zero things happening is how to create balance in a maximalist room. Just like a gallery wall can give your room the look of luxury, having every wall covered top to bottom in art feels a bit much. Whether you’re achieving the feel of negative space by having less stuff or carefully selecting your colour palette to obscure items you do have. Neutral colour tones that consume larger pieces of furniture, walls, or even your lockers can help gently fade these items into the background, creating the illusion of negative space.


4. Painting Illusions

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Paint is your best friend when it comes to nailing this design trend. Using paint and colour in clever ways to define zones, make rooms feel bigger, and ensure that only the right objects really pop can help you to create the fascination you’re striving for. Use darker colours to make rooms feel large and looming, or light, neutral tones to create a flat space that will frame your favourite objects. Bold colours and patterns can be used on walls to achieve the look of unusual spaces, even if you find yourself square in the middle of a box.


5. Proper Zoning

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Zoning is another really reliable way to create the illusion of space, without having to sacrifice your treasured belongings. Zoning is the ideal of visually sectioning off certain areas in a space. Like creating a bedroom space alongside a reading nook or dining area in a studio apartment. Zoning can be achieved through a myriad of different design methods, including the intentional use of furniture, area rugs, dividers, or even colour. You can section off designated spaces in a number of different ways, don’t feel required to use physical barriers in your design.


6. Texture and Nature

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Bring the outdoors in! When you’re going with a maximalist style, it’s important to balance vibrant patterns, bright colors, and bold fabrics with natural elements. Using things like unique house plants, or natural materials like wood or cement, gives your room a more grounded feeling. Creating a calming contrast between visually intensive items and serene moments of relaxation. Using the best of all worlds is really what maximalist design is all about. If you’re not ready to be a plant parent- consider using actual texture in design, which you can get from the DIY board and batten feature walls.