How To Tell If You’re A Minimalist Or A Maximalist

Wherever you live should be as comfortable as you make it. Different people have different preferences, and here's something interesting: you might not even know what yours are. Consider this. When you're a youngster, you live with authorities who have their own ideas on what's comfortable.

Accordingly, you may come to be used to things that you think you like simply because you grew up with them. But what you might find is that the first time you live on your own, the way you decorate your home is vastly different than that around which you were raised.


If you had a family of homemakers bring you up, you might have become used to plastic on the couch, carefully vacuumed floors, ornate tapestries, sculptures, pictures, and paintings. In your first apartment, you might have a living room with a couch, a TV, a lamp, and nothing else.

How To Tell If You’re A Minimalist Or A Maximalist

The difference between these two extremes is “maximal” and “minimal” thought in décor. To really know what you like, first and foremost, you need some time to stretch your metaphorical legs. You need a few years living on your own. If you've never had that, becoming married as soon as you leave your home, or always living with roommates, you might want to try a few things out.


The minimalist will want the least expensive possible design in terms of interior décor. The maximalist will want to cover every possible space with something interesting, ornate, or properly regal. Sometimes, both will be married. A compromise might be necessary—an ornate room for guests, and a spartan one for the minimalist's comfort.

All preferences aside, though, sometimes budget is the defining factor in your home's décor. What you might do is consider what sort of resources you're working with, and develop style from there. Going this route can make minimalist choices seem aesthetic rather than necessary to guests. They think you chose such style because you liked it, rather than it being your only real choice.

How To Tell If You’re A Minimalist Or A Maximalist

There is a balance between the two which can be found, though, and that often represents RTA cabinetry. Especially in kitchens, where space may not be what it could, Ready To Assemble cabinets can provide both minimal and maximal style choices, either of which having high levels of affordability.

Check out this introduction to affordable kitchen cabinets and how to find RTA cabinets that fit your needs; be they Spartan or lavish. At the very least, such information can help inspire you. The truth is, there are many designs which aren't terribly complex. If you're even a little handy with the right tools, you could build cabinets yourself; representing another compromise.

The DIY Component

Building or remodeling things yourself in a DIY fashion is essentially a minimalist exercise. But in doing so, you can achieve some fairly maximal outcomes. Woodworkers can turn their carpentry into a true art. It has maximum appearance, but at a minimum cost; time being the primary expense—and perhaps a little sweat.

How To Tell If You’re A Minimalist Or A Maximalist

If you're still not sure whether you're a minimalist or a maximalist, it may be helpful to put together a list of qualities which match either extreme. There are marked differences which can help you determine where you really want to be. Perhaps all under a household are minimal, perhaps all have a maximum energy to them.

The Maximalist

Maximalists tend to be more extroverted in terms of personality. This isn't always the case, but it's something to be expected. They tend to like bright colors, sleep in, and stay out late. But again, this depends on the individual—these defining characteristics can only really be defined in terms of generalities. Still, in general, you can expect the maximalist to strive for the best life has to offer all the time.

The maximalist wants to experience everything. They want to see all the colors, hear all the music, watch all the films, try everything at the buffet, and check out all the hot spots for couples across town. They may like traveling. Music tastes will be eclectic; they'll include all kinds of genres.

How To Tell If You’re A Minimalist Or A Maximalist

The maximalist is interested in experience, but this individual isn't without the ability to become entranced with a single area of stimulation. Mental health can be negatively affected by too much tech use. Whether a minimalist or a maximalist, it's possible to get caught in a single train of thinking, and this can look either extreme or constrained.

Technology can string a person along, regardless of where they come from stylistically. A maximalist may become entranced with a film like The Matrix, and for a time follow the minimalist stylings of the cast, and their detachment from real possessions. But then they may become tired of that, and revert to something more akin to their normal personality.

The Minimalist

In contrast, a minimalist generally has a narrow spectrum of interests. As with maximalist description, these things are general—several of them could apply to you personally from either extreme. That said, minimalists like specific things. They like order, and they generally have a tendency toward introversion.

How To Tell If You’re A Minimalist Or A Maximalist

Schedules are likely to be kept, premises are likely to be clean, and responsibility quotients tend to be extremely high. The minimalist functions on what they need, not what they can potentially gain. While maximalists do tend to love all they can experience, this can tend toward greed. The minimalist is less likely to be greedy, but they are more likely to be stingy.

Finding The Balance Between Maximal And Minimal Stylings

Balance between either extremes is often architecturally complementary, because the truth is, there's some of the minimalist and maximalist in all of us. Everybody needs a change of pace now and again. Sometimes that change of pace involves trying everything, sometimes it involves cutting out the unnecessary from the daily grind.

When you're going about remodeling your home, something that can make it more livable is dividing it up into minimal or maximized sections. Maybe the basement has a minimal quality, but you've got an attic that looks like something from a Victorian novel. Different solutions for different households will work best.

How To Tell If You’re A Minimalist Or A Maximalist

If you haven't tried one style of living over the other, remodeling premises to fit either paradigm may be recommendable. You don't have to do the whole house; you can start in one room and see how it suits you.

Ultimately, where you are in life may be the most telling factor of your aesthetic decoration choices when it comes to the place you call home. So try different things, consider where you've come from, where you are, where you're going, and what resources you have available. Whether you're by yourself or in a family unit, there are harmonious options for all.

Abigail Jones

Hi, I'm Abigail. I like spending time tearing my house apart and putting it together back again. Join me on home improvement tutorials, tips on my blog.

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