How to Design a Maximalist Living Room, According to Dabito

Cue the color, pattern, and plants!

Dabito, Interior Designer on outdoor deck
Photo: Courtesy of Dabito

Los Angeles–based Dabito worked as a graphic designer, photographer, and flight attendant for an international airline before launching his interior design blog, Old Brand New, in 2010. His style is maximalist and eclectic, filled with color, pattern, plants, art, and vintage pieces inspired by his travels. He specializes in power clashing: mixing competing patterns in a way that looks cohesive. He's planning to use this technique in the living room he's designing in the 2022 Real Simple Home (launching in September!). Check out his design plan for the space, below, then follow his tips to bring the maximalist aesthetic into your own space.

Some designers shy away from brightly colored splurge pieces, but not Dabito. He'll start with an avocado green sectional sofa, which will dominate the room. Then he'll add casual, textured accents in emerald and yellow, his favorite color combo.

Next, add in artwork you love—even if it doesn't perfectly match your decor, Dabito says. The watercolor prints that will be featured in the living room were created by Dabito himself. Follow his lead and opt for artwork you'll enjoy living with, and it will always work wherever you live.

Dabito's Design Plan:

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Light Bulb Moment

Mitzi Chandelier Brass and Glass

Dabito designed chandeliers as part of a lighting collab with the brand Mitzi. The spherical and conical bulbs will add an unexpected twist to the space.

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Hot Seat

Melrose Green Sectional Sofa

The bold sectional is the first item Dabito picked, and the anchor for this space.

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Art That Pops

Old Brand New Art Print in greens and mustard yellow
Old Brand New

Dabito created this watercolor print in shades of green, rich gold, and blue. The artwork reflects some of the hues seen throughout the room, while inviting a couple more to the party.

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In Shape

Gold Mushroom Ottoman

One trick to make spaces feel playful: Mix in fun sculptural accents, like a mushroom stool.

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Unique Table

Grasscloth Coffee Table
Crate & Barrel

Pieces in a variety of shapes, colors, and textures, like a grass-cloth-covered table, give a room character.

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