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It felt like, for a few years at least, ‘minimalism’ was the order of the day for home design.

There were Netflix specials about it, there were magazine and internet articles about it, there were even endless Youtube and Tiktok videos about it, but they all seemed to share one thing in common: minimalist living was the way to go!

Don’t have a lot of stuff, don’t display a lot of decorations, just whittle it down to the bare essentials and see if you can live more easily that way. We all tried it, even if our book collections suffered for it, and we saw…mixed results.

What if you like having stuff? Sure, there’s obviously a limit to the amount of stuff you could have, but if you’re a collector or a hobbyist of some kind, the minimalist approach obviously isn’t going to work. Maybe you own a lot of toys, video games, or records, maybe you play a musical instrument or a sport that requires a lot of equipment…either way, sometimes you just need (or want) a lot of stuff around!

Enter “cluttercore”.


What Is Cluttercore?


Cluttercore is a design trend that’s popped up recently on social media, where all good fads start these days, and it’s been pretty appealing to a lot of people.

Inspired, at least in part, by the amount of time we were all spending at home with our stuff during the pandemic, the idea of cluttercore is to make the most out of the stuff you have. It’s about not being afraid of clashing looks, and not being afraid to use whatever surface space you have to show it all off.

Now, granted, it doesn’t always involve bringing in more stuff – it just encourages you to show off and display all the stuff you have in a way that brings about your own unique aesthetics! Remember: cluttercore isn’t a celebration of hoarding all the stuff you possibly can, but it is a celebration of the things that make up your unique tastes and interests.


Cluttercore Design Ideas

Cluttercore can take many forms, and it isn’t hard to incorporate it into many different parts of your home. A few ideas to start could include:

  • Wall decorations: Cluttercore often manifests itself as decorative, and the wall is a great place to start. Instead of carefully framing a few tasteful photos perfectly in order, just throw whatever you like up there! Hang some boxed toys from thumbtacks, hang up some silly framed pictures you got from the thrift store, put some movie posters on the opposite wall, and then use some home wall shelves to display a few loose knicknacks you’ve picked up along the way.
  • Bring clutter back out: The last time you felt like you had too much stuff on a table or a shelf, where did you put it all? How fun it would be to put it all back? Line up your end tables, coffee tables, and home bookshelves with stuff that doesn’t even match – ironic coffee mugs, a few books, some Pop Vinyls if you’re the sort that collects them – and enjoy the pop of color and ‘life’ that it adds, even if not everything really matches or coordinates at all.
  • Mismatched textures: A lot of modern home decor enjoys pairing like-with-like; wood shelves with natural-looking picture frames, metal or porcelain goods on metal shelves, and so-on. But cluttercore has no time for such concerns! This can be a ton of fun in rooms like the kitchen, which might already be leaning towards cluttercore just due to the amount of things kept in there – set up a bar cart or baker’s rack and place a few decorations on it, like your favorite drinkware, coffee mugs, cooking supplies, or even just some arts and crafts projects to brighten up your kitchen (which, if it’s anything like most houses, is probably mostly white-and-grey at this point).
  • Empty out your cupboards: The focus of cluttercore is to keep stuff on display, and cupboards can get in the way of that. Take the doors off your cabinets and keep all your favorites in full view – movie collections under the TV, shelves full of your favorite drinking cups, even a hall closet where your coats go. Anything you can see will only add to the look.

Give it a try sometime – you might just find yourself enjoying having all your stuff around!

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