Confession of a Sustainable Maximalist

Confession of a Sustainable Maximalist
I (used to) believe that a specific minimalist aesthetic, filled with monochrome shades will improve my life, which I read from many style blogs, magazines, and the influencers on my Instagram feed.
That meant wearing light-colored linen dresses, more neutral tones (and whites) that many see as ‘freshly-looking’, like stereotypical women in Byron Bay.

I felt like I couldn’t enjoy a good pasta without worrying about messing up my shirt. The minimalist aesthetics limit my expression of my truest self like I’ve been silenced.

The pandemic turns into somehow a blessing-in-disguise for me, and I got time to focus on things that truly give me joy – expressing myself through arts and crafts.





What is maximalism?

Maximalism lifestyle

While you might think maximalism means a giant house or an overflowing wallet, it’s important to note that it isn’t just a synonym for excess. And you can be a maximalist without falling into the ecological trap of overconsumption. Instead, maximalism is an aesthetic of excess that explores vibrancy, lushness, and creativity.

My definition of maximalism is beyond the price tag.

Things that I’ve collected over the years are all provided me with full of joy, memories, and stories. 

Confession of a Sustainable Maximalist

For example, I bought this 500-pieces mosaic Manilyn Monroe jigsaw puzzle from a local op shop in Morwell Sunday Market (for AUD8.00 – the proceeds go to the charity in the Philippines) and asked my Grandma to finish it. When she finally completed the puzzles, I glued them all together and framed the finished puzzle. It is now part of my framed collection in our bedroom!

Another thing is when I inherited a huge bag of faux fur textile remnants from a lady in our neighborhood, and I patiently turned them all into a faux fur jacket. 

Over the course of the isolation, I’ve collected old duvet covers that I’ve sourced from my neighborhood, and selected charity shops, and can’t wait to turn them all into fashionable dresses. 

I also found some old vinyl records of classical music that my husband stored in his shed (then forgotten about it). To complete my collection, I managed to buy a second-hand vinyl record player. 

During the two years of the pandemic, I started enjoying my old hobby of crocheting and I’ve accumulated over 20-pieces of handmade crochet jumpers and jackets, and the collection is still growing!





Maximalism is a lifestyle.

It is a lifestyle of collecting things that sparks joy. 

Your sneakerhead bestie is considered a maximalist. 

If you love collecting action figures, have a huge wall of books from your many travels, or even have a massive collection of indoor plants then you are considered a maximalist.





I’m a sustainable maximalist!


I’ve been to Facebook Marketplace, several op shops around the neighborhood including the op shops from the places I’ve visited, not to mention weekend garage sales, my supportive friends and family that know my passion for upcycling, including my wealthy neighbors throwing their unwanted belonging on the curve (can be considered dumpster diving). 

Time is one thing that costs me a lot doing research on a particular item I want, and where I could get it in the cheapest possible, and if someone will give it away for free then that’s more than welcome!

Through the years, I managed to maximize joy without maxing my credit card, and I feel rich, inspired, and abundant in every other way.

Confession of a Sustainable Maximalist

Part of what makes my space so joyful is that I can tell you when and how I acquired each item—even if it was a Kmart purchase. I can likely tell you which Kmart I purchased it from, when, and how I felt that day.

But without patience, I wouldn’t be having a sustainable maximalist lifestyle. Every piece I made and collect tells a story, and I make sure that each piece will be cared for very well so that I could enjoy them all for many years to come. 

My basic sewing skills come in handy, and I repaired and patched several clothes because there is no way I will send them to the bin. 

That’s why I can’t be a minimalist. It doesn’t work for me. 

Being a sustainable maximalist, I am freely expressing my personality and style. I find it more honest and humbling, that I’m a person full of colors.

Confession of a Sustainable Maximalist

Confession of a Sustainable Maximalist

Here’s the rundown of this whole look.

• Crystalized headband that I’ve made recently, with all materials sourced from Spotlight.

• My prescription sunglasses were gifted to me by Oscar Wylee.

• The blue ruffled dress used to be an old duvet cover. You can read all about it here

• Funky faux fur jacket that is also upcycled using various faux fur textile remnants. You can read my separate blog about it here

• Red handbag with googly eyes is from the local charity shop.

• My favorite pink gumboots from Kmart



Confession of a Sustainable Maximalist

I am lucky that my husband wouldn’t mind that I am slowly filling my boudoir with things I love, and I reckon I will be occupying the next room to store my collection.  


Bisou Bisou!



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41 comments :

  1. Oh, so this is what they call it -- maximalist! I am more of a minimalist than anything...but I do envy maximalists. I understand what you mean by feeling silenced by minimalism. I hope I get the same courage as you to go for it.

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    1. Thanks for appreciating! I learn to enjoy fashion recently and found the style that gives me more courage and confidence.

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  2. Thank you for sharing this . Very informative . And ang galing niyo po tlga mag style or gumwa ng outfit na tlga nmn bagay na bagay po sainyo 😍

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  3. Lizel Tejares PurciaJune 11, 2022 at 11:17 AM

    I love the way you maximalist, You find your joy and freely expressing personality and style through collection of things that you loved.
    Grateful for you po.

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    1. I make sure that the things that I collect are not just out-of-the-whim. Yung long lasting ang joy na maibibigay sa akin.

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  4. Yes to sustainable maximalist po and so proud of you ganda din talent yung pag crochet and napakagaling mo plus pa yung mag dala ng damit ang being creative din.

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    1. Thank you Rowena! Break muna ako sa crocheting and sewing para focus naman for blogging. But soon I'll be maging more dresses again in preparation for the Spring!

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  5. Thanks for sharing ,very informative ✨ you're so such an inspiration Ms. blair and keep it up!!you have an amazing talent ,lahat ng gawa mo ay nakapaganda ❤️✨

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  6. The vibrancy πŸ’―
    The lushness πŸ’―
    The creativity πŸ’―
    Embracing the ideas more and more ! Inspiring and motivating!

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  7. Super galing talaga Ms blair napaka creative nyo po at talented na a admire po tuloy ako gumawa ulit Ng mga costumes sa inyoπŸ₯°

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    Replies
    1. Konting patience lang, and just do that makes you happy!

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  8. Kyla Mae B. CultivoJune 11, 2022 at 1:25 PM

    Yes to maximalist po talaga,it has a big part and help for us and other thing.thank you for sharing this informative and thank you for being us inspiration!I really appreciated all your outfit Ms blair,all your outfit is really amazing πŸ₯°

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  9. The sweater is truly stunning in its appearance. I enjoyed the way you mix and match things to create a sophisticated outfit. I love it! I think that I am also a maximalist - I remember when I went to France and almost everyone there wore outfits with neutral colors, but there I was in my neon pink jacket. 

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  10. I love your outlook, Blair. Indeed we can my joyful and live the most out of life without our budget going overboard.

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  11. dear! kung minimalist kaaa, i agree you wouldn't be able to express yourself more, you arent free! kaya kudos to you for not only being able to express yourself but to sharing it with others as well! inspiring!

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    1. I did tried being minimalist, pero hindi talaga kaya ng feelings ko. Hindi ako happy being minimalist. Besides, I don't go crazy in spending spree para lang to become happy :D

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  12. Oh ayan pala yung maximalist! I love your style and creativity in here. <3

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  13. I feel like there's a great middle ground, too. I am minimalist in what we collect and things we have. But I also love bright fun colors and textures.

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  14. I cannot get enough of your style! It's so ecclectic. I love all those colors.

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  15. you're indeed a maximalist Blair. I love the way you style and creativity

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  16. Hhhhmmmm....this is good to hear. I have always had kind of a judgemental definition of a maximalist. Thanks for opening up about it.

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  17. This looks awesome, I like the colors on this one and how the top and bottom looks. Great outfit!

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  18. Whoa! I never knew that there's this lifestyle called maximalism until I read this post kasi I have only heard about minimalism (which I have been gradually transitioning into). Have you been a maximalist or did you just transition into one?

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    1. I think I've been a maximalist even years ago coz I love collecting things that I love. Then since I only have limited space back in the Philippines, I tried the minimalist lifestyle. But my hearts says nah - be a maximalist with pride! I am happy that follow my heart.

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  19. I had no idea this is what it's called but I believe this is the lifestyle that I currently have. I am collector of things that bring me joy -- I have so much toys, books and anything Disney. :) I don't think I am a hoarder since I can easily let go of things too by selling, giving away or finding a new purpose for them. I just keep them because they bring me joy. :)

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  20. That's wonderful that you're so creative and resourceful. That is an awesome looking fur jacket.

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  21. What an interesting post and I've definitely learned somethings new about this maximalist lifestyle. You look absolutely amazing in your outfit as well and love how well the pieces go with each other.

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  22. This is such an amazing way to live... Thank you for sharing and shedding light on a this misconception! This is the epitome of living true to yourself

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    Replies
    1. We can always surround ourselves with things and people that gives us joy!

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  23. Sustainability is often linked with minimalism but it is SO wrong! I agree: it's about your choices not what you like. I am not maximalist but my pinterest is filled with outfits and rooms in this style. I find it endlessly inspiring and I love spending some time in maximalist rooms. Your blog is one of the places I enjoy as well

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    1. Oh wow, coming from you I am feel grateful! Thanks for appreciating my blog!

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  24. I am glad to know the term from you. I am not a minimalist, though I admire people who do. But I just can't. In style and lifestyle. Like you, I feel constricted. Glad to know you wrote down what I feel.

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