Travel is a beautiful discovery and exploration of the world and ourselves, exposing us to new people, places, and traditions. Home, on the other hand, is our sanctuary. It’s our safe space that reflects and celebrates who we are. Put the two together and you have the perfect recipe for creating a travel-inspired interior design that will truly make you feel good.
Shop For Unique Objects
We’ve all brought something home from a trip abroad. Whether it be a quirky fridge magnet or a handwoven rug, these keepsakes carry personal meaning that connects us to that time. But how can we incorporate these into our home in a way that feels personal, yet thoughtful and curated at the same time?
Jodie Hazlewood, treasure hunter, avid traveler, and owner of The House Upstairs, advises travelers to “avoid the obvious stuff. Baskets and bags are useful things to bring home but look for textiles and kitchenware, too. Seek out junk shops and flea markets wherever you go. It doesn’t need to be obviously ‘holiday’ — only you need to know it’s a memory.”
If you follow Jodie on Instagram, you’ll know that her home is a treasure trove of beautiful objects. “My favorite thing to bring home is obscure kitchen equipment. I love my tagine from Morocco and my fancy vegetable peelers from Thailand!” she says. Bringing home objects that don’t just look good, but that you’ll use all the time, is the perfect way to elevate your everyday rituals (and no doubt bring a smile to your face when peeling those veggies!).
One of my favorite things about traveling is the changing colors around the world. From the multicolored houses of Burano to the pastel tones of Miami South Beach and the turquoise waters in Salento. Collecting colors, as I like to call it, is often something we do on an unconscious level.
There are three ways in which we relate to color: personal color association, color in culture, and color psychology. All of these are huge factors in how we experience a destination when we travel, helping to create memories and experiences of that place. By infusing your favorite color combinations into your interior design, your home can take you anywhere around the world.
Tash Bradley, the Director of Interior Design at Lick loves seeing the different impact that light and seasons have on the color choices we make in our homes. “When I travel, I take note of how different colors make me feel,” she explains. “I love warmer tones that remind me of Summer. I want to bottle that warmth and energy from my favorite places and bring it into my home in London.”
One of Tash’s favorite destinations is Cornwall. “I absolutely love being by the beach and near the sea, so my home has fun yellow accents that remind me of sunshine, and blue artwork that reminisces our beach holidays. These colors just fill my soul with happiness!”
Create New Rituals
When we’re on holiday, we slow down and relax, switch off, and reconnect…then the minute we get home, life goes back to normal and it feels like we’ve never been away. But what if we extended these holiday rituals or even the idea of finding ourselves, to something that we can achieve at home, not just abroad?
What rituals do you have when traveling that you’d love to do at home too? Perhaps it’s to spend more time at the table connecting with loved ones over delicious food. Maybe it’s spending less time on your phone or simply making your morning coffee a ritual rather than a quick caffeine hit that you drink on the go. Interior guru and journalist Kate Watson-Smyth, otherwise known as Mad About the House, has even introduced aperitivo hour in her home.
“This started in lockdown when there was a real need to make a break between the working day and the evening when everything was taking place in the same space,” she states. “Rather than just grabbing a glass of wine, we take the time to make a drink (often Campari-based) and a little tray with a bowl of olives and some nuts. Taking the time to sit down and chat with my husband has become a key part of our day and one that makes us feel a little bit more connected to our favorite place on earth: Italy,” she says.
Channel la bella vita
If there is one country that has taught me how to slow down and change my own daily rituals, it’s Italy. Channel la bella vita by finding a sunny spot in your home. Take advantage and soak up that moment with your favorite drink. Why not create a reading nook or display your books on open shelves to encourage you to curl up and get lost in a good book? Travel-inspired interior design can take on many forms, including new habits.
The table is sacred here in Italy, sharing conversation and good food with the people you love. Consider a round dining table to soften any space. This makes it easy to bring people together for a dinner party or squeeze in unexpected guests. These subtle changes can encourage small but meaningful moments, shaping homes that relax and restore us and ultimately improve our well-being.
Traveling opens our eyes to the world around us, it allows us to learn and grow. By translating that into our homes through travel-inspired interior design, we can create daily environments that allow us to do exactly that.
It’s all about making the normal, special and the ordinary, extraordinary.Ilse Crawford, founder of Studioilse