Travel decor fulfills an important purpose in your home: inspiration & memory. We like to reminisce about past trips. Adventure in exotic countries, fulfillment of childhood dreams, great moments with friends or partner. In this article I introduce you to my BIG5 travel decor. You will find ideas and tips on which elements you can add creatively to your interior design – DIY or bought, the main thing is to have good travel memories!
What will you learn from this article?
Make good memories of the travels
For me, every trip has at least 3 overarching phases: the planning, the trip itself and – and this is often forgotten – the “follow-up“, the remembering. In the past it was mainly developing films from the cameras, waiting anxiously for the prints. Did the snapshots turn out as good as hoped? Open your eyes or close your eyes? Then the selection, sticking in the photo album and neatly labeling the pictures – the number was quite manageable, even when traveling for several weeks. Showing the pictures around to family and friends – not everyone was there “live” on WhatsApp or Instagram.
Even today, photo albums are still created after a trip, mostly digitally on the PC and then printed. The best pictures of your personal “travel career” get their frame and worthy place on the wall.
Especially the actual situation makes travel memories important
Due to the corona pandemic, travel is no longer possible without restrictions. There are risk areas and closed borders – who knows how much longer.
It is now all the more important and nicer to make past trips present and to enjoy them. True to the motto “Ich nehm’ das alles mit nach Hause” (“I’m taking it all home with me”), as the German punk band “Die Toten Hosen” deals with the subject of travel memories in a song:
Ich nehm’ das alles mit nach Hause (I’m taking it all home with me)
Ich gebe nichts mehr davon her (I’m not giving any more of it away)
Das hier ist alles meine Beute (All this is my prize)
Ich halt’ sie fest, ich brauche nicht viel mehr (I hold it tight, I don’t need much more)
What is the best way to deal with your precious prize, the great travel memories? Here I would like to introduce you to my BIG5 ideas for travel decoration, with which I have turned our small but beautiful apartment into a place of travel memories and inspiration.
My BIG5 of travel decor
The world map as pinboard
A special accessory hangs as a great source of inspiration directly above the kitchen table:
The world map into which you can stick pins. Over the years, I have been fortunate enough to travel to many, many countries. Now there are almost 100 on all continents.
I find them more practical than the scratch cards, because the pins show relatively exactly in which region one was travelling.
How often do we sit down to eat, think about future trips and have the map immediately in front of us: what is the distance, what are the neighbouring countries?
On this map I have two different colours: red and green. The green pins mark the route of my world trip. So I visited all the countries with green pins on one continuous journey. Of course, you could also display desired travel destinations for the future in a separate colour.
It’s a great feeling to remember at every meal where you have already been in the world.
You can find the great travel inspiration on Amazon as well as the corresponding pins.
The wall tattoo world map with a best-off collection
The wall above the couch set in the living room is decorated with a huge wall tattoo in the shape of a world map. I am an absolute fan of this kind of decoration, because it offers many advantages: Easy to apply, a high level of detail (I’d rather not try to paint all the islands of Indonesia or Canada cleanly on the wall) and easy to remove without leaving any residue, without having to paint over the wall in particular.
All around, we hung up many great travel memories with family, friends or alone. As highlights, the parachute jump in New Zealand or the summit photo of the ascent of Kilimanjaro are not to be missed.
Creative travel decor: DIY collage with foreign bank notes
Who hasn’t? You come home and the one or other note in foreign currency is still in your luggage. There are a lot of things in your luggage. I have made this process conscious: Over the years, I have always put aside especially beautiful and colorful banknotes immediately after taking them off to take them home. The very personal loot, so to speak.
Compared to Euro or Dollar, in many travel countries the respective notes (and coins) are not worth huge amounts of money, so there is no big financial effect – very cheap souvenirs so to speak. With many notes I connect special personal memories like with pictures: What else did you buy with them? Which admissions did you pay? Which types of beer and drinks?
From the stacks of notes I have made this collage in do-it-yourself (DIY) style and framed it. Well, do you recognize some of the colorful notes?
The collage hangs in a living room corner above the couch, protected from direct sunlight. This would probably give the colourful shine a bit of a problem over time – and unfortunately I can’t just buy this unique piece somewhere else.
P.S.: I never calculated the current value in Euro of this collage.
The Metropolis Wall Tattoo in the bedroom
Another wall tattoo is hanging above the bed in the bedroom. A beautiful collage of the melodious names of various metropolises around the world. In May 2019 I was able to go to Athens as part of an extended trip to the Balkans and thus visit the last missing city from this collage.
I used to have the same wall tattoo in my flat share room, so it has been with me for quite some time.
Around it, many single frames can be arranged with further travel pictures or memories, which one likes to hang over the bed.
In contrast to the living room, there are not too many pictures distributed around it. From the home at the Middle Rhine and Mainz, from the Franz-Josef-Glacier in New Zealand, the Rockefeller-Center in Manhattan / New York, on the beach in Goa and in front of the impressive Meteora monasteries in Greece.
Focus on the essential: The Holstee Manifesto
On the wall opposite the bed hangs only one picture, and this is a special one: The Holstee Manifesto by Rachael Beresh.
The text on it is like a mantra that I try to recall as often as possible. Clear announcements for life.
Hence the important position: when I wake up I look directly at it while I’m still in bed and maybe have a minute to think. Inspiring statements, especially if you have the whole day ahead of you and can shape it according to these principles.
One of the core messages besides “This is your life” at the beginning and “Life is short” at the end is “Travel often“! Why? The manifesto also says this: “Getting lost will help you find yourself”. Seemingly losing yourself while travelling, i.e. not having a concrete plan, helps you to reflect on yourself and your wishes, needs and dreams.
It is not a direct memory of one of your journeys, but it is a constant reminder of how important travelling, getting to know strangers and getting involved in something new is for our personal happiness and well-being.
I love the Holstee Manifesto, a lot of deep stuff, a lot of truth and wisdom on such a piece of paper.
Additional tip for travel decor: Collage of boarding passes
That was already the BIG5, but an additional tip is still possible:
Over the years I have been fortunate enough to make many many flights all over the world, for business and pleasure. For many flights, I honestly looked more at the price than at the membership in a bonus mile program. Which ultimately led to the fact that I was travelling with many different airlines.
Over the years, I have kept most boarding passes for no particular reason or goal – and then I had the idea for this collage. Now 34 different airlines with flights on all continents are immortalized here – from A for Aeroflot to Hawaiian to V for Vietnam Airlines.
Of course, this special accessory cannot be made overnight. But remember this, next time you dispose of your boarding pass right after your flight.
That was the little tour of the world of travel decor in my apartment. I hope it was one or the other inspiration for you. Hhave fun collecting, recreating and decorating!
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