Creating Travel Inspired Home Interiors

How as an interior designer, I use travel to inspire my design schemes and my tips on how you can do this too.

Ever wondered how you can take all that inspiration you see when traveling and translate it into your home interiors, in a way that actually works!

You’re away on holiday and you love the culture, the things you’re experiencing, the memories you’re making. You want to bring a bit of this back home. So you buy something from a local artist that looks great….but then you bring it back home and even though it reminds you of some great memories, it just does not work in your English home, amongst your existing decor or with your interiors style.

Before I became an interior designer, I would bring back different pieces from my holidays. Individually they looked great. They reminded me of great memories. But many would not work with the rest of my home. And so this threw everything off. I didn’t want to part with the pieces because they were unique and had a story behind them, but they also didn’t work. So instead they’d eventually end up collecting dust in storage.

Now with my interior design eye, experience and skills - I can easily spot something that will work back home, I can take all the inspiration I am seeing and interpret it into different interior ideas. In a way that is much more design led, thought through, clever and stylish.

#1 - Take notes and lots of photos!

This is the quickest way you'll see what you are drawn to most. Similar themes of what you are inspired by will start to come through; it might be certain colours or patterns. It might be spaces that look cosy or spaces that look bright and airy.

#2 - Add on your favourite experiences & look DEEPER.

All those images your taking of things you love, add this to some of the favourite experiences you have. Now what's the first thing that comes to mind...probably something expected. Like 'oh I like Zebras' so therefore I need to find a picture of a Zebra. Or 'I loved that day at the water park' so therefore let's install a slide at home ;)

Once you've figured out what comes to mind. Now its time to look deeper and start being clever.

How do you do this?....

#3 - Look at the colours

Notice all the colours around you. It might be the colours of the landscape, in the food, the different sunsets. It might be beachy colours you're being inspired by or perhaps more industrial urban city colours. This can be your first starting place for inspiration. Instead of just 'replicating' the exact things you've seen, use colour to inspire your interior choices.

Landscape pictures from my Safari Trip on the left. Which inspired this Moodboard on the right.

#4 - Look at the patterns

Start noticing the patterns you see around you and which ones you love. It might be Zebra print, perhaps its the flooring tiles in the hotel, or maybe its on the serve ware of that restaurant you went to.

'' On my most recent trip I notice Eucalyptus trees everywhere and I loved the different textures, shapes and colours of these trees. Which made me think about incorporating Eucalyptus pattern wallpaper in my upcoming design schemes. Like this one from Happy Walls.''

On Safari I was really inspired by the Giraffes; they were so elegant and their skin pattern was so unique and you don't see this being used as an animal print. But whilst you could just choose a cushion with a giraffe print on it, like this one of the right.

Instead I would choose a cushion like this one on the left. The shape is similar to that of Giraffe print, the colours echo that also but its not 'obvious'.

Inspo from Apartment Therapy -

Tip #4 - Look at things differently

Not only is it about look at the patterns, colour, smells, things you are seeing differently. But you can look at objects differently too.

Can that 'tea towel' be framed and be made into art. Could you create a set of wall decor framed images from postcards. Could that oversized shell be used as a plant pot or bowl?!


My absolute always go to tip for travel memories in the home - coffee table books. Create photo books for your travel memories and get these printed into a coffee table book style.

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