Staycation Decorating: Bring the Vacation Home With Travel Themes

A souvenir stand filled with travel-themed decoration for your apartment. While The Perfect Design Blog suggests travel as a way for graphic designers to revive their creativity and broaden their perspectives, we think everyone, despite what you do for a living, can benefit from changes of pace and scenery. But if your summer vacation has passed, or you just can't get away, fear not, apartment dweller. There are simple ways to capture the restorative effects of travel at home.

Below, we present ideas for ways to incorporate travel -- including your own travels -- into the design of your apartment.

Addressing clutter and style at once, HGTV shows how the home office of a pair of newlyweds is transformed from messy and bland to put-together and unique, thanks to the couple's travel souvenirs. Box seats with storage space are used to display various knickknacks from around the world, while vintage travel labels decorate the couple's cork board. HGTV also turned a blasé living room into a worldly space, using eclectic fabrics and wall coverings, and chic wall-mounted picture frames filled with travel memories.

That's not to say you should show off all of your souvenirs at once in the same room. But which items to choose? And how to find souvenirs that aren't too kitschy? Apartment Therapy covers both questions in a post on "Best Souvenirs to Display in the Home." Your own photos, items from foreign thrift shops, framed postcards, nature jars, and fabrics are all affordable ways to preserve travel memories, and all can be displayed easily at home.

Apartment Therapy also shows how to display vintage travel posters. Colorful art deco advertisements with illustrations of the Eiffel Tower, European summer festivals and various 1930s products are some of the more charming posters you'll find. In addition to upping your apartment's worldly style, these posters may just inspire your next getaway.

Decorating with vintage suitcases and globes are some of the more obvious suggestions given, but interior decorating examiner Zaday Sanchez also tells how a travel theme can be used to spruce up your kitchen space. If you can't sip a coffee and nosh on croissants in Paris, why not create that Parisian bistro vibe at home? Sanchez suggests "French-themed wall art" and wire wine racks for a subtly chic atmosphere.

Finally, for some international inspiration, check out Travel and Leisure's annual Design Awards for 2010, including travel products, hotels and motels, and museums and restaurants that are destinations unto themselves.

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