I don't think anything that brought us joy during a period of our lives should be hidden away in boxes, and left to collect dust. Especially the memories made in those unexpected moments we encounter while traveling.
We may have an itinerary we've spent hours putting together, created a Pinterest board of all the landmarks we plan to visit, or the restaurants we plan to dine. But there is nothing quite like that moment you are there, with both feet planted on the ground and you're taking it all in. Then you snap that perfect photo, and realize that none of the online photos you've seen compare to the one you experienced while traveling.
The mementos and souvenirs we pick up along our travels, as well as the photos we take are so inspiring in the moment. If you are a sentimental collector who finds it hard to let go of items close to your heart, chances are you're in serious collection mode when on vacation, (like not being able to fit anything in the suitcase when it's time to head home). So what happens when you get home, unpack and you're staring at a collection piece that doesn't match your decor, and knowing you have over 1,000 photos you've taken. In some cases the souvenirs become clutter in a closet, and the photos may sit in the camera for months. But you were so inspired on that trip! We want our homes to be a collection of everything we love, to tell a story. We want to keep those special moments of travel alive in our lives, and we can accomplish that at home.
Here are 5 ways to organize your travel keepsakes and display them in such a way that will leave you feeling inspired, fulfilled and nostalgic each time you walk through the door.
The most successful interiors are put together by people who surround themselves with objects that bring them joy
Clearly bookshelves can be used for storage well beyond books. The reason I personally love a good bookshelf decor project is because of the world of possibilities that exist. Frame your favorite photos from your trip, maybe even a quote that inspired you to visit, or the destination on a map. Display the souvenirs by each photo, and work in travel books you may have collected for that particular trip. Dedicate one shelf for the trip, or the entire shelving unit. Keep it as a conversation piece in your entryway or living room, or if you prefer it be the last thing you see before you drift off to sleep, have it somewhere in your bedroom.
Decorative memory boxes
If space is a consideration and you can't seem to fit most of your travel mementos without them appearing as clutter (we want to give them the love and care they deserve), a simple memory box can be made to house them. Inside you can place your treasures, maybe even your plane or bus tickets and photo highlights. On the outside you can display the name of the place you traveled to or just a simple photo that captures the essence of the trip. Place the memory box on your coffee table, book shelf or wherever you are able to easily get to it each time you want to revisit the memories.
It's not always in what we saw that we become nostalgic for a place, but it in the way we felt. Words can capture the most beautiful moments
If you did not manage to incessantly take notes along your journey, no need to panic when you read the word journal. If you did manage to do so, then using your journal as a place holder for photos, postcards and tickets you held onto can be tucked away in your travel journal. You can also head to the book store and find a journal that can be used to recap your journey through words and photos. The events, experiences, feelings, impressions and insights all captured in one book. I like the idea of keeping them on a bookshelf, in a basket dedicated to your travels or by your bed. Visit them and read often.
A photograph is the pause button of life
There is nothing more beautiful than decorating our walls with photos that inspire and uplift us. Take some time to wander around your home and locate some areas where you can turn your favorite travel photos into canvas prints, small or large. Take note of the colors and patterns that appear in the photos and the way you feel when you look at them. It can be hard to narrow down which ones to print and display, but that's all the fun of this project. The photos can easily change the look of a space and add a uniqueness to it, that true exemplifies your personalty. For the additional photos you don't use and have decided to develop I suggest photo boxes or clear plastic bins with labels for storage.
Coaster Maps and Photos
Ever come back from a trip with a bunch of travel maps you collected in the hotel? I realize our days of actually using paper maps have come and gone with GPS and all, but I do find that maps are still lingering in the lobbies of hotels and somehow find their way home with us. If you'd rather not toss them in the recycling bin, trace out a portion you want to keep and have custom coasters made. It turns out there are so many DIY articles online with how to make these yourself. You can also take those favorite photos and make coasters for yourself, or even as a gift. Spread your travel love to family and friends too.
Wherever your travels may take you, be sure they continue to inspire you in the place you call home. While you're out there experiencing this amazing world, it's always important to remember those moments from the comforts of home.