3 Tips for a Well Traveled Home

Time Several Hours

Budget $ $$$

Skill Level

WORDS BY Gillian Grefe

Fill 1Created with Sketch.

Published on May 21, 2021

No matter how far you travel, there’s no place like home. And there’s no place like a home that echoes your priceless vacation memories long after you’ve returned.

Call it a well-traveled home. A home that’s “reflective of the experiences of your life,” says Havenly designer Brady Burke. “A home with photos from trips or vacations, keepsakes from travels or even purposeful decor meant to evoke the spirit of traveling makes a well-traveled home.”

In between his own travels, Brady paused to share three tips on achieving the well-traveled look in your home (no boarding pass required): 

Think in layers.

Another term for “a well-traveled home” might be “a well-layered home.”

There’s a real art to layering in interior design, but basically it’s all about arranging your furniture and decor in a way that adds visual intrigue. The goal is for the layering to appear effortless, not contrived and never cluttered. 

This is good news if your travel plans have been grounded, but you still admire that frequent flier look, says Brady: “Add layered textiles, bold colors and unique statement pieces that feel specific to an area or destination.” 

Desert road trip, Paris in the springtime or Scandinavian getaway. Through the magic of interior design, the world is your oyster.  


Go global or boho.

Certainly any design style can have showcase elements of a life well-traveled. Global and Bohemian designs, however, lend themselves to the look particularly well.

“Rich color, heavy textures and natural materials all remind you of that one hotel you stayed in or the hostel you visited when you backpacked across Europe in college,” Brady says.

Explore how Havenly incorporated a client’s travel treasures, including a Moroccan blanket, into this boho Brooklyn bedroom

Shop smart.

It can be tempting when traveling to load your luggage with tangible memories of your trip. A trinket here and a treasure there add up.

Brady offers these souvenir-shopping guardrails: 

  • Focus on buying items in similar colors and materials to what you already own. “That way, all of your souvenirs tell a similar story.”
  • Give preference to artwork and functional decor, such as rugs, candlesticks or bowls. “I find these are preferable to small tchotchkes that often gather dust rather than garner attention.”
  • Bring back something of enduring quality that’s reflective of your unique travel experience. Ask yourself: Is this something I can imagine passing down to future generations?

When it’s true travel love, you’ll know, just like this Portland, Ore., couple whose Havenly-designed apartment includes clever nods to their travels together. Or like our tour guide Brady: “I have two handmade rugs that I purchased in Morocco and a set of hand-sculpted wooden statues from Cuba. “They are some of the first things that I would grab in a fire!”

Achieve the well-traveled look from the comfort of your own home. Take our fun style quiz and meet the perfect Havenly designer to help you pull it all together.

Words by Staci Sturrock