I don’t know about you but when I travel I like to bring home travel souvenirs to help me relive the memories. But key chains and magnets are just not doing it for me. I know there are a lot of country-specific things you could buy as an alternative. And those are great. It’s just not personal enough. Watch the video below if you don’t feel like reading or pin this post for later.
What about all those gazillion photos I took? Should I just print them? Should I leave them on my hard drive? How do I sort out all the brochures I took with me? So many questions and so I decided to answer them. Since I am currently home and need something to keep myself from the miserable pangs of wanderlust, I decided to come up with way to decorate the place with travel souvenirs that I made myself. So my adventures never seem to far away.
#1 The Photo Wall
This one is for all of you who like to keep it lazy and affordable (like me). Sort through all your travel photos and get them printed out. I opted for a square format because I am addicted to instagram and it makes me feel like I could possibly own a Polaroid (which I don’t cause I’m too cheap). You could A) just stick them on a noticeboad you already have hanging in your room.
Alternatively, you could B) get a string – or maybe even fairy lights – and tie to your furniture. With little clips and hangers, you can attach your printed photos to dangle from the wall or ceiling. Instead of counting sheep, you can count the adventures in your travel photos. Yay!
If you haven’t seen my detailed post on how to turn your travel memories into scrapbooking material, you could still check it out. But in a nutshell, why not gather all the travel brochures, collected tickets, dried leaves/blossoms/flat travel souvenirs you have from your trips and glue them all into a simple notebook?
Add your own doodles and texts in there to personalise some more. I usually take it with me on the road and have people I meet write in there as well. It keeps the memory of them fresh and it creates a sort of timeline.
#3 Painted Porcelain
If I don’t take good care, I end up on an obsessive pinterest spree, wasting entire hours pinning away places I want to see, planning my future dream apartment. (For when I come home from travels and am super successful and rich – one can dream, right?) Especially since I travel all the time, my options for DIYing are very limited and all I have is pinterest dreaming.
But since I can currently make the most of them, I decided to get right on it and hand painted plain white porcelain for a birthday. My photos of it were so well received on facebook, I decided to put my custom-made porcelain with city skylines on etsy as well. So if you like the idea but don’t like to draw your china yourself, check it out. But be quick, when I’m back travelling, I will take it down again (which is always soon).
#4 Photo Albums
Remember those days when you had an analogue camera and had your films developed just so you could hand around photos and glue them into big photo albums? If not, you are very young. But if you like retro hipster things or just to have your photos in your actual hands, stay with this paragraph.
I usually photoshop the entire pages so I can have the exact layout I want. I arrange the photos in digital frames on the page or add stickers and quirky backgrounds. Only then do I upload them online to a photo album printer and have the photo book sent to me. For each new country or trip I have a separate photo book. It’s great for showing around. No need to bore people with your thousands of unsorted photos.
#5 Write a Book
Ok, this one might sound silly and over the top. Maybe it is. But maybe it isn’t. As you know I am writing down my travel stories on this little blog here (and in German over here). Still, at the rate I am travelling and not wanting to spam you, I cannot possibly recount ALL of them in detail here. So I wrote a book. Also, to fill in all my friends and family cause they keep asking for stories.
Actually making myself sit down to write a book was just so hard. I am a master procrastinator but once I resorted to strap myself onto a chair, taking away all the chocolate and youtube and forcing myself to get on it, it was fine. By now, I have four books out. (Writing that is a weird feeling.) And if you like travel tales peppered with disaster and self-deprecating humour, be my guest on Amazon.
Which Are Your Favourite Travel Souvenirs?
These are just a few suggestions for travel souvenirs, of course there are many more ideas and maybe I get around to them as well. So did you like them? Have you done any of them yet? Let me know in the comments so I know if I should talk more about this. And whether there are any other DIY-loving wanderlusters out there. I would love to connect.
Until then, I’m out…exploring.
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