Decorating Ideas Using Antique Souvenirs and Travel Collectibles
Home décor featuring travel motifs can create fascinating looks with a fun and adventuresome feel. Using vintage memorabilia provides more possibilities for uniqueness. Here are ideas for decorating with travel related collectibles and souvenirs.
Wall Décor of Travel Memorabilia and Vintage Souvenirs
Many types of paper and ceramic travel collectables can make unusual wall art. You can decorate with an attractive assortment of different types of memorabilia from all eras, or specialize in one type of object as wall art for specific areas. Another way to focus is by location – collectibles featuring a particular destination, for example, a country, state, city, natural or cultural tourist attraction etc.
One idea is using antiques or reproduction promotional travel posters as the focal points of your wall displays. For instance, you could create unique wall décor by featuring a 1950s travel poster of Dublin illustrating an inviting bridge and city scene, and surround it with smaller Irish travel theme memorabilia such as postcards, brochures, or maps. Or a late1800s poster of a well-known factory of the period, surrounded by smaller travel ephemera that also features architecture.
Tourist destination brochures, guides, maps, and vintage souvenir postcards offer a practically unlimited variety of colorful stylized or realistic photo designs to work into your wall décor. Other possibilities are menus and magazine covers. For instance, the cover of a 1938 “Paris” vintage magazine would look sensational displayed with antique menus or scenic view postcards of the same city.
Ceramic travel memorabilia can also make unusual wall décor. Souvenir plates decorated with scenes and attractions of travel destinations are available from recent times to early periods. Quality varies considerably on these items. For instance, bright and cheery, inexpensive U.S. state souvenir plates from the 40s – 70s versus fancy, finely detailed transfer decorated designs from the late 1800s. An eclectic mix of different eras, focusing perhaps on a specific location or type of design subject from anywhere, would be an attention getting display. Besides ceramic, vintage souvenir plates were made of other materials such as pewter, bamboo, and wood.
Decorative Accessories of Travel Memorabilia and Vintage Souvenirs
Vintage luggage makes fine decorative accessories in travel theme decorating. Bags and cases made for traveling purposes, from the 70s and before look classic when stacked pleasingly. For instance, you might feature a handsome Louis Vuitton leather case from the turn of the century, a fabric covered suitcase with original ocean liner labels from the 1950s, or a retro 1970s portable drinks case. There are many possibilities for creating fun displays when decorating with old luggage.
Vintage figural souvenirs also make interesting decorative accessories, displayed as collections or individually in small settings. You might find bells, thermometers, banks, ashtrays or paperweights shaped or adorned with the shapes of well-known tourist attractions – Statue of Liberty, Eiffel Tower, Roman Coliseum etc. Ceramic, glass and metal souvenir pin dishes, trinket trays, mugs, shot glasses etc., are also widely available decorated with the images and names of travel destinations.
Antique and reproduction tins are another fantastic source of accessories for travel theme decorating. Vintage containers that previously held food or personal products of all kinds often have wonderful old-fashioned designs and vivid coloring. For instance, a “Manhattan Pure Spices” tin picturing a stylized cityscape and bridge, or a “Big Ben Pipe and Cigarette Smoking Tobacco” tin with images of this famous English landmark. You can create some unordinary and colorful looks by incorporating vintage tins into your decorating theme.
Miller’s 2006 Collectables Price Guide
Madeleine Marsh, General Editor. Octopus Publishing Group, 2005
Antique Tins, Antique Tins Book II
Fred Dodge. Collector Books, 1995,1998