5 of the hottest travel destinations for interior design inspiration

Travel trends floating our design boat
Karthik Chandran on Unsplash

Travel is a wonderful source of inspiration – art, culture, food and textiles all find their way into our daily lives after a trip abroad. It’s the very reason we move beyond the comfort of our own homes – to explore and learn how others live.

Since the earliest explorers set out to uncover new continents to stimulate our senses humans have sought to travel and collect treasure along the way. Whilst destinations come and go in popularity, here are five places at the top of travel trends right now, bringing colour, texture, art and decorative depth to our interiors.

1. Bali

Just a hop skip and jump away, Bali is an easy jaunt to chase the sun and a little relaxation and a wonderful destination to fuel a love of coastal decorating style. The tourism industry continues to respond with recent growth in the number of homeware stores – answering the call of visitors hungry for Indonesian art, homewares, textiles and antiques.

Look for:

  • Ceramics – handmade, rustic modern and tribal, or pastel and bang on trend
  • Carved wood – antique doors, small vessels, stools and chopping boards
  • Cushions – leave the inserts behinds and bring back a stash

2. India

Fabrics and tassels, silks and saris – scour markets night and day. It’s all a riot of colourful decorating potential and one visit can never be enough. Vibrant and affordable, beautifully crafted homewares are made with age-old methods and quality materials.

Look for:

  • Block-printed fabric bolts
  • Brightly-edged baskets
  • Ribbons, findings and intricately woven braid – hand-dyed and all gleaming in the sunshine

3. South Africa

With tribal art, traditional beading and ceremonial masks now featuring interiors all over the world, this is not a new trend but one that has recently gained a lot of traction. Feathered juju hats on walls are just the beginning.

Look for:

  • Telephone wire bowls – woven in myriad colours and patterns
  • Cushions woven and printed in tribal patterns
  • Endless woven items – from artisan baskets to elaborate floor rugs

4. Mexico

More colour and movement with a dash of Frida Kahlo – flowers, fruit, food and art in the celebration of life and death – it’s all here in Mexico and it’s all hand embroidered.

Look for:

  • Table linens hand-embroidered in bold colours
  • Blankets woven in traditional, time-worn patterns and lines
  • Fun and funky trinkets celebrating Los Muertos (Day of the Dead)

Travel tip

Always declare your treasures as you come through customs to avoid heavy fines. Some items are low risk of biosecurity and will be admitted without quarantine, others may be assessed and held for treatment.

5. Australia

Look no further than our own doorstep for some of the most breathtaking and culturally stimulating art and homewares to bring your interiors to life. From traditional Aboriginal artworks, paintings, weavings and fabrics to locally made ceramics, glassware and sculpture. The best part is there’s no quarantine – so no restriction on what treasures you can bring home with you!

Look for:

  • Handpainted wall art made using traditional methods
  • Textural fabrics and woven baskets made on this land
  • Ceramics to die for in all shapes, clays and colours

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