We’ve come to that point in the season when the cold, dreary weather is really starting to become downright depressing. While a vacation is a surefire pick-me-up, leaving on a jet plane is not always an immediate option—even if our wanderlust mentality persuades us otherwise. So, until you can pack your bags and skip town, designer Michael Del Piero of Michael Del Piero Good Design has shared six easy ways to incorporate those souvenirs and impulse purchases from your travels into your home. After all, what could be better for your mental well-being than a home full of amazing memories?
Rugs and Textiles
I love finding handmade rugs and textiles while traveling. I’ve acquired rugs in Morocco for my shop and textiles in other parts of the world for my home, like the pillows from Africa on my sofa. Textiles are easy to drape over a table or sofa, and using pillows to create a splash of texture is a must.
I scan flea markets looking for shape, size, and color. Whatever catches my eye deserves a deeper look. The ability for a piece to mix well with others is key in my object purchases. At home, pottery is great in a group on top of a fireplace mantle, peppered on bookshelves, or perched on top of an armoire.
I found a cool door in Spain and shipped it home. I then made the door into a headboard for my client’s guest bedroom. Think about what you find and try giving it new purpose.
We have a collection of baskets on first dibs. They are from the Yemen-Saudi border. Baskets can be used as wall sculpture or functionally to house fireplace wood or magazines.
Get The Look
Surround yourself with books. Never buy expensive books for looks only. If the value of the book is important, this trick doesn’t fit the bill. I look for books by color. Worn brown-gold tones are my favorite. I love white and off-white books as well. Unfortunately, the best in these shades are fakes or the real deal—meaning hide-wrapped books from Germany, Sweden, and France are gorgeous but also very old and valuable due to their limited availability. I just purchased a collection of 18 books in Munich. The bill—a shocking $5,000—was worth it for me and my clientele, however, because they are beyond gorgeous and very special.
Accessories For me, accessories are all about the story. Where did they come from? What was their previous life? Visually, I like large-scale items that make a big impact, and I certainly like to display items in groupings, gathering similar things together.
Founded in 2007, Michael Del Piero Good Design is based on three simple principals: Strive for balance. Create interiors as current as they are enduring, as sophisticated as they are approachable, and as unusual as they are beautiful. Fueled by her global finds and an appetite for all things beautiful, in 2008 Michael opened her eponymous shop in Chicago’s Bucktown neighborhood. Del Piero is a 2016 DreamHome Designer.