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treasures from afar

From Tangier to Tokyo and everywhere in between: How to incorporate souvenirs into your home decor.

COLLECT AND LAYER⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Whenever I travel, I love to bring home a memento, something that exemplifies place or time, an exhilarating adventure, a joyful celebration. The first such item I procured for myself was a gum-saver from Universal Studios in California, chosen when I was eight. (Yes. A gum saver!) A little hand, palm-up with ‘Universal Studios gum saver’ written flowingly around the edges, it was on my bureau for years, more often than not devoid of gum, but its presence took me back to that wonderful West Coast adventure in 1979. Thankfully, my tastes have since matured, but my little gum saver was my first piece of a joyful little collection, the childhood pieces of which are tucked away in a small box of childhood treasures.

Now when I travel, whether for work or pleasure, I often gravitate toward hand-crafted pottery, vintage textiles, and artwork. I love artisan and local craftsmanship, things with age, with patina and character, things made by hand, like this vintage, hand-painted Moroccan vessel I found in Marrakech in 2018.⠀⠀⠀⠀

I most often allow myself only one item, so as to not overwhelm my suitcase or my home, and I delight in searching for and deciding upon that something special that will henceforth be in use or on display in my home, a quiet reminder of days gone by. These things tell their own quiet story and become part of mine, too.

A few key touchpoints to conclude: Select your treasures carefully so they’ll integrate into your life effortlessly; Think quality, not quantity; Avoid buying too much of anything so that your home remains unique, not themed.

Do you have any favourite collections from your travels? I'd love to know!

Universal Studios Gum Saver (Strange, but true!)


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