One of our absolute favorite things to do (and this will surprise nobody) together is travel. Dustin travels for work quite a bit, so I often meet him where he is for work, or we use our abundant travel points to go somewhere together when he’s off.
Recently, we went to Amsterdam, Rotterdam, and London and something new kept catching my eye: ideas for our house.
Sure, usually when we travel we’ll notice a particularly nice hotel or the occasional shop that catches our eye, but this time was different. Having just bought a house and given that we’re planning on doing a good deal of work to it, inspiration was everywhere.
So, I started snapping photos. And if it’s good enough that I wanted to remember it, I figured you might be interested in seeing it as well. So here’s a quick roundup of design inspiration from our latest travels. Enjoy!
We booked our time in Amsterdam mostly because the direct flights from Minneapolis were cheaper than flying to either Paris or London. Thankfully, Amsterdam was absolutely lovely and we both would be happy to return any time.
The thing about Amsterdam is that you’ll be walking down the street and suddenly realize you’re walking down the prettiest street in the world. But then you’ll turn the corner, and realize…no, this is the prettiest street in the world. And so it goes.
When we arrived in Amsterdam, our hotel room wasn’t ready for us quite yet, so we changed quick in the hotel bathroom which happened to be completely adorable in blush with this asymmetrical sink situation and round gold light.
As we ventured out, we encountered Dille & Kamille, which is an absolute must if you happen to be in The Netherlands—cute housewares make the best souvenirs. I bought napkins and now when people come for dinner I get to say I got my napkins in The Netherlands.
Another shop brought me within inches of purchasing a monkey lamp, before I realized I’d have to pack it to get it home. Oh, well, there will be other monkey lamps.
Back to our hotel, we also found fireplace inspiration in the form of this geometric beauty done in white tile with gold accents that was big enough to gather a crowd around.
I also fell hard for the combination of pink velvet bar stool + dark blue velvet curtains that matched the wall that was being served in the hotel bar.
And then, while we were walking to the train station, this minty table and chairs set demanded my attention and camera snap.
We arrived in Rotterdam and the train station wanted us to know right away that we were in a very architecturally interesting place. Rotterdam was basically flattened in World War 2, and thus is chock-full of stunning modern architecture. You can hardly believe you’re less than an hour by train from Amsterdam.
We soaked up this modernity walking in and around the Markthal—it’s apartments on the outside and that massive glass windowed area in the center is the market.
Across the street we found the Cube Houses, one of which you can enter and contemplate how annoying it must be to have to purchase furniture that fits in all of your weird corners.
We happily sipped wine among a zillion christmas lights…
…and then dined amidst the coolest oversize wallpaper/mural situation that illustrated all the things we wanted to eat.
Our London hotel was ready for us upon arrival, and I walked in and proceeded to stare at these three perfect little prints hanging above the nightstand. What is it about this little scene that looked so perfect to me?? Is it the lamp? The random frame, size, mat size, print selection? The somewhat-symmetry of three other little prints on the opposite side of the bed? The world may never know.
For dinner I found an inspiration that is much simpler to unpack: I like buttons that result in champagne drinking.
The next day, we contemplated throwing all of our ideas out the window and building a Harry Potter house instead, as we climbed the stairs at the House of Minalima.
Ultimately, this idea went out the window when we couldn’t decide on a wallpaper: the Black family tree…
…or an assortment of wanted posters. What a struggle.
The rest of our time in London was spent largely in pubs, mostly viewing stone arched basements over gin and tonics. Forgive me for skipping the photography.
Thanks for following along—I’d love to know if you’re stealing any of the same inspiration for your own home. Let me know in the comments here.