How to Turn 3 Key Areas of Your Home Into a Travel-Inspired Getaway

It seems that everyone wants to get away for summer, ditching their routines for a blissful retreat abroad. But the key to a relaxing mood all summer long might just be doing the opposite—by bringing the vacation atmosphere into your home. There are so many ancient design legacies across the world that can enhance your abode and turn it into a space you’ll never want to escape. 

It’s simply about finding the right products, palettes, and inspirations from your favorite vacation destinations—in a way that honors and celebrates their design sensibilities. HomeGoods is one shop that does international design right and at accessible price points.

So, we tapped designer Beth Diana Smith for her advice on how to style your home into a cosmopolitan oasis—from a European countryside entryway to a Grecian dining room and India-inspired living room. Check out Smith’s tips, ahead.


European Countryside Entryway

Southern Europe is coveted for some of the most picturesque countryside destinations. Think lush vineyards, pastel cottages, and pristine lakes. To emulate the quaint summertime bliss of these areas, Smith suggests bringing the outdoors into your entryway with color. Specifically, she notes that green is associated with positive thinking and peace of mind.

Adding greenery to an entry space creates an organic and inviting atmosphere—one that evokes the rolling hills of the European countryside,” Smith says. “HomeGoods’ garden department is a treasure trove of greenery from real dried lavender to faux plants that look oh-so-real and fresh.”

She also suggests adding in bold hues when possible—reminiscent of fuchsia flowers or candy-colored homes you might see in a countryside town.


“An unexpected pop of color in a small yet impactful way—such as a ceramic vase or frosted glass candle—can up the wow factor in your entry,” Smith elaborates. “Leaning into those soft mustard, turquoise, and terracotta tones will transport you straight to an Italian countryside villa.”

Of course, with an abundance of mountains, plants, and trees in the countryside, you can’t forget to bring in some natural materials as well.

“Vases of varying colors, sizes, and materials like stone, clay, or porcelain are an easy way to add that earthy and inviting countryside ambiance into the space—creating a special first impression for your visitors and most importantly, yourself,” Smith notes.


Grecian Dining Room

You can’t picture Greece without its idyllic crystal waters, white stucco buildings, and ornate ancient architecture. To bring some of the magic home in your dining room, Smith recommends embracing Grecian style’s classic palette of blue and gold hues—after all, it doesn’t have to break the bank. 

“When decorating a dining table, the natural place to start is with the tableware,” Smith advises. “In creating my dreamy Grecian tablescape, I found textured ceramic white dinner plates at HomeGoods for under $10 that act as the perfect base to let the bright blue ceramic appetizer plates and gold-trimmed porcelain bowls shine.”


A solid tablescape should also embrace lots of layering. Smith recommends using knitted runners, woven placemats, linen napkins, and stacks of plates to create a full dining experience.

It’s important to consider dimension, as well, so that your tablescape doesn’t fall flat. “Instead of one main centerpiece, use several decor items, varying in height, extended across the length of the table to create an elevated, and much more interesting, centerpiece,” Smith elaborates.

“This gives you multiple conversation pieces and really transports you to that seaside Grecian dinner party I was inspired by,” she adds. “Think ceramic painted vases, delicate blue and white butter dishes, oversized candles, or even a Greek head statue.”


India-Inspired Living Room

India is renowned for its unapologetic embrace of vibrancy and ornamentation in design. So, if you’re looking to bring some of those features into the living room, it’s key to play with rich colors and bold patterns—as Smith learned from her travels across the country. 

“For example, I found a wool 9’ x 12’ area rug at HomeGoods for under $500 with blue and red tones weaved throughout the pattern, and then matched that with an upholstered daybed, made in India from HomeGoods, that complemented those blue tones,” Smith explains. “These lines of cohesion between the two statement pieces help make your space feel balanced yet eye-catching.”


You can also get creative with smaller pieces. “Decorate shelves with items like bold blue candles, wooden decorative boxes, and hand-painted ceramic pots,” Smith suggests.

The texture is another important element of Indian interior design—and one that’s easy to incorporate through softer, plush items on your seating.

“Layering pillows of different designs allows you to mix and match textures that complement each other in an unexpected way, like a bright yellow velvet pillow with tassels and an embroidered purple throw pillow with a tiger design,” Smith concludes.

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