I recently just got back from a solo trip to Spain and I can’t recommend visiting this beautiful country enough!
The gothic and art nouveau architecture is absolutely stunning, the food and coffee is to die for, and the extremely walkable city and beach are beautiful. Here are a few photos from my trip so you can feel those wanderlust vibes:
Booking a flight to Spain yet? If not, you should be 🙂
I’m the kind of person who likes to save travel mementos, and Spain was no exception. I used to have a huge “memory box” of everything in it but soon realized that it was just full of crap from high school and people who I don’t even talk to anymore. SO, I decided that only the travel mementos really mattered to me and everything else got kicked to the curb.
I have a few glass jars of sand from various places that I’ve been and they’re pretty, but ticket stubs don’t look as nice when displayed in a glass jar. I wanted to make something that reminded me of my trip but still stored my mementos in a more visually appealing way that went with my existing decor.
I then stumbled across a picture on Pinterest that showed a bunch of different boxes all with the name of a country on them. They were painted to go with the decor in the room and opened to store mementos as well. It was the perfect solution!
All it took was a little bit of box searching, some sanding and a coat of paint and I had perfectly beautiful (and custom!) boxes to store my travel keepsakes.
I made my first 3 boxes 4 years ago when I went to Italy, France, and England, so I’m thrilled to be adding another one to the mix. Because I’ve made them 4 years apart, the box I bought recently is a little shorter, but I think it still works really well. They go together, but not in a way that’s too matchy-matchy.
For the boxes, I chose to use wooden boxes and paint them. The boxes that I got measure roughly 3 x 5 x 9 and 2 x 5 x 9 and I feel like they’re a perfect size. I chose to use boxes that were all roughly the same size, but you could change it up and do a couple different sizes if that works better with your space/style. I also chose boxes that have a very sleek exterior (no clasps or closing mechanism) and I highly recommend this look. The simplicity makes it easy to paint and write the name of the country on.
Here’s how to make a travel keepsake box of your own:
- 1 wooden box per country that you’ve traveled to (I got mine from a dollar store)
- acrylic paint
- paint brush
- black sharpie
- keepsakes to fill your box with!
- Lightly sand your box with sandpaper until the box is smooth
- Paint your box with two coats of your desired color. For my Spain box, I decided to pull in some of the dusty rose colors that I used in my DIY Dust Jacket Tutorial.
- Apply a third coat if needed and then allow your box to fully dry for about 6 hours
- Once dry, write the name of the country (or city) that you’ve been to. How you want to write the name of the country is entirely up to you. I wrote it freehand and went with a thin sans serif font for mine. When you’re writing the name of the country, I recommend writing the middle letter in the middle of your box first and then placing the letters on either side. This helps to ensure that your text stays centred 🙂
- Fill your box with your travel keepsakes and display!
I love making these boxes because it’s such a pretty way to store your travel keepsakes and it’s so easy to customize them to your space! The next time I decide to redo my apartment, I could just paint them a different color or use a different font. There are a ton of ways that you could add some more details to your boxes too. Maybe painting them with chalkboard paint would be good so you can change the font/name whenever you feel like it! Or even try some simple white boxes with gold hardware in the corners. There are so many ways that you can do these boxes, so have fun with it!
I’d love to see what you come up with for you travel keepsake boxes!
Follow Me at