If you buy one design book this year, let it be Travel Home: Design with a Global Spirit. From mother-daughter duo Caitlin Flemming and Julie Goebel, it’s a celebration of beautiful design, encouraging readers to “curate interiors that reflect your favorite places and experiences in ways that are beautiful and authentic.”
With exquisite and ethereal photography by Peggy Wong, the book takes you directly into the travel-inspired homes of more than 20 leaders in the design world — Nate Berkus and Jeremiah Brent, Jenni Kayne, and Vicente Wolf to name a few. The thoughtfully composed pages offer an intimate view into each designer’s personal home, enhanced with candid glimpses into their travel preferences, from favorite cities to visit to what they pack for every trip.
The book is officially out today, and to celebrate the authors have graciously shared a look inside the pages. In the slideshow, you can take an exclusive tour of Lan Jaenicke‘s flat. The fashion designer was born in China, studied in London, and now calls San Francisco home. Her minimal aesthetic is reflected beautifully, with a neutral palette and select antiques from her family in China. As she explains in Travel Home, Lan has lined the space under her bed with multiple volumes of Chinese history and literature. Moving upward, the stacked books also serve as her bedside tables — a truly unique design element that reflects her history and serves as a steady compass for her spiritual guidance.
We sat down with the mother-daughter duo to learn more about the book, from the initial idea to the hard work it took to bring it to life:
What was your light bulb moment? Where did the idea for Travel Home begin?
We knew we wanted to write a book and once we made the decision and knew the time was right for us, we narrowed our focus to meld our two passions – design and travel – into a book. We spent almost as much time crafting the concept of the book as we did to write it. But every time we worked on it, the concept became clearer and more focused and we were energized and determined to follow through with it. It was also an excuse to travel together while writing and photographing the book. We have always worked well together. It probably stems from having been very close when living in Mexico City as a child. My dad was a conservationist and was out of town a lot, so we often hung out and explored the city together. We would also tag along on his trips and explore places on our own. Fast forward 25 years, and we still work harmoniously as a mother/daughter team.
What drew you to Lan’s home? What are some elements in her space that you feel embody the spirit of the book?
We chose Lan before seeing her home. Just by knowing her, we felt her home must be an extension of the person she is. You can see the influence of travel in her designs for clothing and she is one of the most present and kind people you can meet. It was fun to see how her travels, as well as her background directly shape the home she lives in. When you sleep surrounded by volumes of Chinese history her parents gifted her, the connection is clear to see. Lan is a deeply spiritual and we were also attracted to that part of her.
As you began the creative process and explored the homes of other travel aficionados, was there anything that surprised you, or you hadn’t considered about travel and design before?
We are still pinching ourselves for having found such incredible people for the book. We had a few key introductions, but for many in the book, we just contacted them directly. We wanted to stay true to one thing: all of those chosen for our book have influenced us profoundly. And after getting to know them, we feel so much gratitude to them for not only opening up their homes but also their hearts as well. Their stories have been etched into our lives and we are better for having known them. I think what surprised both of us is just how much we enjoyed the entire process – even the crazy travel schedule in photographing the homes around the world. Each person taught us something different and we hope you’ll learn something new by reading Travel Home.
What do you hope readers gain by reading Travel Home?
We think you will gain a perspective on how designers gain insight and perspective when they travel and how it can influence your design aesthetic. The stories of each person in the book are compelling and the photographs of their homes are stunning. They each differ from one another yet there is an important thread between them – they all love to travel and they have had a profound influence on our style.
Caitlin Flemming is an interior designer, stylist, and founder of the style and interior design blog Sacramento Street. Julie Goebel is the founder of Travelers Conservation Foundation. Her design work can be found in the San Francisco Chronicle, Better Homes & Gardens, and Romantic Homes. They both live in San Francisco. Travel Home: Design with a Global Spirit can be purchased here.