17 Vintage Suitcase Decor Ideas for a Wanderlust Feel

Updated March 16, 2022
Modern living room decorated with vintage luggage

Bring some antique charm to your home with vintage suitcase decor ideas for every room. From suitcase nightstands in the bedroom to suitcase medicine cabinets in the bathroom, there are lots of ways to use old luggage in your decor. You can buy pieces ready-made or convert old suitcases to meet your decorating needs. These are 15 of the most creative ideas to try.

1. Create a Vintage Suitcase Nightstand

Surrey farmhouse redesigned as a family home

Turn an old suitcase into a bedside table that doubles as extra storage. This vintage suitcase decorating idea is simple to implement, and it adds a gorgeous antique look to your bedroom. You can either stack several small suitcases or choose one larger vintage piece. Either way, the ideal height for a nightstand or bedside table is about 26 inches, so getting as close to that as possible is a good plan.

2. Turn Vintage Suitcases Into Wall Shelves

Old suitcases as shelves

You can make or purchase wall shelves crafted from vintage suitcases. To make these shelves, cut off the back portion of an old suitcase and fit it over a floating wall shelf for stability. You can permanently affix the suitcase to the shelf with screws or glue, depending on the design. Then create an interior decorating statement by placing everything from books and photos to live plants on the suitcase shelf.

3. Use Old Suitcases as Stacked Storage

Antique wooden drawers and mirror in hallway with leather armchairs and vintage trunks

Vintage suitcases make great storage, and they look gorgeous stacked in a corner of your living room. Stack the larger suitcases at the bottom and the smaller ones on top for a stable, tapered appearance. When you're considering what to store in the suitcases, put larger, infrequently used items in the bottom ones and things you need to use more often in the top.

4. Make a Vintage Suitcase Table

Suitcase as table, upcycling

A vintage suitcase makes a great table. All you have to do is add some legs. You can buy vintage suitcase tables on Etsy, or you can make them yourself. Simply pick up some hairpin table legs in the height you want, such as Smartstandard Heavy Duty Hairpin Furniture Legs, which sell for about $23 on Amazon. Choose a sturdy, hard-sided vintage suitcase and attach the legs to turn it into a table.

5. Keep Craft Supplies Handy

Woman knitting and using a vintage suitcase to store supplies

Use a vintage suitcase as a decorative way to store craft supplies where you need them. If you enjoy knitting or sewing and don't want to leave your supplies out in the open to get dusty or look cluttered, a vintage suitcase next to your chair is a great way to keep supplies within reach. You can even use it to transport your projects when you travel.

6. Create a Vintage Conversation Piece

Retro items including two suitcases, a globe and a fan that sit on a white table

If you need a focal point in your living room or foyer, create a vignette with a vintage suitcase. To make an antique table decoration, stack the suitcase with other vintage items, such as globes, books, old fans, sewing implements, or candles. Place it in a spot visitors will notice, and it will work as a conversation piece in your home.

7. Turn a Vintage Suitcase Into a Pet Bed

You can purchase a vintage suitcase pet bed or make your own. Simply choose an old suitcase in good shape, and remove the top lid or add straps to the back to hold it open permanently. Then fit the bottom of the suitcase with a comfy pillow and cover it in a pretty fabric. Your cat or small dog will enjoy napping there, and it will look adorable in any room of your home.

8. Use Suitcases for Beautiful Storage Up High

Mallorca house renovated with antiques in a traditional style

Storing things on upper shelves or above cabinets or wardrobes can be a challenge. A vintage suitcase is a great solution because it keeps items clean and dust-free and has a handle to make it easy to get things down when you need them. You can use this vintage suitcase decor idea in the bedroom for off-season clothes and shoes or in your kitchen for linens and dishes you use less frequently.

9. Try a Vintage Suitcase for Under Bed Storage

Bedroom with Coordinated Bedding and Fabric-covered Walls

Store off-season clothing, extra blankets, or anything else under your bed with a vintage suitcase. Because of their shape and size, suitcases slide under a bed perfectly, and the handle makes it easy to retrieve what you need when you need it. For this type of use, it's best to choose a vintage suitcase that smells fresh and clean, since musty or moldy odors could transfer to the items you store.

10. Keep Home Bar Supplies Handy With a Vintage Suitcase

Vintage Upcycled Suitcase Bar

Give your home bar a cute, retro look by storing your supplies in an open vintage suitcase. You can put bottles, glasses, antique decanters, and other items in the suitcase to create a pretty bar vignette. For even more storage, stack a second suitcase underneath. You can keep glassware, utensils, and cocktail napkins in it.

11. Use a Retro Suitcase Instead of a Coffee Table

Italian chairs flank vintage trunks in room with Moroccan rug

There's no decorating rule that says your coffee table has to be an actual table. Instead, use a large vintage suitcase or antique trunk to hold extra throw blankets, magazines, books, or anything else. When it's closed, it will work as a great place to put decorative books and drinks as you sit and chat with friends.

12. Turn a Vintage Suitcase Into a Medicine Cabinet

You can even use vintage suitcase decor in your bathroom. Turn an old hard-sided vintage suitcase into a medicine cabinet. Attach the suitcase to the wall and then affix a mirror to the front. You may want to decoupage the inside with pretty paper or old maps, and you can even add a shelf. This is a fun DIY project, or you can buy suitcase medicine cabinets on Etsy.

13. Place a Vintage Suitcase at the Foot of the Bed

South African ranch house

A vintage suitcase looks great stacked on top of an old trunk at the foot of the bed. You can store items you might need to access in it, such as hand lotion or perfume, scarves, jewelry, and other small things. It's easy to move if you need to open the trunk for access, and it gives an instant retro vibe to your room.

14. Decoupage a Vintage Suitcase for Decorative Storage

You can give a battered vintage suitcase a beautiful new custom look that will fit in with your decor. Simply remove any loose vinyl or leather and decoupage paper or fabric onto the surface of the suitcase. You don't have to know how to decoupage ahead of time; it's a very simple process. Just apply a decoupage medium like Mod Podge to the suitcase, add the fabric or paper decorations, and add more decoupage medium over the top. Allow it to dry and then use it to display or store your treasures in any room.

15. Create a Vintage Suitcase Ottoman

vintage suitcase ottoman

You can also turn a vintage suitcase into an ottoman by adding legs, just like making it into a table. Then add fabric over the top in your choice of color and pattern. You can buy suitcase ottomans on Etsy or experiment and make your own.

16. Use a Vintage Suitcase as a Unique Chair

This completely unique use for a vintage suitcase in your decor is something you can purchase on Etsy or make yourself. To turn a suitcase into a chair, you need a very sturdy piece. You'll want to reinforce the bottom with plywood and add legs. It's also a good idea to give the back a sturdy frame of wood. Then you can cover the plywood reinforcements with padding and upholstery fabric.

17. Get Creative With Vintage Suitcase Wedding Decor

vintage suitcase with flowers wedding decoration

If you and your future spouse enjoy traveling, a vintage suitcase can make an amazing wedding decoration. You can use a suitcase full of flower to greet guests at the entrance to your event. Another fun idea is to create a vintage suitcase wedding centerpiece with flowers and other decorations. Antique suitcases offer a surprising and creative alternative to the traditional wedding decor.

Give Your Home a Sense of History

No matter what type of vintage suitcase decor you choose to use in your home, these old suitcases offer a beautiful and unique feel to any interior. Get more ideas for decorating with antiques and vintage items to give your home a lovely sense of history.

17 Vintage Suitcase Decor Ideas for a Wanderlust Feel