With an eye for interior design, Portuguese architect and mum-of-two Joana Luís likes to draw and create new spaces getting inspiration from everything that is beautiful from her daily life and always trying to meet the expectations of her client's needs and aspirations.
She told us how she decorated the bedrooms of her daughter, Magui, and baby boy, Valentim, and how much she enjoys her family life in charming little town, Vila do Conde, in Northern Portugal. It is definitely a place to visit!
How motherhood changed your life?
It may sound like a cliché, but becoming a mum change us completely: our world becomes different and an unconditional love is born since the first second. I became a more determined and confident woman, but at the same time I also gained some new fears. The most important thing about all this process was the awareness of wanting to be the best mother for my children without forgetting the rules and a good education that are essential for them to become good human beings.
You're an architect, but you also have a passion for interior design and decorating, is that true?
All my family work in the Construction industry, so since a very young age I live in the middle of drawings and construction. I remember of wanting to decide the place of the things at home, of drawing spaces that I dreamed of and naturally this path has been traced. I studied Architecture, but what I really love is the interiors, create ambiences, details, work with colours and textures, and explore the potential of a new space.
Where do you find inspiration and ideas for your work?
First of all, I get inspired in the people for who I’m working, because they’re the ones that are going to live in the places that I’m designing. Those places need to have the soul of these people that live in there. After that I get inspired in everything beautiful from my day by day. It can be colours, textures, shapes…
How did you decorate the bedroom(s) of Magui and Valentim?
Their bedrooms are very simple and practical. I used soft colours, organic textures and decoration pieces that make the difference. I like bedrooms with clean bases and that will remain contemporary and proper to their ages while they’re growing up. I do not like very childlike rooms.
And how do you like to dress them?
Just like me. The style of my children is very relax. I love Portuguese childrenswearing brands. Besides the creative designs, they’ve very good quality and special attention to detail, and then pass on to a sibling as new. I also like to take the risk and be different, and boy’s clothes have surprised me, as there is a new world to explore with lots of potential.
What are your favourite pieces from the new Beatrice & Bee SS19 Collection?
They’re definitely the ones I chose. For Valentim, the Rufus Shirt and the Oscar and Elliott Bloomers. Both can be styled in different ways creating different types of outfits. For Magui I love the Sailor Dress that is always a classic!
Can you define a perfect family day in your town, Vila do Conde?
Vila do Conde is the perfect town to live. We’ve the beach, the river, good food, cultura, beautiful independent boutiques and places to go in. It’s just a 30 km from Oporto and is very quiet.
On Saturday mornings, I love walking down the road and watching the canoeing classes. Then eat a good grilled fish in front of the river, go to the park, see what’s new in the high street shops and enjoy the best sunset in front of the sea.
Do you recommend any place(s) to go or things to do in your hometown?
I’m a foodie, as most part of the Portuguese people, so I’m going to recommend the best places to eat here, in Vila do Conde.
For fish, I do recommend the Cangalho or Adega do Testas restaurants, and the famous Romando for the best sushi in Northern Portugal. Besides that, it has a fabulous view over the marina of Vila do Conde.
In Oporto there’s lots of beautiful places, but I definitely recommend Baixa, Clérigos and Ribeira. In any little corner there’s something to admire.