Travel Home is so incredibly beautiful and well-written. Tell us about your journey in creating this book as a mother-daughter duo. How did it all come about?
We knew we wanted to write a book 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.
Tell us about your dynamic working together?
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.
How did you go about finding these incredible people to include in the book?
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.
What were some of the biggest lessons you learned while creating the book?
When things go wrong, try to have a sense of humor about it. There were plenty of highs and lows while making a book like this – research, interviewing, writing, photographing the homes, styling the homes, traveling, coordinating schedules, editing, and PR and marketing. At each stage, we learned something new and gained insights from going through it, even when we made mistakes or failed. We definitely realized we both have bucket loads of grit.
Is there one moment from this book-creating process that you’ll never forget?
There were definitely many magical moments. Maybe the beautiful lunch Malene Birger prepared for us in her home in Tremezzo, Italy on the shores of Lake Como. It was a beautiful moment in time for both of us. Another moment that was kind of crazy, is when we went for Chinese food after interviewing with Abrams. One of our fortune cookies read: “You have had an interesting life. You should write a book.” At that moment, we knew it was going to happen.
The introduction on your earliest memories of travel are endearing and exciting. Did you ever expect to fall in love with travel as you have?
I have never known life without traveling. I know this is a privilege and I am grateful for the opportunities I’ve had. My mom, on the other hand, didn’t travel much until she was an adult. Both of us are devoted to travel and seeing the world with both an open heart and an open mind.
What’s one piece of advice you’d offer someone who might feel uneasy about travel?
The advice we would give someone who feels uneasy about travel is to try and find a trip that revolves around an interest you have. There are so many small-scale trips you can choose from: cooking classes in Tuscany, markets in Morocco, dancing classes in Argentina – there are so many ways to travel and also pursue your passions. You can also start with a trip closer to home – baby steps can lead to giant leaps.
Anything else you want to share?
It’s never too late to go after a dream. My mom didn’t realize she liked to write until she was in her sixties. There are no rules on how old you need to be when going after a dream.