If you are a young interior designer starting out your career in Portugal, congrats! Surely this is an exciting time in your career, and it’s an exciting time to be in Portugal as well. Madonna has just moved in, and so have John Malkovich, Michael Fassbender, Christian Louboutin... What can we say? But famous personalities aside, here’s what you should expect as an interior designer in Portugal.
Which are the biggest interior design trends in Portugal?
Not so long ago, hiring an interior designer was seen as a luxury. Even today, only people with medium to high purchasing power will hire an interior designer. However, since Portuguese cities like Porto and Lisbon are quite trendy right now, AirBnBs and other short term rentals are on the rise. Lots of old houses are being renovated and redecorated for that purpose, so there’s a huge window of opportunity for those dedicated to interior designing.
Short term rentals usually follow the same interior design trends that you’d find in any other big European city. The Scandinavian/minimalist style popularized by IKEA is pervasive in Portugal, but you may end up with a project that resembles many houses around the world if you don’t add a personal touch. Traditional Portuguese icons are one way of getting around that. For those, you can start by looking at Vida Portuguesa, which is where you’ll find traditional, revived Portuguese brands. Repurposed doors, windows, bottles, wood pallets is a movement of sustainable furnishing that is (thankfully) on the rise.
Clients with a higher budget who own charm houses will likely ask for mid-century furniture with some French inspiration. This interior decoration style fits in perfectly with the decorative ceilings and wood-carved interiors you’ll find in the old houses of Porto, for example. And, as a bonus, there isn’t a short supply of Portuguese brands which manufacture mid-century inspired furniture.
Now the only thing you need to learn is how to actually reach those clients... But I dare say that it is easier than you thought! Online platforms like Fixando have made their way into our hearts, so people will be looking for interior designers and house maintenance services online. Register yourself for free and connect with new clients - this is the beginning of your Portuguese career.