Designing The Future: Lidda Durazo Talks Life As A Working Mother.
Words & Photos by Charlie Blair
“It’s tough, it was very hard…” She shares while holding back tears. It’s a beautiful 80 degree spring day in Tucson. I’m meeting with Lidda Durazo, a burgeoning, jack of all trades interior designer, to discuss motherhood and entrepreneurship. We’re able to find a perfectly shaded, peaceful area away from the hustle and bustle of a city with 530,000 residents to briefly chat.
“I had a lot of guilt. Your first priority is always being a mom, so when I was out working I’d always have this feeling that I was missing out on important moments of his life.” she says. “It’s tough, it was very hard, but eventually you understand that, as a single mother, what you’re doing is necessary. I’m building a foundation for Liam, to give him the best life I possibly can while also trying to set a great example for him as he gets older.”
Interior design is nothing new to Lidda, she’s been researching and learning the ways of the industry long before Property Brothers, Love It or List it and Fixer Upper took over your evening tv watching. “I’ve always loved architecture. I would walk into buildings and get so distracted gathering inspiration for projects or seeing the potential and wanting to bring all of my ideas to life. I’ve continued to build on that over the years. I have a really strong understanding of the construction side as well now that compliments my designer side because I can give realistic ideas to clients about what we can achieve - instead of just saying we can knock a wall down to open up a room, only to find out that we can’t because it’s load bearing. That’s the kind of information that can end up saving clients money, you know?”
Blown away by the amount of passion in which Lidda delivers her thoughts I ask her to talk some more about her skills, particularly some she’s learned from being a mom that have helped her in business as well. “Oh my goodness, Patience!” she exclaims while laughing, “Liam has made me so much better at being patient. Understanding comes with that as well. Combining the two of those I’m able to…I used to be very go, go, go, but now I’m able to be patient, to understand that it’s ok to take a step back to collect yourself, to get better and then go take two steps forward. I’m finding that I’m starting to have a lot more success with the company as I’ve done that.”
“So you’ve turned what most consider a difficulty [being a single mother while owning a business] into a strength, an advantage even.” “I’m still figuring everything out, it’s still a new balance I’m trying to grasp, but I’d say absolutely. Although, I don’t want it to be my defining trait because there are a bunch of moms out there running businesses and doing an amazing job of it as well. I’d still like people to come to me for my forward thinking approach to design, my ability to think beyond what the current trend is. They say everything is cyclical, right? Everything comes back in style eventually. I keep an eye on those things and find interesting ways to incorporate them into a current trend so that way you don’t have to hire a designer again a year, two years later when the trends change. I’m enjoying traveling and really look forward to being able to do that with Liam as he gets older, finding cool pieces and inspiration from other states, other countries together and bringing them into people’s homes here in town.”
Liam is playing in a toy truck he got for his birthday, “He loves to play in that thing. It’s so funny though, he doesn’t realize that it puts him to sleep. He’ll be leaning over the edge fast asleep. I’m working on creating a little garden in the yard so he can eventually plant fruits and vegetables. I want him to understand where the things we eat come from, give him a creative outlet and something to take pride in…and also keep him awake.” I ask more about the example she’d like to set for him, “I just want to be his best role model, to see me as a strong individual. Ultimately I’d like for him to take the best parts of me and make them greater in himself. I’d like to have that impact on everyone. I’d really like to solidify myself in the Tucson community, become a household name in regards to design. That’s what my team and I are working really hard on this year, becoming a quality brand, strong, ethical and stylish. I believe with all of my heart that it can be accomplished - I’ve met and overcome too many obstacles to believe anything different. That’s what I wanted to tell anyone who’s trying to pursue anything similar, especially working mothers. Hard work and dedication always pays off, in all aspects of life. Don’t give up on what you believe in, what you feel your soul calling you towards, no matter what you’ve been through or how much people might discourage you. Everything can be a lesson if you treat it that way. Allow your life experiences and what you’ve learned to be the foundation you build your house on…and then call me to come design it.” She says with a smile.