How Portuguese Home Decor Brand Luz Editions Grew and Developed a Devoted Following

Credit to all photos: Paula Franco, Luz Editions

I have known Paula Franco for many years and watched her trust in her creative instincts grow. 

When she launched her first collection under her brand Luz Editions, I knew she had created something special. I have been a superfan from the start, purchasing her products for myself and gifts for those I love. 

I knew she had great potential but I could see from the outside she was missing some of the key components that would take her where she wanted to go so I was delighted when she joined my original Walls of Love program in 2021, I have had the joy to get to know Paula and her products and to help her fill in the missing pieces and I am delighted to share where she is now and how she achieved it.

The name Luz means light and in this precise case highlights Portuguese heritage and know-how. Because Portugal is still rooted in its tradition but is currently experiencing strong changes, it is necessary to remember its history, to value its simplicity, and to embrace it.

Our desire to create small, limited collections is dictated by the human side of handmade and rarity. Each collection will have a specific theme and will be limited in quantities. They will not be reissued.

— Paula Franco on Luz Editions

What motivated you to open your shop and what was your vision for your work?

I was born in France to Portuguese parents so my heart belongs to both cultures. I wanted to create a collection of pieces whose storytelling is rooted in my origins.

Each piece we create invites you to travel in the traditions and know-how of Portuguese craftsmanship. 

Everything was ready to launch Luz at the beginning of January 2020. I had done my first photoshoot in February to be able to prepare a catalog and the site. And suddenly, in March, Covid arrived and stopped the world. At the time, I was already comparing designers’ quotes to launch my online store. So, as it was impossible for me to have direct contact with merchants and customers, I started to work alone on my website. At that time, I saw no other possible way out for the development of my brand.

My vision has always been to be as visible as possible, to give people the opportunity to buy when there are no physical stores close to them.

Where were you when you started the course?

When I started the course, I had just built my website for my brand and was almost at the starting point. A year before, I had done the Yes, Yes, Yes course and I had come to the conclusion that, even if I loved photography, I would certainly never live from it. At the end of this course, thanks to the introspection of the course, I had another project in mind… and I started to develop “Luz Editions,” my brand of decorative pieces for the home, based in artisanat.

A few months later, when Carla launched her Walls of Love course, I didn’t immediately join because I thought it was only for photographers. It was by speaking with participants and questioning Carla directly that I understood all the potential that I could draw from it.

What did you want to achieve?

I was looking for guidance and advice, sharing and, above all, group motivation because the loneliness of entrepreneurship weighed on me. In the beginning, I didn’t have many expectations but as soon as I discovered the content of the program, I was very motivated.

In the program, I was able to find a lot of resources, details that mattered but that I hadn’t taken into account and above all I could share my ideas on future launches and get effective and honest feedback from the whole group.

I found in Carla a great inspiration, a mentor who is always very frank and caring at the same time. She shares each time so much of her own experience… that it is very motivating. You understand that if you put in the hard work, you can be successful too!

What was a block that held you back and how did you overcome it?

The most obvious blockage in general is that of success. We always want it but to what extent? The point of not knowing how to say no? The point of paying yourself last, if you pay yourself? The point of working more hours than when you were an employee? Then comes the subject of freedom. We all want to be entrepreneurs to be more “free” but in truth, it doesn’t really happen like that because we are everywhere and nowhere. Lack of organization or procrastination is also our worst enemy. All these points, I managed to overcome them thanks to the program. Not that it never happens to me again, but today, I am able to identify where not to put my energy and on the contrary, where to put more effort. And thanks to that, I can say that success came gradually but surely.

Where are you now? What has changed? Prizes, big orders, books published, new product lines, sales, etc.

Almost three years after the launch of Luz and one year after the end of the program, I can say that I live my business with more serenity and confidence. My turnover has tripled and the growth is increasing month after month.

I followed the advice of the Walls of Love program which notably highlighted the need to surround yourself and delegate.

For me, everything accelerated from the moment I started working with a logistics platform.

Now I save my time for my genius areas and delegate tasks like managing inventory, preparing shipments, and shipping. Despite my apprehension at the start, I realized that the logistics center costs much less than renting a warehouse and paying an employee.

And now, with the time I save, I focus more on the development and launch of new products, visits to craftsmen, and customer acquisition. 

What have been some of the surprises and joys (possibly how you have grown, the relationships you have started with incredible people, companies, galleries, shops, publishers, etc.)

My greatest surprise – outside of sales – is the relationship I’ve developed with many people. First with craftsmen who help me to give life to my vision and to the products I design. I love how we find solutions and have open discussions. Right after them come the customers and the owners of physical stores that sell the brand.

Regarding customers, I have very moving messages about the purchase of certain products. Regarding the shops, a great respect and a good collaboration have been established with many of the owners. We work hand in hand to make every launch a success. I listen to their praise, their expectations, their disappointments too; I feel that the message I wanted to convey is understood. I feel that there is a real transmission and for me, this project would not make sense without this human part and all that it brings.

How would you describe your relationship with what you have created and your long term view for continuing your work? 

Today when I think back to my initial idea and the evolution that the brand has taken, I feel proud. First of all because my vision paid off and it was above all to meet consumers who, like me, are looking for decorative pieces with meaning.

The starting point was to maintain and make known to the world traditional Portuguese knowledge such as soenga, a talented photographer like Artur Pastor, and to push the work of traditional craftsmen on a small scale.

Now, I have the feeling that the more I advance, the more I refine the products that I create. My message is clearer each time and contributes to building a small loving community in the Luz Editions universe.

Actually, I can see me running my little brand for 10 years more and pass it to someone who has the same vision but who will come with new ideas. It would be like passing the torch to the next generation.

What would you say has been a habit, behaviour, or anything that has attributed to your success?

Contacting people, knocking on doors, canvassing even if it requires effort and overcoming a certain shyness. Because I really believe in my products. I also learned to accept that not everyone might be interested in selling them (shops know their ideal client). But the more I refine my research, the more I contact real future partners. The shops were essential for my visibility. Now, each time I travel, I always take products with me in case I see a shop that can be a good match.

Of course, this “sales” work is also a big part of the program because knocking on doors also corresponds to writing emails and newsletters. And to insist sometimes too… I have a lot of shops that read my emails but didn’t contact me but, seeing my success grow, they came to me. This is often the case with the flagship stores, they are the ones who come to you and not the other way around.

What’s your next big dream…or where do you see Luz in 5 years? 

I keep the dream of opening at least one shop. But it has to be a specific place full of beauty, history, meaning… and given the real estate prices today in Lisbon, maybe it won’t happen but I’m still hopeful. Who knows, maybe someone will read this interview and contact me?! You have to dream… always!

Huge thanks to Paula for sharing her story and for continuing to bring to life original objects with local artisans. Having the courage to follow your heart and take action means the world is a better place thanks to Paula. 


You can check out her shop here:

Follow her on Instagram here and on Pinterest here


Carla x

P.S.: If you would like to learn more about selling your photography and art online, you can watch my FREE training here.

TV Sensation Shaynna Blaze’s Place With One Of My Flower Girls!!!

Dearest Fellow Creatives,

What a joy to see in Domain this past week the beautiful home interiors of superstar interior designer and co-host of TV sensation The Block, Shaynna Blaze.

I’ve lived away from Australia for so many years and had only heard about this show on trips home but when my Father was dying, it was one of the shows my Mum, Dad, and I watched each week.

I stayed in Australia for four months that year and became a The Block enthusiast so it was super exciting to see that one of my flower girls, Going Places, was actually hanging in Shaynna’s beautiful home!

Photo: Natalie Jeffcott

The clever folks at Domain created a little tour video of Shaynna’s home with lots of beautiful surprises, which you can watch here:

In Shaynna’s words, “A home should feel like an oasis as well as an adventure, with elements of fun, personality, and the unexpected.”

Here is a little preview of her home with photos by the talented Natalie Jeffcott:

Photo: Natalie Jeffcott
Photo: Natalie Jeffcott

You can check out Domain’s feature on Shaynna’s 1880s Melbourne pad HERE.


If you would like to decorate your walls with a little joy and beauty, you can check out my shop here:

Loads of love and thanks to Domain, Shaynna Blaze, and Natalie Jeffcott. 


Carla x

creativity, carla coulson

Lessons from Creativity, the Generous Teacher

creativity, carla coulson

Hello Beautiful Ones, 

I’ve been absent for a while and am so excited to be back. 

Sometimes in life, we need to give ourselves the gift of time of being able to reconnect back to what is important to us and process what’s next.

I’ve had a lot of fun taking photos over the past months with some beautiful gals who the universe sent my way and the joy we shared reminded me of the power of photography and creativity in general. 

Here are some wisps of thoughts and feelings this experience gave me:

    • Opening myself to new ideas
    • Working with beauty
    • Looking at the environment in a new way when I couldn’t get what I wanted
    • Being allowed ‘to play’ 
    • The release of anxiety and stress 
    • Being lost in the flow, the process
    • Connecting to a story that I deeply care about 
    • Constantly asking myself ‘what if’?
    • Starting a love affair with my project and staying in that phase till it’s ready to share with the world
    • Entering the ‘process’ of creativity with trust and faith knowing that something will come 
    • Feeling the softening inside after a day of a shoot, the little ‘love rush’ for what was created. 
    • The pure joy of being in the moment 
    • Making mindful choices… Asking those inner questions 


If your life is feeling a little rocky, reach for something creative, give yourself the gift of communing with yourself, being fully in the present, and creating beauty. It’s an easy and fun way to reconnect to joy

Sending you much love,

Carla x

P. S. If you would like a little help reconnecting to something that sparks your joy, you can download my free Reawakening your Lust for life PDF here.

eclectic design, Design Anarchy, Eva Trevisan

Dreams Into Reality: An Eclectic Artisanal Design Brand

eclectic design, Design Anarchy, Eva Trevisan
Portrait by David Bastianoni; Photo in background by Bottega53

I first came to know of the beautiful eclectic design work of Eva Trevisan and Clara Boatto when the daughter of a friend of mine was part of a beautiful wedding in Puglia. I loved everything about that wedding, the table decorations, the flowers, the tambourines, the music, the fiat 500, and the music. And just like that, I was a mega fan of the girls who were then known as Chic Weddings. 

Eva and Clara, like the true creatives they are, kept on rolling and creating new versions of themselves and events for lucky folk to participate in from colourful creative workshops to out of this world parties and events known as the Design Anarchy Studio.

Their recent project is one that I think many people dream of and that is creating their own curated collection of accessories crafted by talented artists for soul gifting and memorable hospitality! 

They boldly state, “This is our story, we are different. You either love us or hate us. If you love us, it will be forever.”

I’m one of those lovers! And maybe you will be too?

Today Eva shares her knowledge on turning their dream into a reality.

You’ve had many incarnations as a creative, designing amazing weddings and private functions around the world, stylist, creating workshops for creatives to re-inspire them after a season of giving. What has been a useful talent, skill or value that has helped you bring to your incredible creative artisanal eclectic design products to life?

We always dreamt to create something unique that could express the real “us,” something that could represent our vision and show our audience what we really love but we were always reluctant because the risk was that our tastes would appeal to one particular clientele and automatically alienate another. 

From the moment we understood that, we just wanted to be ourselves and show who we really are. Letting go of our fears, we started running directly towards our online collection of items we love. The collection is for DIY brides, private event organisers, hotels, and restaurants looking for artisanal items for their tables and for all those seeking ideas for presents and thoughts for their guests or for themselves. It is a cabinet of curiosities aimed at showing beautiful pieces made by worldwide artisans. The crafting skills behind some items are incredible. We worked with artists who helped us to bring our ideas into reality and who created, in collaboration with our design, wonderful handmade items. Nothing is produced in big factories and with this, we hope to help the world of craftsmanship to be valued and appreciated more and more.

eclectic design, Design Anarchy, Eva Trevisan, Clara Boatto, Italy
Photo Credit: Design Anarchy Studio
eclectic design, Design Anarchy, Eva Trevisan, Clara Boatto, Italy
Photo Credit: Cinzia Bruschini

Courage is essential when we do something new or dare to move towards something we care about. I love how you embrace the concept of “be uncommon, be you” which is so refreshing in a world that finds it difficult to be themselves and stand out. What role has courage played in your new project, in leaning into your particular eclectic design style and vision, what has motivated you to be courageous with Design Anarchy Studio? 

We always chose to be ourselves even though sometimes it is not always easy to follow this path; it is a choice we made fully when our company grew, and I must admit we are still evolving and shaping into this decision. Sometimes, we feel the pressure from the world — especially the business world — for us to be more commercial, more similar to other companies. A good entrepreneur would probably focus on the business side of his company, while an artist would prefer to keep doing his art (and live on the street)… but we are a bit in between. 

We believe that as much as it is important to run a healthy business and that without a good profit, the business would cease to exist, we still try to run our company (with our vision in mind), always bringing our visions and personalities to our clients. We’re always aiming to meld art, our vision, and our knowledge of the market altogether to make the business more successful in all aspects.

After 15 years in this business, we have seen this market grow enormously in these past years. New agencies have been born and now the market offers different solutions for every budget or taste. We have understood that the only way to make a difference is to be ourselves, to bring our expertise and knowledge to this market with our skills and experience and with our dreams and creative visions. This requires a bit of risk — not every client might like a leopard-print tablecloth at their event, but like everything in life, we believe that risks are always paid back. Only in this way will we attract the right clients for us. 

We might change again in the next 10 years — obviously, we won’t be the same as we are now — but this is the beauty of life. Courage doesn’t come without fears, but when you are motivated by something creative inside, the jump always rewards you with surprises that would not be possible if you stayed in safer waters. 🙂

eclectic design, Design Anarchy, Eva Trevisan, Clara Boatto, Italy
Right, Photo Credit: Cinzia Bruschini; Left, Photo Credit: Design Anarchy
Design Anarchy, Eva Trevisan, Clara Boatto, Italy, eclectic design
Photo Credit: Design Anarchy Studio

You are a renaissance woman moving across so many creative fields. What is one habit, tip, or behaviour that supports your ongoing creativity? What has creativity taught you about yourself? 

Sometimes, I personally don’t feel creative at all. While some days are better than others, I think it is the normal life of a creative person. 

When we were in lockdown in March 2020, I had this idea to create moodboards with items I found at home and to describe each moodboard with the names of an event or a journey. It was a super fun project which helped me and my business partner Clara, to “see” more and visualise more of the items we had at home. To divide in colour palette, to create from nothing…

What I have learnt about myself is that sometimes creativity is an inner talent. You don’t notice you have it but then you realise it belongs to you when you compare it with the world or when a magical idea comes in. A glimpse of creativity comes to me when I am at the cinema (which has a big influence on me, I looove the big screen) or maybe I’m just walking down the street and boom! I get an idea! I am a big observer when I travel and I always have my eyes open, so I think this helps a lot. I observe everything around me, from young generations in the way they live, act, dress to food markets, nature, buildings, and people…

Creativity has taught me that I cannot live without combining items, patterns, and colours together. It also makes me happy.

eclectic design, Design Anarchy, Eva Trevisan, Clara Boatto, Italy
Photo Credit: Alina Danilov
eclectic design, Design Anarchy, Eva Trevisan, Clara Boatto, Italy
Left, Photo Credit: David Bastianoni; Right, Photo Credit: Elisabetta Lilly-Red

Women are often told that at 40+, they are too late to realise their dreams. How has your age and experience been a positive asset in starting this new adventure for Design Anarchy? What would you say to women who need to take their first step?

I think when you are 40+, you need to take your steps more consciously because at this age, you may also have a bunch of heavy luggage with you (children, husband, a house to pay, bills to pay, etc…) so let’s face it, it requires a good business plan. We started to change our company name in 2020 after 14 years in the business. It took a lot of courage but we were tired of being associated with something we were not anymore. We took the risk and now we are happy about our decision. We are not the same as we were 14 years ago, and our company name didn’t represent us anymore so we feel we did the right move.

40s is also the age when a woman feels more empowered with herself, more convinced of herself, and she has started accepting herself differently than during her 20s. It requires lots of constant work when taking the first step in achieving the dreams, hard work, and pragmatism but she also forgives herself easily. If she falls, she rises up again without being too hard on herself. To the women who are taking their first steps, I would say that it is important to plan well and play a lot, to enjoy each journey they have decided to step into, to take their decisions with a smile, and if they don’t work out, it doesn’t matter. To avoid acting like the worst judge of themselves but to be kind. To treat themselves gently. Whatever their dreams are, it is important to value them and to have a clear plan in mind, then once they’ve decided to take that step forward, be aware of all the roads leading to that dream, it is not all glam and fame but it is always worth the journey.

Courage doesn’t come without fears, but when you are motivated by something creative inside, the jump always rewards you with surprises that would not be possible if you stayed in safer waters.

What’s a message, quote, or saying you would like to send out to the world about taking a risk and doing what you love? And why?

“It is better to be hated for what you are than to be loved for what you are not.” — Andre Gide

I think the quote summarizes everything.

eclectic design, Design Anarchy, Eva Trevisan, Clara Boatto, Italy
Left, Photo Credit: David Bastianoni; Right, Photo Credit: Design Anarchy Studio

You can check out the eclectic design work of Design Anarchy Studio here:

Their new shop and artisanal range of artisanal eclectic design products here:

And you can follow Design Anarchy on Instagram here:

A huge thank you to Eva for sharing her thoughts and knowledge.


Wishing you a beautiful, creative day.

Carla x

If you want to know how you can live more wholeheartedly, reconnect to your joy, creativity, and purpose, download my free Workbook here.

Mum and dad

Saying Goodbye to Dad and 2020

carla coulson, dad on the beach, saying goodbye

Dear Friends,

On the 30th November, just days after his 91st birthday my beautiful father left, as he called it, ‘the land of the living’ to continue his journey with all his mates, ancestors, and family in another land. 

I take great solace in the fact that I know he is in great company. 

You are never really prepared to say goodbye even when you know it’s coming.

On the 21st of September 2020, I was one of the very lucky people who boarded a plane out of Charles De Gaulle airport in Paris heading for Australia to spend time with my dying father and my family. I called him from the empty airport lounge in case something happened to both of us in between and I howled down the phone that ‘he did a great job as a father and I loved him dearly.’ He reassured me that nothing would happen to him and I boarded the plane a blubbering mess, I prayed he would wait for me. Dad waited, he always did.

Hector coulson Carcoar with family, saying goodbye

My Dad, as my brother said in his eulogy, ‘was the kind of man that there isn’t enough said about.’ Dad saw it an honour to devote his life to his family from the day he married my mother and he was unwavering in his mission with my mum to give us a safe, secure, simple, and joyous life.

Dad was a quiet man but he knew who he was, stood by his values, and took great pride in passing them onto us. He found pleasure in the simple things, he tended his garden every day of his life no matter where we lived. Each time we would pull up sticks and move again to a new town, the first thing Dad would do was plant his new garden where we would always find sweet peas, petunias, pansies, and an array of veggies.  

Mum and Dad Carla Coulson, saying goodbye 

Mum and Dad were an undividable team no matter how hard we tried. It was this love and care that I had the joy of witnessing in the last months of Dad’s life. There was beauty in dying, in the love that my mother showed my father in the tiniest of daily rituals to ensure he was comfortable, the deepest loyalty in the promises to Dad that he would end his last days at home with his beloved garden just a glance out the window. 

In preparing to say goodbye, everything becomes precious, the sweet smell and taste of mangoes that Dad only wanted to eat for breakfast, the pristine white of the first magnolias that bloomed from the tree he planted in front of their window, shared discussions with my sisters and brothers about what to do next. The hunt for fresh oysters when that’s all he wanted to eat or to track down a culinary throwback such as ‘curried prawns and rice’ when the rare request was made. 

For me, everything was an honour, to do the smallest of tasks, to place a knitted blanket over him to keep him warm as he dozed off to sleep, like he did for me at the other end of my life. The smallest of tokens for the love and care my sisters, brother, and myself have been shown throughout our lives. 

hector coulson

There is so much talk about leaving a legacy, some families leave legacies of wealth and share portfolios. My father (and mother) left another kind of legacy, they worked every week of our lives to make our childhood an adventure, rich with barbecues late into the night on the beach when others may have packed it in for the day, picnics with our extended family that included card tables, flasks, eskies, fishing rods, cricket sets, and our beloved family dog. Road trips around Australia in our Valiant with wide eyes and big hearts singing ‘que sera, sera’. What will be, will be. 

It’s a legacy of family and beauty, of appreciation for a perfect gardenia and the rush of pleasure its heavenly scent elicits, for the simple joy of being outdoors laughing our hearts out and being part of this big, beautiful world we live in. A legacy of family I see in the faces of my nieces and nephews, my brothers and sisters. Going through our photos cemented another legacy, a life well-lived. Dad maxed out his life in his own gentle way and created so much love. 


Mum and dad

What remains? Love. Dad’s on another ‘plane’ now, but the love remains, so much love. I count myself as one of the luckiest gals on the planet to have inherited a gentle legacy that feels large and wide, perfumed with the simple joy of a garden, an incredible family with so much gumption and echoes of laughter floating away on a windy beach. Over the past months, I’ve spent so much time with my brothers and sisters, nieces and nephews, friends and family friends and it’s this fabulous tribe created by Dad and Mum that brings comfort and security. 

So on the Eve of the close of 2020, a year like no other, a year that gifted us the opportunity to tune into what is important to us, I thank you for being a valued part of my community and wish you loved times with your family and friends. 2020 has been kind to me, many wishes came true, so please don’t be sad for me, I’m filled with gratitude and thanks for all that I was able to experience and share. 

2020 has been a chance for all of us to ask ourselves the deeper questions about what’s really important to us and I hope that 2021 is the year we get to realise some of those dreams

Que, sera, sera (what will be, will be)

Carla x