Latter-day Saints Heather Fujikawa and Heidi Andrews are twins with a mother who was always pointing out beauty in the rare and obscure details most people seldom noticed.
“She taught us to pause and find beauty in things,” Heather says. “And not only that but create beauty.”
From this love of beautiful details and creativity sprung Heidi and Heather’s passion for interior design—a passion which led them to start their own company, Joyful Living co., and landed them their own TV Show, Design Twins, set to premiere February 14, 2019 on UPtv.
Starting with Joy
The twins named their business Joyful Living because it’s the principle they start with: joy. When they meet with clients, one of their first questions is, “What brings you joy?” The sisters will build off that initial question, asking about their clients’ passions and interests, what elements of design they like, and what kind of experience they want to have in their home.
“How can we tell their story through the design in their home? If you do that, you’re always going to design a space that celebrates your clients, and in the end your client will be encircled by things, colors, and an overall design that brings them joy and comfort,” the sisters say.
For Heidi and Heather, home is a place where people should feel and experience “some of life’s greatest moments”—and these moments, for them, center on family and family relationships.
“Relationships are established and maintained under the roof. Those walls are filled with laughter, joy, and sadness at times, so with this spectrum of emotions, home is where deep rooted connections are made,” they say. “Helping our children through the path of life all starts in the home.”
Beautiful and Functional
Heidi and her husband, Paul, with their four daughters.
But the twins also know that homes should be both beautiful and functional—especially if it’s filled with young, creative children. For the two mothers, family is at the forefront, and they incorporate that priority into their home designs.
“Being [mothers] gave us more of a practical and real life approach to design, with everything from choice of fabric to flooring, to naturally putting breakable pieces up high on shelves, out of reach of those cute little hands,” the sisters say. “You can have nice things if you’re mindful of where to put them.”
Heather and Heidi suggest that families with young children choose highly durable, easy-to-maintain fabrics and textiles for sofas and other furnishings. The two also like to incorporate a well-designed swing, like a rattan swing, where little children can “get out the jitters.”
“We also like to use kids’ creations that reflect their talents in the home, like putting up a painted white cork board in the toy room or wherever you see fit and then pinning up children’s new paintings or creations of the week,” the twins say. “It makes them feel loved, and their artwork is cherished.”
Making Time for God and Family
Heather and her husband, Tyson, with their three sons.
Despite their love of designing kid-friendly living spaces, ultimately, Heidi and Heather attest that building in time with family and children is the most important part to a home. Although their biggest challenge during the filming of their new show was striking the right balance between work and family, the two found ways to stay close and present to their children.
“When we were with [our children], we embraced and loved on them so much. Typically, outside of filming, we are full-time mama mode as we usually work early mornings, nights, or during nap times, so having to leave our kids to film some scenes was new for us. When we were with them during filming we soaked it up, were present, and gave them our all when we could. Then we gave our all to the projects at hand and gave ourselves grace in the process,” the sisters say.
This ability to find balance between work, family, and self became critical for the women as they began filming. The new show follows the twins as they move both their families—Heather with her husband and three sons and Heidi with her husband and four girls—under one roof as they set out to start their interior design business. The television series also gives viewers unique insights as the twins juggle the chaos of family, work, play, hard times, and good times, while still finding joy. What do they hope viewers will learn from watching this new show?
“We hope [the audience will] feel they can be empowered in their own homes and what brings joy and happiness inside their walls of their home. Overall, if they could feel Christ’s love through watching the show by seeing how we strive to live our life with Christ at the center, that would make us happier than anything else they could be inspired by.”
Though bringing two families with small children under one rough seems daunting, Heidi says the transition was overall relatively smooth, which she believed happened because of both her and her sister’s reliance on prayer and grace.
“I think it had to do with keeping ourselves aligned with the demands of the show, family, and also building ourselves spiritually in the process. If times ever got hard, we would turn directly to prayers. Also, we would have little team meetings between all of us and have a little family council to bring up anything that may be hard for someone before it turned into something big,” Heidi says.
And, when times were especially hard, Heidi and Heather turned to a favorite phrase their father often quoted from President Monson: “Your future is as bright as your faith.”
“Sometimes in this busy, chaotic world dark days can come, but with keeping this quote in perspective, we realize there is so much love, light, and joy that can be found in the world and created in the home with your families,” Heather and Heidi say.
“As members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, our [inspiration] to design [comes from a desire to] incorporate light and love in the home that really all points to the light and love that our Savior Jesus Christ brings into our lives.”
For more about Heather and Heidi’s interior design business line of home décor and newly published book Joyful Living, as well as their interior design business and upcoming show, visit joyfullivingco.com.