During our holiday trip to Spain, we indulged both our wide-eyed tourist by ogling ancient architecture and visiting museums and monuments, and our savvy shopper by nibbling all manner of traditional snacks (stay tuned for more on this) and hitting the label-lined streets of Madrid for some heavy-duty retail therapy (from Isabel Marant and Adolfo Dominguez to Zara and Springfield!). In the midst of all this inspiration, who’d have guessed that one of our favorite finds would be DO Design, a concept store with an unassuming, hotel-like exterior, and an interior brimming with an exquisitely edited collection of home décor, clothing, and personal accessories?
Lucía Ruiz-Rivas, who earned her design stripes at the Academy of Fine Arts in Helsinki, founded DO just three years ago, during the depths of Spain’s economic downturn, as a place for inspiration—for people to start “doing things,” as reflected in the bold, creative products she carries. DO, located in Madrid’s hip Chueca neighborhood, integrates art, fashion, and design, and features constantly changing displays of everything from minimalist dinnerware to fabric-covered notebooks and diaries to diaphanous, hand-painted scarves.
Ruiz-Rivas favors modern items that have a traditional feel and are made with time-tested materials such as wood, porcelain, and natural fibers. Somehow, she finds a way to spotlight all of them within her serene, clutter-free boutique. Nestled in wall cubes, on rope-hung racks, and among tabletop vignettes, some of our top picks included ethereal, photo-printed clutches and travel bags by Spanish sister design team ZUBI, repurposed vintage and military wear by cutting-edge French label Bensimon, Euro-chic illustrations by Asturian-born graphic artist Marta Botas, and lofty cashmere and wool throws by centuries-old Scottish standout Johnstons of Elgin.
But no matter where you turn in DO Design, you won’t take a wrong step. We’re already plotting our return trip—and this time, we’ll leave plenty of room in our suitcases.