Rare Blooms

Stories of Resilience & Transformation

Kim Mupangilai

Kim Mupangilai

The Belgian Congolese architect paints a story around the importance of healing spaces.

Q: What does a sacred space look like for you?

A: Sacred space to me translates to ‘home’. Not so much the physical space, such as a house but more so the feeling. Home to me is a feeling of belonging, where my heart feels comfortable with all its surroundings. A space where I feel safe and secure and where I experience emotional warmth and the freedom to express myself, because my ideas and attitudes are in sync with those who I share ‘space’ with and that to me is sacred.

Q: ⁠⁠What is your morning or evening routine?

A: As I strongly inherited my love for skincare from my grandmother and mother, I take great pride in saying that I have had a skincare routine since I was 15. My typical morning routine consists of damping my face with cold water and microfoliating it with a concoction of Japanese rice powder, followed by patting my face with a blend of three skin-softening acids. I let it dry for a minute or two to then spray my face with rosewater. Once my face is hydrated, I then apply a vitamin C serum followed by the Taos Blue Day Cream, which makes my skin feel so hydrated and refreshed. My final and last step is applying 2-3 drops of the Amber Elix Face Oil to create that extra dewy look which leaves my skin feeling nurtured and looking glowy.

Q: Where do you draw inspiration to design?

A:  From the small and grand things in life. It can be as simple as seeing a certain composition created by shadow play on a walk with my partner to traveling to a different country and experiencing a different culture. Overall, I believe most of my inspiration comes from experiences in my daily life and not so much from books or the Internet/social media. The beauty of inspiration is that it is everywhere around us and we don’t always have to google it.

Q: What does resilience mean to you?

A: Resilience to me means to not be afraid of failure when you are trying something new or when you are just working towards your dream. There will always be things that don’t meet our expectations along the way. When we see other people “got it right” the first time, it’s most likely preceded by mistakes that we don’t see. Because failure is more certain than success, standing up after a failure is a much more important skill to learn than preventing the failure itself.

Q: Where do you draw inspiration from when designing?

A: When designing, my first inspiration comes from the client I’m creating for. Paired with the idea of bringing one’s private home into existence as well as opening it up to others as a space almost perfectly coincides with how I like to think about a space. By not only understanding the environmental aspects, I translate space, shape and form through understanding what one values in life. With the purpose to then better grasp and shape an interior, so that the interior reflects them. I’ve always been driven by the interior and the psychology of it, so when I design, I seek a balance and assemble both worlds—the interior space and the mind space.


Shop Kim's routine with Taos Blue Day Cream and Amber Elix Face Oil.