Edward Aarons, New York
I can hardly believe how much my personal space designed by Carol Crawford meets my needs. Looking up from my swivel chair, I see … the library I’ve always wanted… my working desk… the home office I’ve long needed. Glancing around further, I spot my stereo, computer, the neat brown leather sleeping couch, the elegant cherry and mahogany storage cabinetry.
But I have to look up higher, above the bookcases, to see the trains; yes, the trains: beautifully detailed scale models of vintage trains that rumbled past my home during my youth.
Not many designers would face the hardships involved in indulging a client this arcane feature. But Carol believes that home design is more than the prestigious, the trendy and the merely spectacular. It should express the full essence of the client—his desires, thoughts, dreams—the contents of his soul.
Cassandra Martinez, Registered Architect, New York
My children live in a magical garden bedroom surrounded by a world of forest, meadow, burrows, ponds, and all the creatures you would find there. Up above, the moon and sky seem to change colors as the light changes in the room throughout the day.
When I first spoke with Carol about the design of a children’s room, I knew that I wanted a garden theme but I did not have any specific ideas or designs to show her .Carol was able to listen to my ideas and put together a complete design for the mural and for the custom built upholstered window seat/ bookshelves/ toy storage unit.
The room at first glance appears to be mainly a combination of soft greens until you walk inside and begin to notice all the details. On one wall is a lovely meadow with a birch tree whose branches reach up onto the ceiling and into the book shelves. Sitting in the tree is a busy squirrel trying to have some lunch. Under the tree is a bed of lovely perennial flowers and plants. Along the adjacent wall the forest area begins with evergreens and burrows. There are several varieties of birds and even a family of field mice. Further over on the next wall is the pond which is my favorite. There is a planting of swamp grasses and crop of water lilies complete with frogs.
The best feature of the room is what’s on the last wall: the two standard-sized windows are completely framed by a window seat unit with storage underneath and built-in lighting, perfect for reading a book on a cloudy day. Surrounding the seat are shelves and cubbies for books, clothes, baskets of toys, and even more painted creatures hiding in shelves waiting to be discovered. The room is unified with a very soft green carpet.
Carol did an excellent job of making a special place for my children. It was Carol’s idea to paint things into the mural that my daughter could connect to, like mommy’s wisteria vines. My daughter, now three, likes to pretend she’s climbing up the big birch tree which looks just like the one outside her window.
Throughout this whole process Carol was approachable, responsive, and very knowledgeable in her skills. She was also professional and ethical. I would recommend Carol to anyone …
Pat Berg, Staten Island, N.Y.
Carol Crawford made the daydreams of a decade or more become a reality in our modest home in Staten Island.
She translated my sketches into architectural drawings and plans that were clear and comprehensible to the carpenters, guided me through the sometimes overwhelming process of choosing materials and appliances, and personally monitored the progress of what became an ever-changing project, as the glitches and frailties of a simple 1950s ranch house revealed themselves.
Anne Marie McDonough, MPH, FACHE Associate Vice President Rehab Medicine Staten Island University Hospital, N.Y.
The most comforting spaces for the delivery of health care come when we look outside typical “white wall” hospital design. Successful collaborations to create such places can be difficult to accomplish. We challenged Carol Crawford Environments, Inc. and Carol Crawford’s students at Pratt Institute to fill a windowless treatment area with light and nature. Utilizing our adjacent wetland habitat site as inspiration, a useful proposal emerged filled with the colors and textures of our surrounding seashore environment and the playfulness needed to satisfy our pediatric patients and our adult caregivers.
Paula M. McAvoy RN, Administrative Director, Ambulatory Oncology Staten Island University Hospital, NY
Carol has the ability to listen attentively and pull together environmentally sensitive materials and design a workspace that is truly functional for real life application.