Style Profile: Serena Crawford

serena crawford hopetoun awnings

{The Charming Hopetoun Avenue House designed by Serena Crawford}

While perusing Pinterest yesterday, I came across the photo above of a lovely house with pale green shutters and a green and white striped awning. I was immediately drawn to the facade of the house and clicked, through hoping to see more. I soon found out that this house, titled the Hopetoun Avenue project, was designed by South African designer, architect, and builder, Serena Crawford.  I am always so happy to come across inspiring designers who are new to me, especially ones as multi-faceted and talented as Crawford. Her work has an effortless style that feels classic and timeless. Marrying traditional roots with modern elements, these stunning homes designed by Serena Crawford are sure to be enduringly beautiful for many years to come.

serena crawford vogue

 {Hopetoun is lovely at first sight. Notice the beautiful view just beyond.}

serena crawford vogue3

{Though quite elegant, the living room in the Hopetoun house has an easy, effortless quality.}

serena crawford hopetoun living

{Ikat, Block Printed Textiles, Chinoiserie Panels, Slipcovers, and Chandeliers Work Together in the Living Room}

serena crawford hopetoun kitchen

{The kitchen is casual and chic with shutter-type cabinetry to echo the home’s location near the beach, easy open shelving, and lots of blue and white.}

serena crawford hopetoun pool

{The terrace at Hopetoun features an array of neutral rattan and wicker.}

serena crawford hopetoun bed

{Beautiful White-Washed Floors and Elegant Accessories in a Bedroom at Hopetoun}

serena crawford hopetoun bathroom

{The cabinetry  and open shelving in one of the bathrooms at Hopetoun echoes similar elements in the kitchen.}

serena crawford hopetoun2

{I’m not quite sure what the purpose of this room is, but it is lovely nonetheless. A children’s playroom, perhaps?}

serena crawford vogue2

{A Sun-Drenched Breakfast Room is Lovely in Neutrals}

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{A Beautiful Bathroom at Hopetoun features a modern bathtub, skirted sink, and dramatic Venetian mirror.}

serena crawford parsley bay

{A separate project called Parsley Bay is slightly more formal and traditional, though a lot of the same elements– a neutral palette, slipcovers, etc. are present.}

serena crawford parsley bay

{The great room is a combination of a living and dining area. Instead of having one large dining table, the dining room features a cluster of smaller tables seating four people each. Doing this is probably great for larger gatherings. }

serena crawford parsley bay living

{Notice the Vintage Louis Vuitton Trunks that Appear throughout this Space}

serena crawford silverhurst

{The Beautiful Grounds at Silverhurst, another Serena Crawford-Designed House}

serena crawford silverhurst stairs

{A Dramatic Staircase Welcomes Guests in the Entry at Silverhurst. Notice the same leopard chair that appeared in the dining room   at Parsley Bay.}

serena crawford silverhurst3

{I love the simplicity of the mud room.}

serena crawford silverhurst2

{The terrace at Silverhurst features the same neutral wicker and rattan that was used at Hopetoun.}

serena crawford silverhurst bath

{This is such a pretty bathroom!}

serena crawford vogue4

{It looks like Crawford likes to use this cabinetry in most of her projects. I love the look of it.}

serena crawford castle exterior

{Castle on the Cliff was designed by Serena Crawford and once functioned as an award-winning luxury boutique hotel. It is now a vacation home for the current owners.}

serena crawford castle deck

{Incredible Views at Castle on the Cliff}

serena crawford blue and white

{Blue and White Stripes and Batik Prints in the Living Room at Castle on the Cliff}

serena crawford castle

{Can you imagine waking up here with the beautiful ocean just beyond the windows?}


{Castle on the Cliff is Rustic Chic}

serena crawford castle2

{I love this bedroom at Castle on the Cliff. The ceiling detail and built-in bookshelves are fabulous.}

serena crawford wellington

{There are only two photos of the Wellington Project on Crawford’s website, but the exterior is too beautiful not to share.}

serena crawford wellington2

{This is such a beautiful garden, pool, and guesthouse. I love it!}

While observing Crawford’s portfolio, I couldn’t help but notice that she uses a lot of the same design elements in each project. As a designer, I know this is important in defining one’s look and point of view and frankly, sometimes you can’t help but keep going back to individual pieces you love. However, I am curious how you feel about designers employing a lot of the same elements from one project to the next. What are your thoughts?


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Tell Me What You Think! leave a comment...

  1. Lovely design and enviable properties! I don’t think I have a problem with designers using the same elements in different projects. I would look to a designer for product resources and hope that the designer has favorite and “go-to” suppliers. There are certainly efficiencies to be had. On the other hand, I understand not wanting my home to look too much like someone else’s, especially if I have paid for an expensive interior designer, so I guess it is a fine line for the designer to navigate.

  2. Serena’s work is incredible. I do like that she uses some of the same elements in her projects, it doesn’t look redundant and it definitely works!!

    The Arts by Karena

  3. Thank you for the wonderful accolade on your blog.
    These are all my personal homes. And as a result it’s often the same furniture moved from country to country house to house!!! I’m now building a new house..very excited. And once again the same favourite gold mirror will reappear !! I have lived and moved too many times . I have mostly been my own client as a result !

    1. Serena, your work is absolutely beautiful and truly inspiring. How wonderful that these are all your personal homes. While there are some common threads, they each seem to have a distinct point of view and personality.

  4. Beautiful portfolio and interesting question. As a designer I do not appreciate it if someone walks into a room I have done and says “Diane must have done this”, which says to me that I did not adequately reflect the taste and style of the client. While I do use similar elements in most rooms i.e. contrast welting and a touch of black, this is not a “signature” but more of a good design “trick”. That being said, I love the fact that she, like most of us, hang on to her favorites and use them in each of her homes. Proof that good design never goes out of style!

  5. These rooms are perfection! Effortlessly beautiful is my favorite look in interior design as well as fashion. Ms. Crawford has achieved that look in all of these projects.
    I think if a designer is talented they can use some of the same elements in many projects but still reflect the clients desires. But some designers do almost the exact same look from wall paint to furniture to accessories in all of their projects. For me, that becomes extremely boring and almost a paint-by-the-numbers approach to design, which isn’t design at all.

  6. Just looking through all these wonderful comments on your fabulous blog… and Im so touched!! Anyway the one room you didn’t know what its was.. and thought it was a childs room….was actually my bathroom! You can see tip of bath in one corner.It had sweeping views of Sydney Harbour..through marvellous sliding open windows. My new house in Cape Town is nearly finished and when its done I will send the photos to
    Love your blog!!
    love Serena Crawford

  7. What a great profile on my dear friend Serena. Do you know that we have been friends since we were 15 years old in Johannesburg South Africa!! I am actually going beach walking with her in Cape Town on Monday, I am visiting my sister and going to a 60th birthday. We are having breakfast at her house that she has just built here in Cape Town. I hear word that it too is spectacular. I will keep you posted.

  8. That designers do have a style that they naturally gravitate towards is a given. Many people adore this style of interior decoration. It’s not new but Serena’s approach is a fresh uncluttered take on it. I think it’s quite lovely and easy on the eye.