Carrie Preston

May 25, 2015

Carrie Preston by jolanthe lalkens

Carrie Preston has been designing gardens for 25 years. At just 14 years old she started working at a perennial nursery in NJ and became quickly obsessed with plants. After completing a degree in horticulture and sustainable agriculture she went to the Netherlands for an internship and never left. In 2005 she started her own design firm, Studio TOOP.

Carrie Preston’s work is defined by a mix of generosity and humility. Whether it is a small urban garden or a large estate, the needs of the user are met with a seamless logic that borders on inevitability. Carrie excels at noticing the unique qualities of a place, with aspects of its architecture and identity echoing throughout the design – sometimes loudly and obviously, other times subtly through such things as the quiet repetition of certain dimensions. Practical needs are never an afterthought but are expertly worked into the design.

Carrie Preston, a US native, moved to the Netherlands in 2000 and started Studio Toop in 2005. She has come to be regarded as one of the leading landscape designers in the Netherlands. In 2016 she was chosen as the Association of Landscape Designers’ “Designer of the Year 2016”. Previously, Carrie was a finalist in the international “best private plots” competition (Austria, 2007) and a winner of both the Appeltern Garden Festival (the Netherlands, 2011) and the Dutch Landscape Triennial (2014). Carrie was a guest designer at the 2017 Philadelphia Flower Show, where she was awarded both a Silver Medal and the Governor’s Trophy for most innovative design. In 2018 she was both a jury member and guest designer for the Moscow Flower Jam 2018 and in 2019 her garden “The Magpie’s Paradise” was awarded the Coup de Coer (jury’s favourite) in the International Garden Festival in Chaumont-sur-Loire, France. Her work has been featured in many gardening magazines in the Netherlands, the Ukraine, Russia and Lithuania, as well as English-language publications such as “Garden’s Illustrated”, “Grow” and “The Designer”.

Learn more at Studio TOOP

Connect With Carrie on Instagram

image by Jolanthe Lalkens

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