firstname.lastname@example.orgCape Coral resident Carrie Cremia's penchant for interior design surfaced at a very young age.
When she was about 8 years old, Cremia would drag her parents to open houses. Once inside, she would wander off on her own to rearrange the home's dcor, hiding any out-of-place or ugly pieces.
"At a very young age, I was doing that," she laughed.
Now the proud owner of Carrie Cremia Interiors, Cremia has been in the interior design industry in Southwest Florida for more than 15 years. Also employed as a designer on call at the Miromar Design Center in Estero, she was recently recognized with the August 2013 Designer of Distinction award.
"I'm really happy about that," Cremia said of the distinction.
"I love working with the design center," she said.
According to the Miromar Design Center, each month it recognizes the talents, loyalty and support of interior design professionals based upon nominations submitted by the center's 45 store managers.
"I play well with others, so I think that when I work in the design center I'm easy to work with," Cremia said. "I know how things are done. I speak with confidence, but I don't talk down to people."
She noted that the Designer of Distinction winners usually hail from Naples or Sarasota.
"I've had projects all over, but the fact that I'm from Cape Coral - I'm really excited about being nominated," Cremia said.
Prior to her win, she had reportedly been nominated 17 times for the award.
Vivian Armenti, manager of the Henredon Interior Design Showcase, nominated Cremia.
"Carrie's professionalism and talent has made our experience working with her a pleasure," she said in a statement. "She is very creative, with a wonderful knowledge of how to get the job done successfully. She supports and understands the showroom operations and the value of this relationship to everyone."
Kravet Showroom manager Amy Jimenez also nominated Cremia.
"Carrie's creativity, attention to detail, professionalism and commitment to providing great service are some of the wonderful qualities she possesses," she said in a statement. "She skillfully balances scale, style and function, transforming her client's homes into fabulous spaces for them to live in and enjoy."
Cremia has been working on call for the Miromar Design Center for more than two years.
She explained that when customers stop by the center to shop for a few things but need help or some direction, the center contacts the designer on call to provide assistance to the customers in-store.
"That's a nice program that Miromar offers to their client community," she said.
A graduate of Alverno College in Milwaukee, Wis., Cremia has a bachelor's degree in art, as well as public relations and marketing. In 1994, Cremia moved to Southwest Florida to pursue her career.
"Since that time, I've been working as an interior designer," she said.
Cremia has worked for Burdines and Norris Furniture & Interiors. She helped open and set up the vendors for the Baer's Furniture in Naples, then opened the Fort Myers venue and design studio.
In 2009, Cremia ventured out on her own with the formation of Carrie Cremia Interiors.
"I love this industry," she said. "I can't imagine doing anything else."
Cremia has an extensive background in all facets of design, with model merchandising, residential design and renovation being the most prominent areas, according to the Miromar Design Center.
"I typically stick to residential now," she said. "Anything that your home needs."
As an independent designer, Cremia is not limited to one showroom's products.
"I have the ability to go anywhere," she said, adding that she also gets the designer prices.
"I have a lot of produce knowledge because I've been in the business so long, and I have a lot of great subcontractor connections, so I really can save people (money)," Cremia said.
She noted that she listens to clients and looks at what they need, not what she thinks they need.
For information, visit: ccdesignelements.com or call (239) 839-5191.
The Miromar Design Center is at 10800 Corkscrew Road, Suite 382, Estero.
Hours are Monday through Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. The First Floor and Clearance Showroom are open Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; the other floors are by appointment only.
For information, visit: miromardesigncenter.com or call (239) 390-5111.