Monday, August 24, 2009

DS6 - "This Job is about Hosting, anyway"

Cue Artie's jaw dropping. The minute that I heard Jason say: "This job is about hosting anyway" I nearly fell out of my chair! The challenge wasn't about hosting. The job as "Design Star" isn't about hosting. The challenge was to design a room for a child client - one that they would live in, love, but more importantly would show that the person who designed it was indeed a designer.

IF this was a competition about hosting, the name of the show would be "Who wants Clive Pearse's job!" The final 5 seemed to have the same issues they've always had: not enough time.

Dan. My poor Dan. I loved some of the elements that he used this week, considering his client. The young environmentalist wanted a green room, and with the new bamboo floors, reclaimed items and re-used pieces he scored big with on green points. The things that I thought he missed:
  1. The finishing touches. I hope he didn't intend to leave the platform base raw pine. The clouds on the mirror were really unnecessary, so I'm actually glad to see that he didn't get time to etch that mirror. Unfortunately though, the tape remains.
  2. The colors. I'm not so sure about the greens and blues that he used. I'm a fan of the fuchsia, and I think that it's a great compliment to some of the other details. But the green blue combination seems like the colors are fighting against each other, instead of working with each other.
  3. The client wanted something that was "earthy" and this room doesn't read that to me. Even with the blue and green paint.
Torie. You know, her idea for the loft bed with the desk under it was great! I loved the blue with the touch of orange/red, even the "name in lights" concept was a good one. What I didn't like:
  1. What's with that fabric? I know that she intended for something else. When she first mentioned it she said "basket weave pattern" and so my guess is that Torie simply ran out of time.
Antonio. Oh Antonio, finally finally finally. Someone took an out of the box idea and proved that there is some potential. What I loved:
  1. The rocks. Fantastic.
  2. The bed. Storage is such a great thing in a kids room - and he really recognized that.
  3. The decals.

You know, I had sorta left Antonio out of my book of potential winners, but he has certainly proven with this room that he has great ideas and loads of potential.

Lonnie. You know, even labeled a one trick pony due to her wall treatments, I think that Lonnie took a room that looked so drab and boring, and made it feel like a young and comfortable room for a guy that will last a long while. Pieces like that ottoman, and the desk will be pieces that her client can take with him to apartments, and even into his first home. I think overall:
  1. Lonnie scored a homerun in her design, and in her hosting. I was rather impressed.

And then there was Jason. In his exit interview, Jason said he was embarrassed. America hadn't gotten to see his design style, and even though I understand that, it wasn't because he didn't have a chance to show us.

Saturday night, at a wonderful party my friend "Margaret" and her husband had, I got into an interesting conversation with my landscape designer neighbor about this season's cast. We both recognized how difficult it must be to have that sort of stress on your creative flow, but we agreed that it was also the true test of a design star to be able to creatively think and express an idea even "on your toes". So that's my closing question this week. Who has it?


  1. I'm leaning towards Antonio, but I always do go for those "Bad-Boys". Great overview again this week, Artie.

  2. Hey Artie! I was looking forward to reading what you had to say about last night. Didn't these guys have a budget of $5000? None of them looked like they spent even half of that. I was so disappointed! None of the rooms looked like a "Designer" had designed and decorated them. The possibilities were endless! I liked Antonio's ideas but with his budget he could have really created a mancave atmosphere. Decals and painted plywood? That's it? And how in the world did Jason even get in this competition. His 17 year old client could've done better. Placemats?!? with a $5000 budget! And why didn't he keep that gorgeous bed she had? Boy! I think I'm taking this all a little too seriously! I promise to chill! (LOL) Lauralu :)

  3. I'm not so sure any more who I want to win. Since the last 2 have been female, is it a male's turn this time? I have been surprised by Lonnie. There is something abt Antonio that wears thin and I don't know if he has what it takes to keep me watching week after week. The same with Tori. I kind of like Dan. All in and not really thrilled or impressed with any of them. Maybe they should do a show down season where they take the 2nd and 3rd runner ups from previous years and have them compete Now that might be interesting!

  4. Antonio is the only one that had a vision and led it to fruition. Everyone else sort of had a vision or part of a vision and just didn't have what it took to pull it off.

    Placemats, used the right way, could have been a cool accent. In Jason's case, it would have looked better without them!

    The colors in all of the rooms, but Antonio's, were atrocious!

    Torie's name on the wall thing would have looked so cute without all of those competing colors behind it.

    I always look forward to your recaps:)

  5. I wasn't really excited by ANY of these rooms!

  6. Antonio has always been my favorite!--Designer for the Sopranos. I loved Connor holding up his tv! That said, none of them blows me away. I want the leftover $ from last night's 5000 budget.--placemats for a headboard in a princess room-??!

  7. Appreciate your summary. Agree on lack of time, yet by now the designers should know the drill. Maybe HGTV should have provided painters instead of carpenters on this short timeframe,low-budget assignment. What a kick to see David Bromstad interact with each of them.

    Lonni had a huge advantage in working in a separate home. Apparently the others were designing for siblings--chaos must have ruled. Moving stuff out, moving stuff in, running into each other or the carpenters or the camera guys and their equipment, noise everywhere.

    I think maybe Dan listened the best to his client. Fieldstone/Pam

  8. Again, not overly impressed by any of them, I mean how many people auditioned for this show nationwide! If I had to pick the most "creative" and "original" folks it would be Antonio or Dan.

    I find myself watching and wanting them to do something wow and it just doesn't happen. I wonder how the judges must feel???

  9. I didn't like any of the rooms but my favorite thing was the kid's picture holding up the TV in Antonio's room. I've said a couple of times that Antonio's the one to watch but will add Lonnie to the final with him. Her hosting presence was great! My prediction - Torie will be the next to leave! Of course, IMHO.
    G in CT

  10. Hi Artie, I don't watch this show so you could say I am a "Design Star" virgin of sorts. However as a casual observer, I really don't think any of them are even close to what a "paid" designer would have ended up with. It seems evident that no one in this group has a kid or has been around a child in quite a while. A good designer has to understand the client. Kids like what is fun and in the moment. Watch a movie or MTV for a few minutes; even the cartoon network is funny and inspiring. I vote for you Artie, where can I sen in my ballot! LOL~*~kelley

  11. Still pulling for Dan ..........

  12. None of these rooms really impressed me all that much, given the budget. I've lots of friends whose kids rooms are every bit as good, if not better than these. And believe me, they were done on ALOT less than $5000.00. The only thing I can chalk it up to is the time constraint. I'm leaning toward Lonnie, but still pulling for Dan. Antonio impressed me with his room the most, but I'm still not sold. But Jason's room was really atrocious. It looked slapped together and not well thought out at all, and it's really a shame, because I think he had a good vision, just couldn't pull it off for the poor girl. The finals should be interesting - I hope someone really steps it up in the next week or two. Kathy

  13. I don't think there is anyone like Antonio on the air, but to be honest I don't think I would intrust any of my rooms to any one of these "designers". Sorry Design Star

  14. Like I've said before, I haven't been following the show, but if I'm to be honest, I hate EVERY ONE of these rooms! blech!

    Justine :o )

  15. A budget of $5,000? My eldest sister did her Grandchild's bedroom over for much less (in Canadian funds and purchased merchandise. CaChing-CaChing) and the end result would blow any of these rooms away. She isn't or does she claim to be a Designer, therefore I have to agree with many others that these rooms are horrid.

    Re your discussion with Margaret, I agree the stress factor must be overwhelming. It's unfortunate that many Competitors do not consider the art of Meditation, Tai Chi or Yoga as a prerequisite in order to successfully participate in a show of this nature. -Brenda-

  16. I don't watch the show either, but didn't especially like any of the rooms. Speaking of rooms, did you get your bathroom done - I must have missed your post on the finished room. Miss reading you every day - you've been working too hard!!

  17. Artie,

    Although I have to admit that I think Antonio did the best job with the kid's room, I don't want to see him win this, he's too rough. :( Please remember, that comes from one Italian talking about another. Since I live and breath HGTV I don't care to see him on there. I think you should try out for the show, after all, you do have tv experience, decorating know-how and a great personality. :) GO FOR IT....