Tuesday, September 15, 2009

a tale of two turds

well folks this is the final installment of the designturd series. and i would like to start off with an emphatic "DO FUCKING BETTER NEXT TIME JIM SAMPLES HEAD OF HGTV!!!" seriously, are you even a designer?? no...i get it..you are putting shows together based on what's reflective in the marketplace. well, let's show middle america that fake plants are not okay, lets show them that no one ever needs to do one stop shopping to decorate a room, instead lets show them how to reuse and recycle and refinish and buy well made products that last a long time and maybe that an ikea lamp here and there is okay so long as your whole fucking house isn't a page from an ikea catalog or pottery barn. let's show them that you don't need millions of dollars to redecorate (and i'm not talking about that design on a dime crap or FUCK ME joan steffand's droll kuntry klatch bullshit) and finally, let's show them that style CAN be learned by SHOWING THEM GOOD FUCKING STYLE AND TASTE!!!! and if you can't learn it you can fucking COPY IT!!!!!!

okay...on to the show...
yep! dan failed. and quite honestly as you will see below he had the better design. but OBVIOUSLY (and again i'm talking to you HGTV) they had antonio's show planned from early on b/c the show he gets is not really decor based it's remodeling based BECAUSE THE GUY IS A FUCKING SET BUILDER! and yes, again...i GET IT hgtv...dan was a terrible on air personality. although he could have improved and most likely would have as it would seem his main problem was nerves and after a while those go away. but with antonio you have all of that already. he just can't seem to bring that into his sets..i mean rooms. and you can have your hgtv decor minions come in and "fix" his designs if need be. maybe you should hire me as said minion. i will show antonio how to make a room look less like a set and more like an inviting room. just sayin'.

alright...points of interest. the d'tards had to redecorate the house of one family they were given (maybe??) 4 days. maybe 3? fuck i don't know...hgtv next time you might get better design out of your people if you gave them MORE time and a little less money. remember money does NOT buy taste and perhaps if they were given less their real skills would present themselves. again...just S A Y I N'!

dan had a single mother and 15 year old daughter and he wanted to give them a feminine space and they enjoyed purple.

here is the before living room:

here is the after:
not terrible. still it's a little thoughtless in terms of panache and detail. but i don't HATE it. he went a little mirror crazy. but the mirrors he put over the fireplace are pretty cool considering they are really a cabinet with sliding doors hiding a flat screen. in the immortal words of will farrell doing james lipton...well plaaaaayed!

but in terms of femininity and details this is a better choice...don't you think?

or this:

his real turd de force was the 15 year old girl's room. here is the before:

here is the after:
over all the best room in the bunch in either house. the bed is great. it's a great blend of style and function and he put a vintage looking loveseat in there! good job dan. it gets a b- from me because i would have liked to have seen another color in there instead of all that mauve and lilac. maybe a bright, yellow velvet..something...to give it a little punch.
the kitchen before:

the kitchen after:
again...meh...the floors are travertine (gross) but here they worked. the backsplash is all wrong. too yellow. it will look dated in no time. should have gone tiny, classic subway tiles or stuck with the bamboo tiles in a different color.

here is the master bedroom before:

and after:
words cannot describe my loathe for this room. it's a very small room and all the bullshit dark wood is making the room appear smaller. and those blue and brown pillows make me want to kill someone. oh look!! the rug matches too!!! i just threw up on myself. it's just all so matchy matchy, uninspired and CHEAP looking. if you're gonna do built ins in a small space at least do them all white or paint them all the same color as your lavender walls. that way they would disappear making the room seem bigger. and really with the white shutters? if you were going to keep them then that would have been my starting point for the WHITE built ins so that i could achieve a more cohesive look.

and how about some tailored bedding like this:
so much more interesting than the bed-in-a-bag-look.

so over all i think dan had a better design...you know...if i HAD to pick one.

now let's move on..
here's your design star:
yep fangtonio won. maybe if he used some of that chiang mai dragon fabric (or similar looking knock off) i could have looked past everything else that sucked. ok no i couldn't but still, that apron is WORKING ME!!!

his clients were a young family without much of an opinion as to what they wanted...or at least that's what hgtv wanted us to think...but whatever it is it's fucking terrible.

here is the before kitchen:
here is the after:
whatever...yawn...she (the client) asked for dark counter tops and light cabinets saying she liked contrast. while the counters and cabinets DO contrast it's just. so. fucking. boring. if it were me i would have done something like this:

and added elements of this:

moving on...

here is the master bedroom before:

and after:
first of all what in the fug are those hershey bars over the bed suppose to mean? art? more like fart. for me this is more of that zen bullshit he keeps throwing on us. i mean there are elements in here that could work...like the bedding is not bad...but what the french is up with those fluorescent light boxes on the ceiling? really? couldn't change those? think we wouldn't notice?
fuck you antonio. i notice.

and how about some green like this:
or this:

yeah, yeah...i know antonio, i know. those rooms are not your aesthetic...so if you're gonna (gag) do zen(gag)modern then do something like this:
light, airy, neutral, live things...nothing jarring...

or this:
texture, texture, texture...and some major lighting wow factor.

but see even this would have been within the realm of your aesthetic:
only with a bit of glamour, elegance (things a bedroom should have and the wow factor hgtv so desperately loves) AND it looks inviting.
ok, so there was a little one involved here too...
here is his room before: (first i should note that the mom wanted a place to sit..)

here's the after:
yes, fangtonio gave mom a fucking ottoman to sit on while her son plays. good one fang. that looks really fucking comfortable.
and what's with the stupid stars? trees had to die for that shit. i won't bother with finding a better looking child's room b/c i feel it is a waste of my time at this point. but this is your winner people. there is not one cohesive element to this house now, no flow...no relevance.
it sucks a dick.

and last but certainly least was the room the judges flipped over (tandice and psycho eyes were about to go all axe commercial on him). here is the before:

here is the after:
pretty sure he was going for a modern eclectic look. this room is oookaaaay. it's just not good enough. the orange chairs are good. the big hutch over the fireplace that he hacked to make into a storage unit for the tv is a GREAT idea and it's a beautiful piece. the detail up close was really pretty, lots of colors. but i just think it would have stood out more if he toned the room down a notch. there's just too much going on. i would have done a lighter bamboo roman blind and then had the curtains match the wall color a bit more so the eye moved around the room more easily. those green curtains just make my eyes stop every few feet. and the pendant light, while cool, is all wrong for this room. something shiny and sparkly but still modern looking would have worked better.
here is a better version of eclectic:
see, there is lots going on in the room but the background is neutral and soft so that the business of the patterns and colors doesn't feel overwhelming.

alright look...the thing of it is i KNOW this type of shit isn't easy to do for a television show and i am pretty sure both of these guys have some talent and will improve over time, so no hard feelings boys- i would make out with both of you, but come on hgtv!!! let's do better next time..whatever that means. if that means more time for these people then GIVE IT TO THEM! if it means better (and more) resources then PROVIDE IT! if it means putting me on your show THEN DO IT!! i am not trained and could probably only build a box out of popsicle sticks but if i had good resources and time i think i could put together a whole house and make it look outstanding.



I so knew Antonio was going to win even though Dan did pull off a much better house. But that's show biz. I'm so sad the show is over because that means your posts are over. We've always got next season though, right? And please tell me you're going to audition for it!!!

sleepwalker said...

I'm pretty sure the ugly light boxes are lighting for the show and not part of his design

Jenn said...

I'm going to miss this show. Not because I ever watched it, but because I'm going to miss this commentary.

boops said...

I have to say, if it wasn't for HGTV Design Star Season 4, I would have never discovered your blog, so I'm hugely indebted to it (weird huh?)

Jeannine | The Small and Chic Home said...

Please, please blog about Top Design when the new season starts!

Anonymous said...

i was NOT impressed with this season AT ALL. i think i could do MUCH better!

Anonymous said...

One factor that dooms the show to bed-in-a-bag decorating is the crass tie-in with Sears, which clearly obligates the contestants to get all their crap there.

Anonymous said...

Agreed on all fronts. And also, I about vomited when both ladies fawned over Antonio like he was some kind of biker-cum-designer. "You are just on the point of being rude, and I find that charming." I am almost sure I got that quote right. WTF? And at some point, Mandice was imitating Antonio TO Antonio... um...yeah. Anyhoo... HGTV should give you some kind of commission b/c I wouldn't have watched that show but for your posts :-)

anita said...

i'm so glad i forgot to watch the final episode. i don't remember what i was doing at the time, but i know for a fact my time was better spent.
WTF? why does it all look so incredibly cheap?
You are so good. I will miss your re-caps.

SGM said...

Hershey bars! And the photo with the mom telling fangtonio to fuck off! (no shit, btw. And that toddler bed looks like ASS, plus he will outgrow that in about 6 months).

Thank you so much for this recap and all of the accompanying LOLs. You need to be on this show.

Unknown said...

sleepwalker: You're right, we can see those ugly light boxes in Dan's "before" living room picture too.

adrianne said...

I just heart you. and these posts. your "instead" photos are so much better. love them all!

Beth said...

You are right on the money. I can't believe that Antonio won. I bet Vern is dying. Both seemed nice...that's all the good I have to say. They did a preview for Antonio's new show...he's remodeling his house! That should be fun for us to watch!

Dumbwit Tellher said...

Like I said, the writing was on the wall episodes ago that Fangtonio was to win, despite the outcome of the final competition. You hit the nail on it's head that Samples had a bigger picture in sight & likely mandated that designtard fangtonio was acing the final episode. I was hugely, utterly, disappointed & bored through the whole season. Watching my husband clip his toenails would be far more exciting!

I say - start recording your audition video for next seasons entry. You my dear are the future for bringing back decency to Design Star.

court. said...

PLEASE try out for Design Star next season.

I never bothered watching anything past the first ep. THANK YOU for doing all the dirty work while my boyfriend and I laugh over you telling "Fangtonio" to fuck off!!!!

bluehydrangea said...

Girlfriend, you would be crazy not to try out for design star!!! Your pics are 10 x better than what they did..plus if nothing else you would be way more entertaining!!

Haute Decor said...

I must admit I am going to really miss your commentary. They have been the only beacon of light in an otherwise lame and talentless season. But I take solace in the fact that Top Design will be forced upon us shortly and will once again get to relish in your sardonic wit. keep up the good work

PS: I agree that you would be an asset to the show.

MFAMB said...

i think it's awesome any of you think i should be on this show! how hilarious would that be??? not sure they'd take me though...i have no experience, no design portfolio as it were, and am pretty sure i have alienated everyone that works over there by calling them a tard, psycho eyes or mandice.
i certainly would need to bring it if i were on that show.

court. said...

would the "D'tards" then become "Top Tards"?? I'm going to hell.

MFAMB said...

HAAHA! court. top tards. let's hope top design has no tards period.
will top design even come back??

boops said...

After the shenanigans that went on this season, I can't imagine anyone wanting to be associated with this show (DS). Can't we keep you to ourselves?

Anonymous said...

The Elle Decor rooms you're showing for comparison probably cost $50,000 to $75,000 and took six months to put together (have you ever tried ordering custom furniture?), so while you're right, they're far better, I'm not sure the comparison illuminates that much.

The other thing is: The judges are fairly poor decorators themselves. Judging from their own shows, they're best suited for, say, decorating the lobby of a suburban Ramada Inn. You are not going to be seeing Vern Yip or Candace Olsen in World of Interiors.

Anonymous said...

I'm still laughing.

I am probably in the minority but I actually liked Antonio. I failed to see the 'hotness' but I do like different design and the rest kept showing the same stuff over and over and over... (Although I'll give props to Dan's White Room Challenge. He should have gone home, however, over the Gazebo Incident instead of Tori who was an After-The-Fact Accessory.)

Dan's rooms this week were so full of lavender and mirrors that I would have had hay fever and thought I'd been invaded by strangers every time I entered a room. And ohhhh, that poor gray countertop misstep against gold-toned blacksplash and floors. *sniff* I cried for him those rooms were so painful.

Anonymous said...

@urbansardines: Genevieve's comment was "this side of offensive and I find that exciting". Who finds excitement in offensive in their bedroom?

Alana said...

YOU need to try out for the next Designstar!!!! I'm telling you, you would win! You could decorate a hell of a lot better AND you are hilarious and entertaining.

The Townhouselady said...

This show was total shit this year. Your recaps were the best thing about it. They should have paid you a commission because the only reason I kept watching was so that I could read your recaps the next day and laugh my tuckus off.

The sad thing is you were also 100% right.


Mrs. Limestone said...

"art? more like fart."

Oh my god, Im dying over here. Great recap. Please start doing recaps of all the design shows!

Visual Vamp said...

Well, well, well - another brilliant analysis!
You know they put a commercial on right after the show for Antonio's new show next week. Makes it seem kind of like a fix, a done deal.
I wish they would let the public vote ala Dancing With The Stars.
Out of all the past winners, is there anyone of them who has a good show? Kim The Mess Myles? David the gay pin up boy Bromstead? I saw a glimmer of Jen's (the token woman) show in an obscure time slot, and it's there for good reason - it is really bad.
So HGTV can't pick them, nor can they nuture them into a good show.
Jim Samples needs to go.
xo xo

Unknown said...

this is good.
please review some blogs now.
ur honesty is needed.

i'm B. said...

don't watch the show.
don't need to.
love reading your recaps. it's like seeing the show MST style! the rooms? FML. that toddler room? HAS to be the most heinous thing i've ever seen. wow.
anyway, your commentary is great.
recently linked to your blog via bryn. love it. my daily dose of eff-bombs.

corine said...

You had me at' turd de force'

Junque Rethunque said...

Yup, I called it ages ago... Antonio was chosen in auditions and they made it work around him. Which made for a show as exciting as formica countertops.

My favorite judge turd comment was when Vern complimented Fang on the fact that his stovetop blended in with the countertops. REALLY!? Like he planned that?? Give me a break.

Glad I found your blog!

Rachel said...

Oh my gosh, I'm glad I'm reading this at home and not work.... I was laughing so hard I was crying! Especially the drawn in Mommy telling Antonio off. I mean, really??? Bean bag ottomans?? Why don't you just throw some pillows on the floor.

Seriously, though, just as everyone else has said, your recaps rock. Spot on.

So Haute said...

OMG-was reading through your post and was pleasantly surprised to see a photo of my living room (with the pink gourd lamps below your comments about Dan). Thanks so much for including it! xo

MABELLE said...

Ok, seriously, I'm starting to live for these posts!! Hahaha- SO FUNNY AND SO SPOT-ON LADY!! Keep 'em coming!

Jessie said...

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