Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Design Star Recap, week 2: Dueling Kitchens

OK I missed the first five minutes this week, so I missed Clive (Pearse not Owens) recounting for us what happened during week one. He could have just popped you over here for a quicker recap.

The second I tune in I ask myself, “Who’s that girl in the kicky beret?” (I never do find out the answer to this – but she did seem so fashionably put together on Confession Cam that I thought I’d mention it.) The only thing I know for sure is that it wasn’t NataLee!!

This week is kitchens. They choose team leaders with the old star-in-the-paint-can trick, and it’s Nathan and Amy! (Side note: Nathan has gone with a more natural shade of lip stain this week and it totally works on him.) They’ll be picking their teams “playground style”. I’m telling you what – no matter who I am right now, I’m killing myself at this point to get Antonio on my team. Even if you don’t like him, this is the episode when it pays to have a straight guy on your team. A gay man might have a better idea what looks nice, and I’d certainly rather have a gay decorator… but I don’t tend to think of them as “handy.” There are cabinets to install and heavy work to be done – ANTONIO is the man here people! No matter what, you pick him!

Amy goes first, and she picks… not Antonio. Dumbass. She ends up with a team of all women and Dan.

Nathan’s first pick? ANTONIO! Someone knows the secret, am I right?

OK, are we shocked that Torie got picked last? No, they have no faith in the contestant they themselves voted on to this particular island, as they think they voted in a loser.

Amy meets her homeowners with, “We’re Team Love…” STOP. I can tell you that if my husband were greeted with this line he’d be like, “Team Love? No. What I want is ‘Team Get It The Hell Done or you can turn your ass around, Missy.’” Even on a free kitchen makeover she needs to tone down the touchy feely.

The question of the day seems to be; “ How do you see yourself using this room?”
“We entertain.” “We spend time in the kitchen.” “It’s the command central of our home.” OK, OK, we get it; if it had a bed you’d never leave. Did they expect anything different? “Oh, I like to quilt around the spaghetti sauce,” or perhaps, “We like to carry out Civil War battle re-enactments over by the window.” It’s a kitchen. People hang out in the kitchen. You already knew that.

At the end of that engrossing conversation we have it that Nathan’s team likes “Italian and Moroccan”, whilst Team Love has homeowners that want people who see the new kitchen to say “I’ve never seen anything like it before.” Which, in both cases, leaves a hell of a lot of gray area they they’re going to wish they’d filled in.

I’m going to throw in here that Clive (Pearse, not Owens… is that getting old yet?) is giving each team $20,000 for the makeover. This is not a lot of money when kitchens are involved… and it doesn’t buy them any extra grouting time for that tile backsplash that has never once been completed on any of the kitchens they’ve done in the past three years. Just a warning.

Oh, and why is SEARS not taking this opportunity to advertise its amazing kitchen cabinet re-facing program on national television? I get a mailer weekly, and yet when they’re sponsoring a prime time reality show they leave that part out? Frankly, I’m questioning SEARS’ commitment to making sure the homeowner’s needs are met.

WOW! Nathan’s team demo’d that kitchen FAST. These guys are needed on those flipping shows!

Wait, the girls JUST got back from shopping, and the cabinets are already there?

Why is Amy crying? (Why do I have the feeling that I’m going to be typing that question a lot?) I hate it when they cry.

Is anyone worried that we’ve not heard the word “backsplash” yet, and it’s day two? Get that project going – have they never seen this show? Time is lost in the backsplash!

(I’m going to take a moment here and say that I’m disturbed by how hot I’m finding Antonio this episode. That 40-year-old homeowner persona with the glasses is turning me on, and this is not a happy place for me. Remember in college when there was that one guy that, if the chance ever came up, you’d totally jump – but you knew you’d regret it the next day? We called that guy your potential “shame f**k”. Antonio? IS THAT GUY!)

TORIE! You are the GIRL! That backsplash idea is the bomb – if it looks good I might steal her idea! I’ll bet she’s not picked last next time!

Antonio announces to the Confession Cam that he doesn’t think Nathan is a good leader. I’m going to agree with him, and not just because he is my potential “shame f**k.” I think Nathan has been pretty good, but it’s probably Antonio that is driving the project home. (Gosh, I’m all hot again now.)

Amy is an idiot. You NEVER let them drop a fridge off in the yard. They always offer to bring it in, it’s called DELIVERY, and they’ll even plug it in for you. Why those two girls are struggling with it I’ll never know… but they don’t want to disturb Dan – because he’s the “guy” on the team and is installing the cabinets. (Remember gay man = not handy?)

As we leave the teams tonight, they announce that the floors will be installed, and the countertops will be put in as well. Who is that girl on Team Love (Jany?) who isn’t finishing the tile backsplash tonight? She’s going to install it AND grout it in one day. No, she’s not. We all see that coming, right?

Now it’s the next morning, and I’m going to have to pat myself on the back here for just a second…. The team with the (shamefully hot) straight guy installing the cabinets has a beautiful counter top. The team with the (confident but not as handy as he might think) gay man installing the cabinets? Improperly installed countertops because the cabinets are not square. So again, students, in the kitchen challenge YOU ALWAYS WANT THE STRAIGHT GUY on your team. (I wonder if Torie had to restrain herself from dragging him in to the pantry for a little “brainstorming” session?)

(Is it warm in here?)

We see Jany lamenting her bad tile job. Ha Ha. Its OK Jany – that traditional kitchen wasn’t ever going to be good enough for Mr. I Want Something Original anyway.

SHAWWWWWW, did Team Love not accessorize? Amy is SO gone. Or maybe the tile girl. Or maybe Tashica – who is on the show why? Because I’m sure there are Haverhill Staging students out there more qualified to be on this show than her.

Time to see the kitchens!!

Team Nathan’s kitchen:

The judges don’t love the colors, and Jen – the “color designer” is to blame for that. They say “less is more.” I think the colors would have been less overpowering if they didn’t have all those mismatched pendant lights all over the place adding even more color to the design. When one of the daughters says, “It looks like my mom designed it herself,” is that a compliment? AND? I DIG the backsplashes!!!!! Candice complimented those, “Congratulations on not getting bogged down with tile.” (Did you notice that Candace thought they were tin, not vinyl? I’m totally going to go looking for that stuff when we get to the kitchen in our house.) I actually think if they had stuck with two colors and kept the accessories to a minimum (less Buddha, more edibles), Genevieve and Vern would have been happy.

Amy’s Team Love:
They call it “Warm Modernism.” Let me tell you that this is THE AFTER SHOT… not the before shot. This kitchen had no accessories whatsoever. The Judges notice EVERYTHING that is wrong. They hated the styling. They hated the shoddy workmanship, the unfinished tile (Candace: “Have you ever SEEN this show before?”), and the countertops. Tashica is weak and whiny. Candace thinks Tashica has blown it two weeks in a row. Candace it right… Tashica SHOULD be the one to go, but Amy was project leader and will be chopped I’ll bet.

OK here we go! The results are in and Dan and Antonio? The judges think that clearly they were the leaders this week. Please wait in Green room.

Jany, Loni, Jason, & Torrie: Good work, please go join the others in the green room.

Remaining designers, will you please step forward.

Jen, your choice in color does not reflect well on you.
Nathan, you lack of leadership (but you do not lack overly blushed cheeks). However you are safe. You may both wait in the green room.

Amy and Tashica. You were both unable to focus. You left the family with an unusable kitchen. Amy is scattered. Tashica, you are not clear on what you could and could not execute.

Amy your show has been cancelled.

My thoughts on this decision? Tashica screwed up two weeks in a row. It’s a bad decision, and the other contestants aren’t happy with the fact that Tashica is still there. No one was happy when she walked through that door.

Next week is the white room challenge. I LOVE those


  1. oh.my.gosh. the looks on the other contestants faces when tashica walked into the green room were classic....I was jumping up and down yelling at Jason that that decision was so unfair, tashica should have sooooo gone home! I hope she rocks the white room challange to save face.....
    you know what i'm missing...i'm missing that quirky weird artist that makes 'art' out of vacuum cleaners found at the curbside that gets voted off the first time...there was no one like that this season....

  2. oh yeah, and I loved vern saying, 'it's like a rainbow threw up in there!"

  3. Damn - I forgot about the rainbow comment! That would have been good, Vern doesn't usually come up with the good one liners!

  4. Torri was wrong about the backsplash being a 'form of vinyl flooring'. It is sold as backsplash kit at either Lowes or Home Depot.Leads me to question if she even picked it out..... It is a great time saver but the real tin looks leaps and bounds better.

  5. Ok, I'm all caught up...and wondering why is Tashika still around? Other than the scripted part of reality t.v.: she's entertaining to see how she'll screw up next week?

    Keep it coming, girl! Your recaps just add so much fun to these otherwise predictable shows!