(Image via HGTV.)
As promised, here’s Caitlin’s take on Episode Six of Design Star. Enjoy!
By Caitlin Giddens
If you missed Tuesday’s episode of Design Star, do your kitchen a favor and check it out. Sara Peterson, HGTV Magazine editor-in-chief and former D Magazine employee, challenged the designers to create a kitchen to be featured in HGTV. This episode presented an unusual amount of tips for those who watch to actually learn. Apparently that’s Design Star’s intention. But after recently meeting Dallasite designer Hilari, I tune in to watch my new BFF.
The contestants worked in pairs to match the sink to the kitchen, meaning two designers faced elimination. In Rachel and Mikel’s country kitchen, Rachel insisted on toile wallpaper. As always, this episode showed what to avoid when designing a space. Not since “The Yellow Wallpaper” have I been as horrified by walls. That toile was everywhere. Just watching the show, I felt suffocated by the wallpaper. Mikel added rustic touches that the judges loved, including a twine-twisted chandelier. But the Kitchens Cousins, the guest judges this week, said the chandelier was lost in the wallpaper. Rachel’s fatal decision, combined with poor spacing in the kitchen, led to her elimination. She said she hoped her daughter didn’t judge her on the last two competitions. We’ll try not to, and remember Rachel for her first two rooms.
Danielle, as the winner of last week’s Hollywood party room, selected the pairs for this challenge. She strategically matched manly Stanley with the always girly and chic Hilari. If Danielle was looking for a troublesome team, she delivered. The odd couple attempted to match a black apron-front sink with their kitchen. But Hilari and Stanley struggled through opposing design ideas, including hand-shaped cabinet knobs.
“Working with Stanley was most fun, but not for a competition,” Hilari said in response to the episode. (See, told you we were BFFs. Hilari and I chat on the phone now.) “He’s like a big kid in an adult body. Watching him roam and around and conceptualize, it was fun. I love him so much that I had to figure out how to play the game in that moment.”
Hilari’s gorgeous red counters could not save the kitchen, and the room ended up looking like something from a juvenile’s mind. So take caution when designing your space: the kitchen is one room that cannot carry outrageous pieces. At the panel, the judges gave Stanley thumbs down for his hand knobs and Asian-inspired window decor. They agreed that the cabinet knobs were impractical, and Stanley was sent home.
Danielle and Britany won this challenge, and a feature in HGTV Magazine, with their eclectic kitchen based on a contemporary sink. At first, their pale color palette looked boring. But with vintage furniture and artful accessorizing, the kitchen came together beautifully. Vern said the space captured how people live today, fusing modern and classic styles. The only flaw in their design was Britany’s photo frame backsplash, which Anthony Carrino of Kitchen Cousins deemed unpractical. He said cooking will damage decor placed by the oven. That is, if you use your kitchen for cooking. Your call.
With four remaining contestants, the next episodes of Design Star look entertaining. Each designer would bring something talented and creative to an HGTV show. Danielle has won two challenges in a row, and always produces chic spaces. Britany has proven herself as an innovator and real contender. Mikel plans to break out of the middle by showing his skill as a set designer. And Hilari balances tasteful design with a charming, camera-ready personality. But there can only be one winner. Who do you think deserves the title of Design Star?