This week’s challenge for the remaining 10 contestants of HGTV’s Design Star was a remodel of two local families’ kitchens. The group was divided into two teams and each team had 26 hours of work time over 3 days, a $20,000 budget, Sears appliances and flooring from Lumber Liquidators.
The first team was captained by Amy who chose Dan, Jany, Lonni and Tashica as her team. The second team’s captain was Nathan who chose Antonio, Jen, Jason and Torie. Both teams met first with their prospective families to determine the family’s style and the overall function the kitchen needed to have. Amy’s team’s family was looking for something warm and sleek and they needed to be able to entertain easily in the space. Nathan’s homeowner uses the kitchen as the main hanging out place of the home and his team chose a Moroccan/Italian style.
After the homeowner interviews both teams decided which style direction they would take, with Amy’s team choosing dark floors, dark cabinetry and light granite countertops and tile, yes the dreaded tile, backsplash. Nathan’s team goes with a multi-colored room with the use of many accessories to bring the Moroccan/Italian elements into the room. Nathan’s team made it their goal from the beginning to finish the room in the allotted time. Next was demolition and shopping. On day one Amy had a bit of a breakdown over all the things that needed to be done and Dan helped her regroup. Nathan had a power struggle with Antonio during the project.
On day two the cabinets were installed and painting was completed in both rooms. Amy’s team had to work on the tiling of the backsplash, and the tile repair grout which is a long process. Nathan’s team picked a stylish tin type backsplash which was much easier to install. Amy somewhat lost her position as leader of the team, as did Nathan.
When Amy’s team arrived on the last day they discovered that the granite was not seamed together like it should be because their cabinets were not square, which caused the templates made from them to be off. When time was up in Amy’s team’s house there were no accessories and there were many little details unfinished, such as drawer pulls missing, some trim missing and some paint unfinished. Nathan’s team was able to complete all of its projects. The only issue they seemed to have was a little infighting between some of them. At the last minute the hood fell down but Antonio apparently fixed it in time.
Finally came judgment time. Judges Vern Yip, Candice Olson and Genevieve Gorder looked at both rooms. They liked the design choices Amy’s team made but the incomplete room was unacceptable. Tiling projects in kitchens on Design Star usually take too much time to complete. Nathan’s team had completed their room which scored them some points but they thought the room was over- accessorized and in Vern’s words “it looks like a rainbow threw up in there.” In the end the finished room won the judges over, although both homeowners seemed very pleased with the design choices their teams had made. Amy’s homeowners were of course not pleased at the unfinished touches, but host Clive Pears assured everyone that the room had been completed by HGTV’s finishing team.
The bottom two were Tashica who was blamed for not putting out the accessories she was responsible for and Amy who didn’t lead her team well. In the end the judges cancelled Amy’s show. She was the second to be let go, Natalee left first last week. Week three’s show promises to be just as exciting as this week’s was. It will be the first individual challenge so we’ll be able to get a better feel for each designer’s personal style, we’ll have to keep watching!!