HGTV Design Star Recap

So who out there saw Design Star last night?  If you did, check out my recap.  Or if you didn't but you don't give a damn about spoilers, read on!  If you didn't and you do care about spoilers, catch up on your DVR, lazy.


Last night's challenge was to create a space for a Hollywood party in specific design genres.  This, in itself, was a bit of a stretch for Hollywood considering nouveau douche wasn't an option- perhaps it's implied in all of them?  Instead, they had to pick from: Victorian, Art Deco, Hollywood Regency, Mid-century Contemporary, 70's, 80's and Futuristic (notice how I put them in chronological order?!!).
Clean slate

 The designers drew cards and Rachel Kate got the shaft with Victorian while Hollywood Regency was delivered on a silver platter to I-put-mascara-on-my-lower-lashes-Britany.  Really?  Hollywood Regency?  So not fair.  But once the genres were divvied up the designers quickly set to work sketching their spaces.  And once again, I was disappointed to discover that every single challenge, regardless of intent, turns into a living room.  Designers do they tell you to do this?  I don't get it- last time I checked credenzas weren't essential party fare.

In his defense, Kris never saw Boogie Nights

Mikel- "The orange blob will go here"
At any rate, it didn't take long to discover that Kris and Mikel were going to be misguided.  Kris added butt-ugly wood paneling to his 70's space and hung his dome chair at suicide height.  Meanwhile, Mikel decided that a fireplace had to be the centerpiece of any Mid-century party zone and all I can think is, hello? uh Mad Men?  This one's done for you.  Roger Sterling the shit out of that cube and call it a day!  Instead, he cut this teeny tiny square for his focal point fireplace and then ultimately covered it with a painting because he needed more color.  The painting, a supposed nod to Rothko, he chose to hang portrait instead of landscape, so it looked like a person making a blech! face (pictured later).  Which I suppose was creative in an art-imitating-life kinda way.

Victorian by Rachel Kate
Birds are Victorian, right?
Rachel, not surprisingly, struggled with her Victorian theme.  For some reason the judges actually thought a Victorian space made sense for a Hollywood party and criticized Rachel for modernizing it with bright contemporary colors and a shit ton of lacquer.  Not that it looked that great, and for sure that tufted floor was crap city, but I gotta say I would have gone in the modern baroque direction myself.  So I felt for her.

80's by Stanley Palmieri
Stanley had Futuristic, which I think was also an uphill battle.  The space ended up looking retro futuristic with red vinyl wall coverings, Sputnik chandeliers and silver metallic chairs.  All he needed was Britney Spears in her Oops I Did It Again red leather jumpsuit and the place would have been complete! The judges got a good chuckle over his enormous red phallic lamp.  It was weird, not functional, and oddly placed.  But overall, not the worst space in the bunch.

80's by Hillari Younger
Hillari got a lot of props (no pun intended) for her 80's room and out of all the rooms, I thought it looked the most like a lounge.  There was enough seating for a group of people and a fun vibe to the place.  The judges were mixed though- Vern wished there was more PVC piping to add privacy to the space while Genevieve countered that "the 80's were a very voyeuristic time."  How profound.  The lighting was really bright, so maybe if she couldda put that ish on a dimmer she would have been in the top.  She was also only OK in her camera challenge.  But give me 5 minutes with her and we'll perfect that DeLorean joke- there was good stuff there!

Art Deco by Danielle Colding

Hollywood Regency by Britany Simon
Ultimately the judges thought the most successful space was the Art Deco room by Danielle, which edged out Britany's Hollywood Regency.  Danielle's space was well-curated and arranged though it still didn't feel like a party space.  She really has an eye for accessorizing though.  On the other hand, after leaving most of her purchasing to the last minute, Britany pulled off her space just in the nick of time.  And it looked just like Britany; pretty.  I don't like pretty.  The judges might have made her the winner though if it weren't for the fact that she tanked her camera challenge on the EASIEST GENRE EVER IT EVEN HAS HOLLYWOOD IN THE NAME.  And at the end, she most ungraciously cried when she lost out to Danielle.  "This is the prettiest room I have ever designed," she whined as she smeared her lower-lash-mascara.  I wonder if her room cried too when it found out it didn't win the challenge.

70's by Kris Swift

Mid-century Contemporary by Mikel Welch
On the bottom were Rachel and Kris, though I was shocked that Mikel wasn't in there too.  I couldn't get over how he arranged his furniture to line all the walls of the room, while the white shag rug just sat in the middle like a floating flokati island.  And he really dropped the ball on iconic mid-century design, especially in the color department.  His space had about four different shades of white and then a blob of orange.

In the end it was Kris who was sent home with his That 70's Show disaster.  To his credit, it was the only room anyone could picture honestly getting fucked up in.  But I'm sad to see him and his ego go- he made condescension into an art form.  True to form, for his camera challenge he made a cheesy toast to Hollywood that even the Hollywood d-bags didn't dig, probably because none of them actually had drinks to raise for said toast.  But Kris can't tell the difference between confused, disapproving faces and happy faces sipping drinks they just toasted, so he thought he nailed it.  Oh Kris, if only you could go back to last week when you stuck succulents into tree stumps and were lauded a genius.  But alas, succulents can get you only so far, and this week you were sent home.  The show will now need to find another narcissistic villain.  Who's up for the challenge?

I can't wait!
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