Link Spaces Through ColorAt a critical time in the competition, Jennifer manages to step up her game and deliver a very creative dining room and living room transformation for her sister’s family. By choosing to use the same color palette in both rooms, Jenn links the two spaces together visually and makes each room feel larger via the continuous paint color. Each part of this generous space is given its own character, however, through the insertion of unique fabrics and elements that work together while still maintaining distinct personalities. The dining room features incredible hand-drawn leaves in a very sophisticated paler version of the main wall color, while the pattern shows up in the living room in the form of brown and green drapery. Red leather dining chairs and a small splash of red in the living room artwork showcase Jennifer’s ability to punch up her room with small doses of concentrated color without going over the top.
Add Punches of ColorThe updated piece of furniture the fish tank now sits on is an especially insightful solution to the ones normally offered at pet stores, and demonstrates that thinking outside the box can transform one kind of item into something else entirely. Minor points such as the drapes not extending up to the ceiling plane and the overabundance of fake plants and flowers slightly detract from these rooms. In general, though, Jennifer demonstrates why she should continue in the competition to become the next HGTV Design Star.
Bring Function and DesignOf all of the room transformations this week, Matt’s room was the most difficult in terms of issues to resolve. Because of the need to preserve — and hide — a generous amount of storage, a sink area and a large piece of equipment, Matt has to contend with creating a dramatic and beautiful space while maintaining functionality. True to form, Matt again comes up with some innovative solutions that turn his challenges into winners. By creating a television/media wall in this room, and putting it on casters, the large piece of equipment in this space can still be accessed when needed without having to be consistently viewed. A bold sweep of drapery, in a similar tone to the wall color, hides storage and the sink area, allowing the rest of the room to be outfitted with seating.
Pay Attention to ScaleIt is in the selection of the furniture pieces that this room begins to slightly fall apart. Four identical dark-brown leather chairs weigh down the space considerably, creating two parallel walls of darkness. The use of some bright throw pillows on the chairs would have provided some visual relief and warmth. Odd accent table choices make the center of the room resemble a yard sale rather than a Design Star makeover. Although I completely appreciate Matt’s willingness to mix styles in an eclectic fashion, issues of appropriate scale and balance call some of his furniture choices into question. In the grand scheme of things, however, there are many very innovative and clever ideas manifested in this room, and Matt continues to show that he is a creative and original thinker.
Flooring Is a Great StartConsistently traditional in her design style, Trish continues to demonstrate her talent for creating the warm, inviting and familiar in this makeover for her parents. By choosing to invest much of her time and resources into a warm, brown wood-laminate floor, Trish provides a great foundation for new upholstery, rugs and accent tables. The other successful design move made in this room is the establishment of the fireplace as a clear focal point by painting it a warm white that demands attention. Blue drapes that extend all the way to the ceiling line lengthen the visual plane, while the employment of a mix of textures and tones lend this room sophistication and warmth. Thoughtful and special touches, such as the inclusion of framed family photos, begin to take this room in a great direction by taking it beyond a generic lobby that could be found anywhere.
Plan Your SpaceSmall issues with space planning, such as a chair in the corner that doesn’t have the possibility of interacting with the main seating area, and a generic quality to some of the accessories indicate that Trish may have been faced with time-management issues. Overall, this design is pleasant and successful but not innovative in a significant way. The next HGTV Design Star must constantly push the envelope and offer a new perspective — even in the realm of traditional decor — and this room does not. The world of traditional design is constantly expanding to showcase new and interesting ways to include familiar elements, and Trish needed to demonstrate a little more of her unique, traditionalist vision in this transformation.