Design Star Season 7: Photo Highlights From Episode 7

The final four Design Star contestants face the biggest challenge yet: colorful condo makeovers + a live TV demo.
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November 25, 2014

The Final Four

Britany, Hilari, Danielle and Mikel meet David to learn their challenge for this week: make over a newly-built condo and do live design demo on CBS's The Talk.

Guest Judge: Meg Caswell

Meg Caswell, winner of Design Star season six and host of Meg's Great Rooms, joins the Design Panel as a guest judge. "I'm so glad Meg is on the panel...she understands what we're going through so hopefully she'll be kind," Mikel says.

Colorful Condos

Each designer draws a hue to inspire their design. Danielle's color family: blue. "I'm not happy with all blues, but I can do teal," she says.

Searching for Perfection

Since Danielle's condo has a dark wood floor, she wants to find a light, airy glass dining table. She finds the perfect one...after Hilari's already claimed it for her space. "There goes my entire plan," she says. "I have to start from scratch.

Subtle Blues

Danielle decides to bring turquoise into the room through accessories, like the painted mats on this artwork. "I'm not that designer that hits you over the head with colors...I like to weave it in," she says.

Out of Time

Danielle struggles to find accessories in her chosen hue, and ultimately runs out of time before she finishes her space — these painted light fixtures didn't make it over the dining table. "Hopefully the Design Panel will ultimately see where I was headed," she says.

Before: Blank Slate

Dark wood floors and beige walls provide a clean slate in this brand new condo.

After: Sophisticated but Bland

Nearly-blank walls and drab hues don't impress the judges in this color-based challenge. "The challenge wasn't to make a room with all taupe," judge Genevieve Gorder says.

After: Bits of Brilliance

"I like how she's woven the turquoise in...we just need to see more of it," guest judge Meg Caswell says.

Original Art

When she couldn't find the right art at the store, Danielle turned to outdoor inspiration. She shot digital photos of the California landscape, then printed and framed them.

Turquoise Walls

Worried about going too bold, Danielle uses a bright turquoise in one corner only. Vern likes the color she chose, but wishes it was more present throughout the space.

Grim Gray

Danielle uses a paint hue so similar to the "builder beige" the condo came with that the panel isn't even sure if the color changed. "Don't waste time and money painting the walls one shade darker of gray," judge Vern Yip says.

Backup Table

When she couldn't find another glass table, Danielle settled for this espresso model, but the judges felt it didn't contrast with the floor enough. "It's very homogenous...a dark dining table with a dark floor," judge Genevieve Gorder says.

Yellow Accents

Danielle used bursts of bright yellow — like the hue featured on this graphic pillow — alongside cool turquoise.

Bits of Chrome

A chrome coffee table brings in a bit of the contrast Danielle was looking for from the glass dining table, but it isn't enough to wow the judges.

Ready for the Camera?

After a difficult challenge, Danielle knows she has to nail the live TV segment to stay in the competition. "Preparing to be on national TV is extremely daunting," she says.

Live From The Talk

David and the final four meet up with hosts Julie Chen and Aisha Tyler to talk about easy ways to add color at home.

Danielle Shines

Danielle starts to show a bit of her personality as she gives her mat-painting tip, and the judges love seeing a new side of her. "You were friendly and energetic," Vern says. It's enough to keep Danielle safe this week.

Redeemable Red

After last week's questionable red countertops, Hilari isn't thrilled to draw red as the inspiration for her condo. "Last week I was in the bottom with my red countertops, so I'll bring red in through accessories and artwork," she says.

Lots of Texture

Hilari focuses on finding colorful, textural accents that will add the sophistication she desperately needs to show the judges.

Before: Basic Beige

Neutral walls and bland tile floors don't lend any character here — it has to be created from scratch.

After: Sophisticated Style

Hilari finally shows the judges her signature layered style.

After: Red Accents

The design panel appreciates Hilari's restrained approach with the color red — "It can be a difficult color to work with," judge Vern Yip notes.

Texture, Texture, Texture

Hilari layered texture and pattern throughout the space, like this mix of tweed, velvet and silk pillows topped with a bold, zebra-printed accent.

Branch Out

Hilari uses both a large-scale vine sculpture and several manzanita branches, but it's too much of the same form for the panel. "I liked how she used red, but think she needs to edit herself a bit more," guest judge Meg Caswell says.

Versace Moments

Hilari finally showed her glamorous side with shiny, high-end accessory choices. "I love big shiny things. And that's my philosophy: Buy things that you love," she says.

Before: Big and Blank

Hilari dubbed this massive, blank wall "the great wall of Marina Del Ray."

Tactile Tapestry

Hilari finds a richy-textured Indian blanket and turns it into a large-scale art piece by mounting it on a wooden frame.

Warm and Inviting

The tapestry breaks up the large wall, and a bench outfitted with pillows and blankets below creates an inviting spot for reading or overflow seating.

Glass Dining Table

The judges love Hilari's glass dining table and upholstered chairs — much to Danielle's chagrin.

Ready to Talk

Always-bubbly Hilari plans to present her mounted blanket wall art on The Talk. "Tongue, don't fail me now," she says.

Like Old Friends

Hilari greets hosts Julie Chen and Aisha Tyler like long-lost buddies — and the audience feels the warmth, too. Her delivery is a little scattered, but overall, the judges are happy with her live demo, and so is Hilari. "I feel like everyone's building blanket wall art or a headboard tonight," she says. Hilari is safe this week.

All About Yellow

Britany lucks out when she randomly chooses one of her favorite hues: yellow! Her plan for this colorful condo: A lot of seating, a big dining table and a graphic wall feature to show off her design style.

After: Cool and Cohesive

Britany chose a cool blue-green hue for the walls to offset bold yellow accents. "I'm using a bolder yellow so it feels different from the last challenge," Britany says.

Citron Vases

Britany transforms simple white vases with a coat of citron paint. "You handled this color beautifully. I love the small moments you created with yellow," judge Vern Yip says.

Graphic Wall Accent

To break up the condo's large wall, Britany delivers one of her go-to elements: a 3-D, graphic wall treatment. But judge Genevieve Gorder is over it: "We've just seen her do that like five times now," she says.

Glamorous Accents

Britany works in brass and gold accents as an extension of the yellow color palette.

Brilliant Blooms

An arrangement of white hydrangeas and yellow roses adds a finished feel to this space.

Vibrant Dining Room

The judges are in agreement: They're head-over-heels for Britany's yellow dining chairs. A gunmetal pendant adds interest over the table.

Talk, Talk, Talk

On The Talk, Britany demonstrates how to repurpose an outdated lamp, but the judges think she's not smiling enough. "You didn't look that happy," judge Vern Yip says.

A Winning Space

Despite the repeat appearance of the graphic wall, the judges love Britany's polished space and strong camera presence. The judges reward her with her first solo win!

Green Scene

To decorate his condo, Mikel is randomly assigned to work with the color green. His first order of business: have the painter coat every wall in a fresh thyme hue.

Shopping List

Mikel loves midcentury furniture, so he plans to find '60s-inspired pieces to help his "vintage chic" aesthetic shine through.

Too Much Green?

The designers are asked to use a color in a significant way, and to Mikel that means "use a lot of it." He uses red and brown accents to offset the minty-fresh walls.

Midcentury Lighting

A classic midcentury arc lamp illuminates the condo's living space.

Before: New Construction

This newly-built condo doesn't have the character that comes with older structures.

After: Character, Created

Mikel's signature style brings a collected feel into this new space. The judges love his styling of the vintage-inspired credenza.

After: Too Much Mint

"What I'm not vibing on is the shade of green," judge Genevieve Gorder says. "It looks institutional to me." Judge Vern Yip adds that he's "baffled" by Mikel's color choice.

Stylish Seating

Danish modern-style chairs and a sleek glass table create a stylish dining area.

Graphic Wall Detail

A fluid, wooden graphic on the wall helps separate Mikel's dining space from the rest of the living area.

Poor Space Planning

Judge Vern Yip shakes his finger at Mikel's living room when he finds that the two sofas aren't facing the TV. "He didn't imagine how someone would actually utilize the space," Vern says.

One More Chance

Mikel knows he has one more chance to prove himself. "I have to nail this camera challenge or else the panel is going to send me home," he says. He engages the crowd with his tip on antiquing furniture, but the information is off-topic.

Goodbye, Mikel

"Middle Mikel" couldn't make it to the top, and design mistakes plus a lackluster design demo made him the obvious choice for the chopping block. See what he has to say about going home.

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