When television shows like “Trading Spaces” came out, I was thrilled to see designers do their thang on national television! I was a teenager at the time, and I was excited to see the field I was passionate about getting air time. This gave me hope for my future career!
After I started design school, these shows just made me downright angry. Not only is the timeline for these projects unrealistic, but insulting to all designers. These shows make everyone think I went to school for 4 years to pick out drapes and paint colors. There is no talk of interior architecture, space planning, or the fundamentals of design. They also never listened to their clients! If your client says, “Anything but yellow,” you certainly don’t paint their whole living room yellow! They also came up with really tacky solutions, that any paying clients would NOT go for. For example, in one episode the “designer” wanted to move the current location of lighting in a living space, so she covered the hole in the ceiling where the previous electrical was coming through with a metal plate! This episode put me over the edge … Below is an image of an interior from Trading Spaces where the “designer” filled the client’s basement with SAND …. and those stripes … and that TREE … agh.
I said all of that to say — I am COMPLETELY against these shows, but a few weeks ago an episode of Nate Berkus‘s American Dream Builders happened to come on. I was immediately dazzled, and not just by Nate’s gorgeous face.
The designers and architects were talking about tying in historical architectural elements and I was hooked. This show is legit. The interiors are amazing, and the architects, designers, and contractors on this show are incredible. They still have to meet crazy deadlines and there’s also the drama aspect of reality TV, but I could definitely see myself binge watching this show on Netflix. I also must say — I am a tad biased, because I LOVE everything about Nate Berkus. He’s a phenomenal designer, he’s a Harrington College of Design Alum (woooot!), he has an amazing story, AND he’s oh-so handsome!
Here are some pics from “American Dream Builders”!
Designer or not — check out an episode of Amercian Dream Builders! You won’t regret it.