The Design Star producers were at it again…this time the lying liars told the designers to head to the airport with their passports for some kind of “around the world” challenge. Let’s see a show of hands…who really thought the contestants were going to start globetrotting?

Yeah, me neither.

Enter the white room individual challenge…the one that separated the winners of the past two seasons from their competitors. This season’s designers had to contend with some clunky dorm-style modular couches from Lovesac. I’ll fess up to my in-depth knowledge of reality TV and point out that the dude who founded Lovesac was once upon a time a reality show contestant himself. The one he appeared on was Richard Branson’s The Rebel Billionaire—which I loved. I do not love the Lovesac. In fact, I think the Lovesac sucks and I think we were all given a great hour-long demo revealing just how much they do suck.

Enough of that…let’s get to it. Mikey V. and Matt were supposed to create rooms inspired by Thailand, Stax and Trish drew Mexico, Crazee and Jennifer: Italy, and Michael drew the wild card, which allowed him to select the country of his choice (Spain).

Mikey V.

Vern said it best when he said Mikey V’s room looked like a stereotype, although I don’t know how they expected everyone to be so familiar with exotic destinations as to create something that was completely authentic. Madam Mam’s is about as close to Thailand as I’ve ever been, so I guess I would have had to rely on restaurant cues myself.


Oh Matty Boy. You came dangerously close to going home today. I totally dug where you were going, and so did Stax. “I like it,” she said. “It’s like a spaceship.”

Which is exactly what you want someone to say about your Zen Buddhist Temple.

If the judging criteria didn’t have as much to do with the telegenic power of their designs, Matt would never have seen the view from the bottom rung of the ladder. However, I did find myself wondering where his $500 budget went, because all I saw was a bit of wood and a light kit.


The judges were all over Stax’s room like frat boys wanna be on Stax. Personally, I thought her room was completely unappealing and drab. I didn’t really think she pulled off the cabana thing and for gawd’s sake, was it so wrong of me to want to see a little color down Mexico-way?


Trish kept saying she wanted to create a relaxing hotel vibe. Well evidently Trish does not have much of a clue when it comes to color theory. Flourescent lime green all over your walls is irritating, cringe-inducing, and is absolutely 180 degrees from relaxing. Soothing, soft, earthy greens: relaxing. Blacklight Special green: not relaxing. Also, high-contrast graphic elements? Not relaxing. Low contrast organic forms? Relaxing.


Barbie bordello. ‘Nuff said.


Jenn had a brilliant concept and was clearly the winner of the challenge from the moment she started sketching her wall detail. The idea to create a wall treatment based on well-known pottery from a specific Italian village was awesome and the oversized scale of the graphics on the wall were very today. Out of all of the faux rooms, Jenn’s was the only one inviting enough to have enticed me to sit on that gawd-awful furniture.


The not-so-amazing Michael was in true form this week, spending what seemed to be the majority of his allotted twelve hours piddling around, scratching his butt around the power tools and trying to incite drama. And where did all that overconfidence and nonchalance take you, Michael? Well, it sure wasn’t Spain.

The following is a recap of what went down in my living room during Michael’s blubbering meltdown and after he was directed to his kennel…er, I mean, the cagey faux elevator of doom. And I swear this is the exact sequence:

ME: Somebody give the Texan a Kleenex.

JEB: Or his mommy!

MICHAEL (crying, on TV): I want my mom right now. I want my mom right now.

MICHAEL (in his head): MOMMY!