Skip to content

Top Design: The Weekly Dish

Miss Becky is back to share her opinion on the finale of Bravo’s Top Design. Yay! I’ve loved having her here to comment on the show each week, I’m sure you’ll all agree that often Becky is MORE entertaining than the actual episode. Becky, the stage is yours, my dear! ? Holly


The Finale! The first order of business before we discuss the show: Holly, are you missing the shower curtain from your apartment in Germany? I’m pretty sure that Kelly Wearstler was wearing it in this episode!

Kelly wearing a dress by Marni.

I really enjoyed this episode. The contestants had a couple of days, a couple of carpenters, a seamstress and an auffed (thanks Kristin – I’m using that for every reality show now) contestant assistant to complete an entire house. By the way, was I seeing it correctly? Were the kitchen, dining, and living rooms all on the top floor of the house? Were there views? If not, I don’t get it.

Room by Ondine.

Room by Ondine.

Each contestant really showed their individual style this week. Ondine seemed to have grown the most throughout the competition, though I recognized the photo of her headboard from some magazine – does anyone remember where that was from? I think it might have been Elle Decor, but I’m not sure. I thought that was a little weird. I also wished that Big Daddy had built something like that headboard for the David Hockney window that resulted in his auffing. Ondine’s style was really fun but seemed to simply emulate Jonathan Adler’s. There was the C. Jere-esque sculpture, the bright BOOM! POW! colors and foo dogs galore. It was all straight out of My Prescription for Anti-Depressive Living. That being said, I thought she did a good job.

Design by Preston.

Design by Preston.

While Preston’s design was very polished, I don’t think he took the judges’ advice from last week. They begged him to add that extra layer of his own personality, but he didn’t. While he had very clean and modern rooms, it all had that Jeff Lewis staged-to-sell or impersonal hotel look (that’s a shout-out to you, Eleise!). As they panned through his rooms, all I could think was “Man I wish ‘Lost’ was on!” He seemed to have an inability to have fun, whether at the pool or when designing.

Design by Nathan.

Design by Nathan.

My favorite, Nathan, was wackadooarama, and I loved it. He took huge risks, and his designs were the only ones that seemed to have any originality and excitement. While this crazy funkiness can impress judges, it is also a major gamble. Nathan was far and away the gutsiest competitor throughout the entire season. When he hits, he gets a bulls-eye. When he misses, he misses by a long-shot! He clearly knows the difference between designing and decorating.

A few other random notes: If I had only seen this episode and the first two episodes, I would have liked Eddie just fine, and I would have found him entertaining. I cringed when I saw him return, but he didn’t offend or appall me at all this week! I finally saw Margaret smile – she’s been speaking with quite a crisp tone to the other judges the past few weeks. India seemed to warm up a lot as the season went on and I found myself wanting to have a drink with her by the end. Jonathan Adler actually made a Samantha Fox reference, and now I can’t get “I Wanna Have Some Fun…” out of my head! (SaSaSamantha Fox!)

So, I’m dying to read what you all thought of the finale. Do you think the right person won? If not, who were you pulling for? Which house was your favorite and which was your least favorite? Is there such a thing as a “traditional twist,” which was part of Preston’s weird explanation for his style, or is that an oxymoron? How funny is it that Nathan comes up with style names like “Bohemian Bourgeouisie,” and calls a large chest a “giant coffin S and M holding pen”? Do you think that seeing her own style copied so much on this show drove Kelly to switch it up and go all Bravura Modern, as featured recently in Domino? Do you read so many design blogs every day that a lot of this looked really done to death to you? Did you think anyone’s style was “love it or hate it”? Whom would you like to have a beer with the most? Who would you take to a Kathy Griffin concert? Do you remember Samantha Fox? (If not here’s a YouTube video, don’t say I never gave you anything.) Where is she now? What did you think about Preston switching his lounge, which was supposed to set the whole tone for the house design, into a dining room? Please just comment on anything you want!

One more note: It has been my pleasure to be able to dish with you all every week! After I post here, I find myself compulsively checking the comments every ten minutes to see what you have to say, and I find myself chuckling and nodding as I do. It’s been an absolute honor to be posting on decor8 and to be able to have discussions with you every week! Thank you so much! – Becky Harris


Thank you Becky, it’s been our pleasure having you. LOVE your post each week. :) – Holly

(images from bravo’s top design)

Posted in guest bloggers, reality tv on November 06, 2008

Top Design: The Weekly Dish

Miss Becky is back to share her opinion on this week?s episode of Top Design on Bravo. I haven’t watched a single episode but boy, oh boy you all are NOT liking this Eddie character! Anyhoo… Becky, the mic is all yours! ? Holly

WOW! Top Design made me SO happy this week! I did not think I could become any more obsessed with Jeff Lewis, I mean, I even thought “Oh, he has “Vines and Flowers” in one of his houses!” when I saw Ondine use it (so do Rachel Zoe and half of the reality TV universe, but I still love it). The way he hammered Eddie made me swoon. Finally! I mean, besides you all, I haven’t really heard much hating on Eddie out there in the blogosphere, in fact, it’s quite the opposite. I don’t get it! I mean, he was even featured in my favorite magazine this month, which made me ill. Then along came Jeff Lewis, to add some balance to the universe, who told Eddie his style was older, and “by older I mean, walkers, bedpans, and oxygen tanks.” Thank you Bravo, for giving me a Jeff Lewis fix. Thank you Jeff, for hitting the nail on the head.





Alright, Eddie rant over. The challenge this week was an introduction to the final challenge. The remaining three each will be decorating a depressingly generic new three bedroom house. For this challenge, they had to tackle one room in said house which would represent the way they planned on decorating the house. Nathan and Eddie both picked the master bedroom, Ondine picked the small bedroom and made it into a study, and Preston turned half of the eat-in kitchen into a family room lounge area. A few notes:

  • Eddie: You are in L.A., not the Hamptons. And that is not the Hamptons, it’s trying to be like Thom Filicia and winding up with tacky Florida rental condo. That trellis and plant combo was totally Golden Girls. Go grab some cheesecake and talk to Blanche about her panties. Everyone sing along with me, “Thank you for being a friend….”
  • Ondine: Her room was very Jonathan Adler Happy Chic. I mean, she even had bright blue foo dogs. I recognize the sofa because it’s been in every Plantation ad in every magazine for about two years. She kept it simple and I think it was brilliant that she did the smallest room in this challenge. It was manageable and easy to edit. I’d really love to see her apartment in person – it looked really interesting!
  • Nathan: I agreed with every single word the judges had to say about him. His room looked like a boring hotel room, let’s say, a Hampton Inn or a Sheraton.
  • Preston: OK, who can concentrate on his room when we’ve seen him rejected by the New York posse and heard all about his tragic childhood. I felt really bad for him and I felt like I understood his personality better from this episode. TIDBIT: I read in Jonathan Adler’s blog last week that all of the judges call Preston “Cleavage.” I didn’t love his room, and I agreed with the judges that he needs another layer. It looks like he does have that layer in his own home. I was really impressed with the shots they shared. It was very Hollywood Regency with a bit of Ian Schrager edge.

While I missed Kelly, the judging portion was the best part of the show this week. Jeff Lewis and Jonathan were affectionately giving each other a hard time (well, Jeff was giving it and JA was taking it), I think Margaret clearly dislikes Jeff Lewis and already had Eddie hand-picked for the Elle Decor spread, and Jeff judged people by their outfits (good thing for Ondine he liked her room). It was DELICIOUS!

I am talking too much once again. So, were you yelling “TAKE THE DOOR OFF!” when Ondine’s desk would not fit into the room? What did you think of Nathan’s hosting skills when he was drunk? Did you think any of the rooms looked like the Plantation showroom? When Eddie kept saying “Easy Breezy” did you think “Cover Girl” or “Rachel Ray”? Whose room worked and whose room did not? Whose room did the best job of enticing the judges to want to see the completed house? Whose personal home did you dig the most? Do you wish they’d have a contest where the prize would be a home visit consultation from Todd Oldham? Do you think Eddie can do sexy? Have you said “Sit and Spin!” ever? If so, were you over the age of 12? What do you think of the big photograph trend seen in Ondine’s room and Preston’s home? Did the show make you want to buy Windex or a GE Profile wine fridge?

Please join and answer any of these questions or any others you want to ask the group!

(images from bravo television, text from becky harris)

Posted in guest bloggers, reality tv on October 30, 2008

Top Design: The Weekly Dish

Once again Miss Becky is back to share her opinion on this week?s episode of Top Design on Bravo. Becky, the mic is all yours! ? Holly


O.K. you all. We all know this week’s theme was not “Light It Up” with a Swarovski crystal chandelier, but rather was stated by Nathan — it was, “Martha Martha Martha! Martha Martha Martha!”






The Pop Design challenge was to style a room using Jonathan Adler’s products. I could do this one in my sleep, as I want at least half of his collection and I worship him. I was really disappointed in the result of this challenge, as I had a favorite who was not the winner. However, my favorite moment was when India called Jonathan “short.”

As for the rooms, what did you think? In my honest opinion, Nathan’s story made me laugh. I was watching this cutesy show called “Priveleged” Tuesday night, and I was in awe of how eclectic and insane the rich sisters’ room was. Nathan’s seemed to be like that, but as far as the line between eclectic and crackhead, I thought it was more crackhead and it did not work for me. Preston, surprise surprise, hold onto your seats, decided to be inspired by “a boutique hotel.” Has he ever NOT been inspired by a boutique hotel? It was like Kelly Wearstler on a budget.

Enough from me: Tonight was a shocking outcome. What did you think about how it went down?

Even if you dislike Kelly, can you admit that you missed her this week? What is there to dish about when there isn’t a Kelly outfit to discuss?

If you do not watch this show please get involved in this discussion anyway… You can view the ‘finished’ rooms this week above and let us know your impression of them.

Please come join us and dish! – Becky

(image from bravo television, text written by guest blogger Rebecca Harris.)

Posted in guest bloggers, reality tv on October 23, 2008

Top Design: The Weekly Dish

Miss Becky is back to share her take on this week?s episode of Top Design. Becky, take it away! — Holly
Hi Everyone! Before I get started talking about this week’s episode of Top Design, who caught Wisit’s opera-etic departure TWICE on The Soup this week? I almost fell off the couch laughing! I also noticed that they changed the cover of the Elle Decor they show at the beginning. It used to be the issue with a cover showing the dining room of Cynthia Rowley, a judge on competing show Design Star.

Well, this week’s “Room of the Future” episode was a major improvement over last week’s depressing green offices. I remember doing those kinds of exercises in 4th grade, except the future year we were told to imagine was 2000! I guess my “space car convertible” was a little ahead of its time. It was really interesting to see which designers were able to think about the future, and which ones were still stuck styling bookshelves with woven baskets. I agreed 100% with the judges’ decisions tonight. I also liked that they had two and a half days plus a carpenter to help them execute their designs. Besides the fact that it takes a good week to put together several pieces of furniture from IKEA, it really gave them ample time to execute their designs well.

It was hilarious to hear Ondine, “the road runner on crack,” drop the f-bomb so many times, and that she spilled big cans of paint or varnish twice. I was pleasantly surprised that Eddie handled it so well. I will give him props for that. I loved that the Pop Design challenge actually tested their knowledge of design history, and it was interesting to see who dropped out and when, though I suppose it wasn’t much of a surprise who knew their stuff and who did not. Personally, I could not tell if the vintage lamp was a garage sale find or an L.A. high-end modern furniture store piece, and I got that one wrong! My guess is that the store charging $1,200 for it today found it at a garage sale for five bucks last week.

The two funniest, or in one case, ironic things Kelly said in this week’s episode?

1) “I love the plates on the wall” to Nathan. Um, Kelly, that’s because it’s almost exactly like your design at the Viceroy Santa Monica. It’s funny that Project Runway judges pick up on those who copy Balenciaga and Alexander McQueen, yet a Top Design judge doesn’t call out her own work as an inspiration. Nathan’s plates did look great, but the rest of his styling was a bit of a hot mess.

2) “It’s like Grannies Gone Wild to Eddie, regarding his room. Um, honey, WHAT ARE YOU WEARING? Socks with pumps, beads galore, the crazy hat, purple and green, the ruffled dress, uh, if that’s not Grannies Gone Wild, I don’t know what is! I loved it though. If there’s one thing I’ve learned from these discussions, it’s that people love Kelly or hate her, but there is absolutely no middle ground. Perhaps that’s why I love her.

So, what did you think the year 2000 would be like when you were in third grade (I was in third grade in 1980, BTW)? Which futuristic plans did you think stood out in a good way? Which ones did you think were ridiculous? Do you know how to pronounce “Chaise Lounge” better than Preston does? Whose room would you choose to live in if you had to? Who is worse at receiving constructive criticism, Eddie, or Kenley from Project Runway? Were there any issues of the future you would have addressed through a design that were not mentioned in this episode? Would you ever wear a suit with sneakers and no socks? Do you think Ricky Schroeder looks smokin’ hot in that picture that Andrea brought with her?

(image from bravo, text from rebecca harris)

Posted in guest bloggers, reality tv on October 16, 2008


Some of my books

Co-editions are also available in many languages, learn more


Next dates

Blogging Your Way
e-courses, 2015
Visit our e-course website to learn more about our inspirational e-courses by bloggers, for bloggers.