Ellen’s Design Challenge


I have been waiting for this show for a long time, Fangirls. I don’t watch a lot of television, but when I do it’s almost exclusively HGTV or DIY Network. I can’t get enough of either. So when I started seeing the adds for a show that focused on designing furniture, which I adore, and Ellen DeGeneres whom I also immensely adore, I could hardly contain myself. Finally last night, the show premiered, and in my opinion, was a total success. 

Maybe it’s just because this show is geared directly at me, but I loved it. I think so far its exciting, fun, interesting, and inspiring. As someone who has recently discovered a passion for designing & building furniture, and as a lesbian who is dedicated to our fearless leader Ellen, I thought the show was brilliant. The show has just six contestants, a rather small group compared to most competition shows such as these. There’s three women, and three men, all varying in age, style, and expertise. Over the course of the show, I developed my own opinions about each of them.

The first challenge was very interesting. After each contestant was assign their own personal carpenter to work with on the show, a giant box wrapped up like a present was wheeled in for them. The opened the box and found it empty. They were then told to take the paper off the box. The giant boxes were built with a steel frame, Plexiglas, and various types of wood & plywood. The designers have to build something, anything they want, using just the materials that the boxes are made from. With that, they get to work.

Katie, a young, very hipstery designer from Brooklyn makes an interesting cabinet. It’s hard to tell what it will look like until it’s finally revealed at the judging. It actually was a beautiful piece that I enjoyed a lot, and it was well received by the judges. I’m still not sure how I feel about her yet. An older woman named Leslie, though my mother & I have nicknamed her Cranky Pants built a wall panel shelving unit. I really, really don’t like this woman. I thought she was scatter brained & uptight, and constantly fought with her carpenter. After all that, her piece turned out terribly, with it being very bare and the shelves being much too narrow. A fellow from Venezuela named Gaspar built a chair that I thought looked like it belonged in an electroshock therapy room. It was poorly received by the judges and one of them called it a failure. Carley, a young blacksmith made a beautiful side table. She was a little braggy about her being a blacksmith, but in a male dominated industry like that, she has every right to own it. My favorite piece of the group was made by a Colorado countrymen named Tim. At first, I thought I would hate him, but he seems like a great man. And he made an absolutely gorgeous campaign table, that had a drawer that could be taken out to use as a brief case! The judges also adored the piece. A middle aged man named Mark made some all purpose wall shelving unit thing. It was pretty, it seemed functional, but the judges thought it didn’t have enough wow for the first  impression.

After the judges, who include the editor in chief of Dwell Magazine and the executive producer of Wayfair.com, deliberated on the contestants and their work, Mark was sent home. I was disappointed. Surely, his piece had no wow, but I think they had much better things to say about it than Gaspar or Leslie’s pieces. I thought that one of them should have been sent home. But of course, this is television and they need to keep characters like Leslie for a drama factor. The winner of the challenge was Tim, of course. I was delighted. Winners of the challenges win an advantage in the next challenge. If they win the whole thing, they get a spread in HGTV Magazine and $100,000.

So far, I’m rooting for Tim, feeling out Katie, and waiting for Leslie to go away. I was disappointed in the total lack of Ellen in the show so far, but am hopeful for the future. I give this show an A, and am very, very excited to continue watching the series. All hail Ellen, all hail furniture, all hail HGTV.


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One Response to Ellen’s Design Challenge

  1. Use to be a watcher says:

    After watching first two episodes this show is a failure just like the so called judges on the show. This is to be “furniture ” this that we have seen is not that at all! Each item made tonight was a great item that would sell. Any mother or father that would leave their child on any changing table shouldn’t be a parent or a pet owner for that matter. This so called drama the showed was simply bad acting. Then the great item checkerboard wine holder bar would not only sell to men but as well to women. Then the big red piece please it was ugly way to large geometrically unporportioned. Look up furniture read the definition, what should have been are real piece like the two that were so called loosers. Then we should she chairs, tables, headboards, nightstands, dressers, sofa’s or couches things of this type dinning tables. This show is not a joke it is a mockery to these designer’s of furniture. I have always respected Ellen but if this “her” show her way big fail! Real people who are buyer’s should be judging if it were furniture, not these sanctimonious people who tell the designers or buyer’s what we should like or buy as well as to what is current has nothing to do with the show! Ellen sorry all around faliure,if it was going to be a silly reality show then it should have been called just that. Then to compare each designer’s items even the loosers to what’s on Way fair which are over priced flea market finds is hypocritical. Done wasting time on another useless show!

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