Category Archives: White Room Challenge

White Room Challenge, Lighting Episode

White Room Challenge, the lighting episode. This is the last episode of season 1. Tis bittersweet BUT we do have Design Star rolling into the same time slot and thats exciting. (I will be writing reviews on Design Star as well) Anyways lets get down to business. This episode the designers were going to be judged in the dark… because the challenge was lighting. They are also judged on how well they used lighting and shadows, and how strong of a concept did they have. Here’s what I noticed in this episode. They were not told they had to design a room. In my episode we clearly had to represent a type of room, and come from an interior designer point of view. I didn’t hear that in this episode, and I didn’t hear them being told not to do an art installation. (I did hear that in other episodes) However designing the majority of their room in the light and only have a few moments of lights out to evaluate what the room would looked like being judged makes the challenge even that more difficult.

Here’s this weeks crew. We have Tiffany ‘Torche’ Perkins. She’s a metal sculpture and inventor. She like me was also in the military. She’s definitely a bit of a trash talker.  Clarione Gutierrez, he’s a freelance designer and a speed painter. I’ve never heard of a speed painter before, but it looks pretty awesome. Jessica Goudreau aka Peanut. She a designer from New York and specializes in restaurants, nightclubs and cruise ships. And lastly Eli Levenstein, he’s an artist who designs one of a kind furniture pieces and “environments.”

Alright so onto the rooms. Torche’s Sexy Lounge. Can I just be totally honest and say I don’t feel sexy or lounge. When I think of sexy lounge I think of mood lighting, dim and sexy that light up just the right areas in a dim space. I don’t think of bright light up floor. I do like that she framed out the floor and light it from the bottom but it’s soooo bright. In fact it’s taking away from the tubes she lit and filled with broken light bulbs. I like those I would have liked to see more of those dimly lighting the space, rather than the jarring floor. I appreciate she used the bulbs in the coffee table build and she didn’t light them, it’s artistic. The metal sculpture is beautiful as it should be because she’s a metal sculpture. She didn’t say she was an interior designer and I have to say she struggled a bit with scale in here. The metal sculpture is small compared to the size of her back wall and sofa. The light hanging in the corner is bitzy. The rug is too small. I would have liked to see a bigger rug that would have diffused the light coming from her floor. Maybe a rug with cutouts that would have giver her blank wall some shadows. All in all I love her metal work but I don’t think her room represents her concept very well and Torche takes home 3rd.

Clarione’s Bright Lights, Big City. All I have to say is I love it. He painted all that art freehand… hooray to that. Clarione is a painter and I’m glad he choose to show off his talent. The concept is strong. There really isn’t much I would change about his space. I do agree with the judges that he could have put gels over his bright lights cutouts so the glowing sunglasses of his lady would have shown up more. I love the whirlybirds used on the block to represent tops of buildings. I love the layering of the buildings in the back. I do have to say I was slightly worried for him because I wasn’t sure if he was going to be criticized for doing more of an art installation than a room, like my favorite robot from a former episode. But the judges loved it. Great job Clarione, you deserved the win!

Jessica’s Late Night lounge. Another lounge, and again like Torche I’m not feeing lounge. This feels a bit more laser tag to me. And she’s another victim of paint with the tape graphic effect. Don’t rely on this to make or break your room, use it to enhance your design, but remember it’s been done over and over and over again on White Room. It looks a tad messy to me. The colored tube lights remind me of space mountain at Disneyland. The furniture looks messy or broken or tipped over… actually I’m not exactly sure whats going on with the furniture. Jessica you said you designed cruise ships, I’ve been on a cruise ship and really wanted you to give me crazy seahorse, pastel green and purple wonderfulness. I love a tacky cruise ship and wished she would have taken it that direction. Instead I’m left with laster tag sloppiness. Jessica takes home 4th.

Eli’s Outer Space Underground. Ok this one is hard for me to critique. It is clearly art, and art is subjective. I appreciate his artistic point of view and in fact I actually like this… as an art installation. Eli and Carione both did art installations, and they were the top two so I guess that didn’t matter this episode. Eli’s fluorescent lighting overpowered his space. He left the majority of his room white which is reflecting the bright lights even more. He lost all shadows in his room, and I think thats what lost the challenge for him. He did use the paint after he saw that the shadows were lost. I know a lot of viewers aren’t going to understand Eli’s space. It’s art, but I do love it. Eli takes runner up but he is someone who is going to be talked about long after this show.

So season 1 of White Room Challenge. Truly a fun show and it seems they are dreaming up harder challenges so good luck season 2!! Maybe there will be an all stars edition, who knows…


Pink Overalls from Rosies Workwear

Ok so I was going to add this post to my White Room Challenge, but then I saw these amazing pictures I’m about to share and I knew I had to dedicate an entire post. So on White Room Challenge, some of you may have noticed while I was working on my room I changed into bight raspberry colored overalls. These are from Rosies Workwear.  When I was cast for White Room Challenge, production mentioned to wear clothes that reflect our style but yet we had to be able to work in them. Originally I thought of getting an apron, then the idea of coveralls came to mind. But painters coveralls are BRIGHT WHTIE and you can’t wear bright white on camera because of the studio lights. I started searching for something and came across these pink overalls. AMAZING!! I could wear them over my clothes and wouldn’t have to work about trying to stay clean and could focus on creating my room.

Look at me running around in my Rosies. So fun. I have to say these were super comfy. Plus they are quirky like me. I might look like a girly blonde but this lady knows her way around power tools, so the idea of pink workers overalls seemed that more fitting.

Plus guess what the overalls have removable kneepads!!! Who knew those would come in such handy while I crawled around about 2 hours painting my floor. I really don’t know if it took me 2 hours, I honestly lost track of the time while I was painting, at least my knees didn’t hurt.

So when e-mailed Rosies about watching the show because I was going to be wearing their overalls, I was touched when I found out they were throwing a viewing party. Even more amazing were the pictures posted on their Facebook page. They made their own white rooms while wearing their Rosies!! I LOVE IT!! Thank you fellow Rosies for all your support.

How fun does this look!!??

Love the mint! This may be my next pair…

and who doesn’t love baby pink…

Here’s the before…

and the after!! Love it ladies, wish I was there…

Oh and I have to share this, after the show my Rosies looked like this…

So it looks like I might need to buy a new pair, somehow I don’t think I could wear these again… I can’t wash the now!!


(btw this post is about my love for overalls, this is not an endorsed post… just me sharing about things I love)



White Room Challenge… Collectables

Ok thanks for waiting a day for my post. So this week on White Room Challenge we had the biggest challenge yet. The wall-less challenge. Not only did we not have walls, we did not have furniture. Nothing…. we basically had a framed out 10 x 10 space. So it’s surreal to watch and realize how much I missed because I was in such shock. So when we walked in and meet David, let me just tell you I really had no idea what he said other than “Welcome to the White Room Challenge,” and “wall-less” challenge. My mind was running a hundred miles a min, I didn’t even catch where we were shopping (at some point I asked if we were going to a wall store) I was super excited that after we finished the intro filming and knew our challenge (because trust me you wonder for weeks whats coming) that we were going to be shopping at Nicks Metropolis. I’m from LA and have shopped there before, but basically it’s a antique, prop- junk store full of amazingness. HOWEVER, for those who have shopped LA for antiques and such you know this stuff is not cheap. This is not craigslist, this is a store, shopped by many production companies. When you have a high demand for this stuff like LA, the prices go up. Basically that means that $1000 does not go far, and thats all we had for budget. Oh and don’t forget our paint and anything we get on set to build our room comes from that $1000 as well. That put lots of exciting items from Nick’s simply out of budget. (David said he was disappointed in us for this but budget is budget, so we had to buy cheaper stuff and turn it into amazingness) That being said lets get on to the reviews and info you did see…

Our challenge was the wall-less challenge, create a sense of enclosure without building walls. We needed to give the feeling of our room type (bedroom, dining, living and office) but it doesn’t have to be functional. Think way outside the box, and we were going to be judged on how imaginative and ingenious our designs were though the use of our collectables. So here we are, Jennifer Glickman the sweet Interior Designer from Boston. Love her to death, she owns her own design company and lately from her twitter it looks like she’s been working on a lot of restaurant designs. Me, I’m a freelance designer, with an undergrad in fashion design and later went on to complete courses in interior design. I worked on the first 2 seasons of Secrets From a Stylist and just recently got hired by Anthropologie as their home department manager. David Slivinski, the New York interior designer who designs for clients with unlimited budgets. Last, Mark Griffin he went back to school for interior design and he’s a hair dresser as well.

Now onto the reviews. Jen’s constructed deconstruction bedroom. Ok it’s harder to review when you know the designers on these spaces, but I am going to try to look at these rooms with a critical eye. I really didn’t know what Jen was doing the entire challenge, I was painting my floor in my room day 1 and she spent most of day 1 in the work room. Her room was still empty day 1 except for the grey floor she painted. I do know from talking to her that she completely spec’d the platform bed for her carpenter. It’s impressive she can design furniture like that on the fly. The platform bed looked like something you could buy in a store, but that was also the problem, it looked like something you could buy in a store. Our challenge was to be imaginative and ingenious, and although impressive, it was at the end of the day, a well built platform bed. She cut apart stools and wicker furniture to make the headboard but alas it was still a headboard. Put that headboard in a model home on an actual wall with her floating nightstands and it could be a pretty moment. In this room however, it wasn’t working. When Jen realized she designed WAY to literal it was too late so she got upset and threw spaghetti all over her floor, ok not really… but had she have said this was a room of a child with an crazy italian mother I would have been onboard. David Bromstad hit the nail on the head when he said her room never became as great as the ideas in her head and Jenn takes 4th.

Mark’s outdoor dining room. Ok here something funny I don’t remember when he painted that floor. His floor was grey like Jens’s most of the time and I don’t remember seeing him paint the flagstone pattern… so sneaky you are Mark. Ok so Mark’s aesthetic was the closest to mine and based on his purchases I originally thought he was going to be the biggest competition. In fact Marks room is just as pretty if not prettier than Monica’s from the salvaged episode, and she won that episode. If someone had this in their backyard everyone would be loving it. I do agree he could have had more pillows but I don’t remember any pretty pillows being available in the stock room. The lightly is moody. The way he painted that floor with cardboard cutout templates was genius. The arch is just as it was in at Nicks he didn’t repurpose it he simply placed it in his room. He made the the tables and the wall scrolly stuff. He hung those cute tables, he did mention to me later that he was worried I would think he copied my hanging chairs when he hung his tables, because I actually hung mine first BUT he totally didn’t copy me. My intention was the chairs were falling… not hanging pretty like his tables. So overall a very pretty space, but also pretty real world and although his space was my favorite after my own… it didn’t take the concept far enough and Mark takes 3rd.

David’s “think tank,” office. Ok I have to admit I never actually heard David’s concept while we were working I just saw his space. I LOVE the concept of the think tank / thought bubble. The concept is super creative, and there are a lot of creative moments in his room… David’s super funny, creative and totally one up’d my doodling comment. I just have to say I’m not a fan of the overall design. I think I called his room “80’s Vegas on a Cruise Ship.” David managed to take 50’s diner tables and turn them into a crazy 80’s light up steps leading up to a throne. He used the base of the tables to make that light in the back. He turned whirlybird vents into stools of some sort. And don’t forget the bedazzled spider web. I love David’s creativity… and his concept… but I think he could have edited the room a little more. His aesthetic is so far removed from mine, I can appreciate his creativity I just can’t say I’m in love with the actual design. David takes home runner up.

Ok onto my room. Of course this review is going to be a tad longer. I am going to try to touch on all the stuff I did that didn’t show up on the show. Ok first off the floor, yep I drew that out with a pencil a ruler and a string to make the circles. I painted it freehand by edging, I didn’t tape it out because I wanted to save time, and I kinda designed it as I went. I just started in the middle and worked my way out. The back wall was done with furniture legs and then I saw a mannequin so I incorporated the mannequin leg as well… I love me a good appendage. Ok so something you didn’t see is I made that coffee table. It looked like this when I bought it…

It was some kind of weird greek inspired pedestal thingy. My carpenter and I cut the base and the legs off, I flipped the legs so that they were coming out of the center so it could stand up without the greek base, repaired the broken edge, and cut out a new top out of MDF. Then I used a combination of spray paint, stain and I even burned the top a little to age it like the base. I was super excited for the finished coffee table.

It went from bad greek, to neato Alice in Wonderland. So to clear things up I didn’t just buy the table and throw it into the room. That is also why I didn’t smash it like the judges suggested. I appreciate the suggestions BUT the idea wasn’t that everything came crashing down the rabbit hole… it was just falling. I liked the disorientation of the chairs juxtaposing the quite moment of the coffee table. If I could go back and change it… I wouldn’t… I stand by that decision. Maybe Meg got the idea from her room when she broke her table during the last min in her White Room Challenge…

Yep sorry Meg had to do it. You were pretty hard on my room, and I appreciate good criticism, but I have to beg to differ. You felt like I didn’t follow though and wished I would have hung everything. Believe me I thought about it, but I wanted the juxtaposition, I didn’t want it to seem like I came up with a great idea and ruin it by taking it too far and making my room seem like one note. So we can agree to disagree on that one, I still love your show and your designs and respect your critiques. Jamie Durie’s critique about my drapes I felt was kinda a complement in a weird way. He thought my drapes were too predictable for “me,” so I guess he was expecting me to come up with a more creative idea for my side wall-less walls. What you didn’t see is that those weren’t drapes. It was just white cotton fabric I got in the stock room. I cut and sewed a pocket into the top so I could hang it like drape and I dyed it by pooring my green paint into a bucket with water and dipped my drapes into the water. I put the drapes into the room because my room needed color, it wasn’t a cop out as a way to create a sense of enclosure… but I can see how you could think that not knowing where those drapes came from… so now you know 🙂

What else did you miss… oh yes remember Mark criticizing me for buying a sofa?? He thought it was too conventional. Well yes I bought a crazy 60’s rattan sofa… I happen to love rattan if it’s used correctly, but it didn’t end up end up being a sofa, I cut the back off and used it as my art. The wood element came from a wine rack I bought and disassembled for parts. I painted a white chihuahua as a play on the white rabbit… because I have a chihuahua and this was my wonderland room after all.

Same idea on the other items, only I painted a clock as a play on the white rabbit’s pocket watch and the fact that we were timed in our challenge. Kinda cheesy yes but I needed a reason why I did everything so I could defend it at judging if I needed too. The one thing I would have changed in my room is the light. I originally wanted to make a chandelier but I wasn’t going to have time as it wasn’t on the highest priority of what my room needed. I did that ugly little light fixture in the last hour of the challenge… I didn’t address lighting in my room at all and thought I wash going to be questioned about it. I didn’t think I needed lighting, the studio lights lit up my room fine, and in reality my room was a rabbit hole, so there wouldn’t be lighting, but I second guessed myself and hung that stupid lightbulb with the pathetic shade made out the the rings from the wine rack. So thats my ugly moment, David called me out on it, but that got edited out.


Last, I’m going to give a huge shout out to my carpenter Jason. He was amazing!! I couldn’t have done it all without him, although I would have tried. Something funny is we matched on day 2, both wearing plaid… because I love me some plaid. I do say on camera I have a slight obsession with lumberjacks but I guess that was too weird and got edited out. I also said in the beginning, “I’m Rebecca a designer from Vegas who’s not afraid to get my hands dirty…. I’m the dirty girl from Las Vegas….” it was a totally joke everyone was laughing and would had been funny but alas the second part got edited out… Oh well my snarky comments get edited off tv, BUT I edit my own blog so I shall share them here… 🙂

Phew thats a long post… so thoughts… comments… what did everyone think!!


White Room Challenge Tonight!!

Just a quick reminder to watch me on White Room Challenge tonight at 9pm (west coasters with satellite it will come on at 6pm) There’s going to be a never seen before twist on this episode! I’ll be tweeting live (@rebeccazajac) during the show and if your Vegas local feel free to come cheer me on at Born and Raised. And of course reviews will be posted shortly after the show here. Wish me luck!!


White Room Challenge… Candy Episode

*warning spoiler alert for those who haven’t watched yet*

AHHHH what a good episode! No offense previous episodes but I really enjoyed todays episode. We got risk takers, tears, and candy all in one hour. Plus can I just say there wasn’t a BROWN room in sight HORRAY!!!! ( yes there was a white one more on that later.)

So lets meet the designers. Melissa Rivera, an industrial designer and college professor. I wish I had you as my professor Melissa, how fun is your portfolio??? Logan Brion, he’s a recently graduated freelance designer looking to get his work out there and get noticed. Good for him I think we’ve all been there. Oliver Auilar, he’s a commercial designer and he designs offices. OK normally I would say BORING,  but his offices are fun and contemporary, far from boring, phew. Last Jennifer Baca a self taught creative director. She did make a good point I agree with, your either born a good designer or your not. Doesn’t matter if you went to school, or didn’t some people just have a natural talent for design.

This weeks challenge… create a creative cohesive childs room using candy. Say that 3 times fast. Originally I was worried about this challenge, candy is so small how is it going to read on camera??? I do have to say I was more than pleasantly surprised.

Up First Melissa. OMG the robot with the candy cogs… genius!!!! I should say she’s a Sweet Genius (a nod to my favorite Food Network Show) Melissa didn’t paint her walls because she wanted to save time, and spent that time instead painting and taping the arms for her robot. The white works here in fact I’m GLAD she left the room white. There isn’t too much I don’t like… I love how he’s hugging me as I look at him…. I love the couch repurposed as his base. I love the chairs on top of the sofa as his legs. I love how she used the candy as cogs and gears??!! Who thinks of that… Melissa does of course. Now here is my one and only small issue with this room. Ok I actually have two issues… although clearly childlike and fun, this robot is more of a art installation than a room. Yes be creative, yes think out of the box, but in the end you should come from an interior design point of view. Maybe if there was a coffee table or chairs, or candy beanbags, something to make it look like a room a child could play in, it would have read more like a room rather than just a an amazing robot. I don’t mind she didn’t use that much candy because she used it in such a neat way, but she could have easily taken that idea and put more gears up around the room on the walls using the candy…. maybe like a gear/cog candy wallpaper. This would have added in tons more candy without compromising her robot. Maybe she didn’t have time… who knows but over all AMAZING job Melissa. She takes runner up… but believe me she won’t go unnoticed after this.

Next up Logan. Oh Logan you started out so strong… but then I think your ladybugs got diarrhea from all that candy and you ended up with ladybug poo all over your floors. Ok what I like… the blue walls with the clouds and grass… a nature fantasy inspired playroom nice… I love the concept and I love love love your lady bugs. Get rid of those pillows they are hiding your ladybugs, you don’t need them. I would have liked to see the grass concept done with candy… and the clouds although I like them I would have LOVED them if they were made from marshmallows instead of cotton. Use your candy to build your concept not just decorate it. The lady bugs spots were black licorice love that. I hate how he closed off his room. He basically just hid half his design… I don’t get it. The lamps in front ewwww why why why… totally unnecessary. And the ladybug poop on the floor was the final nail in the coffin. I really want to find more I like in this room, I mean I maybe could have liked his trees… but I can’t see them they are hidden behind the walls… so I can’t like em cuz I can’t see em. He had a great concept but he takes home 4th.

Oliver and his boys room. He had an emotional ride creating this room and I’m glad he was able to pull it together and pull it off. Love the no girls ottoman made with licorice, what little boy doesn’t do one of those signs once in his life? What I love most is that he used his candy in creating his design rather than just decorating it with candy. The legs of the shelf are fun. The candy applied on the walls clearly draw your eye in. Oliver really wanted to have candy hanging from the ceiling. Originally he wanted a candy chandelier which would have been AMAZING but it wasn’t working for him so he shed a few tears, regrouped and hung the the jaw breakers and it’s a nice moment in the corner. He spent the most money on candy, and in the end it paid off… literally. Although Melissa’s room is more eye-catching, Oliver’s embraced the challenge the best and in the end takes 1st. Who knew candy could bring someone to tears… it started with tears of frustration and ended with tears of joy because he can now afford to go to the Philippines for his dad’s 80’s birthday. Congrats Oliver.

Last up, Jennifer. The kid who lives in this candy room MUST have ADD. My eye has no placed to go… so much going on with no point. Looking at this room you would think she had 2 hours not 15. Jennifer never once had a clear concept and it painfully shows. White walls clearly are not working in this room like they were for Melissa. The room looks flat, there is no dimension. The stacked furniture could have been intresting but has no point and gets lost in the vastness of her white walls. It’s hard to see what the back wall is… other than a mess. Poor Jason, her carpenter, (and my favorite carpenter btw) looks frightened in her room. David Bromstad even said the room needs an overall concept, a vision… and Jennifer’s reply was, “ummm  like you said be more innovative with the candy.” NO thats not what he said… David Bromstad was giving her valuable advice and either she wasn’t listening or she wasn’t getting it. Jennifer’s solution to her lacking focal point and missing concept… put taffy on the sofa. Alright then, Jennifer you were fun and chaotic and I enjoyed watching you. She took home 3rd.

Thought… comments… feel free to share! Officially 1 week from today is my episode!!! I’m so excited and will be tweeting live during the show. I promise it’s the biggest twist white room has thrown out there yet, AND I might be rocking some amazing pink painters overalls…Follow me at @rebeccazajac and join the twitter party next week 9/8c #whiteroomchallenge

BTW I’m a huge fan of itSugar, we have one in Vegas… can you tell!!??



White Room Challenge… Salvaged Treasures

Episode two of White Room Challenge… and I’m loving this challenge. Salvage items mixed with repurposing, this is right up my alley So lets meet the designers. Leslie Landis, she’s sweet, quirky and soft spoken. She recently started her own interior design business after working as a design assistant. Adam Scott is a furniture builder and interior designer. Supported by his new wife he quit his job to start a design firm. Monica Reese, she’s the loving mommy and interior designer with big dreams. And finally Zeinab Ghais who belly dances and likes to bring that movement and flow into her designs.

Their challenge, use the salvage items to create a creative and cohesive design. Easy enough right??? Oh and don’t forget to make sure your room reflects your personal style as well. These rooms are a bit more memorable for me than the flower challenge, maybe because I like repurposing so much, but the personalities of the designers didn’t stand out as much as last weeks. Bring design and personality, this is your moment to shine, you gotta give the audience a reason to remember you.

Ok first off we have Leslie’s 80’s Southwestern Road Trip. I like the idea, I like that she started with a strong concept and stayed true to it though out the entire competition. I like the paint colors. She used the bold colors on the floor and kept the walls neutral. Normally I would say stay away from boring neutral colors, this is your time to go bold, but in Leslie’s case a bold color on the wall could have competed with the hubcap sculpture, which was her focal point. THANK YOU FOR HAVING AN AWESOME FOCAL POINT. Again this is a must to succeed, not only in the white room but in any well designed space. Your eye needs a place to go to first and the rest of the space should flow nicely from that. I love the hubcap sculpture. If she would have just hung it without backlighting it, it would have completely missed the mark. Lighting is a key element in elevating a space, good job on that. The pallet shelves are fine, I’ve seen it done before but I don’t mind it here. Love the southwest rug but I can’t see it with that table. The table and chairs are throw aways for me, they aren’t repurposed they are just stuck in the room as is. If only she would have built a table using something salvaged, that would have taken the room all the way. Good job Leslie, she takes home runner up.

Next up we have Monica’s mommy retreat. It’s organic and free flowing. I get retreat, but I’m not finding anything that reads mommy to me, but Monica is a mommy and if this is her retreat than that totally makes sense. The hanging swing is the winner in this room. I’m not sure what the round piece of metal she used was before, but she did a good job repurposing it. The tree is still a tree, but now it’s a tree bar. This mommy likes a bar in her retreat, which I think is fun. Over all I like this room, the drapes bring your eye to the swing which is clearly the focal point. My only complaints, the walls do seem plain. The color’s are retreat like, but maybe some texture, either on the floor or the wall. Remember in real life your walls and floors are naturally a different texture and I think thats why a lot of these white rooms seems plain compared to real rooms. Also some of the items seems “piecey” and a bit too small compared to the scale of the room, but over all amazing job. Monica wins, and again I totally agree.

And here we have Adam’s music and dance room. Adam, I was really liking your ambition but like Saadia last week it didn’t come together. He started with the painted graphic that clearly draws your eye to a focal point. I do like the graphic but here’s my issue with painted taped walls. Don’t rely on tape and paint to make the room. It’s been done in many white rooms, lets shake it up. Brown and orange can go 70’s and I like the 70’s but but I’m not really enjoying the color pallet here. This is the white room designers! You have no clients, go bold, enough with the brown, bridge, oatmeal, please… I beg you…. Thats my plea for next season. So anyways the graphic brings your eye to a not so amazing focal point. Where I think Adam missed the mark was in his hand rendering. Everything was clearly drawn much bigger in scale in his rendering than he built it for the room. By the time he installed all his builds and realized it wasn’t working it was a bit to late. He didn’t give up but the room just looks like an afterthought, because it kinda was. The repurposed instruments were a good idea but it’s not reading on camera and I can’t really tell what it is. The graphic is symmetrical but the the visual weight of the accessories in the room is off, and makes the room feel lop sided. Good try Adam, you get an A for effort even though your room came in 4th.

Last we have Zeinab’s 60’s Indian Princess. She seemed to struggle the most collecting items from the salvage shop. But I want to know how she ended up with the same blah bridge walls and brown floor that Adam had. You have no limit to your color choices and we get boring brown… again. I do like her red orange spicy color choice. I like how she used the repurposed screens to give her sofa texture, although it doesn’t read so well on camera. The graphic is awesome, I wish it was more of a focal point. It’s dinky on the back wall with the round mirrors, and she said she wanted to go bold so she did it around a rectangular mirror, which really isn’t so bold. You have big blank walls, these need BIG items to fill them. Like Adam, again her room isn’t balanced and feels “piecey.” I do like the coffee table with the brass base, it’s pretty, and I like the fact I can feel her design aesthetic in the design. I just wish it was bigger and bolder. Zeinab came in 3rd.

Can’t wait for next weeks episode. I think it’s the candy episode, which sounds SWEET to me. Let’s hope we get colorful candies and not color pallets inspired by chocolate and caramel.




White Room Challenge… the flower challenge

Ok there are spoiler alerts for those who have not watched the episode. Anyways lets get started. I’m kinda excited to be writing my first review…

The Flower challenge. So we had four designers. Carissa Marson, Matthew Bees, Saadia Kibriya, and David Font. I can’t imagine how they are feeling after viewing their episode. Basically you go though this crazy design process and then you go home to go about your normal life like nothing happened, only to relive the experience again on television… while everyone watches. AND you get the hear for the first time what was said about you while you weren’t listening… it’s nuts! So first off congrats designers you made one great premier episode.

So lets see. First impressions of the designers. Carissa, the feisty blonde. She was confident which is important in a challenge like this. Matthew Bees, the sweet southern boy. He’s deaf and I didn’t even notice until I watched the show the second time. Saadia Kibriya, did she mention she was the youngest??? Oh she did quite a few times, she went for the underdog card. Finally there’s David Font, the landscape  architect who researched and prepared for this show. I have to say David was smart, all the designers knew they were going to be on White Room Challenge, preparation is key. Get inspired, gather tons of ideas that way when challenges are thrown at you, you have ideas and inspiration to pull from.

Now onto the rooms… My one main reaction to this episode was… this was the flower challenge… where’s the color?? When I think flowers the first thing to come to mind is greens and hot pink. I’m sad I felt like most rooms were lacking color…

Carissa’s bisto. Ok there are things I like and things I don’t like. Lets start with the things I like. She went for a focal point on the back wall. As far as TV is concerned you need that bold focal point so the eye has somewhere to go to. The flower frames are nice I’m just not liking the flowers in the frames. It’s like, “hey I just made an awesome frame to frame some not so awesome art.” She used two colors on the side walls an oatmeal and yellow. I feel like the oatmeal is being lost on camera. David Bromstad liked the colors, I actually feel they look too muted. Yes the purples, greens and yellows go nicely together but it’s reading like “oatmeal” to me. Overall she used the flowers the best. She did do the build on the back wall but the main design was done with flowers so good job tacking the challenge head on. Cleaned up, and maybe swapping out the colors out for some something more vibrant and bold I think this room could have been a home run. A tip for Carissa is a glue gun can be your friend. She was making an awesome flower dome which the flowers didn’t stick to whatever glue she was using… use a glue gun whenever possible. It drys fast and would have make those cute domes successful. Carissa takes home runner-up.

Matthew, sweet southern Matthew. He made a keeping room. I can’t say I knew exactly what a keeping room was.. so I googled it. It’s an area just off the kitchen of a home. Um, yeah so I still don’t know exactly what a keeping room is but onto the design. He said he wanted his room to be understated. That is where he clearly missed the mark… this is the flower challenge. Flowers make people happy, add softness and color to a room. When I think flowers I don’t think understated. The sofa and green chairs are throw aways to me. He didn’t do much to them and they do nothing for me in the room. Wall color is blah, floor is blah. Coffee table, now this I love. It’s gold with pretty flowers on top. Here is where his love of simple lines played nicely with the flowers. The ivy sconces are AMAZING. I love these and I have to say I’m not a fan of ivy… but I love it here. Those scones were his home run, it’s unfortunate the rest of his room struck out. Matthew takes 3rd place. Thats ok Matthew I think you just gained a ton of fans after this show, your adorable.

Saadia, the youngest. She mentioned she’s only 26. (BTW I was 28 when I filmed my episode I really don’t think it’s that young) So Saadia, don’t count yourself out due to age. I feel like I loved her original ideas, the colors were fresh, the chevrons were current, but unfortunality none of those ideas come together as a cohesive design and she kinda gave up. I do have to say I found my hot pink!!! Thank you Saadia. I wish she would have finished the back focal chevron wall. I wish the wall to the right was grey not “teal”…she called it teal it reads turquoise to me. The room looks lopsided. The sofa is clearly a focal point but I don’t like that it’s placed off to the left. The pretty mirror I like, but it’s hung too high. I feel like I’m looking across this room and not into it. I want to be pulled into a the space, not feel like I’m glancing across it. Saadia THANK YOU FOR USING A GLUE GUN. You get extra points for that. Be smart with the tools given to you and you will succeed (just don’t go overboard and glue your rug to the table) I give Saadia the award for the most potential, however the concept never developed and Saadia takes 4th.

Last we have David. He’s room is coo-coo crazy color and it’s a breath of fresh air after the understated and the oatmeal. This is more what I want to see when I think of flowers. The lines on the wall draw my eye to the big wood flower. The colors are playful… thank you for going bold with the colors David. I loved the coffee table idea, it reminded me of when we were kids and would melt flowers in-between wax paper and hang them in the window. (we all did that , right) My only issue with the coffee table is it’s horizontal and we can’t see it. He also repurposed the sofa in a really neat way, but we can’t see that either. I would have loved to see the flowers pressed in acrylic hung on the wall or vertical somehow so we could have appreciated it more. The arrangement on the left is hideous and David even said so himself. It’s ok ugly happens, normally in the real world we can remove or edit it. David wins and I 100% agree.

Watching this makes me more excited and nervous for the episode I’m on. What kinda music is going to be played while I’m working… am I gonna get the mean person music… the ditzy music… the crazy music… ahhhhh who knows. Can’t wait for next weeks episode… and remember May 15th… it’s my turn to be judged 🙂



HGTV White Room Challenge premiers tonight

I’m super excited to watch the new show on HGTV, White Room Challenge. The premier episode that airs tonight, the designers are designing their white space with over 1500 flowers. I love me some flowers, so I can’t wait to see what they come up with. I’ll be posting a review of my opinion of the designers spaces after the episode airs.

And don’t forget the episode I’m on is on May 15th, but the deal is you gotta watch the entire series… (but your allowed to love my episode more)

Well I gotta go bake some cupcakes for a cupcake order… I’m thinking a chocolate cherry sangria flavor… so I’ll post that recipe as well!



HGTV White Room Challenge

Ahhhh so excited for this new show on HGTV. I have to admit, the White Room episode of Design Star is my favorite episode of the series. Take a designer out of their element, give them an insane challenge and see what they come up with. I honestly can say this is where you can see people’s true creative talent. So naturally I am super excited about the new spin-off White Room Challenge. However I may be kind of biased because I am happy to announce I am actually one of the contestants on the new series.

I’m not going to be giving details about my episode because you gotta watch it first. Then I’ll post about my experience. All I am going to say is each episode of White Room Challenge has a different twist. Don’t think you can predict what these twists are going to be. I was slightly speechless when I found out  ours (which is hard for me because I always have something to say) so prepare your DVR’s and Tivo’s, request schedule changes at work to get your Tuesday’s off, hire babysitters and get ready to watch!! (It looks like my episode is airing May 15th but I’ll let you know if anything changes)

Also, who doesn’t love the host David Bromstad? As the pioneer success story of the White Room Challenge from Season 1 of Design Star and season winner, it is that much more fitting.


So in preparation for this new series I wanted to post a few of my favorite past White Rooms. In no particular order here we go…

Ok I sorta lied. This is actually my favorite white room of all time! Season 2 of Design Star, Todd Davis’s (host of Room Crashers) tidal wave room. They shopped at the dollar store for this episode. There is nothing I would change about this room, I find it pretty genius. I actually didn’t watch this Design Star series, but the good news is if you didn’t either all the episodes are online on HGTV.

Here is Dan Vickery from Design Star season 4 grocery store episode. This was the first season of Design Star I religiously watched every episode. He truly had a vision when he created this masterpiece. The only things I’m not a huge fan of are the three pieces of art on the left wall. They don’t seem necessary, and those little tables on an angle… ehhhh not so much.

Design Star season 4 Nathan Galui’s milk room. The room doesn’t have that pop on camera that Dan’s room did, but talk about creativity. The walls are milk dripped down to create those stripes and the chandelier is orange slices. Not much I would change about this room, maybe try to bring the chandelier down into the frame so it creates more of a focal point. And maybe make the colors seem more intentional. I see orange  and black and then the blue is slightly jarring and brings my attention away from the chandelier. The chandelier should be the wow, not the blue table. I’m being slightly critical but maybe that is because I love this room and I want it to read better on camera.

On to Michael Moeller’s room from Design Star season 5. They had to design for a fellow contestant and shop an Asian Market. Michael designed for Emily Henderson who won season 5, and who I actually worked for on her show season 1 & 2. It’s harder for me to judge these rooms because this season had a different production company and the contestants didn’t look like they were given as much time as past contestants. It’s hard to compare a room created in 5 hours to a room created in 10 or 15. You should be able to shop anywhere and still create amazingness, but time is necessary. Michael’s room looked pretty to me and was my favorite of the seasons.

On to Mark Diaz season 6. This was the first time I remember designers being told to be conceptual. The White Room is a “set” and doesn’t have to function as a room. Being conceptual and less functional lends to more options to be creative. So Mark tuned his futon into an airplane. They shopped a restaurant supply store. His walls win it for me. He clearly did what Dan Vickery did and create a large focal point on the back wall which reads so well on camera.

Here’s Tyler Wisler’s season 6 glowing lounge chair. He basically took everything out of his room and created a light up chair out of plastic bottles. Super daring and creative. He also is a skilled painter as well.

And finally David Bromstad’s season 1 pet store creation. He was the first to experience this challenge and had no way to prepare for it. So he definaltly set the bar high.

I’ll be doing a critique of each new episode of White Room Challenge after it airs. I feel like now that I got to be one of the few to share this insane experience my feedback will be pretty fair. I can’t wait to see the other contestants and what their challenges were. Follow me on twitter as well @rebeccazajac. I’m learning about the tweeting process but it seems an awesome way to get feedback on the show!