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12 Martha Stewart wannabes from the corners of the country try to outstyle each other. The prize - a contract from CBS, guaranteed television appearances and the chance at stardom.
Recaps by Julie Suchard, GSNN
Host: Joan Lunden
Judges: Candace Bushnell, David Evangelista, Bobby Flay
Creator: Larry Bleidner, Eric Schotz, Bill Paolantonio,
EP: Eric Schotz, Bill Paolantonio,
Packager: LMNO Productions
Airs: Saturdays at 8:00pm ET on CBS
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"The Perfectly Remodeled
Bedroom" - February 12
Day 16 at The Estate:
Denise opens our episode by bitching to the camera about
how Dawn and Kimberly didn't seem to do much during
their last challenge. She and Kimberly seem to agree
that the diminished Team Artisan can beat the Crafty
Beavers with their attention to detail [Whatever that
means, although the judges seem to be harping on it].
Mitch is playing the piano and Amy is on the sofa when
Darlene enters the room. Mitch has apparently been
writing a song, so he begins to sing a "honky tonk" song
about Darlene - here's how it goes:
[With a thick Southern drawl]
Why do you do the things you do-oo?
[Absolutely fantastic, don't you think? Call the
Grammys now, please.]
He then turns the lyric writing over to Darlene, who
[In a surprisingly good singing voice,
although American Idol' doesn't have to worry]
Why are you so such a crazy bitch?
You make the flowers bright,
You keep us up all night,
and then Mitch, Amy, and Darlene all break up laughing.
[Actually, the third line was "Why do you do the things
you do-oo?"; however, both my husband and I were fully
expecting the bitch' line, because it would have
The teams convene in the kitchen with Joan Lunden, whose
hair is pulled back in such a tight bun that it is
almost giving her a faux face-lift, and who is sporting
a dull brown turtleneck with an identically-colored
jacket. [As the "Inconsiderate Cell-Phone Man" of movie
trailers says: "Unsavory!"] Joan begins, "Since this
competition has began, we have tested you in the Dining
Room, in the Kitchen, and even in the Outdoors. Now
it's time to test your skills in the Bedroom."
Actually, Joan said it's time to test their skills in
the Workshop, but they will be working on bedrooms
Basically, the design workshop both teams have been
using is located in a 19th century carriage house on the
estate, and they are going to have to do some remodeling
in the apartment above the workshop. Each team will
remodel one Bedroom and half of the Great Room, which
has been separated down the middle with gauzy curtains.
Team Artisan has to make its half into a Dining Room and
Fitness area, while the Beavers have to create a Home
Office and Media Center. Each team must create at least
one piece of original art, and each team must construct
a bed, including a headboard, from scratch. Both teams
will get an equal amount of hardware and lumber, and
they must use the workshop at the same time. The budget
is $15,000 per team, and they will have one hour to
procure their items from SEARS [complete with major
corporate plugging video shots and Joan's voice-over
stating how Sears is the best company in the history of
the universe]. The teams have 48 hours to complete the
challenge. Teams will be judged on creativity,
ingenuity, and overall craftsmanship. The individual
projects are to gift-wrap identical packages, without
using any wrapping paper.
Both teams scope out their rooms. While Heather
describes her vision of extending the built-in wall
units in the Media Room, Darlene looks on with a vacant
stare. Mitch and Amy continue debating where the bed
should go, when Darlene worries about how she is still
the newbie on the team. Denise reports that both Dawn
and Kimberly build homes with their husbands and
therefore understand blueprints, and that all three Team
Artisan members seem to agree on everything.
On the way to Sears [Where America Shops!], Kimberly
calls dibs on making the headboard. Dawn openly ponders
how difficult the Dining Room will be with all the high
ceilings and trusses in the Great Room; she states,
"It's gonna be a booger." [There's our crazy Dawn
again. Always good for a laugh.] Mitch praises
Darlene, but says that she gets a little hyper at times,
"kinda like a jumping bean. It just wears me out."
With 45 minutes to shop, Darlene becomes orgasmic about
a velvet comforter. [Apparently they don't have velvet
in Florida.] Mitch just shakes his head in disbelief.
Amy talks about how her team is going to use soft muted
colors. Hopefully the judges will like them [Wait,
where is the scary music. This is definitely some
Dawn and Kimberly look for "Mr. Sears Man." They find
him and he helps them get paint. Kimberly says that
Dawn has a lot of energy. Kimberly thought that she
would be the most "obnoxious Energizer Bunny" but Dawn
has her beat. [Dawn probably just took too much Ritalin
today] The girls head off to the exercise equipment
department, which is not in the softer side of Sears'.
They give themselves 30 seconds to decide on equipment,
choosing it on looks rather than whether or not they can
put it together. They chose a treadmill and a weight
center, like a Bowflex or something you might see on
television at 2:00 a.m. when you can't sleep.
Mitch wonders if the girls bought a DVD player and
tapes. The "girls" are methodically buying a computer,
DVD player, television and stereo system.
Crafty Beavers: Budget $15,000; actual amount spent
$14,731. Team Artisan: Budget $15,000; amount spent
$14,116. In another prominent product placement for
Sears, the camera lingers lovingly on Denise, Kimberly
and Dawn as they talk about what cute stuff Sears has.
Team Artisan starts by dusting baseboards and taping.
Denise talks about how the room needs to be taped off
and painted so that they can put on decorative finishes
the next day. Dawn and Kimberly rhapsodize about taping
techniques; Kimberly likes it long and somewhat crooked,
while Dawn likes it short and straight.
Darlene crumbles up tissue paper and glues it to the
wall to create a leathery finish [not unlike her face],
then it will be glazed and painted over when it dries
[much like her face].
Denise talks about how the medication finally kicked in
for Dawn and Kimberly, and they actually have energy and
are working for a change. Mitch worries about his wood
Kimberly and Dawn waste their time scraping old paint
off some doors. They talk as they scrape, mentioning
how stripping doors is like getting a sunburn and
peeling off large pieces of skin and other self-mutilatory
behaviors. [Gee, I guess that Ritalin dose might be a
bit TOO high.]
The cameraman, who has some strange toe fetish, lingers
on Heather's toes while Darlene talks to her. Darlene
is feeling insecure because she is the only person in
the group who doesn't know how to make furniture. She
is going to make sure that she does a really snazzy
Dawn and Kimberly spend quality time grooming
themselves, blow-drying their hair, and putting on
make-up. Denise is shown working, painting and
cleaning, while Dawn and Kimberly eat a leisurely
Mitch is shown taping the walls to make stripes in the
Denise tries to talk some sense into Dawn and Kimberly
about the doors. They want to spend more time scraping
paint off of them, but she wants to get some tangible
work done. They finally agree and apply cream colored
paint to the doors.
Amy says that she hopes that the judges appreciate their
original art. She set up flowers for a still-life
painting and each of the Crafty Beavers is going to
paint the flowers from their own perspective, using
their own painting technique.
With 20 hours left, Kimberly starts working on her
headboard. She cuts out plywood, then staples on
batting. The batting will be covered by silk, and
buttons will be applied through the holes that she
pre-drilled into the wood.
Mitch starts working on some ottomans. He asks Amy how
tall the ottomans should be, to which Amy replies, "they
should be ottoman height." Mitch, coming up to Amy
from the rear, [possibly the closest he has ever come to
a woman's behind ] responds to her quip by measuring her
bottom and saying that it's 36" wide. Mitch applies
leather to the ottomans and realizes that he has run out
of staples. Mitch asks Kimberly if she has any
staples. She says that she has a personal supply that
she brought with her from home. [I always travel with
boxes of extra staples, don't you?] Mitch offers to
barter with her; he will give her a piece of wood
molding if Kimberly will give him a box of staples.
Kimberly says that she would give him the staples
regardless, but takes the molding anyway. Kimberly
talks about how she may be up against Mitch, Heather and
Amy in the end, and it will work to her advantage if
they just think that she is a "little sorority girl from
Darlene is impressed with her faux finishing. She says,
"it's the type of thing that the judges will either love
or hate. They will say, Wow, that's the coolest thing
that I have ever seen' or It looks as though somebody
was sick.'" (My eleven-year-old says that the walls
look like poo.)
Dawn, Kimberly and Denise try to put together their
treadmill and weight machine. They can't manage to put
together the weight machine, so despite the fact that it
cost $1,000 they are opting not to use it.
Amy bitches about Mitch spending so much time on the
ottomans. Heather talks about how Mitch has built so
much of the furniture and he is using it as an
opportunity to shine for the judges, but she says, "It's
not all about the Mitch show." Amy and the other
Beavers start moving furniture up into the room.
Denise works on some decoupage for the room. Denise
says that she doesn't think that anyone is going to bed
that night and if they do she is going to "rip them out
At 1:30 am Darlene is working on her personal project.
She is spending vast amounts of time to sew bits of
fabric together to wrap her package. Mitch uses a
tuxedo shirt to wrap his box. He uses a tie and a
cummerbund to finish off the project. Heather sews
ribbon together to wrap her project. The effect is
truly hideous. She says that it looks like
basket-weaving, but I think that it looks like something
that my cat, who likes to eat ribbon, would vomit up.
Amy wraps her box in orange leather and hand paints the
inside of the box. Darlene discards her project and
wraps her box in cream linen that has a needlework
pattern on it instead. She asks Mitch what he thinks of
her new idea. Mitch says, "After all of that work, you
are going to do this instead?" Darlene says, "I do this
all of the time." Mitch asks, "Have you lost your
mind?" Darlene confirms what we all knew, with a nod of
her head, "Yeah." Darlene goes on to wrap the exterior
of her box in purple fringe and green ribbon; she better
hope that her team doesn't lose.
Kimberly says that she has wrapped a "bazillion" gifts
without using gift wrap. [I think that a bazillion is
somewhere between one and a googol.] She makes flowers
using fabric and a hot glue gun. She can't imagine
that anyone would have anything better. [She obviously
lacks imagination.] Her box is black and the ribbon is
grey, black and cream. And, as if it weren't obvious
enough, she includes a tag that says "A gift for you."
Kimberly wraps her box in brown velveteen and makes an
olive green bow. The whole effect represents the colors
you might find in a newborn's diaper a meconium
stool. Denise wraps her package in a striped cream,
burgundy, and pink with cream lace and hot pink ribbon.
She says that it will be totally tacky or it will
totally stand out.
Dawn is working on her radiator covers for the bedroom.
She says that it's "just for looks and not for function"
- a statement which probably totally defines her life.
She goes on to say that she doesn't see anything wrong
with "just looking cute." The people of Magnolia Texas
should be so proud that they hired this woman to teach
their first grade children.
Mitch is building a headboard, "more feminine" than
usual. He says that it's what the girls wanted, so it's
what he built. He says that the headboard looks like
"pudding in a cloud." He goes on to say it's the
"frilly-est, girly-est, sissy-est thing I've ever
done." Dawn, who is painting her "cute thing," tells
Denise that she thinks that the headboard is cute, but
says it reminds her of a coffin lid. Denish laughingly
Mitch is also worried about the molding he traded to
Kimberly. He hopes that Artisan doesn't end up winning
because of the headboard. He says that if it happens,
he is going to shoot himself in the foot. [Mitch,
Mitch, Mitch. If it happens, then haven't you already
shot yourself in the foot? Beware of metaphors you
don't properly understand.]
Day 18 - The teams are frantically running around
putting finishing touches on their projects. The teams
have a lot of tool messes to clean up. The teams have
to make beds and make sure that everything is where it
is supposed to be.
Crafty Beavers. Candace asks about the influence of the
home office. Mitch explains that the office is a catch
up office, where somebody might check e-mail. He slyly
indicates that he made the desk. Bobby asks about the
textured wall. Candace doesn't like it. She asks about
the ottomans and Mitch mentions the fact that he made
them too, but Amy painted the insides. Amy uses the
opportunity to say that Mitch is very overt about taking
credit for the things that he has done. In the
bedroom, David asks about the pictures and then asks
about the headboard. Mitch once again takes credit, but
mentions that the girls picked out the colors. Candace
asks if the team got the linens at Sears, then goes on
to say that she likes them a lot. [I wonder if Sears
signs her check.]
The judges join Team Artisan. Team Artisan's dining
room area is unimpressive. Candace wants to know why
there is only one piece of exercise equipment in the
exercise room. Dawn attempts to dodge the question by
pointing out that the team bought a plasma television
for the area, and somebody could watch DVDs while
getting a workout. David seems unimpressed. The judges
seemed impressed by Denise's decoupage and are amazed by
Kimberly's headboard. David seems bored by their whole
Joan, looking surprisingly normal, states the obvious -
that the judges have inspected the rooms and the
individual projects. Candace says that Team Artisan did
a lot of good things, more specifically she likes the
headboard that Kimberly did and wants one of her own.
[Cue shot of Mitch cringing.] David said that the color
was too subdued and he would have liked to have seen
more color. [I think that he is forgetting that the
teams had to buy their linens at Sears, which isn't
likely to carry the fancy Frette linens that he is
probably used to flopping his shaved head on.] Bobby
complains about the fitness room saying that it really
didn't have a lot of equipment. Kimberly kisses his ass
and agrees with him.
Candace says that the Crafty Beavers did a lot of
interesting things. She likes the striped walls in the
bedroom and the ottomans, particularly the fact that
they could be used for storage. Bobby goes on to say
that he didn't think that there was enough color in
their space. Bobby says that he Beaver headboard was
too gender-specific. Candace asks why there were no
shades in the room. In an obvious desperate gesture,
Darlene says that the team put little eye-shades in the
nightstand to keep out the light. Bobby asks if they
are really there and Darlene says "no" while everyone
The Verdict - David says that remodeling is a difficult
job, both teams did a great job, but the judges liked
the Crafty Beavers project better. Team Artisan's
individual projects are looked at by the judges.
Candace says that Kimberly's project looks like
something you would give out at a funeral. David likes
Dawn's project because it's simple. Candace says that
Denise's project isn't creative and David says that it's
juvenile. It's no surprise that Kimberly and Denise go
to the rock garden. Dawn will have to chose who
leaves. Hmmm, who will Dawn pick: her friend Kimberly
Mitch tells Denise that he and the other Crafty Beavers
want her to keep Denise. Mitch says that Dawn should
play with her head and not her heart. Dawn says that
she is not a strategizer and she is in a really tough
At the Rock Garden, Denise says that she knows Kimberly
and Dawn have a really tight bond, but says that she and
Dawn are alike because they are tireless and don't
always pick the "glamorous projects." Kimberly says
through tears that she doesn't need to tell Dawn how
important she is to her. She says that she wants
nothing more than to go head-to-head with Dawn in the
Dawn says that the person she is picking to get booted
is truly amazing and unbelievably talented, but she
hasn't known this person as long. So, she is picking
[Gasp! Feigned surprise] Denise to go home, as a smug
Kimberly looks on. Joan reminds Kimberly and Dawn that
there are only six more people left and the judges are
going to be even more critical.
Denise says that she is disappointed by her loss. She
wanted to do something with her skills [Yeah skill] and
she had her art director life and now she stays home
with her kids. She says that it's important to stay
home with your kids and cook and clean and floral
arrange and candle make and use a glue gun. [If this
sounds like a rationalization, it's probably because it
IS a rationalization.] Denise says that the show was a
great way to show off her talents and she has had a
Cut to a scene of Kimberly and Dawn walking inside the
estate. Kimberly says "And you know what's going to
happen now. The Crafty Beavers are going to be all over
us like white on rice." Dawn replies, "Screw 'em." [I
am sure that the parents of the first graders she
teaches are so happy right now.] "But we have got to
Here's a link to the Gift Packaging that ended up
with Denise getting the boot.
Next week: Team switches force people to change
strategies. Teams face off in an estate sale
challenge. Tensions build between Kimberly and Mitch.