Home Makeover Shows vs. Real Life Interior Design


We’ve all seen the jaw-dropping transformations on TV. The family leaves. The smiling crews work their magic. The family comes home to an unbelievably dreamy space, tears of joy + the start of a new, exciting chapter in their lives.

That beautiful picture of over-the-moon joy at the end? That part is true to life. We’ve seen it ourselves! ;)

But the steps it takes to get there aren’t shown, so you’re not seeing the full story!

With home renovation and design shows, you get a big, luscious scoop of entertainment but only a little bit of reality sprinkled on top.

I’m not complaining — I get giddy about a great Before + After, too — but when it comes to realistic expectations for your design project, it’s up to us to spill the juicy details!


Timeline: Not Quite So Fairy Tale (But We’ll Still Sweep You Off Your Feet)

Wouldn’t it be lovely to leave for a deliciously warm weekend getaway, only to return home to your new, drool-worthy kitchen??

Sign me up for that fairy tale in a heartbeat!

Yes, we are all-in, obsessed with making your home the guilty pleasure you dream of, but designers are real people, too! Unlike reality shows, we don’t spend the final Cinderella Hour making design wishes come true under the stars -- we save that for the daytime!

Reality: Your timeline is determined by your project’s scope (more on that next), contractor availability + sometimes whether you have your heart set on any backordered products… though we can usually find you equally, if not more fabulous alternatives. We’ll discuss it all with you during our initial phone pow-wow.


Scope: The Balancing Act We Make Look Easy

Another nuance reality shows keep hush about is the glorious but ‘holy-chic’ amount of detail involved in a design project.

Realizing our goal is to create a sense of continuity throughout your home, every design decision affects several other parts of the room (in other words, the “scope” of your project). Looking at the little pieces and the big picture is something we do on the daily…

...but it’s not something you usually see on reality shows. They make what appears to be a “simple decision” before moving on to the next! Not so simple, my friends. Not. So. Simple.

Reality: When it comes to the overall scope of your project, there’s more than meets the eye!

But of course, we’ll discuss it all with you during our initial phone pow-wow. ;).


Budget: If We Could Shower You with Freebies, We Would!

I get such a satisfying, belly-laugh out of the project “budgets” they list on reality shows. Let me tell you the secret about those low, low digits. That is, if you haven’t heard yet.

Lean in close… a little closer…

Did you know most, if not all, of the products + services on design shows are donated! I know, can you believe it?

Although we wish we could shower you with an endless stream of freebies for your home, reality is a teensy-bit less fantasy. But don’t worry, there’s still a sweet, silver lining... since we aren’t obligated to use any donated products, that means your swoon-worthy space is 100% you.

Reality: MANY factors go into creating a design budget, including scope, aesthetic, longevity + a bajillion other good things. It’s worth doing a little research into any products or materials you already have your heart set on. Otherwise, we’ll discuss it all during that fabulous phone pow-wow I mentioned earlier!

Well, the secrets are out. (+ hopefully, I didn’t completely ruin Fixer Upper for you!) Though your design project will be a little different in real life, we promise it’ll be even more magical — because it’s yours.

Heart-tingling, high-fiving, hot-dayyyum-is-this-real-life moments? Absolutely real.

— Sherri



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