Episode 10 first look

Jonte and Keyunda were kinda  a different scenario.  She was the one that submitted him, but she didn’t live there yet, but she is going to as soon as he proposes (which he will, they were so cute together) but it was tricky.  I kinda think i shot myself in the foot showing him his dream room first, then taking some of it away.  So lets talk first look:  (sorry i don’t have good photos, these are just set photos).

Dude.  Dark, leather, wood, and kinda designery.  When he walked in he just kept saying ‘this is player, this is player’ over and over.  It was pretty awesome.  He loved it.  And i have to say that his sofa really did start to look cool in a way.  It has that overstuffed later 70’s thing happening that when styled right, looks interesting.  So i painted the walls a darkish grey, painted out the mouldings black (and the beams) and added wooden blinds.

I painted out the already painted out brick to be dark.  And the fireplace looked much better, although the stripes were eh.  They were fine, but i’m just not the biggest accent wall fan (unless its a perfect niche) so the second i saw them up i was like, ‘yep, thats not staying’.

Before room.  I remember thinking that for the first look he’ll like it, but not see enough of his future in it, or its over the top masculine, etc.  But he just loved it. So basically i gave him his dream room and then changed it.  Kinda mean.  This is why sometimes the formula of the show is hard for me to navigate.  (you’ll be happy to know that this has changed for season two, see below).


The coffee table i bought from Morgan at The Brick House (who is having a sale in LA on May 15th by the way, i’m so excited).  She sold it to me for $100.  The rug is from Overstock.com and for an 8×10 i think it was under $400 so not bad at all.  The bar in the corner was $80 from the Long Beach Flea, the Wassily chairs were rented from a prop house but normally run 3-$500 depending on how good of shape they are in.  I was shocked he didn’t like them, they are such dude chairs.  But i was glad because they were rentals.

The white lamp is ikea (and yes it was in the first look for the rustic mantique episode), the standing lamp is blueprint, the mid-century side table was a flea market find a while ago  (i think i bought it for Ian’s house, actually).   The huge photographs are from Etsy by an artist named Debbie Carlos.  I totally love them, but didn’t love how they were framed (by our team).  I wish the frame was thinner and deeper.  I go to a wholesale framer because they are bloody cheap (that was $100 to frame) but they also don’t have the best choices.  Again, i liked it, but if it was for me i would have framed it differently.  Basically her photos are large scale arial or nature photos and then blown up so they become really abstract.  i actually think that i should have only used one, it would have made it more special.  They were $50 and $65 each.

That leather chair is incredible.  Rosewood and soft grey worn leather. Unbelievably comfortable.  And 100% amazing.  It was hard to give up, and i was surprised they loved it so much.  I got it at the Rose Bowl for $400 i think.  THe lamp next to it is Room and Board and the Cloche/dome on the bar is restoration hardware.

Ready for some bad pics? here are you taken at 10pm by my iphone.  Nothing irritates me more than posting bad pictures, but its all i got, so sorry:

told you.  So that amazing painting back there is from TINI and i need to get the artist info on it.  It was $285 and i loved it.  Black and white with resin poured on top.  The chrome console table was from the Rose Bowl for $200, the black lamp is from Room and Board and i think it was on sale for $200, which is totally overpriced in my opinion (originally it is like over $300 or so).  The black plane is from PCC flea market for $60.

Man.  This photo is making me mad.  Whatever. That shelving unit (which i’ll post tomorrow with the look 2 photos) was pretty rad. From the Rose bowl $400 i think and huge, totally modular, teak, 70’s. They both loved it.

I think that’s it for first look.  How do you guys feel about only have one final look for season two? I’m not going to lie, i think its going to be totally great.  I’ve shot two episodes like it so far and they have turned out really really great.  No more going over the top in a bad way, no more people being kinda disappointed for first look.  Everybody is happy because they see themselves in the final look, together.  For first season you’ll see a lot of ‘oh my god’s’ for first look and then ‘sighs of relief’ for second.  And everybody has turned out happy, truly.  But a sigh of relief isn’t exactly what i’m going for, but since they have already been through the process, the excitement is a bit diffused – they know what to expect and are a bit self-consious.  Whereas so far the last two reveals have been totally amazing.  Jumping up and down and even some happy tears, and everybody has been equally happy – men and women.  I love showing how a room can look so different, but yes, sometimes i  have struggled with how to make them happy for both looks AND show you guys something new and exciting.  This way we build style layer by layer but to one perfect room that is distinctly them, instead of two that have to look different, but still good….it was hard.

What do you think?

OH and the main reason it was done was to free up some time for more tips and secrets.  So many styling tips get cut because of time (shooting the first look beauties and the first look reveal/reaction) so now there is a lot more styling bookshelves, flower arranging, styling coffee tables, mantles, mixing patterns, etc. etc.  Its way more style oriented.  I stand behind the decision 10,000%.

Do you?



  1. I think that is such a good change for the second season. It's kind of a running joke between my husband and I about your painter: how many times will he have to repaint these walls? :) Definitely a confusing aspect of the show, since it doesn't show a realistic decorating process either.

    More tips and style ideas is a huge improvement. Looking forward to it!

  2. Nooooo! The two looks are going away?! Sniff. I'll miss them so much.

    But, it does open up more time for you to show off your stuff. So I will learn to deal with it.

  3. So excited about the new format – it sounds like a great idea! I have enjoyed the two looks, but from what you say it sounds like this is a good move.

    A x

  4. vicky

    Check the comment on the leather chair above…did you mean to say that?

    And I will love whatever you do, because I love styling…who knew there was such a thing?

  5. Agreed. I thought it was a really interesting way to highlight each person's style as individuals, but I think your plans for the second season will be even better! Diffused excitement/relief…fun..and sometimes funny, but can't wait for Chapter 2!

  6. amyks

    I love this current format, but given the fact that you only have a half hour to get it all out there, I think the change will be good. I think your show is great, your personality really shines through and so does your former career as a a "Stylist"… one of my favorite parts of the show is how you accessorize and make the the room so unique. I love all the sculptures and bits that you put around the room. It is the "stuff" that makes a house a home. As for the ending of this show, I was so hoping Jonte was going to propose. Cheesy, I know :)

  7. I think the change will be good. It's felt a bit awkward, all the changing and rearranging. Good decision!

  8. Kate

    I definitely agree with the change given the limitations of the half hour format. We'll be looking forward to it!

  9. Laura

    I would absolutely be with you 10,000% going to only one final reveal with more from you on the styling aspect. I'd like to know how the two styles come together in the real world where you don't get do-overs painting a whole room. And I think it would be interesting to see how you decide where to put accessories etc.

    Definitely excited about season two!

  10. I love seeing two looks, but if you think it is for the best, I also support your decision 10,000%. As long as it is possible to still get to see how to blend two very different styles, which is one of the main things I love about the show.

    Seeing how to style shelves in more detail and the other things you mentioned would be awesome too!

  11. Paul

    I love the two looks. I really like seeing how the same room can look "HGTV great" in two very different ways even with an overlap in decor items. Whereas the homeowners probably didn't care for their chains being yanked on look 1 I personally thought it made great television.

  12. I agree! The thing I love most about your show is that I actually learn things by watching it! I love all of your tips! My favorite from this past show was how to combine masculine and feminine in one piece. love! So more of this is a definite yes for me!

  13. Ann

    That sounds like a great idea! I loved the two reveals-or was it more like three, for Ian's house when you had a whole hour. But in thirty minutes, it does seem like a little too much. Are you going to tell us tomorrow where the gray couch in your mood board comes from? I'm hoping it's cheaper than the $4000 one I want desperately from DWR! Love the show! And wish it was an hour long!

  14. Tory

    I wish HGTV didn't spend so much time recapping before and after commercials. It seems like we only end up getting 10 minutes of your awesome show! I would love to see more tip and tricks presented in the show so if that means moving to a single look I'm all for it. I always find myself wishing for more, more, more on look 2 anyway.

  15. Jensy

    I think that for your thirty minute show it makes perfect sense to just have one reveal. I would like to know more secrets and tips and it just seems there is never enough time. 10000% percent on board!

  16. If it means more actual tips and secrets, I'm 100% behind the change. The reveals are fabulous, but the tricks are more helpful!

  17. mudrick

    Yes, one reveal and more tips! I especially liked the tip on adding the yellow accessories around the room. I have a hard time incorporating a pop of color so it makes sense but doesn't go overboard.

  18. Rae

    I pine for that leather chair. The changes to season two sound great. I am all for more Emily style secrets! In fact, changing the show to a full hour would be fantastic. I would especially like to see more footage of you shopping at flea markets, vintage stores, etc. and explaining how you spot gems in the midst of all that stuff!

  19. I am all in for more tips and secrets! Will you still do a dual style diagnostic and then combine the two? Did you already say that? Just happy knowing that there's a season two. Hooray for you, Emily!

  20. My gut reaction was "bummer" to the idea of not having two looks, but if it means we get more tips and more on your thought process etc that actually sounds awesome to me!

  21. I've enjoyed this format, but I'll take your word for it that the season two will be even better. I am definitely excited to get more of your insights!

    I'm also hoping you might sometimes do other rooms, like bedrooms. Is that a possibility?

    And a question about this episode (which I really liked, and I thought the woman had good style and articulated it well… I think she must follow design blogs…): Can you paint trim an unusual color in one room and not carry it through the rest of the house? I'm guessing it's not a big deal, but I've really only ever seen houses that either have all wood trim everywhere or all white trim everywhere. There are times that I think a more interesting trim color could work really well in a room, but it wouldn't work in the rest of the house. Is it safe to assume this isn't something to worry about? (I'm referring to homes with actual rooms, of course, not an open floor plan.) Thanks for sharing your wisdom!

  22. I think only having one look is going to be much better for all those reasons you mentioned. I would be so happy to see more styling tips too. I think those are things most people struggle with and after all, the show is called secrets from a stylist so you should share more secrets!

  23. Hi Emily!

    I'm a HUGE fan of your show and just wanted to comment about the new format. Its funny because the format is something that my husband and I used to rave about "ya know, Emily Henderson really takes the ego out of the design show format"… I felt like by allowing for feedback, showing it twice, and making changes you involved the homeowner more input than EVER. However, its really funny that you posted about this amongst this episode's blogpost because it was during this episode that I blurted out "why do they never seem as excited as I want them to be? This sh*t is awesome!!!" Soooo yeah, I think you are point on with the change. It was totally interesting and worth it for the first season, but I'm psyched to start to see people jumping up and down about your designs (so worthy of that) especially the awesome one of a kind vintage/flea market finds that I feel no other show is including! Me GUSTA!

    Your fan,

  24. Of course we're with you! Can't wait!!! I liked feeling like I got two episodes in one but it will be awesome to see more of the process and there will be more time for secret sharing! Woop woop!! Format change couldn't have happened at a better time ;)

    Looking forward to season 2 while still enjoying every moment of season 1!!!

  25. Margarita


    So I was kinda bummed too when I read that you were going away from the two looks format, but I do like the idea of hearing more of your tips and tricks and seeing more styling. Question for you: I saw on the HGTV website a photo of the GLEE co-creator's pad. Is this an episode that aired or just a photo feature on the website? Anywho back to the topic at hand, excited to see how the new format turns out!

  26. diane

    I am really happy that you stopped showing the final product in the intro – now that you have a wealth of rooms to showcase your talents instead! I also liked that the two of the shows were not so much about "his" and "her" style – but about the combination of their style and the house (Spanish Mediterranean) or their style and the needs of a family with kids. I think so long as you continue to show how the final look "builds" the show will continue to be awesome. I i also felt bad about the painter – so it would be nice to only have that done once!

  27. Good decision. More time for tips. Are you changing the style diagnostic at all? ~Tracy

  28. EvelynB

    I stand behind your decision to move to just one look, leaving more time for styling tips, because that's the part I like best. Definitely continue to talk about how this item is from one person's aesthetic, and how it works with this other item that is the other person's aesthetic. In other words, how to mix aesthetics successfully. It's really helpful. Keep up the great work!

  29. I think either way you will rock it! I like seeing the room styled two ways, but I'm glad to see one amazing final room and get some styling tips too! I am just happy there will be a Season Two!

  30. Amanda

    I Absolutely think the change in format will improve the show dramatically. I've enjoyed it so far, but the 2 look format can get cumbersome and awkward. Good decision.

  31. Yes! I'm so with you. Girl, you could pull some retro-Trading Spaces crap, and I'd be like "oh, yea, I see where she was going with that."

    As much as I love your show, and love where you're coming from (and save the DVRs for-ev-uh), you're totally right about the reaction. But again, whatever you'll go, I'll follow! You're such a breath of fresh air in the HGTV lineup, and have so totally inspired me. As I save up cash, I have my favorite dresses/shirts hanging in my room to remind me where "the look" is headed.

    Keep it up girlfriend, can't wait for Season 2!!

  32. I agree that the re-caps take up too much valuable airtime when I am already wishing the show was an hour long indulgence. The multiple layered looks rocked for the Ian special, but the single layer look was fantastic for Tom when you were on Design Star… The styling process, the tips, the techniques, the different approach that you have compared to most of what is on TV is what makes your show so great and unique. I say go for it!

  33. Kristen

    Hi Emily!

    I think this is my first time commenting, but I absolutely LOVE your show & blog! Your style is just so great, and I was totally rooting for you from the beginning on Design Star (well, you and cute Dan) :)

    Anyway, I'm really happy to hear that you're scaling down to one look & reveal for the Season 2… while it's awesome getting to see 2 full transformations, the second look always ends up being the better look anyway :) Plus, truth be told, the show's format right now does seem a bit hurried… I remember my initial reaction after the first episode (well, besides how awesome it was!) was that for the amount of work & content you covered, it should have easily been an hour long show. So, I'm totally excited that we'll be seeing more of the styling & design process with the new format – not to mention, I bet you're excited that you won't have to run around like a crazy person, doing basically double the work for each client!!! When you think about it, you had to do double the design work, double the shopping, double the installation, and double the styling of a normal show. It makes my brain hurt just thinking about it, but you made it look easy – you're such a rockstar!

    Wow, didn't mean for this comment to turn into a novel, but just wanted to say I'm a huge fan, and keep up the GREAT work!!

    - Kristen

  34. LadyLara

    Loved the old format but the new one sounds even better. Can't wait!

  35. Gretchen

    Looking forward to the new format. Hoping the extra time will allow for more design "secrets" from you!

  36. Darcy

    Yes, I completely agree! While I have loved the current format to pieces (and your show in general just rocks my world-HGTV is so lucky to have you), I think freeing up more time to show stying tips is SOOOO awesome. I want as many tricks and tips and you can give us! Besides, it must be a lot of work for you to pull off two completely different looks, especially for stuff that just gets changed. I think showing the layering process with only one final reveal will be killer. And the fact that you're going to be showing more stying secrets makes me even more excited to watch…..because 'Secrets From a Stylist" should be all about spilling your styling secrets, right? Yay! Can't wait. In the meantime I am loving all the current episodes and even rewatch them online! Keep em coming! And I have to say that you are so funny and charming on camera….just as lovely and likeable on screen as you are on here!!!!

  37. melanie

    I am a huge fan of the show and your work Emily and think the new format will be an improvement. Though it was fun to see you essentially style two looks for a room, viewers will most certainly be more pleased by having more of your tips and perspective on your selections and how they are styled. Looking forward to MANY more episodes!

  38. I know that was the gimmick of the show…to style it twice and show how different it could be and bring in each person's personality. But it's twice the work and yes…then we miss out on little details. So although I think it was nice to try doing it differently and especially since you only have 30 minutes….I'd rather see you build one room with each person's influence and have one big reveal. I've thought al along…I didn't know how you were going to keep this up….just way too much work for not a big pay off. I love the show!

  39. QC

    I like the change I think it'll be great! I live in chelsea in nyc and walked into amazing store the other day (but very over priced), its called Mantiques Modern (mantiquesmodern.com) it reminded me of your show.

  40. Erin

    I think they need to make your show in hour long so we can see it all but since they are keeping it at 30 min I think the new changes will be great :) It will be nice to see more of your styling and gain even more amazing tips from you.

  41. YES YES YES YES YES YES YES!!!!! I am SO EXCITED that you'll only be doing one look for the second season – YES!!! One of the coolest things about you is that not only are you a designer, but you are also a stylist – and the show is called "Secrets From A Stylist" so YES!! (uhm, I guess you get the idea.)

  42. Callie


    Your show is SO refreshingly REFRESHING! (if that makes any sense?!!) Just love it, but you make it! I'm looking forward to the new format, primarily because I think you're going to wear yourself out really fast if keep up the current pace of coming up with double looks! Trust me, I love it all, but I care about your sanity even more! :-)

    Thanks for taking time to write in your blog in your hectic schedule… it's fun to feel included on behind the scenes info…I appreciate how down to earth you are and accessible to us folks at home. :-) I've never commented on a sight before….your show is just SO enjoyable and so much fun I want to branch out and talk about it! Also noticed the new set for your studio, looks great…the blue walls really make your eyes and hair pop! :-) The only question is how long do we have to wait for season 2, I don't want season 1 to end!! :-)

    Thanks! Keep up the great work!

    p.s. I also have to say that I enjoy seeing what you're wearing as much as the rooms…. LOVE your taste!

  43. hwar

    I think your decision to move to one look is wise. While I like the two-looks format and it's really fun to watch, I think if it carried on beyond the first season it might get formulaic and less interesting (for you to make or for us to watch). Plus, yeah, I want more styling ideas/tips! And you are so good at putting those final looks together, you have to pull your punches on look one, and what designer wants to do that?

  44. Debra

    Love the idea of just one final look and more styling tips. I think there will be a better build up to the reveal that way. Love your personality and sense of humor Emily and you were rocking the beret on the last episode.

  45. Katie

    I love your show and can't wait for season two. I am excited about learning more about one look rather than two. I can't wait to own a big beautiful house and have you style a room.

  46. Vanessa

    I think doing only one final look is a great idea. I love the show, but I honestly felt that there was a lot of waste involved in having two looks. Maybe it's the economy or something, but it rubbed me the tiniest bit the wrong way to see all that paint and labor wasted. It was fun, but I think the new idea is GREAT!

  47. Candida

    Nooooooooo! Your show is the best thing on HGTV, don't mess with perfection. If anything, they should expand you to an hour so you can do three looks. :)

  48. Clearly the general consensus is whatever you do, we will tune in and love it. I know I do!
    Do you know anything more about the awesome leather chair and ottoman you scored from the flea?
    I just snatched up a very similar set from craigslist for $125 and am looking for a backstory.
    Thanks for the inspiration!

  49. Totally! Although I would still watch the second season if you kept the same formula, of course, I think the idea of one reveal is golden. I'm excited to hear more styling tips and think less about wasted paint ;-).

  50. Julie

    I'm so glad you're doing just one reveal for the next season. I would much rather have more style tips, and I just didn't like the set-up of "Eh", and then "Whew, that looks so much better". Look forward to watching Season 2. You're very fun to watch, and I really like that you teach us while keeping it fun.

  51. Emily,

    What color did you use to paint the walls? That dark purple-ish gray is really pretty.

  52. Callie

    I love the show and am really looking forward to the new format. I hope you'll also consider featuring some singles on the show, in addition to couples. I'd be really interested in seeing you work with one person to identify their personal style, rather than just merging two styles.

  53. Maggie O

    AAAA! I just saw your show for the first time! I am so happy! You are made for TV! Seriously, really fun stuff. Have to say I liked the more masculine room better, but I still learned something. Love the step by step layering explanations. Plus, you are just adorable and smart with your comments, instincts, ideas. (Oh, and, you and your hat? Yes!) Excellent design show.

  54. Jackson

    your show just needs to be an hour long.

  55. Karen

    On the photo you were annoyed with …. when you have a reflective surface and you're using a flash, you gotta use an angle. Don't shoot so straight on. The flash will be awful and ruin things if you do. So stand at more of an angle to your reflective surface, not straight in front of it. (same goes for art in a museum/animals at the zoo behind glass/whatever). :)

  56. Stephanie

    Fo shizzle dizzle! I love that you are changing the format of the show to just one look! I thoroughly enjoyed having the suspense of the two looks, but I cannot get enough of your tips and secrets.So, more time for that sounds great. OR….how about you just have an hour long show. eh eh? (elbow jab) done. thanks! can't wait.

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