Kayla Kitts

Contributor to HGTVersus

Aug 10

Ask the Producer: Dream Kitchen Challenge

Loren Ruch With Paula Deen

Each week, we ask Design Star producer Loren Ruch your most-asked behind-the-scenes questions. This week, Loren shares the funniest moments from the shoot with guest judge Paula Deen. Plus, what really happens during the judges’ deliberation process?

What was it like being on set with Paula Deen? What was the funniest moment of the shoot?
Being on the set with Paula made me wonder, “Is it really fair to call this ‘work’?  I’m having far too much fun to consider this part of my job!” She was a bundle of fun energy and kept the entire crew laughing from start to finish, especially during moments when she’d say things like “Cat Fight!” during a tense moment in evaluation. However, my favorite moment with Paula happened behind the scenes when I saw her looking very ‘seriously’ at her iPad. I thought that something important must have been happening to her at that moment, and I asked “Are you okay? You look concerned. Do you need anything?” She replied, “Darlin’, I’m not concerned about anything…I’m in the middle of a tense game of Angry Birds!” I started to crack up…and so did she. She’s a burst of fun, positive and insightful energy!

How long is the actual time the designers wait for the decisions and how much of their conversation while waiting is edited out? Have the judges ever been deadlocked about who to send home?
Excellent question! Deliberation can run anywhere from 45 minutes to two hours or more. During that time the Design Panel talks through the camera challenges, design challenges and any thoughts they have — and eventually come to a conclusion on their own. There have been disagreements on a particular decision from time to time, but they have never ultimately been deadlocked.

What happened to the kitchens after the challenge?

In a challenge like this (which took place in a studio rather than a real home) the items are either returned or donated. However, if we were doing a challenge at a real home, the homeowners get to keep all of the furnishings that were part of their makeovers.

With the next kitchen challenge, next time, could you do a challenge using a small kitchen done efficiently, incorporating lighting new counters ,eco-flooring and material choices and types so we can learn from the kitchen designs?
We’re in the very early stages of discussing challenges for next year, so I will definitely add this to our suggestion box. I think that it’s a wonderful, relatable and interesting idea!

Do you have a question for Loren about the inner-workings of Design Star? Ask in the comments below and he may just answer you next week.

Posted at 6:24 pm

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  • 139 Comments

139 Comments

  1. Is that the reasons for the bad choices? I cannot watch this show because Cathy is the worst designer I have ever see. The worst part is her ugly personality. Not so pretty to look at but her personality is terrible. People can turn on wrestling and the reality show(housewives) to watch fighting and bickering.
    I watch the design show for the creativity and personalities. Bring back the shows and people the viewers want to watch.

    susanfla on August 12, 2011 at 8:07 am
  2. I agree with everything you write. If she would get her own show I would definitely STOP watching. Don't vote her off KICK her off!!!

    Stella on August 12, 2011 at 8:07 am
    • I also agree. Cathy is very arrogant. There is absolutely nothing warm and "real" about her. She certainly does not know how to get along with ANYONE! I assume she is staying for athe drama she creates. Are the designers afraid to correct her, or give her negative feedback? Come on designers step up and get rid of her!!!!!!!!!!!!

      diana on August 12, 2011 at 6:49 pm
  3. Do the judges see the show the way we see it? I'm just wondering if they are aware that Cathy cannot work with anyone who whom she has been teamed and that she steamrolls everyone who disagrees with her and tries to make the others do all the work? Anyway, it might be useful for the judges to see what is going on during the work as well as the finished product. And I really wish there was a way for us to see more of the rooms. A few pictures aren't good enough – is there any way to create a panoramic or 360 degree view? There are tools available now that can take a series of sequential pictures so you can view a room/view/whatever as if you were in the center and turning to view it from all directions.

    SueM on August 12, 2011 at 10:45 am
  4. On the fan vote, why is Cathy in second place?? No one seems to like her! She isn't a person I would ever want to watch on TV. By the way, if she already has her own show on HGTV Canada, then why is she in the competition? Isn't that against the "rules" or something? Seriously Judges! AND…….. WHY DID TYLER HAVE TO GO HOME?? Send Kevin away!!!!!!!!!!!! He has raw talent, but he is just awkward on TV. He jiggles way too much. Tyler only messed up once! That was the first time he had been on the bottom and the third time for Kevin. If you watch the clip when they said Tyler was going home, even Kevin looks surprised about the judges decision! Come on HGTV!! Bring back the real Design Star style.

    MNKDZINE on August 12, 2011 at 4:48 pm
    • Cathy is in second place because she has enough family members and friends willing to enter votes 10 times a day every day to skew the results. The fan vote is, in my opinion, totally meaningless.

      mlp on August 12, 2011 at 8:12 pm
  5. Anyone else think that when Cathy was explaining her (Oh-so-cluttered) kitchen it sounded like she was reporting the weather? I know she was a newscaster, but I don't ever want to watch a design show that sounds like the eleven o'clock news.

    MNKDZINE on August 12, 2011 at 5:01 pm
  6. Do you think that for a little twist in the show they will bring back a designer? That would be new!:)

    MNKDZINE on August 12, 2011 at 5:04 pm
  7. she could still get the online show though:'(

    Kate on August 12, 2011 at 10:11 pm
  8. My daughters used to tease me because the only TV I watched was HGTV. Whenever they came over they knew the TV would be on the HGTV channel. I was such a 24×7 one-channel fan that I even asked COX cable if I could order just the HGTV channel because I didn't watch anything else. And when COX moved HGTV to a higher tier, I paid the extra $ to continue getting HGTV. BUT… you are blowing it big time with this season's Design Star. I don't watch HGTV to get a drama fix. Don't need a reality show fix either. Don't WANT to watch arrogant jerks like Cathy Hobbs whose attitude not only turns me off but actually infuriates me. Whether she is talented or not is not even material. Who cares? I won't watch her. Period. And you will not entertain or convince me that shows like Donna Does Dallas or Dina's Party with their over the top, crass, 'bling' is tasteful design either. HELLO! I've watched HGTV 24×7 for years because of hosts like Joan Steffen and Clive and designers like Candice Olsen and David Bromstead to name a few, who are charming, classy, talented and true team players. Think about it.

    Kathy on August 13, 2011 at 12:38 am
    • Totally agree. HGTV has "jumped the shark" and is now waay below my first choice of network.

      silverfox on August 21, 2011 at 9:29 am
  9. QUESTION: How are the designers paired for each challenge?

    Guest on August 13, 2011 at 6:58 am
    • The judges choose the designer who will most make Cathy look good, so they don't have to send her home. This way they can create a plausable buzz in order to generate interest, either positive or negative with the American public who might not see her on Canadian HGTV's Top Ten

      CharlesD on August 13, 2011 at 7:05 am
  10. Here's A Headline for Reporter Omarosa to Read:

    HGTV Loses Even More Credibility With Producer's Blog Post.

    "Each week, we ask Design Star producer Loren Ruch your most-asked behind-the-scenes questions. This week, Loren shares the funniest moments from the shoot with guest judge Paula Deen. Plus, what really happens during the judges’ deliberation process?"

    Q1: What was it like being on set with Paula Deen? What was the funniest moment of the shoot?

    Q2: How long is the actual time the designers wait for the decisions and how much of their conversation while waiting is edited out? Have the judges ever been deadlocked about who to send home?

    Q3: What happened to the kitchens after the challenge?

    Q4: With the next kitchen challenge, next time, could you do a challenge using a small kitchen done efficiently, incorporating lighting new counters ,eco-flooring and material choices and types so we can learn from the kitchen designs?

    REALLY?!?! These were the Most Asked Questions? I saw TWO of those questions, each asked ONCE. HGTV Doesn't deserve to have ANY viewers if THIS is the BS you're going to provide us.

    SHAME ON YOU HGTV!! You LOST me as a viewer. Not JUST for any Omarosa show, and not just for DESIGN STAR. Your NETWORK Lost A Viewer.

    scubagolfjim on August 13, 2011 at 9:18 am
    • It's just like the phoney promo, I was never able to find the post that is quoted on the commercial.

      CharlesD on August 13, 2011 at 10:47 am
    • Yup, kinda picks uninteresting stuff to answer. Never the meaty questions that we have.

      Sagebrush on August 14, 2011 at 8:35 pm

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