Liz Gray

Contributor to HGTVersus

Aug 23

Ask the Producer: All Stars Finale

Each week, I chat with Design Star All Stars producer Loren Ruch about the best behind-the-scenes moments from the show.  Read on to go behind the scenes on the judges’ final decision. Plus, find out where you’ll see Leslie on HGTV!

Design Star Producer Loren Ruch With Contestants

How did you decide to use shipping containers for this week’s challenge?
Our executive producer mentioned to me that shipping containers were a hot new trend for second homes and even some primary residences around the country, so we thought “why not?!” We’ve already done glass houses, tiny houses and yurts, so it felt like a natural transition to try shipping containers!

From a guest on the blog: How did the judges’ come to the final decision for Design Star All Stars? Do they use a numerical rating system, a checklist, a compilation of before and after photos, what is the criteria they use to come up with the winning design(er)?
I wish it were that simple! It was a plain and simple long (and I mean looooong) and drawn out conversation comparing pros and cons, camera challenges and design challenges and the scope of work from the entire season. We also have a big notebook prepared for the panel featuring each designers photos of each challenge, and we show them the camera challenge from the current episode. This episode was not cut and dry at all, so it was a very heated conversation. Hilari had been such a dynamic and fun personality with great designs, Tom was such a class act with an upscale taste level, and Leslie was a bundle of energy with great designs to match — but ultimately I think that in the end, Leslie’s Murphy bed is what threw her over the top!

Can you give us any clues about which HGTV show or episode Leslie will appear on?

Sure! Leslie will be a judge on an upcoming episode of The White Room Challenge, and my hunch is that you’ll also see more of her on another HGTV show in the near future.

Design Star Producer Loren Ruch With Design Star Judges

Best on-set moment from the shipping containers episode? That location was ridiculous!
There were gophers EVERYWHERE and all of us kept falling into the gopher holes. I saw at least five crew members trip and fall – it was like an episode of Wipe Out behind the scenes. It had also rained the day before we shot so it was muddy, critter-filled and holey! Need I say more?!

Have a question for Loren? Ask him in the comments below.

Posted at 6:19 pm

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  1. I watch Design Star and when Hillari lost I was so disappointed and when I watch Design Star All-Stars, I knew she was going to be the winner and boy was I wrong. Reading all the other comments, I see that I am not alone in my feeling. She should have won, she has a eye for design and a great personality. I feel the judges made a mistake not once but twice.

    Devaine on September 3, 2012 at 2:53 pm
  2. Must say that the real tragedy here is that Dan did not prevail as all-star champ. The 3 remaining designer's combined talent doesn't even come close to Dan's unique ability to transform a space with creativity and this natural design sense all while being incredibly captivating to watch. He had the entire package which is what the others lacked. His designs were amazing his personality charming and he brought something totally unexspected to the table which is why we all watch HGTV to get great ideas! I do believe there is something out there for him and am terribly disappointed that 1 poor color choice kept him from winning and us from gaining a truly talented HGTV star. Don't give-up Dan!

    Dkyh on September 6, 2012 at 6:22 pm
  3. I've been enjoying Danielle's new show. She looks very comfortable on camera. And her customers seem very happy with the result. I'll say again, the judges made a very wise choice.

    Rickapolis on September 8, 2012 at 3:38 pm
  4. I am confused, I thought that this was a show about style and innovation., creativity and class, if so then why did I witness a judge(Genevieve Gorder) constantly displaying her own insecurity with obivious disdain for a great, talented fun designer and contestant (Hilari). Hilari accomplished what HGTV is all about, indoor and outdoor great design that everyone can relate too. A inviting outdoor room that speaks to you before you even arrive at the front door.
    A mid century modern indoor living area that whispers "you are home, relax"!

    Both Hilari and Tom have style coupled with talent, Leslie has an occasion idea that quickly becomes buried in foolishness and clutter, wow, that also sounds like Genevieve Gorder.

    Tony on September 20, 2012 at 9:12 pm
  5. Why didn't anyone question Leslie about where parents and the kid would sleep? One Murphy bed does not hold a family even if there's just one parent. She made such a big deal about the kids but her design did NOT address family space. Bad decision!

    Lundy on September 28, 2012 at 1:59 pm
  6. I was kind of surprised, The winning room must have looked a lot better live. It looked like a crowded mess on tv.

    Pat on September 29, 2012 at 7:19 pm
  7. Hilari was fabulous! She had great designs, a super personality and got along with everyone. I would hire her in a heartbeat. (If I could afford a designer). She would be so much fun to watch. I liked Leslie's idea of a Murphy bed but I question that as a deciding factor. Hilari's room was the best. I didn't like Leslie's personality so regardless of her designs, i would never have watched her shows. She couldn't get along with anyone else so I imagine working with her would be difficult to the detriment of a client.
    I think Danielle Colding was the perfect choice for Design Star and I have watched and enjoyed her shows. But as for the Design All Stars, it was Hilari all the way. Another bad call by the judges.

    Mary Ann on October 7, 2012 at 10:33 pm
  8. Totally Agree. Genevieve delivers her critique with disdain … why. Where is her personality? Any of the contestants design better rooms than hers. PLEASE get Candace back!!!

    CandaceComeBack on October 20, 2012 at 8:50 pm
  9. When does Season 9 start? Although the winner of Season 9 (a women named Esther Lavonne Almgren) is telling EVERYONE in Austin, Tx and LA that she won that season so I probably will not watch it. Why watch when all the viewers already know who won? She is using this "win" to promote her singing and acting career. You would think that HGTV would have some clause in their contracts that the winner is supposed to remain anonymous…but she is telling everyone in Austin to promote herself. I guess that's fine, just kills any desire to actually watch the show.

    Katie on November 8, 2012 at 2:40 am
  10. great story Liz.. thanx burçlar

    burçlar on January 7, 2013 at 1:27 am

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