Outdoor living design

Hidden Truths Behind Home Improvement TV shows: 3 Vital Factors Often Overlooked

September 8, 2022

Who loves a good reno show as much as I do? I love the moment where the homeowners walk into their newly renovated home and are completely speechless and overwhelmed by how beautiful everything is. The home is them, tiny parts of who they are displayed in such a beautiful and magical way. What’s not to love, right?

Here's the thing about shows like this… it’s TV. It’s not real or what really happens in real life. Today I'm going to let you in behind the scenes of what actually happens. Are you ready? Let's go...

Detail #1: Home Design is Finished Before Starting Demolition

Okay, for starters… Demo day is not the first thing that happens; you do not pick out finishes during the demo. This is a surefire way to go over budget, make mistakes and have a lot of confusion. In real life, there is a plan, a design plan. The design is done BEFORE any demo happens. When clients come to us, we take time to learn who they are and how they live in their homes. The design should not only be beautiful but functional as well.  

Here's a glimpse of what actually happens: Let’s say you want to expand your kitchen by taking a wall out, and you would like to add an island and move the sink to a new location. To start, you'll need a set of drawings to indicate the new kitchen layout and elevations to show the design and dimensions. Selecting finishes, fixtures, and all the items in a kitchen will all go into the drawing.  Once all the design, 3D Renderings, construction documents, and finishing schedules are together, ready, and approved... Now we demo.

Detail #2: Inaccurate Timeframes

Let’s talk unrealistic deadlines… these shows show their teams working all hours to complete a project. Who needs sleep, right?  Actual projects involve real people with real lives. We will tell you if your project timeline is doable or not. We take in design time, how much goes into the project, and the contractor's availability. Lead Times- yep, this is still a thing. They are getting better, but if you want a specialty sink, you make be waiting six months.

Detail #3: Cost Breakdown of Materials and Labor

When discussing investing in a project, we prioritize and guide your desired budget. However, it's important to note that TV shows often showcase fully designed spaces with minimal investment, which is not a realistic depiction of budget constraints for many individuals. In real life, labor and furnishings are not typically donated or sponsored, and quality is crucial. As the saying goes, "You get what you pay for.”

Our best advice, reach out to a designer early to understand the process, timeline and investment based on your scope of work. Then you can decide if it’s right.

If you're ready to chat with home pros that have your real-life best interest in mind, please reach out. We can't wait to hear about your project!


Bringing fresh, refined style to Dallas-area homes

Connect with CEO and Lead Interior Designer Ashley Denbow today

Kind words from our happy clients

"Ashley was great to work with for our house project! She was so patient and explained everything in detail. She really took the time to understand what we wanted and how to make it fit with some existing pieces. She is very creative and always quick with responses. Highly recommend!"

Kristin W.

"During the process of building our home, Ashley was a true lifesaver. With our busy schedules, we found it overwhelming to select colors and finishes. However, Ashley took care of everything from start to finish, including handling all communication with our contractor. This allowed my wife and I to focus on our daily lives without any added stress. Ashley's impeccable design sense was evident in every detail, from selecting finishes to coordinating materials. Her expertise and hands-on guidance made a world of difference, and the end result exceeded our expectations. If you're looking for a top-notch, approachable interior designer who gets things done, Ashley is the perfect choice. To sum it up, Ashley's involvement was a game-changer, giving us not just amazing design but also peace of mind during the construction process. We highly recommend her services to anyone looking for a stress-free and satisfying home building experience."

Keith D.

“If you need help with making a room function to its fullest and look amazing at the same time, Ashley is your girl! She has a keen eye for organizing everything so that each piece in a space feels purposeful and special."

Tammi M.

"If you are looking for the most amazing Interior Designer, then your search is over! Ashley met and exceeded all my expectations for the remodel of my kitchen, bar, living room, and bathroom.  Ashley designed the layout and walked me through every step of the way with picking out paint colors, tile, countertops, cabinet pulls, lighting, and even appliances. Ashley listened to all of my ideas, and with her guidance the final product is so much more than I could have ever dreamed! Ashley is so fun to work with and really takes the time to get to know not only the design features you like, but also what will be functional for you and your family."

Pam S.

"Ashley did an amazing job. She got a good feeling for our style right away and selected high quality pieces within our price range. Super easy to work with and was super patient with us as this was our first time hiring an Interior decorator!"

Jessica D.

"Ashley was an absolute delight to work with! She was so patient with me and listed to all my likes and dislikes before we began. The entire remodel process was such a great experience and something I’ll never forget.”

Kim C.

"I highly recommend Ashley and her business! She was amazing through the entire process with her extreme talent for color and design! I love my new flooring and beautiful new kitchen!! I highly recommend her and her company!"

Stacia D.