Cast Blog: #TOPDESIGN

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Liz Lange: "getting To Know You"

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Party!!!

Nathan: Having The Top Design!

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Simple Truths About Top Design

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A Nightmare To Decide

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Naaaaattttthhhhhhaaaaaan!!

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The Eddie Ross Show Was Cancelled

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From Drab To Fab!

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That Certain Je Ne Sais Quoi

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Episode Ten: Finale Part 2

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Episode Nine: Finale Part 1

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See Ya Later ...

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Suck It Up!

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I Didn't Make Andrea Cry

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Rules Of Decorating

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Episode Eight: Light It Up

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Episode Seven: Room Of The Future

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Eddie And Preston: City Of Contrasts

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Doom And Gloom ...

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Future Shock

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The More Things Change ...

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We Love Wisit!

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Switch-a-roo

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One Man's Trash Is Another Man's Treasure

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Wiiiiiiiiiissssssssssssssssssiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiit!!!!

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Episode Six: Eco-offices

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Oh, My Achin' Muscles!

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Triple Threat

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Get Your Running Shoes On

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Triathlete's Foot

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Episode Five: Triathlon Of Decorating

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Bachelors, Briefs, And The Chronicle Of A Death Foretold

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Survival Of The Fittest

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Dude, Where's My Design?

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Bachelor Party

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Jennifer: Shut Down

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Bye Ker-bear (aka Big Daddy). We Will Miss You!!

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Windows That Wow

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Pigs In Lipstick

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Episode Three: Window Display

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Big Daddy Doesn't Know Best

Liz Lange: "getting To Know You"

Liz Lange on her stint as guest judge.

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When they asked me to be a judge for "Top Design," I was excited because I'm such a fan of Bravo, of "Project Runway" and "Top Chef." As a viewer, I understood how these shows work. I also knew that the challenge going in would surround children's rooms which is appropriate given what I do. But I certainly didn't know -- being previously just a viewer -- what it would be like to walk onto the set. I've been on TV before but I've never done something like this. For Target, I've helped make a few commercials so I wasn't completely shocked by the scale of the production. But I was surprised by how big a production "Top Design" -- and how big the set is -- the entire Pacific Design Center.

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I was also surprised byhow much separation there is between the judges and the contestants. Just to make sure that the pool is never contaminated. I thought it was really incredible and positive. As a judge, you're not even allowed to see them. The first time that they saw me was when I walked the rooms to judge the challenge. For Liz Lange's bio, click here.
It's interesting to me now, today, as a viewer again to watch the show and to know a little bit more about the contestants and what they were dealing with. As a judge, I had no idea about any of it. It was refreshing to see that the judges can vote off anyone they want. Nothing is controlled by the producers; it's very real. At the beginning because there are a lot of contestants and a lot of rooms -- I tried to write down a lot of notes as we were walking. I wasn't familiar with the contestants so I wanted to write things down that would help me remember. Specifically, I was looking for certain things: Who followed the assignment; What rooms really did look like they were intended for a child; Who had an understanding of color and space and proportion? For Liz Lange's bio, click here.
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Seeing the room only told half the story. Asking the contestants later why they chose a certain color or why they chose this object allow ed me to understand them much better. And frankly, this conversation can change your mind. Maybe they were assigned this color, or there were no other color chips left. I liken it, personally, to my own business. I look at my store sales every day, but if I don't speak to my customers, that information isn't useful. So I ask the sales people if a certain dress isn't selling. "Is it a dog or what?" And sometimes they say, "Oh, no. It's a short sleeve and everyone wants a long sleeve." So I think, "Oh, okay, so I won't drop that dress next season, I'll change it." As a guest judge, I thought the final decisions were pretty easy. What was difficult was the fact that people's careers are at stake. We took that fact very seriously. But we were in a fair amount of agreement on the decisions. For Liz Lange's bio, click here.
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I think what we felt was the real deal breaker -- and for me as a viewer of reality shows I think it's very unfair -- is when someone doesn't finish the assignment. John didn't complete his room. I felt from the beginning that not finishing a room could be a deal breaker. Like on "Top Chef" if you're asked to cook three dishes but the contestant comes back with two. It doesn't matter if they're good if the other contestants made three. So at this point, I was really thinking of myself as the viewer again and I wanted to be a fair judge.

I was disappointed, actually, because I liked what I got to know of John. I think he's talented and would have been an asset to the show to keep around. In general, I think the work was a mixed bag. There were a few rooms that were so incredibly pulled together. The pirate room was so impressive. Amazing. I was really impressed with Goil and I liked him in the context that I saw him. I thought he was having fun with it. Another woman who made a room with orange and green and a lot of plants; that was great. The other room with lights in the walls that was sort of Chanel-colored: I liked that. Then, there were other rooms that I questioned the designers' taste levels. For Liz Lange's bio, click here.

Yes, yes, I watched the first episode last week. The very few questions that I got the chance to ask the contestants -- weren't all that revealing, so it was great for me to see the contestants in more depth and get to know them better. I wasn't able to see very much so I'm really excited to watch it every week as a fan. Final words? I'd say keep watching. And to the designers, It's tough. Stay at it and don't be discouraged. For Liz Lange's bio, click here.

Naaaaattttthhhhhhaaaaaan!!

Jonathan Adler on why Nathan's win was well deserved.

Justice prevailed. Nathan rocks. His house was FIERCE and CREATIVE and GORGEOUS! Huge mazel to our Nathan on a well-deserved victory! But my God was it difficult to choose! Our otherwise harmonious judging crew nearly came to blows over who should win. Honestly, I almost came to blows with MYSELF over who should win! I J'ADORED Nathan's house (of course), but I was in love with Ondine's and Preston's creations aussi. Any of the three could have won and I would have been happy. Not to get all KUMBAYA on your asses, but I kinda think they all won.

The three finalists strutted their stuff on national TV and did a brilliant job. They are all talented, appealing, creative, and their futures are so bright they gotta' wear shades. And not to get all PAULA ABDUL on your asses, but I'm a FAN of all three. My fave design moments from the finale: Preston's grey-panelled spare room. PURE GENIUS! That wasn't design; that was ALCHEMY. Ondine's pink sofas with the wallpapered wall. Fun, happy, KAPOW! That room did just what design should do: it made me feel good. Nathan's entryway. He is a SOPHISTICATED MAMA. That room was what won it for Nathan. It was very Architectural Digest in the '70s, eclectic, original, INTERESTING.

I want to thank all the contestants for their hard work, resilience, stamina, and talent. I have so much respect for them and I am blown away by what they all accomplished--I probably would have lasted through one challenge before throwing in the towel. Lots of controversy in the blogosphere over how the show was edited and whether or not it is an accurate depiction of what went down. Honestly, I think the show is a completely fair and accurate portrayal. However, it ain't an accurate reflection of the contestants' personalities and talents in the real world. I'm sure that all of the kids, even the controversial Eddie "Omarosa" Ross, are polite delights.

Finalement, I want to say a huge merci to the Magical Elves and the whole crew for being so gorge and delightful and SILLY. And I want to thank India, Margaret, Kelly, and Todd for making the experience so GIGGLE-ENCRUSTED and FUN. Love, Jonathan