Top Design – Emerging Portfolios – Signature Styles

We’re down to three designers and two more episodes. Andrea, Carisa and Matt have outlasted the rest of the competition and proven that they have the design skills and mental fortitude that keeps them in the game.

They’ve also all shown that they came to the competition with big egos.

Andrea: “I’m going to win, because I always win”.
Carisa: “It’s Top Design. I’m the Designer. Listen to me”.
Matt: “Everyone has their own unique individual style. Mine just happens to be better than the rest”.

Each has won one individual challenge and one team challenge. Additionally, Andrea won the design-only part of the challenge for Episode 5, Garage Band, which I put in a different category, since it was for the preliminary design only and not the final outcome.

So, they really seem pretty evenly matched going into the last two episodes. Collected here are each of their designs through the first eight episodes. Clearly, there have been hits and there have been misses. As in all reality shows – some contestants are popular, some aren’t. But, popularity isn’t a reason to win a competition. None of the folks has been malicious or devious. Nor have any shown themselves to be Mother Theresa. They are human, warts and all.

Beyond the personalities, beyond the bitching, there is the work. Hard work.

Who do you want to win? Who do you think will win? Who do you think should win? These are different questions. The third question is after all the photos. Who do YOU think SHOULD win?

Andrea Keller, 36
A1 (team)
A2 (individual)
A3 (individual)
A4 (team) Winner!
A5(team) Winner! (for plan only)A6 (team)
A7(individual) Winner!
A8 (individual)
Carisa Perez-Fuentes, 26
C1 (team)
C2 (individual)
C3 (individual) Winner!
C4 (team)
C5 (team)
C6 (team) Winner!
C7 (individual)
C8 (individual)

Matt Lorenz, 32

M1 (team)
M2 (individual)
M3 (individual)
M4 (team)
M5 (team)
M6 (team) Winner!
M7 (individual)
M8 (individual) Winner!
Who do you think SHOULD win?
Matt free polls

xoxo Linda

6 thoughts on “Top Design – Emerging Portfolios – Signature Styles”

  1. How about none? I don’t like anything I see except for Andrea’s chef’s table and Matt’s hotel room. I’m not a stripe, orange, or green afficionado, so Clarisa is out. And, frankly, the colors that Andrea and Matt keep choosing turn me off.

    At least Goil had a definite, recognizable design sensibility. At this point, I don’t care who wins.

  2. Sorry, Carisa. I read your post about her room, but I found those vent/screens too heavy and cumbersome, and they chopped up the space in such a way that I would have felt claustrophobic. I like open expanses, such as Goil’s room or Matt’s, or even Andrea’s for that matter. It’s personal preference, I know. But all along, except for the dramatic plant wall, I have not liked Carisa’s designs.

  3. Honestly, I don’t care who wins either. None have inspired me, and I’m pretty easy to inspire. I wanted to be inspired by the designers on this show. But, thinking about it, I think it goes back to the time factor. They cannot be expected to design, shop for and build an entire room in the same time that PR allows its’ contestants to produce a single garment. And as we’ve seen on PR, they are often pressed for time and have to cut corners. But at least the good designers are able to get their vision across in the time allowed. A whole room – even with the help of a carpenter and seamstress – simply takes longer. I’ve said it all along, we haven’t seen what these designers are really capable of. Case in point – the photos of Erik with a K’s apartment showcased by Tom & Lorenzo. Stunning. Like nothing we saw on the show. If you just looked at his work on the show you would have no idea. Goil has had the most innovative and unique ideas – never rendered well and most not practical. But, if he’d had more time to think about them – perhaps he could have more fully realized his vision. Perhaps not. More time wouldn’t help Carisa’s nervous nudginess, because that’s clearly her personality at the moment. Something she sorely needs to get over. But, I think she has a realy creative spark.

    Matt has probably been the most consistent – but he’s not original. He knows luxury and beauty, within a very safe zone. Which will probably give him the win. But – does he have true creativity? I don’t know.

    The most successful room all season, imho, is Andrea’s chef’s table. It’s also the only thing she’s done that I’ve liked. It wasn’t innovative, necessarily, but it also wasn’t the place to be innovative. It is a simple concept – a beautiful place to allow the chef to host guests and show off his cuisine. Chef’s tables play supporting roles to the chef.

    So, Matt is elegent, consistent and safe; Carisa has creativity, poppiness and personality issues and Andrea is all over the map.

    So, no. I don’t care who wins. But I sure wish I did and I wish the TD producers spent a few more bucks and gave them at least one more day on each project.

  4. Dahling, I agree and bow to your superior knowledge.

    Yes, Carisa is talented and I think she will grow out of her puppy behavior. And, yes, I fault Bravo for being so stingy on time, materials, and creativity on the writers’ parts.

  5. I thought about this a lot for the last few days and came to the conclusion that I didn’t care who won it. I feel nonplused. Each one had rooms I preferred and each had rooms that resemble my “the kids are all grown and I am lazy” home decorating style. A lot of half ideas. I agree with you both.

    It seems this program flew out into the market with a list of caveats from the producers: low budget, low time, excessive intermingling promos.
    If it doesn’t work, manufacture drama quick.

    The bloody saw in all Bravo’s promos shows their utter despair for drama.

    I would have loved to see these designers have the time to develop their ideas and have more Tod Oldman mentorship. I really liked Margaret alot.

  6. Goil full of concepts and projects but as a whole I don’t find his rooms to be very comfortable. All of the white and primary colors are too stark for me.

    Andrea’s palate is too dull for me. Even her chef’s room — which was the most polished and deserved to win — but the colors and feel was rather dark and heavy. I liked particular elements a lot — the side table and the suede walls.

    I’m always impressed with what Carisa does. She has an amazingly strong voice for someone her age. It is a little too pop for me but that is a valid design aesthetic.

    Erik strikes me as the person who is most responsive to the customer as a decorator. His apartment was lovely (a little non-descript in style — and it needed art) but it was rich and lush in texture.

    Matt’s elegance is lovely but the thing that has impressed me the most has been Matt’s use of color. Sometimes it just blows me away. It is the one thing I have learned from this show that I will really take and use in my own design work.

    For that reason alone I want him to win. He has a talent — a kind of insight — that is above and beyond the rest. And he’s from Chicago.

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