The Untold Truth Of Trading Spaces


Back in the year 2000, TLC debuted the hit
series Trading Spaces, where neighbors would go into each other’s homes and help redecorate
a room in whatever crazy way the show’s designers felt like. It was lik e a televised trust
fall involving your living room, and the results were often unpredictable if not downright
horrifying. The series was a massive hit, running for eight years and becoming a fan
favorite. But how much do you really know about the cult classic series? Here’s a look
at the untold truth of Trading Spaces. It wasn’t an original idea Though it helped usher in a whole wave of
home redecorating shows, Trading Spaces wasn’t actually an original idea, as it was based
on the British series Changing Rooms, which aired on the BBC from 1996 through 2004. The
shows were nearly identical, right down to the role of fan favorite carpenter Handy Andy,
whose shoes were filled in America by Ty Pennington. “You’re going to love this! Come on, put that
helmet on Frankie, you’re going to love it!” “You can’t get enough of that fun.” The safe zone One of the best parts of Trading Spaces was
the homeowners’ reactions to their newly renovated rooms. Will they love the changes? Will there
be tears? Though some couples ended up hating the redesign, they often had themselves to
blame, because participants actually had to sign a liability release form which allowed
them to list specific items and elements in a room design that would be protected against
any changes. Should have protected that velvet Elvis painting, guys! You could be disqualified Getting chosen to have your room redesigned
was an arduous process, and even included some clauses that could get you disqualified
after you were selected. Among the show’s requirements: your home had to have parking
for the show’s trailer full of renovation tools, you had to be within a two minute walk
of your neighbor’s home, and you had to allow them to actually redesign the room without
too many of those protected items on your list. Break one of those rules and you could
be out before the show even started. Top secret Those shocked reactions from the homeowners
weren’t faked. In fact, the producers went to great lengths to make sure people didn’t
know what changes were being made to their home. Good Housekeeping editor Susan Leaderman
wrote that when she appeared on the show, “They hung sheets on the windows and other
shielding mechanisms around our homes. In fact, when the producer from my home makeover
went to my neighbors’, even the paint splotches on her clothing were covered with duct tape
so I couldn’t see the colors being used.” Who renovates the renovators? According to the Chicago Tribune, it took
some couples less than 48 hours to completely undo the work that was done in their homes.
Homeowner April Kilstrom lived out a nightmare when designer Hildi Santo-Tomas infamously
glued hay all over the walls. Neighbor Rhea Wisherop, who appeared on the show with Kilstrom,
told SFGate it took five people 17 hours to remove all the glue from the wall. “The baby
the next day was gagging on the hay. We loaded [the bookshelf] up with books, and the next
day it was pulling out of the wall. What if that fell on the kids?” “They have a baby in a cover.” “What do you mean?” “Well they might pick it off.” Well they need to be told not to, I mean…
” They also had to remove other health hazards
in the room, including glass that was intentionally broken to get a modern art look, and wooden
window frames that immediately gave the children splinters. All told, it cost Kilstrom thousands
of dollars to undo the damage left behind by Trading Spaces. The host got fired In 2005, Trading Spaces fans were shocked
when beloved host Paige Davis was abruptly fired from the series. TLC issued a statement
claiming that going without a host would “enable the show to be more spontaneous, focus more
on the homeowners and designers… ” Instead, ratings went in the tank, while Davis
used the opportunity to forge a successful stage career. In 2008, Davis finally returned,
but only after TLC gave in to demands that included the return of the show’s original
designers, and a return to this show’s original basic concept of two couples, two days, and
a $1,000 budget. Davis told TV Guide, “To not use a host was one of the more visible,
destructive mistakes they made in terms of the fans.” “They wanted the old show back.” There’s still more to come Fans of the series were encouraged in 2016
when designer Genevieve Gorder told TooFab that the cast and crew of the show still keeps
in touch, saying, “I wish TLC would throw a reunion.” And that may actually happen.
According to Deadline, Trading Spaces is scheduled to return in 2017. TLC President Nancy Daniels
said “We are thrilled to expand in this space, and what better way to do that than to bring
back Trading Spaces, the series that put property on the map.” So will any members of the original cast return?
Only time will tell. But if they do, we have just one request: this time, leave the hay
in the barn. Thanks for watching! Click the List icon to
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