Top Design
Chef’s Choice

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Tom's Diner

The minute hand on the clock moves rapidly. Carpenters use nail guns. Andrea yawns. And the editors finally figure out how to use editing properly to show the passage of time. Five minutes remain in day one: Michael is hanging his red-but-probably-really-orange paintings up; Matt paints; Carisa paints; everyone, paint! Goil seems to have gotten a second-wind: he's outlining his grandiose plans for the next day, which include assembling a wall and a support system and doing much wood-cutting. Now, that's the young go-getter who caught America's fancy way back when. Ah, but the confidence is still MIA: "I'm usually able to turn around a project quickly. I can muscle it out. But now it seems my most fabulous power is diminishing." Sounds like someone has been watching a few too many episodes of Heroes lately.

A streetlamp dies, another night is over; another day is dawning. And with it, the Top Designers pour themselves a hot, steaming cup of Seattle's Best Coffee ("We're the coffee that makes Goil a nervous wreck!") and outline all the challenges awaiting them today. Allow me to sum up: finish by the appointed time. With that out of the way, the boys can spend the rest of their morning, giving us an imitation of Adler and Company by critiquing Carisa's room. Matt: "The banquette doesn't look high-end and luxurious." Michael: "It's outdoor furniture, and it looks outdoor furniture." Also: "She's doing a grandpa fabric." Me: "Meow, fellas." It's worth noting that Goil is sporting a tasteful "(Gar) Goil" t-shirt. Bravo overlords, I need not tell you what item needs to find its way into your gift shop. The girls are doing their own Adler channeling, in regards to Goil's ongoing battles with sanity. Carisa: "[Goil's room] is another white room with, like, weird cutouts and... but I don't know how that relates to arts-and-crafts." If it's any consolation, Carisa, Goil probably doesn't either. But enough cattiness; let's turn to Andrea for some in-game analysis: "I think each person is competition in a different way. I think Carisa, she's trying to push it with her designs. And she's very bold. And I'm not as bold. And I don't want to be knocked out because I'm not as bold." Then punch a judge -- that'd certainly be bold. Anyhow, off to the Pacific Design Center with the lot of you. Goil calls shotgun.

Back to work! Michael sweeps up in front of his "Orange you glad you're not that hungry?" paintings. Andrea goes to town on a circular saw. Matt announces his plans to cover things in plastic, no doubt as a protective measure for that leather floor he spent so much time assembling. Carisa is giving instructions to Carl -- someone seems to be regretting her top pick in the carpenter's draft. And Goil is discovering his painted stripes look terrible -- it bled through the tape. It looks like some sinister clown broke out of a circus for the deranged and painted crooked stripes all over the place. That's great if you're designing a chef's table for Hell's Big Top, but not so good here. It's still early yet, but Andrea and Matt appear to have a good grasp on this project -- Andrea's stone wall looks fantastic, and the colors and fabrics on Matt's room really pop. And did we mention Matt gets an extra hour? Because he does. And he plans on using all 60 minutes of it to fuss with drapery.

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Top Design




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