I’ve been really enjoying HGTV’s Summer House this season, have you? Samantha Pynn, Malcolm Patterson and Joel Bray are doing a great job showing us simple, beautiful decorating ideas, inspiring transformations, and clever tips and ideas each episode. It’s what I like best in a decorating show – content and personality over cheesy ‘drama’ or a style that leans more towards a reality show. I know other people love the drama, and TV networks have been using this to lure in new viewers who many not really care about design. But as for me? I long for the days when decorating/design and gardening shows taught and inspired.
Remember Lynette Jennings Homeworks? I used to watch it on Life Network (Slice now, bah!) and could sing you the whole intro! Actually I’m now sining ,”Life, don’t let it pass you by!” which was the jingle for Life Network. Now Slice is all about Millionaire Matchmaker and Real Housewives. Oh man, how far we’ve fallen!
Check out this vintage clip of Lynette back in the day. Amazing tube dress, amazing over the top traditional decorating – but all kidding aside, very informative. Obviously it could do with a little fun, but I’m just amazed at the space they give to instructing the viewer.
Two other shows I loved were Sarah Richardson’s Room Service and Nik Manojlovich’s Savoir Faire. These were both exceptional shows that really inspired me and gave me a start in this biz. Each episode taught me so much, informed my personal style, and gave me so much inspiration and food for thought. Ahhh…the good ol’ days….
And of course, we all know I grew up on Martha Stewart Living. That show was a Sunday night ritual for me – I used to take notes sometimes! I mean seriously, I was a sponge and filed all of that information away and I still use it today! Now that’s a theme song I could sing for you! That show ushered me into another world full of creativity and beauty and taught me through calm, clear lessons that I can’t imagine being without.
Martha’s shift from this type of show to her more recent talk show format (now ending) is evidence enough of the cultural shift. One that I’m sad about and wish I could change. But I’m glad we had these good old shows when we did and that I learned all I could. Now will someone get to making more shows like this??? Updated obviously, looser, more fun, but based on a strong premise and featuring decorating and ideas over meltdowns??? I think Summer House is a great start – how about you?