After 8 long weeks of design ups and downs, HGTV's Design Star wrapped up last night by giving back to two deserving families in New Orleans. Finalists Matt and Jennifer each had $20,000, 36 hours and a team of help to design a kitchen, living room and dining room for two Katrina-ravaged homes. Now it's time for you to decide who will win... Also, you voted and we listened: our interview with Design Star finalist Matt Locke tomorrow right here on AT Boston! No glass houses in NYC, no hotel suites in Hawaii—just two devastated homes in New Orleans with families in desperate need of a place to call home again. Matt lucked out with a family who loves minimal design while Jenn got to work with a huge family in need of a very social space. Extra help came in the form of eliminated contestants Trish and Mikey to help pull off the 4 day transformation that left the two families thrilled with the results. But the real question is, how thrilled were you with the results? Jenn's design incorporated tons of seating and a soft, neutral palette with a (big) pop of red in the kitchen. We liked the tone-on-tone horizontal stripes to energize the large walls and actually agreed with her decision to paint yet another wood table white (this time). But the kitchen felt a bit too dark for the light surroundings.
Matt's design focused on clean lines and simple pieces—including a kitchen with few upper cabinets and a light fixture over the dining table that had us drooling. We didn't love the couch and hated the red chairs (is that "minimal"?). Overall the space felt too dark and heavy. We were also disappointed that the stain didn't work out on the cabinets and that they ended up painted flat brown. The dining room was pretty amazing, though, and Matt's saving grace.
Voting is open until Wednesday on HGTV for you to choose the winner of this season's Design Star. Who will you be voting for? Don't miss our interview with Matt Locke tomorrow on AT Boston and don't miss the final outcome next Sunday night on HGTV.