What we CAN learn from HGTV.

25 min read Today we are going a little more positive in our HGTV exploration. Because it is SO FUN to look at other people’s homes.

OK, so I spend a lot of time warning Mid-Century homeowners off of getting their ideas and advice from general shelter media. A lot of it is just not for us. But that doesn’t mean there is nothing we can learn from HGTV.

Home improvement shows (and magazines, and social media) give us lots of chances to look at other peoples homes. And to observe those people looking at lots of different homes. And even have the occasional good Mid-Century design idea. (It happens!)

Let’s talk about what we can learn from HGTV.

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Change your home to change your life.

21 min read The culture we live in tells us that we can change our lives by changing our homes. Let’s interrogate this modern urge toward self improvement through remodeling.

According to HGTV, you can never take a house as it is. A change is required. You must remodel it to make it “yours”. 

But … (again per HGTV) there’s ONLY one right way to improve your home. And that is whatever is the most current latest and greatest on Pinterest on Instagram on HGTV and in Dwell magazine. 

Now, in fact, I actually do believe in the transformative power of a remodel.

Planning them is kind of my bread and butter.

But here’s the thing: real, life changing transformations rarely look the same for every homeowner or home. And very frequently there’s nary a subway tile to be found. 

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Your remodel should not be a surprise.

21 min read A surprise reveal is a mainstay of remodeling TV shows and it’s basically a jumpscare. Your ideal remodel should include few to no surprises.

Nothing about the final outcome of your remodel should surprise you.

Read that twice.

Now, I do hope that as you live in your transformed home that it is a delight for you and your family. Maybe the changes will have an even greater effect on your life than you expected. That’s great. But the remodel itself … should not be a surprise. 

Why HGTV loves the “surprise reveal.”

Surprise reveals are a mainstay of home and garden media like HGTV because they create drama and suspense.

They allow the designers to build to a big conclusion and show a happy client. Surprises are not good for MCM homeowners in the same way trends are not our friends. 

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Trends are not your friend, Mid Mod lover.

22 min read Why avoid trends in remodeling? Because your taste and your home’s history matter more than what is current.

When it comes to updating and upgrading a mid-century home … trends are not your friend. You know this already. But the pressure to make the same choice as everyone else is SO STRONG. “What about the re-sale value?,” your well meaning advisors will anxiously wonder. But in reality, a timeless choice will always work better than a trendy one!

Here’s the most basic truth: Trendy =/= Timeless. And you don’t want to put all your energy, money and time into a remodel with an expiration date!

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Cooking with gas…ads and sponcon in remodeling “reality” shows. 

20 min read How did gas (and granite and stainless steel) come to seem like our only finish options? Blame it on the sponcon.

Certain elements seem to make it into every renovation. Think gas stoves, stainless steel finishes, professional grade appliances, countertop materials like granite and marble, luxury vinyl flooring. 

Want the most reliably biased remodeling advice around? Head for HGTV. In fact, pick up or turn on any mainstream piece of home and garden media. Now, try to separate expert advice from paid content. What you’ll find is a strong push toward well funded trends that dominate the industry.

Are these the best choices? Unlikely. Are they the best choices for you? Maybe. 

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The (main) problem with HGTV.

19 min read HGTV is a primary source of our beliefs about remodeling and what making good choices for a home looks like. And most of that advice is just dead wrong for mid-century homeowners.

This season, I’m pushing back on the default remodeling advice that we all encounter on HGTV and in online magazines, see manifested in big box home improvement stores and hear echoed in the mouths of run-of-the-mill general contractors. 

But you know I’m not about negativity! 

Instead, you are going to get all the positive, encouraging, actionable advice to help you make timeless choices tailored to your home. 

In short, this season’s theme is “The remodel advice you will never get from HGTV.” 

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Find Your Mid Mod ReMod Squad

13 min read What is a mid mod ReMod Squad and what can it do for you?

Your ReMod Squad is the team you rely on to give you advice specific to your love of mid century style.  There is just TOO much bad advice out there for people who want to update a mid-century home. It takes a village (a squad) of people on your side to help you push back and make regret-proof choices for your home!

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