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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92 Replies to “The Untold Truth Of Trading Spaces”

  1. I never like Hildie she was one of those designers that didn't seem to care a fig about the homeowner's tastes or needs

  2. The first host got fired too. She was less perky than Paige.
    Any new version of this show would probably have tons of social media and internet input, all crap.

  3. I always wanted to throat-punch Hildi. Whether it was hay, or stapling hundreds of flowers to the wall, or the wine-themed kitchen for the teetotaling couple, her disdain for the homeowners was one of the reasons I stopped watching.

    You can be darned sure she wouldn't have pulled crap like that on a paying customer.

  4. Bring them all back. I loved them all and missed many hours of sleep watching. Retired now and have time to try some of it! Yahoo!

  5. Paige got weird once she got engaged. All of a sudden she was dressing in prairie skirts and flip-flops and wanting to do prayer circles all the time.

  6. They made A LOT OF UGLY ROOMS. One I remember was when they took a beautiful country family room and glued straw to the walls. HORRIFYING!

  7. In my humble opinion, the show was a joke. It was so hard to see the disappointed looks, and sometimes tears, on the people's faces during the reveals. I think TLC would do better to keep this show off the air.

  8. As long as you view it as a prank and have the time and money to completely redo it afterwards, sign up for the show!

  9. why the hell did they get rid of Paige when the OBVIOUS problem was one of their designers who's name keeps coming up in all these comments. and i have to say that i agree with most everyone here that didn't like that particular designer. heck, even my mom really disliked her and customarily she just loved seeing the rooms transform into something less boring or traditional. but yeah, my mom and i just didn't understand that Hildy person's vision. i think her intentions were decent enough but i don't think she really gave much thought to the actual spaces she was designing for. i mean, most of these rooms were not very large and i think she tried to design them with some kind of grandiosity that would only work well on a larger scale and more spacious room. she really was a little off kilter.

  10. Hildi Santo-Tomas was the absolute WORST designer ever, barely edging out Constance Ramos of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. With hindsight being what it is, the show was far too ambitious, and will certainly be again.

  11. Can someone explain to me how Hildi was hired to be a designer? Or what school she got her training from? Either everyone on the casting team was her extended family or they conducted phone interviews. Hildi has managed to destroy these peoples homes with her cheap and unfocused designs. When her career ends (if it hasnt already) hopefully she'll write a tell all book on how she convinced the TLC team to put her on TV despite her ugly so call designs.

  12. “They have a baby and a toddler. What if they pick it off?”
    “Well then they need to be told not to?”

    Lmao what? You’re designing someone’s home. You’re supposed to design around THEIR needs and wishes not yours

  13. Well I saw the new Trading Spaces yesterday and apparently their awful taste in decorating has not evolved! First episode included the dreaded Hildi and she did not disappoint in creating a mess of a kaleidoscope room makeover! The other designer was the silver haired guy ( he's name escapes me)and his was not as bad, but he tapered the walls in burlap…so no! I say run away from being on that show…they still don't listen to anything the participants want or don't want!

  14. Vern Yip was one of the best designers on the show, every room he did had class!  I might not have wanted it in my home, but they were always workable, and livable, I'd love to see how many of the rooms done on the show lasted for over a year and if any are still around.

  15. I remember Page telling one designer not to touch an antique cabinet because of it's value well guess what he ignored her and painted it an ugly green and the show had to buy it. It was the family's grandmother who willed the cabinet to them how is money going to replace something like that. I was glad to see the show taken off the air so much for safe zones the designers do what they want. To bad it's back again but I won't watch it

  16. This lady is nuts. Wonder if people could paint her ceiling hit pink and glue hay all over….among other things…this lady made these peoples homes looks absoulety horrid. People work hard for their homes and 1,000 budget to remodel or redonrooms in this day and age isn't cutting anything. This is why it will always be trashy and look bad. Nobody wants to see a show where some snot nosed lady comes in and destroys someone's home in 2 days…nothing funny, nor entertaining about that ever.

  17. I used to binge watch this show on weekends! I liked everyone, but I’m pretty sure Hildi had some mental health problems, she just wasn’t normal. She should’ve been fired!

  18. The complete disregard for the safety of those children when designing the infamous hay room makes me very uneasy…

  19. Well, its back and so is Hildie. I can only conclude Hildie must be related to one of the shows producers; because no one seems to like her or her grotesque "designs". The woman is a nightmare.

  20. Currently Trading Spaces about to be on again now I think it's pretty shity what they did to the people at the hay even after being warned that the children could choke on it and the b** saying well they'll just have to be told not to that's not the way any of that work and I woulda sued the s*** out of them for knowingly putting my children in danger that is not in any way part of the deal

  21. This time lock Hildi Santos-Thomas in the attic and throw away the key. That woman is no designer…she's Loca!

  22. Hildie was/is a highly unlikable induvidual who designed to satisfy her 'unorthodox' (translation – self absorbed, inconsiderate of owners' needs post departure and treating this as an abstract last minute design school mid-term project, ALL rolled into one). It is as if she challenged her victims to dare question her 'brilliance', a deliberate affront to what she presumed were their 'unrefined sensibilities'. I could not stand her. She wasn't that great. I finally decided that she did that to compensate for lack of real talent like Vern, who sought to combine swappers's needs with elevated design.

  23. I always freaking hated Paige Davis. She was/ is annoying as shit- u can tell she annoys the hell outta some of the designers

  24. Let it die! It wasn't a show of what it could be but about designers ego! Dumb show. Really cheap looking rooms

  25. Horrible horrible designs and they always use awful patterns to paint the walls. A joke all around.

  26. Why is Page Davis always touching people. It’s kind of creepy. Even when they let go of her hand she grabs on again. She’s to weird !

  27. I would have punched hildi in the face because you Know she did that shit on purpose. Look at her fucking face when she shows the rooms. She Wants then to hate them. Bitch. I’d make her regret that shit.

  28. Trading spaces didn’t tank because they fired the host. It ranked because ppl were tried of seeing hildi deliberately fuck ppl over and by time y’all fired her ppl were too done with the bullshit to return and You Know It. Or else why even fire her in the first place.

  29. the clients are too nice to her. i would go OFF. i don’t care if it’s televised. she needs to be berated for these god awful “designs”

  30. REALLY… HELL NO, HILDE SUCKS…. Obviously, she's someone' on HGTV flunky family who can't get or keep a real job. Poor people who are her VICTIMS & the VICTIMS OF TRADING SPACES.

  31. Fun fact about host Paige Davis . Paige's first name is actually Mindy . Paige is her middle name and of course the one she uses. She married a man named Patrick page. So if she ever decided to go by her married name and her preferred first name. Her name would be Paige Page. I dont know why, but I felt the need to share that.

  32. Does anyone think you can do a renovation for $1,000.00 and it look good? That was the only clue you needed to know in order to decide to watch this show or not.

  33. I remember a beautiful fireplace being painted egg plant purple with creepy white hand statues on the mantel, which the traded people lit tried to argue with the designer not to paint it that it would terribly upset the homeowner but it got painted anyway, and I remember being just downright pissed off alongside the homeowner, that fireplace was utterly ruined.

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