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Why are there almost no Decorating Shows in Australia?

While other countries churn out design and decor shows at a rapid pace, Down Under we’re left with high-drama reality and one home staging series. But why?

I’m a decorating addict. I’m sure that comes as no surprise to long-time readers of the blog. As an interior stylist, design is my life. I not only work in it and write about it, but I consume TV shows in this genre too.

I love nothing more than recording a series on Foxtel and watching the eps back-to-back in one chunk, with a glass of red and a cat on my lap (yes, this is my dream evening in and I won’t apologise for it).

What’s unfortunate though, is the lack of TV shows produced locally in this arena. So what gives?

Selling Houses Australia - Image via Foxtel Website

The Decorating Shows we do have…

I think it’s important to distinguish the difference between home staging shows, renovating shows, architecture shows and decorating shows. The first three topics do have shows that take you inside these design disciplines.

For home staging we have Selling Houses Australia (love it), for renovating we have The Block (albeit not a real depiction of how a reno works) and for architecture we have Grand Designs Australia (I’m on board).

Shaynna Blaze’s new TV show, Deadline Design, does take us on more of a journey through the building and design process. I really liked the first episode and think the concept shows promise.

But none of these shows are decorating-focussed. Not in the way the TV shows produced by other countries are.

I’m after no drama, no tears, no $500,000 design budget. Just inspiring home makeovers done well – by people who know what they’re doing.

Designer Genevieve Gorder of HGTV's Real Genevieve.

Our overseas friends are churning them out…

There are so many TV series in the decorating space being made overseas that it’s almost impossible to keep up with them.

One of my fave shows to watch is Genevieve Gorder’s, Dear Genevieve, which gives you an inside look at how she decides on colours, finishes and other decorating choices for a room for her clients.

I’m also a fan of Candice Tells All, which does a lot of the same thing; a 30-minute look at the before, the brief by the client, and the after. It’s a simple concept but it works.

HGTV’s Design Star was another series I watched, produced in the US (or was it Canada?) that took us on the journey to find designers who could present to camera; competing to get their own TV series. This show ran for numerous seasons and birthed two awesome decorating shows from its winners; Color Splash with David Bromstad and Secrets from a Stylist with Emily Henderson.

And then there’s a whole slew of shows from Canadian Sarah Richardson, which are completely dedicated to making over spaces and following her journey through all aspects of the design. You know; learning about pattern, textures, colour, putting them all together, ensuring a whole house looks and feels resolved.

Chris Carroll - TLC Interiors
I’m ready to host or participate in some way

So why no locally-produced decorating shows?

I have the concept ready to go. I will host or participate in the series, and I know several decorators and stylists who’d love to take part in it as fellow hosts. Are you listening Foxtel? I’m ready when you are.

The idea is simple. Each week different rooms are made over in different styles for clients. The different designers tackle different rooms in the home, all collaborating on the over-arching scheme and giving you tips in each zone on how to pull it together.

We work off a mood board, we ensure the rooms flow and make sense, and you get talked through all of the decisions we make for the client.

Not only that, but because it’s produced locally, we tell you where we got all of the products so you can replicate the look yourself.

No drama, no tears, no $500,000 design budget. Just inspiring home makeovers done well by people who know what they’re doing (because I’m becoming tired of ‘everyday Aussies’ who have little to no design knowledge guiding viewers on how to do things).

It’s time for a shakeup, people. We need and deserve shows that inspire us to style and decorate our homes. Without spending a truckload of cash, without calling in a builder, and without being judged on the result.

I refuse to believe that we need the drama to ensure people tune in.

The Block Judges Home Design Shows on TLC Interiors

Are you wanting more too?

Am I the only one yearning for more locally-made decorating shows? I’d love to know what you think. In my humble opinion, it’s high time someone bring this to market and introduce Australia to a show that is focused on decorating and nothing more.

Foxtel, I’ll await your call…


Chris Carroll

Outside of writing this blog, Chris is an interior designer, presenter and author. He’s also spent time on TV, on Channel 10’s Changing Rooms, as well presenting segments on Channel 7’s Sunrise and The Morning Show. If you’d like to book a design consult with Chris, you can find out more here

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14 Responses

  1. At last!!! Someone who has vision. We definitely need something locally made, supporting designers, trades and products. How can I help you to make this happen?

  2. I’ll come on the journey with you….I’d like nothing more than inspirational tips, real people and realistic budgets.
    Your experience and knowledge is something I would love to be apart of. Having studied Interior Design, mainly for my own projects, it sounds like fun experience we all need more if….

  3. Yes yes and YES!! I totally agree Chris – but do you need Foxtel? Maybe YouTube your show so we can all watch in. And please have ‘Experiened’ designers on the show. I can’t believe on the block they were crying over only having 8k to decorate a bedroom!! I think the block has really lost touch with the average person here.

  4. I am totally on board!!! I don’t have Foxtel but I yearn for shows like the Sarah Richardson ones.

    Hey if you need an offsider when you finally get a show of your own, look no further 🙂

    I think The Block jumped the shark a few years ago. Who does that in real life???

    Looking forward to seeing you on the small screen soon!

    Nat @ This Little Yellow House

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I’m interior designer Chris Carroll, and at TLC Interiors we’re all about helping you create an amazing home without breaking the bank. It’s affordable designer style at its best, and we make the whole process easy and fun for clients & readers alike!

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