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HGTV Design Star – Interview with David Bromstad

As crafters, it’s natural to love HGTV (Home and Garden Television). However, entertainment can be more engaging when there’s a competition. HGTV’s Design Star puts designers through a series of challenges voting off one designer at a time until the final contestant remains winning their own HGTV show. If you’ve ever fantasized about hosting your own craft show, this series will help you see there’s a lot more work that goes into a television show than just mastering your craft.

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For Season 6, Design Star has brought on the Season 1 winner David Bromstad to serve as the mentor. He particularly teaches the contestants how to present themselves on TV so they can learn to host their own show while they compete for that very prize. Sarah Eve Fulghum participated in a conference call with HGTV’s Design Star mentor and host of Color Splash, David Bromstad.

Sarah Eve Fulghum: “Hi David. Thanks for taking the time today.”

David Bromstad: “Oh my gosh, my pleasure.”

Sarah Eve Fulghum: “Oh no, the pleasure’s mine. I’d like to know, do you think the competition to find the design show host leads to a better end result, such as a stronger fan base when the winner’s show does premiere?”

David Bromstad: “I think it brings in a stronger sense of the camera challenges when, you know, now that I’m in there. Before, these contestants were just going for it not knowing what to do, and my role is now to guide them and tell them what to do and guide them and just be that mentor that they didn’t have in the past.”

Sarah Eve Fulghum: “Yes. Having a mentor makes all of the difference.”

David Bromstad: “It really does. It really does.”

Sarah Eve Fulghum: “Speaking of which, how did you become the mentor? Did HGTV call you up out of the blue or was this in the works for a while?”

David Bromstad: “Well, I don’t know how ‘in the works’ it was for a while, but I mean they’ve been talking about it for almost close to a year, so they’ve been talking about it, mulling it over, and of course, I am gung-ho on the whole process because I’m a Design Star junkie of course. That’s how I got my beginning. So I was more than honored to be a part of it.”

David Bromstad explained further his new role on Design Star, “ I am going to be doing the mentoring role, and I’m really focusing on really honing their skills as on-camera talent and doing camera challenges. I’m there to assist them, and I’ve been there. I’ve done it. I know how nerve wracking it is. I know what craziness is going through those brains and so what better person to mentor them than me.”

And what does he think about becoming the mentor? “I was thinking wow, this is pretty amazing. I’ve been watching Design Star since I won and just in awe of the talent that has come through there, and now to be a part of it is just, it feels right. It feels amazing, and I had so much fun. It’s a true honor. It really is. It was like everything’s just been full circle.”

What advice does David have for the contestants? True to David’s nature, he gives practical advice from the heart. “You know, I think the biggest advice is to not lose yourself in the competition, is just to stick with who you are and be that vibrant personality that brought you onto the show in the first place. And, you know, whether you’re great at camera challenges or horrible at it, you can always be taught to be great on camera, but you can’t be taught to have a great personality.”

And of course, what’s an interview with the star of HGTV’s Color Splash without a little home decorating advice? Here’s David Bromstad’s take on decorating in a rental.

“Well, I’m probably going to give horrible advice right now because I’m sure everyone out there is going to be like, what? But, I think in every lease, every rental agreement that I was in before I bought my place, it always says don’t paint, but I always did. It was the first thing I did before I even moved in just because that is one way that you can just put your stamp on it and make it feel cozy. And all they want to do is have it look nice and have it be painted white when you leave.

So, if you’re willing to paint it white when you leave, that’s just fine. So, I was always willing and you know what? Every time that I did paint it, the landlord would come in and would be like, “You’re not supposed to paint, but it looks really great.” And I’m like well do you want me to paint it back, and they’re like no.”

On the flip side, he says:

“And if you don’t want to take the time to paint, just bringing in personal effects and just hang things on the wall—hang pieces of art, hang mirrors, make sure that it looks lived in. My house, honestly, is all white. And it’s very comfortable and it’s very cozy, and I’ve done a lot of homes that are all white with all white walls. You can still make it look chic and still make it look amazing. Don’t let the white walls fool you.”

You can watch David Bromstad as the mentor on HGTV’s Design Star Monday nights at 9/8central or on HGTV.com.

365 Thank Yous

Gratitude and happiness go hand in hand. No doubt a grateful heart is not only happy, but generous as well. Generosity can take many forms. For the author of “365 Thank Yous“ a disgruntled lawyer turns his outlook around in the course of a year through his generosity of thankful words. Each day for a year he wrote a thank you note. Some were simple, others in depth, all were genuine. While the effort seems small, think about how easily we all overlook opportunities to express our gratitude. This book got me thinking…

Maybe we should all try it!

Have you written a thank you card to someone today? What’s stopping you?

Writing thank-you cards is also the perfect excuse to make your own cards!

Crafting + Gratitude = Happiness

Clutches and Diaper Bags

35 clutches made as favors for a baby shower.

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Bonus! The gift to the mom-to-be, this super cute diaper bag.

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Thanks Amylouwho!

Look at a Cookbook – More Make It Fast, Cook It Slow: 200 Brand-New, Budget-Friendly, Slow-Cooker Recipes

“More Make It Fast, Cook It Slow: 200 Brand-New, Budget-Friendly, Slow-Cooker Recipes” by Stephanie O’Dea is the follow up to her New York Time best selling book “Make It Fast, Cook It Slow: The Big Book of Everyday Slow Cooking.
The best thing about this cookbook is that it has everything you love about the first one: easy to follow recipes, wide variety of ideas, and practical cooking. However, now you get even more ideas to try and taste!

What would make this book better?

Pictures! But if you’re looking for straight-forward recipes within a book at a value price (since printing text is more affordable than printing graphics) you’ll be perfectly happy with “More Make It Fast, Cook It Slow: 200 Brand-New, Budget-Friendly, Slow-Cooker Recipes.”

My favorite part of the book?

Real ingredients. Too many cookbooks feature recipes that call for unconventional ingredients. Perhaps the chefs are so far departed from the real world of typical grocery store shopping that they don’t realize that some items they take for granted are actually exotic luxuries to the average shopper. Not that you won’t find quality ingredients listed, there are plenty of occasions within this book for fresh flavor infusing delectables. But fortunately you won’t need to change grocery stores to prepare for these recipes. In fact, you probably already have most of what you’ll need to cook.

Wooden Turtle

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Thanks Angela!

Masquerade Glitter Mask

I usually don’t do a variety of crafts but this weekend I’m going to a masquerade event so I got to play, *happy dance*. I popped into Michaels and spent more then I should have for supplies, but worth every penny! I think my favorite purchase was a 24 pack of Martha Stewart glitter, it was more expensive then other glitter but the shades that she has are fabulous!!!!

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Thanks ambersmith59!

Drawstring Bag Embellishment

We received some free samples in a little green drawstring bag. I thought it was too neat to throw away, so I gave it a second chance at life. It worked out perfectly for this months challenge, since it was green! I have strawberry stuff in my kitchen, and have had strawberry material for probably years, so finally I put it to use.

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I trimmed the material and pressed the edges under. Then I stitched it around both sides of the bag. This hid the stuff that was printed on the other side of the bag. Then I decided to use hot glue to add a burgundy ribbon on the edge and a bow with a button.

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I hung it on a shelf with hooks in my kitchen. It turned out pretty cute.

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Thanks Trud!

In the Kitchen with a Good Appetite – Book Review

So much more than just a recipe book, “In the Kitchen with a Good Appetite” takes you on a journey of cooking. The stories behind the recipes, the insights into the life of culinary creator and writer Melissa Clark, and a clear passion for good food sets this book apart from your typical “cookbook.” While certainly you will find practical recipes that you are sure to use, the story telling makes it a personal adventure into the discovery of new dishes.

You may recognize the name Melissa Clark since she’s the New York Times Dining columnist. Clearly and expert when it comes to writing about food she brings those skills to this book. A memoir novel and cookbook rolled into one, you’ll be entertained and educated all at once.

The only downside of this book is its lack of pictures. I don’t know about you, but nothing makes me want to get in the kitchen and try out a new recipe like an enticing photo that gets your appetite tempted and your culinary ambition motivated. While the stories and recipes do indeed spark a similar desire, a few photos beyond the cover shot would’ve taken this book from an 8 to a 10 for me.

Easy Fleece Scarves

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Sewing the 2 pieces of fleece together.

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Cutting the scarves ‘fringe’.

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4 of the 10 finished scarves! I mixed all the colors together so none of the 10 scarves are the same.

Thanks msbecca!