Have you had your 'style diagnostic' done yet?

What is that you ask? The style diagnostic is the fresh approach the latest Design Star winner - Emily Henderson - has to pulling a look together in a home, defining the space uniquely as you. On Emily's show, Secrets From a Stylist,  Emily takes a "tailor-made approach to styling a room" by customizing the room "layer by style layer" to ultimately help the homeowners discover their individualized personal taste (somewhat similar to Find Your Style). On Emily's show, she demonstrates this by asking the owners to choose some fave items from what Emily has selected from around their home. She also plays a game with the owners called "Keep it? or Chuck it?" Emily then will come up with a style (hence her 'diagnosis') to be the inspiration for her hunting and gathering new items for the space.

The twist is though - the items may be new to the space, but they aren't necessarily all chain-store new items (like only shopping at West Elm or Crate & Barrel). She shares tips on how she saves money by buying vintage or thrifted items, and tweaking them - through paint or upholstery (hence looking at lines & shapes when thrifting). Emily also keeps a photo journal of what she spots - to perhaps use in a future project. This past Saturday's episode, she even showed viewers how not to be discouraged by the high retail price of a pillow, but how to create a look for less. Yes - it is something several DIYer's already know, but not everyone can do.

Emily Thrifting

Emily Thinking

Besides her down-to-earth and quirky personality, what I have enjoyed about the show is that Emily is explaining to viewers the what, why and how of shopping thrift & vintage (almost like a blog turned TV show). She easily  demonstrates one room styled two ways. Although a budget isn't shown, the cost of item selections are and they are more reflective of the way we think in today's economy. Her first two episodes have done a great job of demonstrating to viewers that from a simple shift to shopping thrift you can create a personal style that is uniquely YOU. And that truly is what makes a house a home - rather than looking like a merchandised store.

From Emily's first Episode - Option 1

Same room - Option 2
No construction - just paint and a simple switch of rug, accessories and
some furniture - but not necessarily its placement.

You can catch a re-cap of her show she posts on her blog at Emily Hendrson's Blog, as well as check the schedule and room reviews on HGTV.com. There is even a site created for you to upload your won pictures (similar to the Rate My Space format) and Emily can diagnose your design style.

Have you seen it? What do you think?



  1. I haven't seen it yet, but thought she was so cute on Design Star. I will have to watch it!

  2. Going to have to check this out. Thanks,
    Mary Ann

  3. Decent premise, but it didn't go over well. Now it's revamped and she's back but it's still not that engaging. The homeowners seem a bit "deer in the headlights" in contrast to Emily's "quirky" personality. Maybe it's just me, but her delivery to the clients always comes off a bit snarky; almost like she's bored. I'd like to see her actually working alongside her carpenter and assistant on the show--not just dreaming up the design. She seems to pop in and get excited about a piece of furniture here, a light fixture there, then give the reveal at the end. The show, and Emily, have potential--both just need to stop trying to be hip and connect with the viewers.



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