End of the Year & End of an Era at HGTV.com

Long before blogging, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest took over the Internet as a source for home enthusiasts to share "How To" home improvement projects, makeover photos, and decorating tips, there was a TV network who reached out to its community for engagement with a website called Rate My Space. Some may laugh at RMS, some took it as a competitive platform, some used it for inspiration, and some used it for help with their own design dilemmas. You could say HGTV pioneered the interior design and decorating social sharing we know today, from interior photography to vignette + tablescape styling to writing those How To posts we read on blogs, plus online magazines. And as of today, December 31, 2014 - the site Rate My Space will no longer exist - which is hard to believe it would cease to exist when it started back in 2007. 

 NYE Tablescape shared & featured at HGTV and on my blog - read here.

I can still remember seeing the commercial on TV (I think during Design Star or Devine Design with Candice Olsen) asking people to "Share their photos" and thinking - Hey - I could do that - I can share what I've done here (which was, at the time, our townhouse we bought in October 2006 in  Florida). The first share was an epic fail - filled with so much criticism, I deleted the photo. The photo was of our bedroom, and I hadn't yet decided whether to lean wall art on the night stands or hang above. Afterwards, I decided to go with above arrangement, retake the photos, and repost the room, which this time was a hit - no mean comments (yes, negative commenting was rooted back in '07!). 

 From RMS photo share to
 The show aired 2008-2009-2010-2011 on HGTV.

From that point on, I had begun my own personal online sharing -- and -- engaging with other people who were posting and leaving comments. That was back in 2007, and I continued sharing up until 2013 (wow!! SIX years of photo sharing). Within those six years, I became friends with many of the people who were commenting - some are still friends today, from sending Christmas cards (Linda), to our Facebook connections (Patrick), and even meeting in real life Rate My Space commenters and contributors such as the Visual Vamp, Valorie in Miami and Janelle in Phoenix. Ironically, Janelle and I decided to meet for lunch back in 2012 (after we had connected on Facebook). I had a rough time getting settled in Phoenix, but meeting Janelle for lunch those three years was probably one of the highlights! We even drank our first Mint Julep together at lunch during the Kentucky Derby weekend this past Spring - and I bring this up because it all goes back to having formed the connections back on Rate My Space.

Our second Thanksgiving in our FL townhome - 2007

Sharing on Rate My Space helped me develop my ever changing seasonal style - but one thing didn't change: keeping my concept of repurposing, and using what you already have in new ways, with refreshed colors - even if shifting from room to room - to restyle, refresh, renew a home's space - without breaking the bank. The photo sharing, along with detailed room descriptions evolved into blogging - which Valorie had already tapped into, and who was a huge encouragement to me when I first started blogging back in late 2009. The two key points I learned from her were. 1. It will take a while to find your voice, but 2. Don't stop blogging.

Fast forward to today, and thanks to sites like Houzz and Pinterest, interior decor photo sharing has exploded on the Internet, and has changed not only magazine publications, but also site designs them-self - which is why I'm sure HGTV let go of some of their start-up photo sharing platforms.

Thankfully though, many of the photos and posts I had shared as NYCLQ on Rate My Space were featured in many of the HGTV specialty posts - although I don't think the RMS show or podcast (one of the first video bloggers aka vloggers, Angelo Surmelis) is available.  I have a link list (in my features tab above) but some of the most viewer favorites were the first bedroom I posted called Sweet Retreat, the yellow black and white living room called "Cash Cab" (I still get people complimenting me on that - Thank you!!), my Thanksgiving tablescape in brown & white, "JOY" mirror project from a Christmas Bedroom, New Years Eve tablescape called "No Reservations Required" and a few others...


The Internet has evolved, especially the way we get inspiration for interior design, holiday decorating and entertaining. And so to have the style and decor tastes of homeowners, dorm dwellers and even renters! I feel blessed and I'm grateful to have been a part of this design industry game changer - because not only did photo sharing on RMS grow, so too did the diy industry and building an online presence. Yes - there are still plenty of home improvement projects that should be left in the hands of a professional - even licensed professional, but there is a certain pride in ownership when one can share what and how they made an improvement or turned a house into a home, over time, on their own.

Although the first RMS posts I shared have already being deleted from the site in the past two years, some of the newer ones had remained...

So thank you HGTV! Thank you for having the foresight to see so far into the future and pioneer the online diy decor social experience - and also for having us create one of the first online "User Profile", where I so proudly came up with my NYCLQ user name, and I had my license plate personalized with it too! lol But mostly thank you for giving creative minds a place to mix and mingle, without worrying about watermarks and branding and making a photo pinworthy as we need to be today.

Thank you to the staff contributors who shared my content such as Kayla Kitts and Camille Smith, and thank you to those who commented, saved, or shared one of my posts! Thank you for the opportunity to have had the chance to inspire you to make your home your haven - and all with a little shift and shopping thrift! A special thank you also for having had the opportunity to meet so many good people (you know who you are!!)

While this may not be an end of the year recap of 2014, it is still a time of reflection (we all started somewhere!) and a time to show gratitude. My personal Rewind 2014 will be coming up next - In the meantime, head over to HGTV and check out their new site design at HGTV.com
 Good-bye Rate My Space - and thanks for keeping it real!

Thanks for stopping by!
Have a Happy and Safe New Years Eve!


  1. Hi Linda, I live in Canada and have been following you since RMS, from Florida to Arizona and now look forwards to seeing what you will do in your new home. My decorating style is very similar to yours and I sure get a lot of inspiration from you. Thank you and have a Happy New year in your new home

  2. Lynda...I have followed you for a couple of years now and will continue to follow and admire how you re-purpose decor and your seasonal set ups. When funds are short for me ... you have shown time again how to spot/find great buys and turn them into fabulous pieces. Thank you!! for blogging and i wish you all the best in 2015 and in your new home....big fan from Texas.

  3. Hi Lynda! I have followed you since those first days on RMS! Your work still inspires me and I can't wait to see what this new year brings! Happy New Year to you and yours!

  4. I will never forget your "joy" bedroom on RMS because of it's beauty. Looking forward to seeing what you do with your new home.



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