Take two parts Designing for the Sexes, one part MTV: Music Television and one part Comedy Central, and you have a close approximation of Mix It Up, the latest home-decorating entry, created by Friends
star Courteney Cox and hubby David Arquette for WE: Women's Entertainment.
The homeowner-torture factor is ratcheted up on this one. There's no hand-holding, consensus building designer, as in Designing for the Sexes; no loyal friends to hold the designing beast in check, as in Trading Spaces. This time, the hosts show the battling homeowners to the door and banish them for three days — but only after dragging all their current furnishings onto the front lawn and trashing their taste in front of the whole neighborhood.
The participants know they're in for something different when the hosts arrive. Thea Mann is straight out of the perky host central casting file, but co-host/co-producer Milos Milicevic? He looks more like a part-time biker tattoo artist.
The goal is to find couples as far apart as possible, taste-wise. The first duo, Q and Mary, are the poster children. He's a Wesley Snipes-looking, wears-his-sunglasses-indoors hipster who wants Dean Martin's old digs. She loves their home's Texas touches, down to the cowhide floor covering and longhorns over the door.
It seems impossible that they can be satisfied — especially when Mary begins blubbering every time she thinks about the décor to come — but I'll spoil this one to say both come away happy. Designer David McCauley doesn't say what he calls this Texas-meets-hipster look. Tipster, perhaps?
This is less about the process and more about the people: the feuding homeowners, and a bit more about the challenged designers, too. McCauley curses up a storm when his chosen discount fabrics seem to be sold out from underneath him after he's based his design around them.
And the rooms are pretty fantastic. Unlike Trading Spaces, this one has a $2,500 budget and three-day time frame, so viewers get honest-to-God professional upholstered furniture and a more thought-out room plan.
Mix It Up
debuts Oct. 22 at 1 p.m. ET/PT on WE: Women's Entertainment.