The highly-anticipated season three of Queer Eye is finally here (yassssss!), and if you have plans today—cancel them. This season begs to be binge-watched. Season three follows the Fab Five as they make-over nine heroes in Kansas City, Missouri (one episode features makeovers for two sisters).
While we love each member of the Fab Five for how much care and love they exude through their various expertise’, designer Bobby Berk arguably handles one of the most important aspects of the heroes’ makeovers. If you’ve seen the show, you know that the transformation of the space that Bobby gets his hands on is truly remarkable—not to mention heartwarming.
A big theme during this season is putting down roots and creating a space that really feels like home, while also feeling at home within yourself. I may or may not have cried during every unveiling of the redecorating. Okay, I definitely did. All eight episodes. Without spoiling (too many) of the gorgeous home transformations (because half the fun of the show is being shocked yourself!), we have all kinds of lessons that Bobby taught us about design and making a house a home during this season. Let’s begin!
Bobby explains that people often have the misconception that feminine aspects of design and home decor must have this girly, frilly look. He says that when it comes to these design choices, it’s about what an individual likes—not what gender they are.
Bobby decides to go with a “cute, modern, rustic farmhouse” look to revamp the taxidermy-filled, bland home in this episode. This is a good example of a style that isn’t super feminine, he says.
4. White paint can go a long way.
It makes a space feel brighter and lighter, as opposed to having “dark, depressing wallpaper,” Bobby says.
5. You don’t have to ditch your favorite items—even if they’re not the most stylish.
Take the taxidermy in this home, for example. When you’re redecorating, you can find a place for these kinds of items—it’s all about how you display them and what other design elements surround it.
Episode 2 – Lost Boy
6. Make a checklist for redecorating projects.
Bobby has a checklist of all of the supplies that he needs for this episode, and it seems like a great way to keep track of everything (especially for a larger project). Plus, who doesn’t love checking something off a list?!
7. It’s important to make your living space a home.
You want to feel established in where you’re living.
8. Work with what’s there.
For example, in this episode, Bobby is tasked with revamping a small, rustic cabin. He says when you’re starting on a project, don’t fight what you have as the base—work with it! Bobby uses the cabin’s size to create the aesthetic for the redecorating.
9. The definition of home is a place where you feel safe and secure.
10. Don’t be afraid to use bright, bold colors.
How good do those red cabinets look?
11. Bunk beds are a good space-saving option.
12. Shadow boxes are a nice way to display kids’ art.
Turns out, there is an aesthetically-pleasing solution to the artwork from kiddos laying around the house.
13. Removing overhead cabinets can make a small kitchen feel larger.
Episode 3 – Jones Bar-B-Q
14. Everything has a place.
This is important to remember when decorating and reorganizing. In this episode, for example, Bobby has to focus on organization of a very small barbecue restaurant (more of a shed, if we’re being honest). For that small of a space, it is imperative that everything has a designated place in order to avoid chaos.
15. Give meaningful items a place to shine.
Bobby totally revamps everything about the exterior and interior of the barbecue restaurant, and in doing so, he also creates a space for the sisters’ family history to shine through. He frames news clippings and photos of their family in two simple red frames that pop against the black brick outside the restaurant.
16. Sometimes you need to take a step back and look at the big picture.
It gives you better perspective to focus back in on the task at hand.
Episode 4 – When Robert Met Jamie
17. Community-based workouts are super motivating.
Okay, so not really design-oriented, but still a very good lesson! In this episode, Bobby, Antoni, and Robert take an Orange Theory class together.
18. Sturdy coffee tables are a must in a home with kiddos.
19. Art frame TVs are sophisticated and cool.
The whole family is thoroughly impressed with the TV, which actually looks nice on the mantle.
20. Wallpaper is fun in the kitchen.
The black and white patterned wallpaper pops against the other white walls, and contrasts perfectly with the wooden shelving.
Episode 5 – Black Girl Magic
21. Little luxuries make a home feel permanent.
Like a couch that isn’t from the trash, for example (you’ll have to watch the episode to see what I mean).
22. West Elm is “artsy”, “young” & “hip.”
23. The things you surround yourself with can bring you joy.
So take decorating your home seriously!
24. Design “isn’t just about furniture and spending money”—it’s about things that motivate you.
25. An arrangement of candles inside a fireplace > an actual fire.
26. Painting cabinets can make a kitchen look “new” and “young.”
Bobby says you don’t need to rip out your cabinets to make your kitchen feel fresh and inviting—try a new color! Take these deep blue cabinets, for example.
27. If you’re short on closet space, embrace an open concept.
Episode 6 – Elrod & Sons
28. Take advantage of high ceilings.
The tall, dark shelves fit proportionally in this living room, because of the high ceilings. They also allow for much more display space.
29. Use color to accentuate the architecture in your home.
Here, Bobby says that the soft gray make the architectural features stand out.
30. Use contrasting colors in your kitchen to make it pop.
For example, Bobby put in light countertops with dark cabinets in this kitchen. The backsplash beneath the cabinets makes for a more natural transition from the dark to light colors. He recommends using lighter colors on top, though (such as wallpaper or cabinets), because it draws the eye upwards and makes a space seem bigger.
Episode 7 – Sloth to Slay
31. Make sure you hang a mirror high enough on the wall.
Otherwise, as Bobby points out, your tall friends will have to bend down to see themselves.
32. Try bed panels on the wall instead of a headboard.
33. Remove cabinet doors in a small kitchen.
It creates a more open look, and also makes even the smallest kitchen feel bigger.
34. A ping pong table can double as a casual dining spot.
Yes, it sounds a bit out there—but Bobby says an outdoor ping pong table can serve as a perfect casual table for entertaining friends for a barbecue or summer party. It really is a cute idea (especially for a younger crowd)!
Episode 8 – Baby on Board
35. Keeping a clean and organized home helps your mental health.
As Bobby points out, it’s hard to stay on top of your mental health and happiness when you’re constantly waking up to- and surrounded by piles of stuff everywhere and a messy home. Bobby says it’s okay to be a little messy sometimes, but it’s not okay to live in filth. There is a definite and important difference!
36. DARK CABINETS. LIGHT COUNTERTOPS.
Or vice versa! Louder, for the people in the back! Bobby is reallllly into this design technique.
37. Touch-screen fridges are IN.
I mean, you can see INSIDE the fridge without opening the door. Energy-saving!
38. Think functional when it comes to island in the kitchen.
You use the countertop on the island every day, so why not make sure it’s the most functional space possible? Try an island that has shelving or drawers beneath it, for optimal organization and additional storage space.
39. Paneled lighting adds an understated, yet sophisticated touch to a room.
40. You don’t need an entire room to create a sweet nursery.
A baby doesn’t need that much space, anyway! The crib and chair have their own nice space in the master bedroom, and the prints above the crib anchor the color scheme of the mini nursery.
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