‘Rock the Block’ recap: Alison Victoria returns for season 2 — and someone stops her from painting brick
The second season of “Rock the Block” debuted on Monday, and of the four women who appeared in the first season, only one has returned: Alison Victoria, host of “Windy City Rehab”.
Surprised to see Victoria on another HGTV show? The Chicago-based designer faces multiple lawsuits from disgruntled homeowners and a breakup with her former business partner, contractor Donovan Eckhardt. But that doesn’t seem to bother the network as executives have ordered nine more episodes of Victoria’s show, so let’s move on.
In this season of “Rock the Block” hosted by Ty Pennington, four teams from two hosts of the HGTV series design four identically built houses on the same block. Designers have six weeks to get the most value from their homes on a budget of $ 225,000. The winners will have the opportunity to presumably name the block after themselves and brag about it until next season.
HGTV colleagues Tarek El Moussa (“Flip or Flop”) and his fiancee and real estate agent Heather Rae Young will judge the designs and name the winning team.
Victoria is with Mike Holmes, the star of “Holmes On Holmes”. The Ontario-based general contractor, known for its “Make It Right” attitude, believes in building solid, sustainable homes and is committed to “improving building standards and sustainable construction,” according to its website. (He was also a judge last season, giving Victoria the Challenge win for Best Kitchen and Dining Room.)
Other teams include: Nate Berkus and Jeremiah Brent from “Nate and Jeremiah: Save My House”; David Bromstad from “My Lottery Dream Home” and Tiffany Brooks from the upcoming show “50K Three Ways”; and Brian and Mika Kleinschmidt from “100 Day Dream Home”.
The episode begins with designer introductions, and Bromstad and Brooks immediately identify Victoria and Holmes as their greatest competition.
“She knows how to win it,” explains Brooks. “She knows what won the last time.”
Victoria swears she never thought she’d do this to herself again, but she says she’s back and better – and best of all, she knows what not to do.
The first challenge gets the designers to cook – they have to design the kitchen and dining room of their respective homes. You’ll also need to start planning the exterior of the home, though this will be assessed in a later episode.
Victoria won this challenge last season. Can she do it again
Immediately, Victoria and Holmes agree that the existing kitchen feels too closed. Half a wall separates the kitchen from the dining room and the rest of the space opens up to the family room.
The duo decide to remove half the wall, add a wall and arch over the stove, widen the island, and add custom cabinets and a built-in refrigerator. The total cost is approximately $ 48,000.
“I like where you go,” says Holmes Victoria. “I feel really good about it.”
Holmes describes his style as functional and sustainable, with most of his projects being practical for families.
Victoria says her style is vintage and modern, which is a confusing way of saying that she incorporates an antique or two into her otherwise modern designs. Her goal, she tells the audience, is to create a “lived” feeling.
“If we’re going to make it, I almost want us to be unpredictable,” she says to Holmes.
The first sign of competition hits Victoria and Holmes like a ton of bricks – because a ton of bricks arrives by truck for Berkus and Brent’s exterior design plan. While other designers frolic on the brick house (laughs, guys, look what happened to two little pigs), Victoria and Holmes don’t laugh at Team Double B.
“Are you concerned about these guys,” asks Holmes.
“They are the ones I worry about,” she affirms.
The first surprise challenge of the season comes in the form of Ted Allen from “Chopped”. The reality TV host gives each designer couple four elements that need to be incorporated into their design. Items include chicken wire, faux leather, subway tile, and mason jars.
The design continues and the stones for the kitchen design by Team Victolmes come. Of course, Victoria insists on painting the brick.
“It’s such a natural beauty,” says Holmes.
“The brick in my head is white,” says Victoria. “It rises and it is painted. I paint a lot of bricks in Chicago. “
Holmes is not here for that.
“Please don’t paint it,” he pleads with her. “Don’t give it character, then cover it up!”
It takes something convincing, but Victoria gives in and the house is better for that.
After the kitchens and dining rooms are fully staged, El Moussa and Rae Young arrive to assess the rooms.
“Oh my God!” both exclaim when they see the Victoria Holmes kitchen. The brick – fortunately unpainted – provides a distinctive feature in the entire range. The custom-made cabinets are painted white with a matching refrigerator. All of the hardware is brass, and the wood floors are the perfect complement.
A traditional style chandelier hangs above the dining table by the kitchen near the windows. Heavy curtains dim the lighting in the room and a massive painting protrudes over the table top.
Three of the four challenge items were incorporated into the pantry to the left of the kitchen, and the mason jars were melted down to create a glass bowl.
The kitchen designed by Alison Victoria and Mike Holmes for “Rock the Block”. HGTV
El Moussa and Rae Young love the brick’s eye-catching appearance and praise the designers for making good use of the space. However, they indicate the somewhat dreary design of the dining room. El Moussa said he wished there was more design connectivity between the two rooms.
And the winners of the week?
Victoria and Holmes – this is the second win for Victoria’s kitchen and restaurant challenge.
“Not only did you kill it with the ‘Chopped’ mason jar challenge, but we believe your kitchen added the most value to the house,” Young told this week’s winning team.
“So far, so good,” says Victoria with a smile.