Call Your Mom And Tell Her 'Trading Spaces' Is Back

As you know, 2017 has already seen the return of the early 2000s in a major way. First, it was the return of the Juicy Velour tracksuit, then Tyra Banks announced her return to ANTM, and now, TLC has gone full 2005 by announcing that Trading Spaces—the show that made suburban middle America’s impending housing bubble cool—will be returning to the network sometime next year. For those of you who don’t remember Trading Spaces, the premise was simple: Two sets of neighbors pair up with interior decorators and are given two days and $1,000 to fuck up each other’s homes redecorate. Sometimes, the results are chic and tasteful (or, as chic and tasteful as a 2005 Iowan ranch house could ever be). Sometimes, the results were gold hay spraypainted and stuck to the wall. All in all, it was a pretty great way to destroy your relationship with your neighbors and ensure you’ll never have to make small talk with them ever again. 

The show was hosted by a pixie cut named Page Davis, who was forced to stand there and smile while people broke down into tears wondering why their brick fireplace had been destroyed, or why the fuck someone put all of their furniture on the ceiling. 

Trading Spaces premiered Oct. 13, 2001 and ran until 2008, when TLC decided to switch from introducing the world to nice, normal families to introducing us to horrible nightmare families that abuse children with Here Comes Honey Boo Boo and 19 Kids and Counting. But now that literally all of those shows have completely imploded (who knew that a family with over 19 children who all have J names might have problems?!?), TLC is going back to basics and the new Trading Spaces should be back in 2018, exactly 10 years since it was cancelled. 10 years? Fuck. Now I feel old. 

In honor of Trading Spaces’ return, here is our list of the five worst rooms the show ever produced, almost exclusively thanks to the work of Hildi Santo-Tomas. RIP all of these friendships. 

1. Sand In The Living Room

No one in the history of the Earth has ever thought, “This living room is nice, but what it really needs is a shitload of sand!” And yet, Hildi Santo-Tomas did just that with a living room that was supposed to give a “relaxing cabana” vibe but ended up looking more like you live in a circus on the beach. I seriously cannot think of anything less “relaxing” than coming home to a room that is full of sand. You know those homeowners are still cleaning this shit up.

2. The Fireplace

One of Trading Spaces‘ most cringeworthy moments came when designer Doug Wilson went against the explicit wishes of one family to have their brick fireplace remain untouched. Instead, Doug turned their livingroom into the house from Beetlejuice. The homeowners hated it so much that the wife, Pam, had to step out of the room while legit sobbing on mic. As far as Trading Spaces drama goes, this was the equivalent of Pumkin spitting on New York in Flavor of Love

3. Horror Kitchen

Who wouldn’t want to live in a kitchen that looked like someone was murdered in it? Hildi Santo-Tomas is back again with a kitchen that she designed to look like an elementary school haunted house, complete with a bloody tarp on the wall and coffin spice rack. Seriously, how does this woman call herself a “designer?” 

4. Safari Bedroom

This design was perfect for anyone who’s ever gone to Rainforest Cafe and thought, “I’d like to live here!” The safari bedroom was the brainchild of Doug Wilson, who was probably projecting his own desire to move far far away and never decorate an ungrateful middle income family’s home again. I get that you’re hurting, Doug, but this is not the way out. 

5. The Time Hildi Made A Mural Of Her Own Face

Nothing says “IDGAF what you want” like making a mural of your own fucking face in someone else’s livingroom. And Hildi did just that with one couple, whose room actually would have been cute if it weren’t for the mosaic of a D-list interior designer’s face taking up half the room. Honestly, Hildi must think she’s really pretty if she thinks people she literally met 48 hours ago would be interested in having her face as the centerpiece of their home. Ya gotta respet that confidence. 

Other Hildi creations that I didn’t have time to mention: flower bathroom, hay house, furniture on the ceiling room, and like, a thousand others. God, I hope she comes back for the new season. I would love to see what she’d do with 2017 technology. Maybe a bedroom made out of old iPhones? Just a thought. 

Alise Morales
Alise Morales
Alise Morales is a comedy writer and performer. She is the writer of the Betches Sup Newsletter and co-host of the Betches Sup Podcast.