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Home Town

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A place to discuss particular episodes, arcs and moments from the show's run. Please remember this isn't a complete catch-all topic -- check out the forum for character topics and other places for show-related talk.

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I've been reading Erin's blog for about 5 years now. She and Ben are really sweet, earnest people who love their little town of Laurel, MS. I'm please with their new show and hope it does well for them and their fellow townies. Laurel is a really nice, small town in MS that they're trying to save from falling apart. I wish them the best.

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Started watching the first episode and only lasted about 15 minutes.  It's the same-old-same-old HGTV formula in a different town with different people.  I may give it another chance but I'm burned out on these fixer-upper type shows.

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I wasn't aware of Erin's blog - - or about Erin and Ben - - until this show started.  I love them!  I think they are so cute and appreciate their energy and drive.  So far I like what I see of the show.

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I love the show!  Yeah, it's total formula but I appreciate that Ben isn't as goofy as Chip Gaines and Erin isn't as serious as Joanna.  

I enjoy seeing the small town glimpses and, so far, I like everything they have done.  I think I most appreciate that they are restoring the homes and bringing out the original architectural detail and charm versus stripping them to make them into soulless modern white boxes. 

I've set my DVR to record the season.  I'm all in! 

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11 hours ago, Gam2 said:

I covet Erin's car. I think it's a restored Wagoneer and so great looking.

I hadn't noticed Erin's car because I was mesmerized by Ben's truck.  I'll pay closer attention when I watch the next show, but no worries @Gam2, you've got dibs on the car and I've got dibs on the truck.  Now we just need to convince Erin and Ben to part with them.

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I used to be able to access Erin's blog "make something good today" but since I updated by IPad, it won't work now. I am computer illiterate-ha. Anyway, if you want to see her car and read her blog, just google "Erin Napier's Blog" and it will come up for you. She gives you some info about her town, their house, her awesome car, their friends and dogs, etc. Check it out.

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On 4/12/2017 at 1:14 PM, psychoticstate said:

I love the show!  Yeah, it's total formula but I appreciate that Ben isn't as goofy as Chip Gaines and Erin isn't as serious as Joanna.  

I enjoy seeing the small town glimpses and, so far, I like everything they have done.  I think I most appreciate that they are restoring the homes and bringing out the original architectural detail and charm versus stripping them to make them into soulless modern white boxes. 

I've set my DVR to record the season.  I'm all in! 

I really like this show too. On Fixer Upper, they tend to take down a lot of walls and change the layout of the house; and most of the houses end up looking very similar (in Joanna's style which I do like). On Home Town, they restore the homes back to their original character. Erin & Ben do what I think Nicole Curtis tried to do on Rehab Addict, except Nicole's work was often poor quality and Erin & Ben seem to do high quality work.

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I tried to watch but found it kind of boring. I didn't care for the formula or the design at the end. I like the idea of it but in the end didn't find they were any more interesting than all of the other shows like it. I had expected to like it more. 

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They seem to be a nice couple, I like the houses and yet I am lukewarm on the show.

I think it's a couple things. I don't enjoy their relentless self-promotion of how brilliant they are when it seems more like their charm should be a more down-home, "aw shucks" thing. The houses seem like beautiful old charmers but some of Erin's ... embellishments are more miss than hit for me. I see some good work, particularly in regard to not just ripping entire sections of the house apart to make it an inappropriate modernist or "farmhouse" open space, but nothing with a real "wow, that's amazing" moment. Some of it seems downright goofy, like the piano-turned-desk.

Also, Laurel is a town of 18,000 - how many beautiful old houses in need of restoration being purchased by a couple with some real money to spend can there BE? Waco, TX and the surrounding have a population of around 235,000 and Chip & Joanna ran out of "worst houses in the best neighborhoods" at least 2 seasons ago.

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I like the houses better than fixer upper, and that they dont rip all the walls down.  However, I prefer Jo's white on white aesthetic over all the green I've seen so far.  There was that White House with the extremely expensive wall paper that she did save some of.  I wish she had kept all of it above the wainscoting, and went with white over pukegreen .  Also, the icky green kitchen cabinets, and the WTF? Picture of some guy from the civil war on the oven hood.  Always go light in a darker area.  

I couldn't quite dope out why they had to go downstairs to get to an upstairs room, but it was really cool.  Good house. 

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On 4/12/2017 at 1:14 PM, psychoticstate said:

Yeah, it's total formula but I appreciate that Ben isn't as goofy as Chip Gaines and Erin isn't as serious as Joanna.  

This.   Though some of her hair styles can be distracting, otherwise I'm loving this show.  Like the Gaines, they remind me of the people I grew up with back home. 

 

Creeped out by the bats.  They can carry rabies, and can even potentially bite people without them realizing it.  Unlikely, but just knowing that there's a risk of that....

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I think I am an episode behind - this house had "the war room" and the dark, dark, dark kitchen.  There is a line between living in an old house with some charm and an old house as theme park/museum and I think this one crossed that line with the old photos, newspapers and WW2 relics. If the one of the photos had been a family photo or maybe the photo of the man who had built the house that would be one thing, but a lot of it seemed pretty random. I have a few things mounted and framed: the sleeve with chevrons from my grandfather's WW1 uniform, my father's army cap and of course the flags from my in-laws military funerals but that would be where I draw the line, with personal significance.

I was relieved to see the old dining room wallpaper only used as part of an accent wall, I was afraid they were going to leave it all. I still think it was a bit much.

We didn't see if the reclaimed fireplace actually worked once it was put together - I'd sort of assume that if someone covered up a fireplace that it never drafted correctly due to chimney design and they decided it wasn't worth the trouble. We didn't see if it was functional.

I also didn't see how that library ladder in the kitchen was supposed to stow out of the way - otherwise you'd be tripping over it every time you tried to walk down that narrow hallway to the bedroom.

But, yay for bringing back an old house is surprisingly good shape.

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Also, Laurel is a town of 18,000 - how many beautiful old houses in need of restoration being purchased by a couple with some real money to spend can there BE? 

There's no reason why this can't be just a one-season show, as many are. As far as their ability to make a living, they were doing that before this show, they'll do it after. 

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What has me liking this show so much is that fact that they don't p*ss and moan about a problem. They figure out how to fix it as cheaply as possible and then do it! No phone calls to the new owners, just fix it. Point in fact, the bats! Yuck, was all I could think of and I wanted Ben out of that attic as fast as he could move! The new owners didn't know about the bats 'til after the fact of the clean up...and geez, bats are protected?

We are planning a day trip to Laurel somewhere in the near future...I really want to see the town and the homes. Growing up, I lived in the country so we didn't have a "real" main street. And if we wanted to shop or go the movies, we went into town....which was Richmond, VA which certainly didn't have a small town feel! Last weekend we went through 2 small towns(Aberdeen-already featured on HGTV and West Point which has a grand Plantation home)  with great main streets....like you picture when you think of small town living. Mississippi is full of them with their vintage homes and friendly neighborhoods. I loved them! Starkville is a small town but has a huge University which takes away from the really small town feel but thankfully I don't have to drive far to see the little towns.

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I like these folks - so far they are positive and not acting silly.  Their style isn't what I would go for but I can appreciate their work.  I also love seeing the small town.  We lived in the late 70's in a very small town in southwest Arkansas that was (probably still is) very much like this.  Made me miss that. 

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I'm a confirmed city person, but am enjoying this show.  I like the couple and appreciate their work to restore the houses.  I'm soooooo tired of white/gray houses that all look the same inside.

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In the "bat house" I thought they did a great economical job with the kitchen - although as a homeowner, I'd have preferred a hard surface counter top to the wood, particularly around the sink and stove. Also, having had an undermount kitchen sink, I never want to go back to one with a lip.

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I love Ben's truck.  My dad had one exactly like that when I was a teenager (except his was green).  I also loved the butcher block counter he created from scraps!  It was beautiful.  I'd hate to have to do the maintenance on it, but even so, it definitely showed his craftsman skills.   I like the lack of self-inflicted drama.   

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 Also, having had an undermount kitchen sink, I never want to go back to one with a lip.

I wonder if an undermount sink might be more problematic with butcher block? I have a sister who swears undermount sinks are a pain to keep clean (she's a germaphobe), and I'm not saying they are, but if debris and water can get underneath the sink, maybe wood would not be a good option.

I have not had any experiences with bats, and seeing the bats kinda creeped me out. But hearing that there were from 500 to 600 bats (when I was thinking maybe a couple dozen) really creeped me out. 

I checked out Laurel, MS, and was stunned to see the demographics of the town. Wouldn't have guessed the town's makeup by the filming of this show. 

Edited by mojito
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Well, that was my other point, I'd rather not have butcher block near the sink and stove because I'd rather have an undermount sink and that is really only available with solid surface (granite, quartz, etc). There are also molded-in sinks available with Corian, but I am not a Corian fan. Otherwise the usual install is to use silicone seal to "glue" the sink in and then either use drilled tabs on the underside lip of the sink or a kind of wire turnbuckle that supports the sink.

I have always run another bead of silicone seal between the sink edge and the counter to keep anything from getting in between the two surfaces. It never seemed like a big deal to me.

Yes, from the hosts, clients, workers (although there have been several non-white workers), shots inside other Laurel establishments, you'd get a different impression. Although I think the pilot episode had a black couple as clients.

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@suebee12, if you make it to Laurel, please report back.  I'm curious to know what this town is like.

I looooooved the house in last night's episode.  So charming and really perfect for a single woman.  I loved the front porch, I loved the colors they chose, I loved the living/dining/kitchen space and her office space.  Was she solely a professional calligrapher?  I did wonder what they did with those built-ins that were in the old living room area.  Very vintage and authentic to the home.  Hope they weren't destroyed. 

In short, I would live in this house in a minute.

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“I looooooved the house in last night’s episode.  So charming and really perfect for a single woman.  I loved the front porch, I loved the colors they chose, I love the living/dining/kitchen space and her office space.  In short, I would live in this house in a minute.”

Oh, I agree 100%!

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On 4/18/2017 at 8:07 PM, pep4 said:

reeped out by the bats.  They can carry rabies, and can even potentially bite people without them realizing it.  Unlikely, but just knowing that there's a risk of that....

Those bats made my skin crawl.  And the exterminator said they were protected and you can't kill them? Are bats endangered?  Gah!

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11 hours ago, psychoticstate said:

I did wonder what they did with those built-ins that were in the old living room area.  Very vintage and authentic to the home.  Hope they weren't destroyed. 

I wondered the same thing and it really bothered me. Those built-ins were original and very charming; you know, some of that "character" prospective buyers are always saying they want.  In fact, Erin's  proposal surprised me; seemed like the plan was to simply knock all the walls out to make it one big OPEN CONCEPT space. ~shudder!  

But I have to say, when it was finished, I really liked it.  Great job!  That porch was perfect.  I wanted to dive through the TV and sit there with them while enjoying a lovely lemonade!

Still would like to know what they did w/ those built-ins, however.  Maybe they'll use them in another project.

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I MUCH prefer Home Town to Fixer Upper.  Chip Gaines bugs the ever-loving crap out of me!  I guess one could say that Erin and Ben do self-promote, but there's a genuineness to them that I like.  Ben seems to like to play around a bit, but Chip Gaines comes off as a moron after awhile.

I also think that Ben is a very talented woodworker.  Just from some of the pieces that I've seen on the show, I'd love a piece that he made.

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I'm several episodes behind, so I just watched the Beard Home, which became the Holloway (sp?) home.  

Liked:  Rehabbing a home with history.  Maintaining the original woodwork.  Drop leaf table in kitchen nook.  Discovering the bees and moving them to new home.  Homeowner's reaction to historical plaque.

Things that made me go hmmm, interesting, not sure how I feel about it:  Repurposing piano into desk.  Ben licking honey off his hands in talking head with Erin.

Just no:  Ben, don't take a nap on new swing cushions after you're so sweaty from your hard work on the home.  No, no, no!

I really wish that we could have seen what was accomplished upstairs.  

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But I have to say, when it was finished, I really liked it.  Great job!  That porch was perfect.  I wanted to dive through the TV and sit there with them while enjoying a lovely lemonade!

Totally.  Only thing that annoyed me was the buyer saying "Why are you showing me a house without a front porch?"  I'd be like, "WE ARE GOING TO ADD A FRONT PORCH!  It is not that difficult!  This is what we do!"  I don't have that southern "bless your heart" charm or patience.

It is like on Property Brothers and all the other shows.  Buyers:  "I hate the colors, it is ugly, it is dated ..."     You are on a show where they redo houses. 

On a shallow note, I love Erin's wardrobe.  She wears a lot of cute items.

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This show has grown on me, and now I really like it because it already has way more variety of design and architecture than Fixer Upper, which I can't stand because every house ends up looking exactly the same.  And Chip and Joanna annoy the crap out of me.

I had to laugh at the episode I saw this week, with the couple who had spent the last several years travelling the world for the husband's job as a military chaplain. The other day I was waxing sentimental about all the "classic" HGTV shows from around 2000 and all design trends from that time, so I was thrilled when the wife on this episode requested a "French country" kitchen. Wow, when was the last time I heard that request?! And it was interesting to see the updated interpretation of that idea. Fifteen years ago French country was all about yellows, blues, and toile as far as the eye can see, whereas this version was much more subdued and predominantly white. Neither was particularly my taste, but it was fun to see.

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@Cherpumple, I just watched that episode. I loved the checkerboard kitchen floors.  I like watching Ben do his woodwork and Erin doing her projects and their not trying to bring us into their non-professional lives. 

Local news reported that Chip and Joanna will be showing movies on their property. You just have to bring your blanket.  Unbelievable to me that people are so desperate to be in the presence of "celebrities" that they'd sit on the ground at night feeding 'skeeters to see movies they have access to in the comfort of their own homes. 

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I enjoyed the episode with the army couple who wanted the French Country kitchen.  I don't really know what that means either, but I do think of warmer tones, more rustic touches.  I think Erin interpreted it well.  My least favorite part of the kitchen was the backsplash, but all in all, really nice.  Totally amazed she didn't do a farmhouse sink , which actually would have worked well, but I give her credit for not doing the same thing every time.

Exterior update was really nice as well.  What a charming house!  What a difference the portico, shutters, and window boxes made. 

I did like the fireplace re-do, but it seemed awfully big for the space.

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Finally got an account here just to be able to talk about this show -- and maybe a few others!

I truly enjoy how Erin is not afraid of color -- unlike a particularly beige-white-black - obsessed lady a few miles west of her. (Cough Joanna Cough)  And that Ben has become a heckuva woodworker after a history degree and a stint in the ministry (?!) - who'd think it? 

While I abominate, loathe, hate & despise wallpaper for ME, if Mia wanted it and Erin could actually design it and have it custom made, kudos!  It was a very nice effect with the narrow sideboard and the lamp under the window. 

My favorite glimpse so far is when Ben delivered the gorgeous kitchen table/island and Erin about jumped his bones right there on top of it, she was so excited by the beautiful artistry!

i wouldn't want to be employed by these two but I imagine they'd be interesting to live next door to. 

On 5/9/2017 at 7:55 AM, Cherpumple said:

it already has way more variety of design and architecture than Fixer Upper, which I can't stand because every house ends up looking exactly the same

When the camera pans over most FU living/dining areas during the reveal, it looks like a furniture store to me!  YMMV.

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I loved the last house, too. It was great what they did to make the front of the home look more interesting, the reddish cedar and all. 

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i wouldn't want to be employed by these two but I imagine they'd be interesting to live next door to. 

I'm not sure where you were going with the first part of your statement, but I agree with the second part. They'd be great neighbors.

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2 hours ago, mojito said:

I loved the last house, too. It was great what they did to make the front of the home look more interesting, the reddish cedar and all. 

I'm not sure where you were going with the first part of your statement, but I agree with the second part. They'd be great neighbors.

Oh, just that folks who are that committed to their craft AND own their business would be pretty exacting bosses, in my experience.  I don't have any inside track nor do I think they'd be bad bosses.  Just demanding ones, and reasonably so, and that's not where I want to be. 

I'm not sure why I even wrote the original!  Long live Laurel & Scotsman!!!

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I have only seen a few snippets of this show, but I like this couple. They seem to just get down to business and there is no hamming it up for the camera. They are both really talented. A nice change from Chip and Joanna. 

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I'm not sure what season Chip and Joanna are in now, but I quit the show during the second season, when I saw that they'd gone formulaic on me and Chip became a clown. I really liked that show a lot that first season. I hope no one tries to mess with this show by giving us predictable drama or cutesy sideshows. Surely these homes have termites and old plumbing and rotten joists, but the show just focuses on the work to be done and the end product. What you get on this show that you don't get on the others that I have watched, is that you see Ben and Erin brainstorming what they plan to do, and we don't have to deal with their "disasters" or harp on the budget. That leaves us more time to watch their work and see their end product.

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I watched the marathon yesterday but couldn't watch the last two episodes. I really like this couple and love that their houses are all different. Ben and Erin take into consideration the age of the house, the architecture, the needs of the new owners and their particular style. It's so much better, in my opinion, than Fixer Upper which I used to really enjoy watching. Plus no "surprises" that can't be overcome with a minimum of angst. And I love that they're fixing up their own home town for people who want to move back home. I'll continue to look froward to this sweet show!

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6 hours ago, mojito said:

I quit the show during the second season, when I saw that they'd gone formulaic on me and Chip became a clown. 

I'm hoping Home Town has an ending point before it gets to that kind of thing. Funny, I was wondering/worrying about whether the show was going to succeed, last week. Now, it'd be okay with me if they had a couple great seasons and then quit.

i know, I know --- make up my mind, already!

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Now, it'd be okay with me if they had a couple great seasons and then quit.

Preaching to the choir, FullaNinjas, at least in my case. I think most of TV programming should go the way of series in the UK. Less is more, and cranking out 22 shows per season negatively affects show quality. Leave us wanting more, not wondering when this crap will wrap up. Sometimes, a show's theme is only worth a single season. Write a story, tell it, then shut 'er down, don't milk it dry.  I like shows that last for a couple of months and then goes away for 7 months. Perfect. Kudos for networks like HBO and USA for going that route.

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Most recent episode was nice.  I have a soft spot for split-levels, but they certainly don't have the charm of some of the other homes that they've done so far.  I actually wish they had chosen the other house.  Not my style from the outside, but I thought that it could have been really cool, especially the room that they were going to make into a playroom.

Erin disappointed me by using oversized white subway tile in the kitchen!  White subway is used in 9 out of 10 kitchen renovations on HGTV ... there are infinite choices of beautiful tiles!  That drives me nuts.

I also don't know about having that sitting area in the front.  It is not exactly the same as a front porch.

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56 minutes ago, MoreCoffeePlease said:

White subway is used in 9 out of 10 kitchen renovations on HGTV ... there are infinite choices of beautiful tiles!  That drives me nuts.

ITA.  Is subway tile the cheapest there is, maybe? 

Were I lucky enough to get a home makeover I would make it conditional on NOT winding up with WST!

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As you read through Erin's blog, you'll see the progress of their lives. It's so interesting to see how their lives have changed but Erin and Ben haven't. They still have the same families, same friends (plus some new fun ones), same house, same town and same values. I've been so happy to see their successes as they grow in their lives. I'm also glad that so many seem to like and embrace their show on HGTV and have found Erin's blog. They seem like the kind of people I'd like for my neighbors. 

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My favorite part of the show is when Erin shows them her concept drawings of the houses, they give me the giggles. 

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This last house was nicely done. I didn't understand the street she was on. There was a narrow driveway/street, no curb, and a row of parking spaces up against what looks like an apartment building. She wants a front porch that faces that?

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On 5/16/2017 at 7:54 PM, Pickles said:

A nice change from Chip and Joanna

A calmer version of Chip and Joanna is how I'd describe them.  They talk about sitting on front porches enjoying the day, and Ben and Erin give the impression that they do like spending their days that way when they can.  Not that they don't work hard because I'm sure they do, but Chip has become a goofy moron, and Joanna now seems to be building her commerce empire.  I hope Ben and Erin don't become that.

I continue to covet a piece of furniture made by Ben.

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