Wednesday 10 November 2010

Kirstie's Homemade Hmmm....

"Hmmm" is mostly how I'm feeling about the new series of Kirstie's Homemade Home that's being shown this month on Channel 4.

I really enjoyed the first series - you can read my original blog post about it HERE if you like - I don't find Kirstie "posh and annoying" like I know a lot of people do, it was exciting to see craftsmen and women showing her how to make stuff (people making things! on the telly!) and it was super refreshing to see a program that presented DIY and vintage shopping as a consumer option with more personality and specialness to it rather than just as a way to save money.

But this series? Hmm.

The first episode (shown last week) felt very underwhelming. Partly I think this is because they've changed the format to Kirstie doing up her own house to the more standard "home makeover" format of helping a nice couple "transform" their house with some telly magic, complete with lots of scenes of Kirstie standing around at antiques markets banging on about how much of a "bargain" this that or the other item was compared to the high street. Yawn.

It was also in a large part because they repeated so many crafts / features from last year: they visited the same reclamation yard as last year, made stained glass with the same stained glass artist, and made book ends with the same blacksmith as last year.

There were some new crafts and crafters featured in thie second episode, and some were great (Angel from Tobias and the Angel teaching Kirstie how to make a patchwork cushion) and some not so great (visiting the same candlemaker as last year to make a rather hideous shell lantern)... but it's still left me feeling a bit "hmm" about it all.

I'm still going to be watching the show every week (because even a teeny bit of crafting on telly is better than none, plus I'm excited to see the lovely Manda teach Kirsty to make a beanbag later in the series!) but I think perhaps I need to admit that from my crafting-obsessed viewpoint I'm not the ideal target audience for a show like this!

If you've missed any episodes this series, the last one and the Christmas specials are all currently available to watch on 4OD and you can see lots of how tos and video clips from the show HERE.

Have you been watching this series? What do you think of it?


A Thrifty Mrs said...

Just tried to post this on my phone but it was having none of it!

Great post. I'm really liking the series but certainly tuning a lot of it out, especially that ugly candle thing.

I really don't think the programme is aimed at crafters and people who already live a second hand lifestyle. But perhaps we're the most vocal of those who watch?
Because I've heard a LOT of people talking about it.

I blogged about it last week - (hope you don't mind me sharing a link) and it raised a bit of debate on twitter and in my comments section.

Things Hand Made said...

I agree, I loved the first series but this one just passes me by. I enjoyed seeing the sewing with Angel and I loved the glass pictures with gold foil on the back but the rest.....mmmmm. Have you looked at the book? A friend has it but it wont make it onto my christmas list. I did half think about going to see her at the Cheltenham Literature Festival but didnt.

Bugs and Fishes said...

A Thrifty Mrs - thanks for the link to your post about this!

I'm still chuffed to see handmade and vintage being promoted on the telly, and every time Kirsty mentions a craft course it makes me happy to think of somone at home thinking "ooh, I could do that"

I know us crafty and thrifty types aren't the intended audience, but I definitely felt more engaged by the first series and the handmade = special ethos it was promoting.

It would be very interesting to know how people are reacting to it *outside* our little crafty blogging bubble!

Things Hand Made - I've not seen the book, no. I shall have a look next time I'm near a bookshop!

Anonymous said...

Your not alone in the Hmmmm, I am assuming that they are just trying to pull in a completly different audience - all the location people - as I heard that Phil Spencer is supposed to pop up in this too.

Starry said...

I feel exactly the same. I much prefered the original format of Kirstie doing her own house. The repeating of things is a little annoying but her harping on about how much of a bargain everything is and how original it is/was is a bit annoying.

What we want to see is new crafts, how to spot a bargain from all the other toot and some more impressive crafts people.

BTW I really thought that candle was a bit hideous. The pillow didn't go with the beachy theme at all either...

Sarah said...

I struggle with these shows and so haven't tuned in this time - on the one hand I want to love them and the fact that they promote craft but I could never really get past the Kirstie smugness which strangely never bothered me that much on Location, Location - maybe it was just raging envy of that beautiful house in Devon and the fact that she was getting to go and be taught by these amazing people! Oh for more craft shows on tv - about real people doing real crafts. I'd love proper craftspeople to take us through what they do and then maybe come up with some 'home' projects as well without an irriating presenter/format in the way - if only crafters ruled the tv scheduling!

Gillian said...

I agree with your feelings of 'hmmm'. I like Kirstie and really enjoyed the last series but was so disappointed when she re-visited the same crafters this time around - it just seems like an easy cash-in show following up on the success of last year. Will still watch though I'm sure! G

Pene said...

I absolutely agree with you. I loved last years series and was really excited about the new series but... there are so many talented crafts people out there why are we just seeing more of the same?
Maybe next year she could do a series on handmade/recycled christmas presents instead of another home makeover show!!
Oh I did love the little painted glass pic she gilted that was the highlight of the series so far.
Maybe the best is yet to come?

Anonymous said...

I've kinda been watching it with one eye on a magazine, I agree it's a bit hmm! I loved the first series, but I'd like them to mix up the shows a bit more, I think it's the format that's not quite working for me!

Watkins35 said...

Yep, I'm the same with it too, though love Kirstie. Still going to watch it, as you say, any crafting to watch, but it lacks the freshness of the first & the Christmas ones, which kept me rapt, but I'm not paying as much attention this time :( x

TopCat76 said...

I didn't see the 1st series, but did watch and enjoy the Christmas specials. I also feel rather underwhelmed so far with this series, only 2 episodes in and already somewhat repetitive. I hope that it's target audience isn't crafters as it would be more than a little patronising! But, as you say, some crafting on tv is better than none!
Tracey x

Anonymous said...

I'm with you on this one, not as keen on this series as i was the last one! I was actually interviewed as a participant on this sereis to do a make-over in my house as they liked my 'back-story'! but they seem to have changed the format a bit as the way they decirbed it to me at the beginning of this year is nothing like what they've created :-( oh well...still love kirstie all the same and like you said a bit of craft on TV is better than no craft!

A Thrifty Mrs said...

I do agree that the last series was more engaging. Perhaps because it had us hooked in to see the makeover in total at the end?

madpiano said...

I never saw the first series, only watched the christmas specials last year and loved those. I was a bit disappointed with the show this week. Thrifty/shabby chique is all very well, but the great "bargain" of £400 for a couple of pieces of furniture? I could have gone to Ikea for less. They were nice pieces, but I was expecting a bit more along the lines of showing us how to do it cheap, not how to spend a fortune.
Love seeing crafts and artists on TV though and I really like Kirsty, she seems very sweet and nice.

Vixie said...

Exact thoughts, yeah. I guess it's also partly because being crafty lads and lasses ourselves, it seems a bit less enjoyable to learn about crafts we saw last series, whereas the first time round it was just super exciting to see crafty stuff on TV! I will continue to watch this series, however, as I do so adore Kirstie!