What’s it’s like to ALMOST…film a TV pilot…
Yep, you heard me right, ‘almost’ and ‘TV’…almost as in ‘didn’t happen (this time around) :-)’ and ‘TV’ as in ‘we could’ve been millionaires’…LOL
If you follow us on Instagram, you may have seen some behind the scenes footage of cameras, sound people, directors, me and some very vague clues of top secret happenings. We were sworn to secrecy during this process and had to keep our traps shut…like signed an NDA kind of keep your trap shut. It was only near the end of the journey these last few weeks that I was given the AOK to post those teaser photos. So how did we get here? Well that’s a long story so I will try to give the blog friendly, abridged version….
About 7 years ago (don’t worry I swear I will try to keep it short), right after having my son Jake, an old friend from NY who is in the industry called and said “I’m sending you to a casting director in Emeryville” …” say wha?” … I just had a baby, what in the H-E-double hockey sticks are you even talking about? Well needless to say, it was a bust. At that point, I hadn’t even started DSI and there was really no story to tell. I was a cute chick who just had a baby and some pretty decent design talent but that was it. And let’s just say I was NOT on my game in that meeting and I never heard from them again… but you know…did I mention…I JUST HAD A BABY!!!
Cut to about 4 years later and DSI is in full swing! It’s me and Whitney working from my backyard studio and life is good. We were just selected by Bardis Homes (along with some other kick ass SacTown talent) to design their model homes for The Mill at Broadway. Since they are the coolest developers in town, they do some cool marketing and they asked us to film some video interviews that would play in our models. I did mine in about 10 minutes and the film crew told me this was the quickest anyone had got through it and that I was really at ease on camera… OK cool, who knew? So then Bardis asked us to do Good Day Sacramento with them, my first live TV and we breezed through that and Miss NY is back on the case.
I won’t bore you with all the details but let’s just say I now land in the cross hairs of Big Table Media. What’s awesome about BTM besides everything?? They are a local SacTown production company that has produced some of your very favorite home makeover shows for major cable networks over the years. You might not have even know you had such cool factor in your own home town! And so begins this crazy journey with BTM that I think has been going on for close to 3 years now and let me tell you…this TV production thing is pretty cray!
So I should pause on the story timeline and explain where my head is at through all of this. A TV show was never the goal when I started DSI, becoming famous was never (still isn’t) the goal…but…creating a successful business that could really change the lives of me, my family, my girls and everyone connected to this?? Heck yeah…sign me up! That’s how I looked at it. If the universe was presenting this opportunity, then I was all in. If you haven’t noticed, Sacramento has some pretty exciting energy swirling around and all of us involved just really felt like the time was right for Sac to have its moment!
Ok, so back to the story…what I have learned is there are several stages of filming this process and they are looking for a story to tell. Over the last few years we just weren’t finding our story and things just never felt right. In order for this to work for me, it needed to be authentic and not forced. So cut to a few months ago and I finally found my groove and just let myself be me and that’s when it all clicked.
BTM figured out the authentic story for me which would also appeal to TV buyers, I figured out myself and I found my partner…my contractor Anthony. Our story was authentic and our love for working together is authentic and the beautiful things he and I create together are authentic.
So, Anthony and I filmed what they call a ‘mini sizzle’. It was me and him walking through an actual client job (thanks Kristen & Ken…you guys are awesome) that was a perfect representation of what the show concept would be and we were just doin what we do. So BTM works their editing magic and word comes down a network would like to see more.
And I should explain what ‘more’ is. We will be filming an actual mini show that will be presented to a group of network executives. So, on the heels of this news…SH-T JUST GOT REAL…the weight of what all of this means and what I am doing falls squarely on my shoulders and I literally have a 24 hour panic attack. Then I pull myself together and say LET’S DO THIS! What do we have to lose, right?? Oh, I should mention that I am still trying to run DSI while all of this is going on…LOL.
Again…in the spirit of keeping this story short…the universe continues to line us up on the path of success. We just so happen to have a project well under way that is the EXACT representation of what the show concept would be and our awesome clients (thank you Victor and Ann Marie) sign on to let us film them and their house for our mini show.
So, BTM lines up one of their favorite cameramen, there’s a drone, lighting, snacks, and a sound guy (who I subjected to endless boob jokes while trying to get me mic’d up) I mean the whole thing is just bananas.
Well in true home makeover TV fashion, construction timelines and filming deadlines don’t necessarily go hand in hand…so Anthony and his guys are now working around the clock. Like literally all night long trying to complete the house. I can’t even put into words what these guys did. Tyler & Garett…you guys rock. You built the most beautiful house and brought our madness to life. Thank you. Nick and Ross (my favorite painters in town)…I mean, what painter paints until 2am trying to meet a deadline for a designer trying to be a TV star? LOL, only you guys! XOXO. My cleaning crew even showed up at 6am on a Saturday to give the house a final clean before filming at 9! And Joe & Chicky…the world’s best handyman team…you step up to the plate on every dang job we do! THANK YOU! Side note: We needed a big reveal with the epic before and afters we love seeing on this type of TV show…so here comes team DSI… along with help from West Elm Roseville…AGAIN…(we love you Kim & Jenny!!) and help from Jaipur rugs. Whitney & Ash were so busy with client work through this process, I didn’t want to burden them with the responsibility of any of this. I’m busy at work trying to run DSI, staying on top of my own projects AND filming this mini show…..thank god for Liz! I tasked Liz with taking the lead on this. She shopped, drew floor plans, organized, planned, scheduled, KICKED ASS and made sure everything was in place for one crazy install day. Then team DSI showed up and magic happened. Honestly, this entire project will go down in history for me as the day DSI literally became a team. And they did it for me. I can’t even put that into words. So now it’s BTM’s turn. We film and they start their editing magic and they literally created a mini show. I got to see myself & Anthony in true we’re-almost-on-a-TV-show fashion and once again…SH-T GOT REAL. There was some additional filming and voice over stuff and more edits. Then it was presented, and we waited. We all did the best we could knowing that’s all we could do. I was warned from the very beginning that this is always a crap shoot. You never know what TV buyers are thinking, you never know what they will choose or why they choose it.
And then they called …and we found out it wasn’t selected. And just like that my TV dreams of sharing coffee with Joanna at Magnolia Table are O-V-E-R…
But it’s all good and I’m still processing how I feel about it. I do know one thing is true…I believe if the door doesn’t open, it’s not your door… and this is certainly an exercise in me practicing what I preach. I will however admit that I can’t help but feel like I let people down. People who worked so hard and put so much effort into making this successful. As much as this was about me, it really wasn’t about me in my mind. Over the years I’ve come to look at what we do as an act of service to others and I think it’s that mind set that has helped to make DSI so successful so quickly.
All of us have struggled with our talents, I think that’s common for a creative. I once explained to Ashlee in trying to reassure her of her talent, that what we do comes so naturally to us, that we don’t even realize it’s a thing. It took me years to figure that out. We don’t always remember that everyone doesn’t do what we do. So if what we do can inspire others then we are living in our purpose. It was when I made that connection that DSI truly became successful.
So thank you Big Table Media, thank you Miss NY (you know who you are), thank you IC Construction, thank you Scoville Painting, thank you SMG Cabinets (especially for my last minute corbel additions and also for letting them fly a drone in your factory ;)), thank your Victor & Ann Marie, thank you Team DSI, thank you Joe & Chicky, thank you West Elm Roseville, thank you Kristen & Ken, thank you mom for helping with Jake so much through all of this, thank you Nicole & Scott for being married to me and Anthony, thank you Jaipur rugs, thank you Liz and Angie for all your work on this project and thank you, thank you, thank you universe for this opportunity…now onto the next.
To see the full reveal of this beautiful home click HERE!