Radio and TV Talk

Rodney Ho covers TV and radio, from Atlanta’s stations to the hottest “American Idol" news.

HGTV 'Design Star' cancelled. Here's what Atlanta's Vern Yip has to say.

HGTV has canceled its competition show "Design Star' after seven seasons, leaving Atlanta designer Vern Yip without a gig as a judge.

He was the one continuous link on the show, which aired from 2006 to 2013.

"Of course, I'm disappointed because I've been with the show since the beginning. I've really enjoyed being part of it," Yip said. "That's part of life. It's about changes and change is not always bad."

He said the ratings of the show were still pretty strong by last year, but the numbers were undeniably shrunken from its peak years. Last year, when it was called "HGTV Star," the show drew around 1.5 million viewers in overnight viewing compared to close to 3 million in 2009.

Those dropoffs are happening across the board among similar shows, from "Top Chef" on Bravo to "Project Runway" on Lifetime to "Food Network Star" on Food Network, all of which are still alive. The entire genre is a little tired at this point.

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David Bromstad from season one, much like Guy Fieri for the Food Network and Kelly Clarkson on "American Idol," was by far the breakout star from the show. He was even a mentor for the last two seasons of "HGTV Star." Emily Henderson (season 5 winner) and Meg Caswell (season 6 winner) have big online followings and Caswell writes a column for the HGTV magazine (as does Yip.)

Yip, who lives in Atlanta with his partner and two young children, has a special coming up July 12 at 2 p.m. on HGTV where viewers will get to see him build a beach house in Rosemary Beach, Fla. "You get to watch a piece of land turn into a completely finished product." It's called "Live in Vern's House" and includes a unique opportunity for an HGTV super fan. (Take a guess based on the title.)

He is very active creating product lines for retail and Home Shopping Network, where he is in his third season. He provides HSN with six collections a year. "It keeps expanding and growing,' he said. He provides high-quality sheet sets and comforter quilt sets, as well as home accessories such as mirrors, lamps and side tables.

For retail. he is offering home fragrance candles and warmers, plus a line of home fabric with his name.

And Yip is still pitching TV projects.



About the Author

Rodney Ho covers radio and television for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

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