“Riverdale” designer transforms ‘pop-culture window dressing’

Written by By Phoebe Hampton, CNN

Viewers are accustomed to sparkling and fun drama from Netflix’s show “Riverdale.” But what we have not been accustomed to are a list of smart home products.

That was the challenge for interior designer Julia Butler, who was hired to give a fully renovated Italian style home “Riverdale’s” “fishtail floors” and adorable catapults “total renovation kitty catpulsations,” as she wrote in her January blog post on Shelterpop.com.

“As usual, Riverdale is a very colorful place,” she wrote. “The adult cast mix in with the adolescents; and over-enthusiastic pupils enter the hallways with typically bizarre mums dressed up as a Viking queen and Japanese ninja princesses.”

Jeremy Shinder, at far left, and the entire “Riverdale” cast. Credit: Courtesy Netflix

Shiner describes this imagery as “wacky layout.” But Butler moved things along with a nod to 1960s film chic.

“(My team) faced a style dilemma, to be more precise: To take the main staircase out of the main open plan, and to put it first in order to create a slide down the side and look across onto a slightly fenced-off play yard that guests can wander through for photo opps,” she explained.

Leaning toward tacky though Butler hoped to be, her craftsmanship — as you can see from her photos — succeeds.

Her show of ingenuity was no ordinary decorating stint, as the original owners hired Butler to revamp their entire Italian style home.

At first, her team spent about 18 months renovating “Riverdale’s” house, but they had to cut more than a few corners. When the owners returned from Spain, following the second season, they had to cut their rent in half because they couldn’t afford to live there anymore.

In keeping with the “Riverdale” show, Butler captured her installation on 14-inch pixelated projectors. The show’s premiere date coincides with the show’s mid-season break.

Watch her entire post here:

Homes that pay homage to high fashion?

Even as digital scale is falling on television show schedules, some things haven’t changed — and neither has television’s capacity to push out an enviable design aesthetic.

Design-powerhouse network HGTV has created its own programming initiative to showcase gorgeous interiors and stunning design is a major theme of that programming lineup.

The channel has created a new brand, HGTV Luxe, which will also feature other DIY channels and designers.

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