Saturday, July 19, 2008

to the RMS community...

First and foremost let me just thank all of you who have contacted me and told me about how much you like the show, don't like the show, like the designs, don't like the designs and all the other wonderful comments.  It is almost impossible to respond to everyone.  My schedule is a bit challenging, so I will say here how much I truly appreciate hearing from everyone.  REALLY. Your commitment to the RMS community is awe-inspiring.   

I have been a fan of the RMS community and what it does.  Anyone that knows me can tell you that I truly believe inspiration can come from anywhere or anyone.  Budget has nothing to do with it.  Also, it's incredibly personal.  On the show, the homeowner's that have invited us into their homes not only are being inspired by the RMS community, they have opinions and ideas of their own.  At the end of the day I get to go home, but they have to live there.  My main goal is (and has always been, even in my private practice) to please the client.  If they are not please, neither am I.

There are so many factors that go into producing a television show that there isn't enough time to get into them all.  I will tell you that the show is kind of like a movie being made of your favorite will never be the book.  The challenge is not only honor the RMS community, but also to engage people that have not been to the RMS site and might never go....all they want to do is watch a TV show.  I happen to think that both can happily coexist (the RMS site and the show).  The more design information and inspiration that is out there from as many diverse voices as possible, the more we can all be a part of an eclectic design community.

Like anything else, the show is evolving and morphing to be the best that it can be.  That is the goal of the network, the production company, myself and all the talented, hardworking people that make this happen week after week.  It is a HUGE THRILL for me to meet the new homeowner's every week and then to video conference with the inspirational designers is just the coolest thing ever.  After each video conference the homeowner's getting the makeover always tell me, "They were so nice and this was such a cool thing to be able to do!"  I have THE best job in the world. 

 I really do enjoy hearing from all of you.  I can't thank you enough for your enthusiasm for all things design and I hope that you all continue to inspire each other the way you inspire us.

Go forth and design well,
-angelo surmelis


Penny said...

Hi Angelo.

Love you and your shows, but you know that already. You're the kind of person I try to be, and I wish I had just 1/10th of your design talent. Go forth and have a really great day. :-)

Warmest regards,

mrsben said...

Well put Angelo! Regarding your televised show, as a Canadian I don't have the luxury of viewing it on television so I am very grateful that it's obtainable on the Web.

As an online RMS Groupie, I will admit I notice a big change in the submission of spaces. To be blunt, to ignore the reason for its newfound popularity is an insult to ones intelligence. Many (not all) are only logging on to the site with expectations of a free makeover whilst having little or no interest in Decorating.

I do wish you succes in your new show and prior to closing....would you happen to be acquainted with Sarah Richardson? (Design Inc.) I have sixteen rooms to upgrade. Just Kidding!!!

Best of luck to you. Sincerely,

angelo said...

PENNY, thank you for your support and kind words.
Best always, Angelo

MRSBEN, I am a HUGE Sarah Richardson fan and would have her show along with Candace's on in the background in my office when they came on. I have not had the pleasure of meeting either of them (though I would love to). They both do beautiful work and have fantastically produced shows. There so many amazing designer/decorators out there. The amount of talent that exists is overwhelming and inspiring. I have been to Canada many times and actually lived in Toronto when I was about 5 with my parents before moving to Chicago, Il. When something like RMS goes public, like anything else, it keeps morphing and changing. I hope that the community of regular posters along with new ones are continue to respect the nature of the site and value what is at it's core: people wanting to be proud of their homes and designs as well as ask for advice and design guidance. I'm one of those people that always sees the glass half-full. I really believe that good can be found almost anywhere.
I know that RMS and all it's enthusiastic members can use it for it's BEST intention. Thanks again, Angelo

Bridget said...

Although I share some of the concerns of other long time RMS members, I wish you great success with the new show. I'm an faithful viewer and the Hotel Chic Bedroom is by far my favorite to date! You've done beautiful spaces for the lucky homeowners.

angelo said...

Thank you Bridget and ALSO, to ALL that have asked if I actually write this blog the answer is YES, I do write this blog (I am too much of a control freak to allow someone else to speak for me on my blog, enough of that happens in the world of TV) I do travel quite a bit for the show and the work schedule is huge, so it's a bit difficult to answer all questions.

Anonymous said...

Hello Angelo... I've watched you now on this show and your previous one... I'm not sure I'm as fond of this show "yet"... I see a bit of the inspirations in the rooms you're doing.... I'm wondering are the home owners as satisfied after you leave as they appear to be? I too am an RMS junkie and have noticed a huge change in the rooms that are being posted.. Not to say that everyone has their own styles and ideas..I think if you go back prior to your show airing you'll see a noticable difference.. The slownes of RMS connecting I believe is another issue.. people get discouraged and just don't post now or leave comments and that's really quite sad... I'll continue to watch your future shows to see what they hold for us... Many blessings to you and yours...p.s. Mrs. Ben.. I loved Sarah Richardson when she was on in our area.. I miss that she no longer airs here... She did some marvelous rooms...
fondly.. ~lynne ~

angelo said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
angelo said...

lynne, thank you for your note. I understand the frustration with the logging onto the RMS site and I do not control that or have any power to change it. I think the best advice I can give you and all RMSers is to keep contacting directly. I know that they are working on that and the goal is to make the RMS site as well as as user-friendly as possible.

As far as the homeowner's reactions off-camera, I do not want to speak for them but I can honestly tell you that most of the time the reaction off-camera is even more positive since they can feel more comfortable off-camera. Sometimes they can be a bit shy about being in front of a camera and an audience. It's not their reality or what their used to. It's odd to have your home and life taken over by a bunch of people for about ten days, so I think some of the most authentic reactions we get are when the cameras aren't rolling. I can tell you that they are always beyond positive. Our feelings are the same. We are thrilled to have been a part of each makeover and getting to know each couple has also been incredible for us.

My goal is to ALWAYS please the homeowners. Period. To date, we have not had any unhappy people and if we did, believe me we would do everything in our power to change that. All the best, A

Anonymous said...

Good Afternoon, Angelo!!!
First I would like to congrads on your new RMS show!!! I am also an RMS Junkie and have been for a long time.. I also visit Gollum's blog every day and have from day one...I am the one who told every one the other day if they wanted to know more about the new show and you to visit your blog.
I truly thought what you said at Gollum today was right on!! I feel that us RMS thought this show was going to be take an inspirational room from RMS and recreat it!! But then we would have "sensible Chic"
Now when you give the amount of $10,000 or 15,000 is that just for material costs?? Or for constractors wages material etc?? I mean there is no break down of cost and those watching are thinking Wow that much monies for just paint, lumber etc!!! I do wish they the powers that be would give a total break down...Just me thinking aloud again.. Good luck with your new show!!! even a marriage takes time to work out the kinks. Hugs and smiles to you dear Angelo

angelo said...

Thank you for watching the show!
The total money spent one each episode not only covers paint and lumber but also any kind of supplies needed, all furniture, accessories, lighting, any independent contractors that get hired (i.e. electricians, plumbers, cabinet installers, etc.) rental and disposal of dumpsters that are used during renovation, city filming permits, etc...The list is LONG and almost impossible to fit in a 22 minute show that has so much other information going on. I hope this explains a bit of where the money goes. Best, A

Anonymous said...

Hi Angelo,

I just wanted to say that I personally feel embarrassed and hurt over any criticism about the new RMS show. I think it is fabulous!! I've been watching you every since Clean Sweep. Not only are you one of my favorite designers, but you are such a genuinely nice person. I just don't see how the "critics" don't get it! You are HONORING three people from RMS, giving someone a great makeover, and funding it all! And it is unbelievable to me that people would actually criticize that HGTV is spending too MUCH!! Good grief! If it was the typical $1000.00 makeover, they would say they should spend more! I like how you have taken some of the best elements out of three LUCKY individuals' homes and highlighted them. You are an extremely gracious host! One of the things I really enjoy, is the information on the different styles at the beginning of the show. I don't think there are any "kinks" to work out. It was VERY WELL put together! Surely, people could understand that you can only show so much in 30 minutes! What did the "inspiration people" expect, an entire show about their own space?! I truly don't mean to seem hostile, but there is no reason for any criticism at all. I hope you know that there are many RMSers who are VERY PROUD over the show!! You are just such a nice guy, this has bothered me to no end, because I don't want you to get your feelings hurt. Maybe that sounds silly, but we all need a pat on the back instead too much criticism (as MANY RMSers should know). YOU are fabulous and the show is FABULOUS!! Lacey

angelo said...

I don't know what to say but, Thank You. It is much appreciated and I am extremely proud of our show and all the hard work that goes into it and I have nothing but respect for the RMS community. So many RMSers have reached out and have been supportive even before the show went on the air and it was not because they wanted a makeover. It has been a genuine outpouring of support for the show and for HGTV that I really am humbled. Hope you're having a great summer, Angelo

Unknown said...


I so agree with the last poster, Lacey! I love the show and continue to be amazed at how you easily take someone's room from poor to fab!!! YOU are an INSPIRATION to all of us designer-wanna-be's!

Keep inspiring!

Best regards,
Kim (kimluvsdecor)

Rue said...

Hi Angelo :)

I read what you wrote on Gollum's site. Please don't take what was said personally. There are those of us that have been there for over a year now and I think it's just odd to see what was once our playground become a TV show. I would have to say that we were all expecting something different, but it's not your fault that it doesn't live up to our imaginations.

Personally, I think YOU are doing a fine job and I enjoy watching you. It's the bad vibes that were happening that have caused most of us to start blogs. The site needs policing, but this is NOT your problem and I know that. I think it's hard for people to understand it's not in your control to fix the problems.

I also know for a fact that people wanted to see more of the people that were the inspiration, but again, I know that ultimately this isn't in your control.

I had (at one time) a highly rated room that HGTV wanted me to put on their show, but ugliness changed that and I am now rated a 3.0. Things like this happen all the time and although I know there is nothing anyone can do about it, that is the reason some of us left.

I hope you read Gollums posts from the beginning, because it will give you real insight into what went on.

Best wishes to you and the new show. I honestly hope it does well :)

rue (hthrrue on RMS)

angelo said...

Honestly, I am overwhelmed! I have been receiving e-mails via my "ask angelo" link on my personal website (those go to studio assistants and I should say THEY are overwhelmed) on this blog, on my MySpace page, on FaceBook and any other way the RMS community can get to me.

I have ALWAYS been a fan of RMS WAAAAY before there was even the idea of a show. I have seen some gorgeous rooms on that site and have had the extreme pleasure to video conference with people like FRENCH and her husband (they could not have been nicer or more inspirational, PLUS she likes coffee...what more could one ask for?). GOLLUM and the community of people on that site as well have been honest and enthusiastic about all things design.

Even before RMS I have always believed (still do) inspiration comes from anywhere and anyone. It is impossible for me to "Thank You" all individually but know that I REALLY do appreciate all your comments...even the ones that are not so positive (LOL) I never expect to please everyone, but I do hope I can make you think about your own space in a slightly different way. I am learning new things and being inspired daily and look forward to never knowing it all.

OK, it's late and I still have a design plan to put together for a future RMS show and tomorrow is a shoot day with a new couple for a new RMS episode. They are VERY excited and they get to pick colors for their walls with me. At the end of the week we're filming a new reveal of another episode that has been shooting as well (We are working on about 5 episodes at once, all at different phases) Reveal day is the most nerve-wrecking day of all. The night before I can't sleep and I know the homeowner's feel the same way because they tell me. It's like the "night before Christmas." They can't wait to see the finished product and I cant wait to see the look on their faces.

That's it for now. Keep inspiring each other in all things.

Go Forth and Design Well,

Anonymous said...


Stopping by to add my "Thumbs up" on a really great show! I have followed your shows and must say that, by far, this is my favorite and it really allows you to "shine" as a designer! I look forward to each and every episode, and then re-watch them again online! Thank you for inspiring us with your talent...

Continued success to all!


Anonymous said...

Hey Angelo

I know your busy but I'd like to add my two cents. I saw your gracious comments on Gollums blog and was very impressed that you would take the time to address our feelings and comments about RMS and about your new show. Watching you on the show you seem very warm, friendly and sincere. After reading your comments I realized that you REALLY ARE as charming as you appear on TV. I am also very impressed that you make the time to really get to know your audience through your blog. I'm sure I'm not alone in appreciating your efforts. I do miss the old days of RMS things have changed and it isn't the same friendly sharing place...but I don't think anyone can rightly blame your show for the changes. Keep up the great work! Nikkicrumpet

Lisa (aka) French said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Hi Angelo, I am deembee from RMS! French is one of my close friends!!! Your show is BRILLIANT!!! The transformations are unbelievable! I LOVED the French Inspired bathroom! It was FABULOUS! I don't care where the inspiration comes from, in the end, the client is HAPPY! (That's all that matters!)

As far as RMS, there will always be a mix of the good bad and the ugly!! I am certain there is nothing that can be done about it! I still go on to RMS and rate.. but I must admit, I like blogging a little better! :)

Thank you for being so wonderful! It warms my heart to see how happy your clients are at the end of your show! :) Keep up the good work!

Warm Hugs,

Anonymous said...


I am a designer in Florida. I have been a fan since 24 Hour Design. I am waiting to hate one of your rooms but I guess I will be waiting in vain.
Just viewed the Parisian inspired bathroom episode, loved it! I had done a similar design for my two girls in their bathroom - it was a great choice my girly, girls and you stepped it up a notch and made the room relevant for both sexes.
You are wonderfully infectious as a host and you relate well with the client. I wish you continued success!

Lori Bee said...

How truly gracious of you to post this and your insightful comments on Gollum's blog.... :)
Wishing you success with the show!
PS my fave episode is the updated traditional LR.

Anonymous said...


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