In the final, the two top designers have to complete three rooms each in converted apartments in an 18th-century mock castle in Broadstairs.
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Here in the UK, we're blessed with an enormous variety of types
and styles of buildings that we call home -
from thatched cottages to 1930s Art Deco apartments,
from mock castles to contemporary townhouses.
But sometimes, while the exterior creates a wow factor,
the interior can be distinctly lacking.
So we've gathered some of the UK's most talented amateur interior
designers to show us what they're made of.
Across three knockout rounds, two designers have battled through.
Daniela and Oliver are now going head-to-head in the Grand Final.
Excited, apprehensive, nervous.
But there can only be one winner.
It is going to be stressful once again.
Putting them through their paces and scrutinising their every move,
are judges Daniel Hopwood, designer
and a director at the British Institute of Interior Design...
Oliver and Daniela might have different styles,
but they're both exceptional designers.
I think we're going to have an exciting final.
..and internationally renowned interior designer Kelly Hoppen.
Both Daniela and Oliver have designed
consistently brilliant schemes.
Now they have to pull something out of the bag that is off the charts.
Helping decide who will triumph, as well as piling on the pressure,
is our special guest judge, interior stylist Sophie Robinson.
In order to get to the final,
the designers have already proved that they know the design rules,
but in order to win this competition,
they need to show me that they can break them.
But it's going to take a lot of creativity and hard work to be
crowned winner of the Great Interior Design Challenge.
And the winner...is...
This time, we're in a mock castle in Broadstairs,
begun in the 18th century,
originally a stable block which started out as a Gothic folly.
Kingsgate Castle in Kent is now home to 28 apartments.
This is the imposing setting for our Grand Final.
Our finalists Oliver and Daniela will transform three rooms
across four days.
Each designer will be given a master bedroom and their first kitchen.
Daniela will also have a living/dining room.
And Oliver a study/guest room.
With the help of a small team and a budget of £4,000...
..they'll have to battle till the end
to stand any chance of being crowned champion.
It's a castle. Oh, my God.
It's fantastic. It's beautiful.
This time, they've three rooms, including a kitchen.
I mean, that's hard. The two rooms is one thing, but a kitchen is a
difficult thing to design at the best of times.
So my heart goes out to both of them.
Welcome, designers. It's final time.
By the end of all of this, one of you will be going home with this.
Oliver, a little bit of advice.
When you're given a brief, stick to it.
Be creative, but don't do something that is off brief.
And Daniela, a word of warning.
Remember to delegate, and once you've delegated,
follow that through,
because we want to see that project finished on time.
I know you won't let us, and more importantly your clients, down.
Right, off you go.
First to start is 30-year-old photographer Daniela from Essex.
So much hard work, so many sleepless nights.
I just don't want it to be for second place.
I want it to be for first place.
Right, this needs an iron, as well.
Yes, there, perfect, perfect.
Throughout the competition,
she's impressed the judges with her use of textures
and materials to layer her modern and minimal schemes.
With Daniela, we know she's a great designer,
but she does get a bit kerfuddled with the managing of people.
She doesn't delegate.
And then when she does delegate, she'll forget to go and check.
It has to be organised.
Daniela is charged with transforming three rooms
in Leon and Zelda's apartment.
They've asked for contemporary schemes which will complement
their converted period flat.
So, we've lived here nearly two years now.
And in terms of the amount of decorating we've done,
we've actually not done any at all.
I'm looking forward to some nice surprises.
Although both designers have had their briefs for just over a week,
this will be the first time they'll be seeing the rooms in person.
Wow, this is amazing.
Firstly, the bland and uninspiring master bedroom.
Oh, my goodness, that ceiling, it's so high.
The bedroom has got to have that calm, relaxed feeling to it,
as you walk in. So, warm colours would be quite nice.
Daniela's second room is the dated
and poorly laid out living/dining room.
This is pretty much as I expected.
We like urban modern and mid-century modern.
And finally, the tired looking kitchen.
The kitchen in particular is a room
that we'd like the designer to be
creative and come up with something on our behalf.
Scrutinising Daniela's presentation
are judges Kelly Hoppen and Daniel Hopwood.
They'll be rating how well she puts forward her design plans and how
adaptable she is to her clients' needs.
I'll start with the bedroom, I think.
So, you said you wanted spa, tranquil, calm.
So I've gone for an all white theme.
She wants to add a statement light fitting
and expose the parquet floor.
-Looking forward to talking about the floor.
So, my idea is, it wouldn't be jet black.
It would be a dark stain.
How do you feel about that?
Is it something you did want to keep natural?
It does look really clean and modern.
I don't know if it's something we can do a test on.
-Is it possible to do something like that?
Next, the sleek kitchen
with marble effect wallpaper and mirrored cupboard doors.
Now, this is going to be totally something that's experimental
on-site. I would like to just have bare plaster walls.
-Once again, I know it's quite a brave move.
I've worked in a lot of office blocks
where they go for polished concrete.
A lot of the time, it feels too unfinished.
Daniela's plans for the modern living/dining room include a change
of layout with a bespoke sofa and customised wall art.
I think the thing that's staring out at me at the minute is the walls.
I don't want it to be a white box, basically.
Yeah. Sure. Is it feeling a bit stark for you, perhaps?
-I promise it won't feel like a doctor's surgery.
So there's some sort of cubed theme.
Yes, I've created a TV cabinet.
When you've got the doors closed, it will just look like a gridded wall
with a fireplace on the bottom line.
I'm not too sure about the cabinet.
-Maybe we need a few minutes to think about it.
For even the best designers,
working on a castle would be quite challenging.
But then we've got Daniela being playful with it and coming up
with an entirely new look
which will work with the castle but exciting, too.
But Daniela's really pushed the clients.
They've asked for a certain look, but she's gone the extra mile.
It will be really interesting to see how she pulls this off this time.
I'm going to use my persuasive design skills to make them happy.
They shouldn't have said they wanted to be challenged, basically.
While Daniela's clients ponder over her designs...
Got my list, like I normally do.
..armed with her trusty notes...
You love a list, don't you, Joe?
..work gets under way.
She'll now work on three rooms in just four days.
But both finalists have the added pressure of having to finish
one room by the end of day three.
The walls are white in here.
You know me, love a bit of white.
The room Daniela plans to finish first is the bedroom.
But it's going to be challenging for her team.
-We're doing a wallpapered ceiling again.
-Oh, right, great.
Well, how are we going to do that
without ladders or platforms or...?
So, I think... Have we got a platform?
Do you have one? Cos we have our basic kit.
-But with a ceiling of this height, you kind of need towers.
-You're going to need towers.
Meanwhile, the kitchen fitters are discovering the pitfalls
of working in an old building.
Tiles coming off, right.
It's hardboard tacked on top of finished wall.
So, I think she's going to be in for a few problems.
Oh, God, look at it down there.
There's a massive hole.
Over the years, little bit of bodge's been done here and there,
and as soon as you start touching things,
you're uncovering other people's dodgy bits of work.
-What is this?
-It's a little cupboard.
Oh, that's really freaky.
Been a tough morning, actually.
The kitchen is an absolute state.
I mean, there's holes appearing everywhere.
I don't even want to go in there right now.
All right, well...
Next to begin is 49-year-old hairdresser Oliver
from North London.
I can't tell you how excited I am to be in the final.
It's like I still have to pinch myself to believe
it's actually real.
Throughout the competition, he's impressed the judges
with his eclectic styling and his classic and maximalist schemes.
With Oliver, it's all a bit of a mishmash, but then he surprises you.
But what I'm really expecting here is excellence.
He should be using that time to look at his interiors
and just giving them that little bit of an extra edge
to make them a winning scheme.
Oliver will be working to his client's brief.
Michael has lived in his apartment for just over two years.
He's asked for contemporary and dramatic schemes.
First, the study-cum-guest room.
A quaint little room, actually.
I'd like the designers to make it in keeping with the castle.
But to make it modern.
And modern bright.
Next, the cramped and dated galley kitchen.
The problem with this kitchen is,
because everything comes in and we've got such a huge ceiling,
it makes it so, so narrow.
Like an alleyway.
And finally, the grand master bedroom.
-I would like the designer to put a four-poster bed in there.
My vision of being king of the castle would be nice.
I can't wait to get started now.
Oliver's first room to be completed will be the study-cum-guest room.
He plans to paint the walls light blue, adding a stencilled border.
He also wants to introduce classical touches,
like a bookcase and antique writing desk.
Kind of go for that kind of real study look.
You know, sort of quite traditional.
Looking to the past, but still making it modern.
You asked for a daybed or some sort of sofa bed.
Yes. Does this pull-out?
Yep. It pulls right out. So if you have guests stay...
Oliver's classic style continues
in the opulent and grand master bedroom.
Bold palm print wallpaper will feature inside
and outside the existing panels.
So you want a four-poster bed?
-Yeah, I did, yes.
-So now you've got yourself a four-poster bed.
So you're going to feel like a king when you go to bed.
The kitchen is a modern take on a New England look,
including pale green tiles and new worktops.
And you've also got a little breakfast bar, as well.
That's right. Is that just one chair?
Only one. I think only one will fit.
-If you're happy with that...
-Yep. I couldn't have done any better.
Glad to hear it!
You know, as judges we're always asking for something new, but Oliver
offers something old and blue.
And I think the way in which he's designing that wall
with the wallpaper, that's new, that's clever,
but he's gone for a very traditional type of design.
Maybe he'll come up with a little twist like he always does
to make it a little bit eclectic.
This is the first room that I'd like to get finished.
So if we could maybe all hands on deck just kind of clear it,
would be really helpful.
With the study due to be completed by the end of day three,
Oliver's team wastes no time clearing the room.
But there's a problem.
You're going to have your work cut out with this wallpaper.
It's lifting all over the shop.
-Yeah, it is.
-Can you fix that?
Let's get first coat on, and see how it is.
Work is underway in our modern-day apartments,
but the origin of the building was far from homely.
The design and concept of Kingsgate Castle
grew from follies which the original owner had on his land.
Follies really began appearing in the 18th century,
part of the Picturesque movement.
Aristocrats hired designers to transform their country estates,
almost into private theme parks, dotted with attractions,
like Chinese pagodas or ancient ruined temples.
Kingsgate Castle was extended further in
the 19th and 20th centuries.
Today, all that remains of the original 18th-century folly
is this tower.
Over at Daniela's, while her team works in her spa-like bedroom...
..she's making a discovery in the living/dining room.
Oh! It's gorgeous, isn't it?
Wow. Doesn't need sanding, does it?
It just needs, like, cleaning up.
Oh, my God. How gorgeous is that?
Why on earth would you ever cover that up with this dodgy carpet?
That is a massive result.
That's like finding the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow for me.
While the competition has been all-consuming
for both our finalists,
for Daniela, back home in Essex,
her family life has previously taken centre stage.
I had to leave my career behind when I had children,
which I was glad to do, but now I'm ready to get back out to work,
and hopefully this will be a great platform for me.
It would mean a lot for Daniela to win this.
The amount of work she's put in and the thought she's put in.
I know she's not in it to lose, that's...that's for sure.
Over at Oliver's, he plans to finish his study-cum-guest room first.
This is the fun bit, when you actually get to see
some colour on the walls.
His team wastes no time painting over the wall.
Hoping the paper doesn't bubble.
That goes in there, like so.
While he talks his builders through adapting his client's existing bed,
using staircase newel posts to create a four-poster.
He's a tall guy, as well.
He's not short. That's too low.
Yeah, so how much higher do we want to go?
I would say at least six inches.
If we do it like that. And that looks tall enough to me.
At home in North London,
winning the competition means much more to Oliver than just a trophy.
This, for me, would be actually life-changing.
You know, it's not just about this process.
It's more about going forward
and start making a new career for myself,
you know, and actually...
that is huge.
I think in order for Oliver to win,
I think he just has to stay true to himself.
Follow his heart, his instincts.
It's got him this far, so...
That's his winning formula, I think.
For our two finalists, it's nearly the end of the first day.
-So you want the back to be 40 off there, don't you?
And Daniela's bespoke sofa for the modern living/dining room
is beginning to take shape.
-That fits in nicely.
-Yeah, it really does, doesn't it?
That's going to look good.
I wanted a really low, relaxed sofa.
I mean, it's really worked out well.
Perfect height. I'm really happy.
And checking that her team is equally happy, Daniel pays a visit.
You've got such a good team.
You need to keep them motivated.
You're the designer, you're the creator, you're the conductor.
-Get them working for you.
That's it. And that's what I've realised.
Ideally, I want to get that room finished, definitely by tomorrow.
I'm just purely taken on the fact of what the judges have said,
and I'm going to talk to my team, you know, every five, ten minutes,
checking up on what they're doing.
Just really want to make sure that tomorrow that room is done because
we've still got a lot to do in here.
Over with cool-headed Oliver,
his decorator prepares the bedroom for his palm print wallpaper.
And his builder works on the bookcase for his guest room.
When you've got a team of people, if you start to lose the plot,
then I kind of think it all filters through.
And then people don't have faith in you.
As usual, it's always calm on Oliver's projects.
But it's good that he's calm, that's the sign of a great designer,
that he can control, that he can delegate.
My concern is that it will just be too traditional, because what I love
about Oliver is the fact he has this eclectic edge where he just suddenly
twists it and you're not expecting it.
Ollie, Ollie, Ollie.
-Hello, sweetie, how are you doing?
I'll come and cwtch with you.
Yeah, come on, come and sit down.
-How are you?
-I'm doing good, yeah, I'm fine.
How are you? You look a bit flat.
Oh, I'm so wiped out.
-I'm going to get an early night tonight.
Not doing any work.
It's the beginning of the designers' second day.
Hi, there, all right?
With Kelly and Daniel judging their first rooms tomorrow afternoon,
neither finalist can afford to take their foot off the gas.
I'd love for one of you to come off of what you're doing this morning
and do the trim on the ceiling as soon as that comes in.
This is the way we're going to play the design.
I think this on the outer edge.
Dying to get in, actually,
cos yesterday we painted the first coat in the guest bedroom.
And I want to make sure that it's actually not bubbled,
cos we painted over the top of the wallpaper.
And if it has, then it's kind of back to the drawing board.
Obviously, as you can see, it's all completely flat.
So it's had one coat on and it's not bubbled at all.
And it looks brilliant.
Walls dry, Oliver's decorators can now add the stencil effect
to his classic study.
It's very fiddly because they just need to get the very
first one right.
As the kitchen fitters remove all the old tiles
and the posts for his four-poster bed
are being adapted by his builder...
I'm putting together the sleeves that are going to go around
the bottom of the bed post.
To extend them, to make them a bit longer.
But we've got a bit of fine tuning.
So you can adjust accordingly.
It's just a little piece of MDF.
It's really sad, I know,
but when I see things like that and it looks absolutely pukka, I'm like,
"Oh, my God, that's amazing!"
..over at Daniela's, her client Leon is paying her a visit.
-You all right?
-Yeah, I'm good.
He's got a list of questions regarding her designs.
I thought I'd come and talk to you about the TV unit.
Just looking at it. It still looks massive.
You do need some big pieces in there.
Next on Leon's list is the stain for the bedroom floor.
Right, come in and see this tester.
That is the colour.
Is that about as dark as it's going to go, then?
It may be a touch fuller but not necessarily darker.
-That's actually not as dark as I thought it was going to be.
I've actually got a couple of other questions.
We do plug a few things in.
So, we've got phone chargers, things like that.
So how will that look?
There's not much I can do about hiding the phone chargers.
One of the other things that we were thinking about, light fittings?
He's a lovely guy, but he's just very thorough.
You know, he wants to know every last detail.
Just the last question is really around the windows.
He's just cautious and I think, you know,
he just needs to get into my headspace.
Where would we put the microwave?
My head is a little bit like, "Aaah, OK."
What I thought was going to be a simple chat
was actually a real lengthy discussion.
-Feeling lots better now, actually.
And Daniela went through everything we were concerned about,
so feeling a lot more comfortable now.
I think the issue with Daniela is,
she's so incredibly passionate about her work.
I just think she has to find that balance between
getting the job done,
keeping the integrity of the design,
and keeping the client happy.
If she's having a wobbly,
we're going to end up with a project either slightly unfinished,
which she's done before,
or missing all the magical bits that she adds in at the end.
And Daniela's hoping to add some modern-day sparkle to this medieval
looking castle. Kingsgate's design was based on that of a 13th century
Welsh castle, magically transported to the Kent coast,
in a very different century.
Its battlements and irregular asymmetrical facade
would have been in stark
contrast to the kind of neoclassical villas still being built around here
during the Victorian heyday of the seaside resort.
In 1900, the banker Lord Avebury bought the castle
and started a period of rebuilding and extending.
Lord Avebury's crest is all over the castle,
from the drainpipes to the stonework.
And pride of place on it is a pelican,
symbol of charity and self-sacrifice.
A fitting emblem for the man who introduced the bank holiday.
But there's no time off for our designers.
who must complete one of their schemes by tomorrow afternoon.
Adding to the pressure, they'll also have to impress
guest judge Sophie Robinson.
No, just leave that on top of there, that's fine.
In Oliver's calm apartment,
a new carpet is being fitted in his classic and traditional study...
..while he's revamping the pelmets.
appliqueing some Petersham ribbon.
It's really simply done.
It's just some ironing on webbing.
This is kind of like glue on a strip.
It's a little bit smaller than the actual ribbon,,
and you would just put the two together, iron over.
And then you actually applique the ribbon onto the fabric.
It's a very sort of simple, sort of half-hour little job.
It's very cheap, very quick.
Kind of instant gratification, really.
The judges want to see how Oliver's getting on.
Oliver, any problems this morning?
There was a problem with where we have to put a breakfast bar.
We've lifted out the cupboard and it's full of pipes and wires,
-like Spaghetti Junction.
-It's a kitchen!
Of course there are going to be wires and pipes.
Anything like a kitchen or bathroom, you've got to allocate more time.
You must have designed countless kitchens.
I've never done one before. Do you know what I mean?
So, like, it's a huge learning curve.
I know, it's a learning curve,
but you've got to start thinking on your feet.
You certainly gave Oliver
a bit of a pep talk there, didn't you?
I know. He just seems so incredibly laid-back.
I was trying to put a bit of fire in his belly
and say, "Well, what do you expect if you do a kitchen
"and you pull a cupboard off the wall?"
Do you know what, I actually think this looks smaller now.
My client, you know, obviously,
he's worried that this is going to be a big overpowering item
in the room, it's going to be too big,
but it looks totally in keeping with the scale of the room.
Daniela's living room/dining room is taking shape, while in the kitchen,
the holes in the walls have been covered up
and the cupboards cut down to size.
But in the bedroom, it's all hands on deck.
I am being Miss Bossy Boots now, which I hate doing,
but it's got to be done right now.
I want this job finished, and this floor needs to be painted tonight,
otherwise disaster tomorrow.
So, this is going to take another 20 minutes, say.
It's going to take a good hour to stain our way out the door.
What if I brought, like, everyone in to stain it?
Because I need to halve that time.
It's late on day two,
and the designers will have to finish one room tomorrow.
It's really cool.
At Oliver's, his guest room bookcase is being put into position.
Made to measure.
And it's the big reveal of the stencilled border.
Look how sharp that is.
-Look at that.
I'm really chuffed with it.
So, we all had a moment where we were just sort of standing round,
watching her pull tape off.
Which, like, ordinarily wouldn't sound very exciting,
but we were all like little kids.
"Oh, look, it's really good!"
For Daniela, her final job of the day is staining
the bedroom floor.
The bedroom's 100% going to be finished.
Yeah, there's no way it's not.
Obviously, I've got my worries about certain things, but, yeah,
I'm feeling upbeat if a little emotionally drained.
Just the bookcase has got to be finished in there,
and then that room can be dressed,
so I'm pretty confident that actually that's going to be done
Day three, and after an emotional time yesterday for Daniela and plain
sailing for Oliver,
the real test comes later today when their clients will see their first
-Hey, how you doing?
OK, so we'll get some wallpaper on the walls today.
The pressure's going up a little bit, you know, in terms of,
-you've got to deliver.
-You all right? Morning.
I actually haven't seen the floor yet this morning.
I'm really excited to have a look.
Bit of an issue. We've had to put fans on this morning cos it's still
-Yeah. That was like, quick drying...
-Well, it's water-based, wasn't it?
-Yes, it was.
Yeah, the instructions haven't been carefully followed.
Right. Do you know what, it says 16-24 hours.
A much longer drying time than Daniela had bargained for
means work in the bedroom is put on hold.
I was feeling OK about the floor, but, you know, now it's going to be
cutting it very fine with that one, I think, actually,
and it's kind of getting on my nerves now.
Daniela's oversight could jeopardise her chances of winning the
competition, if the bedroom isn't finished by this afternoon.
You know, the thing is it's such hard work.
A key element of Oliver's study is an antique writing desk,
bought online for £50.
It's a really beautiful writing desk.
However, there's one handle missing,
so I'm desperately searching for a handle to replace it.
If I can't find one to replace it, I'll have to replace all ten.
While the search continues, work in the kitchen progresses.
Including fitting a laminate floor to the exposed pipes under the new
In the bedroom, an online purchase for £160 is revealed.
Is it heavy? Yeah.
As long as we don't have a Del Boy moment, we'll be fine.
Yeah, I've got it, I've got it!
So how are our two getting along?
We've got Oliver, there, steadily going forward.
And Daniela, it's up and down like you wouldn't believe.
-No cracking under pressure?
-Daniela's incredibly emotional,
that's the way she designs.
It's from her heart rather than her head.
Whereas Oliver is more from his head.
The complete opposite.
Do you think so? I think that
actually Oliver does design from the heart,
but his organisational skills are from his head, which is probably the
right way round, I think, you know.
Daniela is not letting anything hold her up to get the bedroom ready for
judging later today.
So, yeah, I've decided that the floor being tacky
is the least of my worries right now.
The ceiling needs to get finished.
You know, we are protecting the floor as much as we can.
But, you know, we don't know
what's going to happen after we pull this up.
It might pull all the paint up. We're not sure.
Just one main problem is that the floor wasn't dry.
Mix up with the paint.
Did you read what it said on the tin?
I assumed that it was going to be the paint that I ordered.
It's all about the detail in knowing how long things are going to be,
your build, that is where it always lets you down.
-I'm really annoyed, Dan.
Honestly, I mean, how many times
does Daniela need to be told to check,
double check and check again?
Now she's running the risk of not getting that room finished
and disappointment, but not only disappointment but losing this.
I know. I'm absolutely furious.
I feel like I got a bit told off, to be honest,
about reading paint tins. But maybe that will lose me the competition,
do you know what I mean?
They do keep picking up on the little details
that I've perhaps missed.
Daniela has a lot of ground to make up if she's to rekindle the spark
from a more glamorous golden age.
After Lord Avebury's death in 1913, the castle became a hotel,
attracting the A-list celebs of the day -
Gracie Fields, John Mills, Merle Oberon, Peggy Ashcroft.
And their signatures are still here on the board.
The hotel closed after the Second World War,
and the castle was converted into apartments.
And most of the interior period details have been lost,
but one incredible survivor is this fabulous plasterwork in what used to
be one of the hotel's reception rooms.
Two strips, three blocks, just screw it in.
Daniela is racing against the clock to get her bedroom finished.
But there could be further problems if her floor hasn't dried.
Oh, it's absolutely fine, look.
It's fine. Yeah. It's great, and actually, it's dry now.
With less than an hour to go,
she's only just started making her central light feature.
What I thought was going to be nice is now stressful again.
-SHE GROANS LOUDLY
Floating bedside shelves are being fitted...
Just the bedside tables, and that's it.
..while she attaches the pendant light above the dressing table.
This is the next shelf that needs to go over here,
and then we are out of here, we are done.
Daniela's time is now up.
I actually feel quite emotional, I actually really do.
Daniela's brief was to create
a spa-like and tranquil master bedroom
which was sympathetic and in keeping with the grandeur of the location.
Two days ago, it felt dated and bland.
Now the layers of white create a modern, calming scheme.
The stained floor ties in with the furniture
and contrasts with the walls.
The large focal light feature centres the room
and completes the clean, minimalist look.
Oh, my word!
All right, you win. White does work, doesn't it?
Of course it works! You know why it works?
Because of the black floor.
It gives you that Ying and Yang.
I mean, it's very contrasting, so it gives you a wow when you walk in.
-I love it.
-And her light is clever.
It's an MDF ring that she's gone and stapled all of these pieces
of string to. It's an incredibly simple idea.
She's managed to do this for about £45.
There are just some finishing touches which are really missing.
If she'd put a bit of cord around the top of this light fitting,
then it would have looked much higher quality.
I can see the stables from here.
But in the brief, they asked for something that had
a spa-like feeling
and yet was in keeping with the original interior of the room.
-She's nailed it.
-She's nailed it.
Just that little bit more finishing, then we've got a winning room.
At the moment, without that quality control, I'm still not sure.
For the first time, the designers are going to show their clients
the finished room.
Daniela has been working to Leon and Zelda's brief,
so their opinion will be taken into consideration
by the judges when they make their final decision.
There we are.
The grand reveal of your new bedroom.
What do you think? All happy?
Yes, it's really good. A statement without being in your face,
so I really like it.
You know, this... at this point,
I want them to have some really special music, like...
I'm sitting waiting for my handles.
Unable to find a matching handle for his antique writing desk,
Oliver has decided to replace all ten with new ones.
With just an hour to go, there's a delivery.
Desk handles have arrived!
Hurray! How good was that?
Just saying that I was waiting for my handles.
Hours of endless fun, Dickie, look.
No-one else in the room seems stressed, but I am, rather.
As his builder completes the writing desk,
Oliver puts the finishing touches to the new bookcase...
..and gives a new wingback chair a final clean.
All done, that's it, end of.
Oliver was asked to create a modern, contemporary study-cum-guest room.
Two days ago, it was a cold, uninviting room that lacked purpose.
Now it's a warm and comfortable study,
with a large bookcase displaying his client's memorabilia.
An antique writing desk sits pride of place overlooking the striking
while a new carpet adds comfort,
and a second-hand sofa bed provides a place for guests to stay.
-What a transformation.
I'm not one for colour on walls, but I have to say,
it kind of just looks amazing with the sea
and the blues and the textures
of the curtains. I love the pelmets.
I kind of quite like this old vintage look.
He's doing something that he obviously likes to do a lot,
which is this stencilling around the wall, but it is, as always,
This bookcase is an absolute joinery triumph,
because what he's done is just take some pretty standard flat-pack
bookcases and join them together with a bit of moulding
and painted it over for less than £115,
and they look totally classic rather than too modern.
-Oh, dear, hang on a minute.
If you're going to say Daniel,
that means there is something that concerns you hugely.
The brief was a modern interior.
-Something really contemporary.
And we've got something that is, quelle surprise, classic design.
I mean, it looks amazing, but it is not what was on the brief.
It's incredibly comfortable, and it's beautiful, but it isn't modern.
It's not modern.
This is your new study.
That is fantastic. Brilliant.
I'm not a person that's good with words, but all I can say,
that is absolutely brilliant.
Oh, well, there you go, I'm more than happy myself, then.
I might sleep in here tonight!
Yeah, you should! You should.
I just feel great, isn't it?
It's good. It's too good for me!
Both finalists have completed their first rooms,
but the battle for the competition is far from over.
There's 30 bulbs in there.
A lot of bulbs. What's wrong with that?
Tomorrow is the final day,
when Kelly and Daniel will be joined
by special guest judge Sophie Robinson...
Oh, my God, you've done it, it's finished.
..and one of the designers will be crowned winner.
It's definitely what the future holds for me,
this is why I'm getting emotional,
because I feel like I actually have been handed like a golden ticket.
I feel really, like, lucky.
So, it's just, I feel like I've been given a second chance, I suppose,
to do good work, and...
Yeah, just, that's why I'm emotional.
It's the final day of what's been a long,
long week for our two plucky designers, but they're almost there.
Just two more rooms to finish each,
and one of them by the end of today will be going home with a trophy.
Right, yes, everything today is going to be like the quickest
you've ever seen. My final day.
I'm feeling pretty good.
It is doable, it's got to be doable.
Living room, not a problem,
but kitchen, I'm scared about, to be honest.
There is one problem, right?
Fridge cabinet doesn't fit.
I'd like you to do the...paint the door in the bedroom.
-And there's also a brass curtain pole.
A huge bag of mixed emotions.
You know, I'm excited, apprehensive, nervous, kind of exhilarated,
you know, there's loads to do.
It's just all over the place at the moment.
On her way is guest judge interior stylist Sophie Robinson.
She'll help decide which designer will win the competition.
Before she meets the finalists,
she is casting a critical eye over their mood boards,
starting with Daniela's bedroom.
The whole point of a really good presentation
is to get the taste buds going, and I'm literally salivating.
Personally, for me, I think bedrooms should be relaxing, cosseting,
warming and a little bit cosy,
so I'm not sure she's hit the right colour scheme with this one.
I would really have liked to have seen
a little bit more colour introduced.
Followed by her lounge-diner.
An area of concern for me is how she's balanced the classical
with that little element of edginess.
And finally her kitchen.
These boards are absolutely sensational.
I mean, they're beautiful. My fear is that they might have given
the homeowner an unrealistic expectation.
Next up are Oliver's designs,
starting with the master bedroom.
When you're presenting a bedroom
that's supposed to feel grand and opulent
I think your board should look grand and opulent, too,
and this just doesn't.
Moving on to the study/guest room.
This is itty, bitty, really unappealing.
Lastly, Oliver's kitchen.
Interestingly, this is the design I'm most excited about
because I know he's got to the final for a reason,
and he can only exceed my expectations right now.
As Sophie makes her way to the castle,
the designers are summoned outside.
Just about to start.
For the all-important final,
our two judges, who've been so impressed
with how you've developed over
the rounds, they need a fresh perspective, a fresh pair of eyes.
Joining us today is one of the industry's
leading interior stylists.
With over 15 years' experience in the field,
she has one of the keenest eyes in the industry.
It's Sophie Robinson.
Hi, guys, lovely to meet you.
Now, as an interior stylist, I really know how to work a budget,
start from scratch and yet still deliver that high-quality finish,
so I am going to be a very tough judge.
So you're on the home stretch, the pair of you.
You can do it. Off you go.
Sophie, I couldn't believe it.
I'm not as freaked out...
She does love bright colours and pattern,
whereas I am more neutral.
I think she'll prefer Oliver's.
First, Sophie will be judging
the rooms the designers finished yesterday,
starting with Daniela's bedroom.
I love the way the design has updated this room,
like we've got all these really fabulous,
traditional mouldings in this space,
but by painting them all out in one colour, it makes
the whole scheme look more up-to-date. Opting...
for this very striking black and white does create
quite a chilly vibe.
They've also said they'd like to introduce some colour,
and there is none in here.
Next up, Oliver's guest room.
What an absolutely fabulous room.
I'm loving the attention to detail.
This is such a nice little painted motif.
You know, quite a classical reference,
which I think is really in keeping with the architecture.
And I feel that this big blank wall behind me
was a real missed opportunity.
I would have put a lovely big piece of artwork on there.
In terms of a scheme, this is
a million miles away from the mood board.
I mean, quite frankly, it's not even the same room.
And I'm pleased to say it has
restored my faith in Oliver as a designer.
He definitely deserves to be here. This is great.
With Sophie's critical eye cast across their first rooms,
both designers are neck and neck.
Sofa's going well.
I've just got to do basically this bit of fabric here and here,
and then the cushions can go on, and it's all good to go then.
As the first designer to start,
Daniela has just a few hours left to complete her rooms.
While the living/dining room is taking shape,
the kitchen is a long way off.
I do envisage the last hour being slightly manic.
Meanwhile, Oliver's adapting
some new curtains for his four-poster bed.
To buy cotton velvet from a sort of haberdashers or fabric shop is
actually quite expensive.
These, I think, are under £40 for a pair.
It's absolutely incredible value.
Just about an hour in here now, guys, OK?
Time's running out for Daniela.
Daniela's ambitious designs have impressed the judges.
Now, I want you to get this looking like it's absolutely 100%.
She's frantically completing the lounge/diner...
-..and the kitchen.
So we've got all up here to paint.
Look, look, look. Ah!
Daniela's four days are up,
but has she done enough to impress the judges one final time?
Daniela's brief was to create
a bright and contemporary urban entertaining space,
which four days ago was bland and beige.
Now it's modern and innovative,
with clean lines and deep colours
which bring warmth to the white walls.
Changing the layout and a bespoke sofa
create a relaxing corner perfect for watching the television,
which is hidden inside a sleek new cabinet.
Mid-century furniture and a retro chandelier
add a classic twist,
complemented with bursts of colourful soft furnishings.
What a difference!
What class. It's just not what you're going to expect.
Everything is about lines, it's about following a line through.
She does this brilliantly with walls.
You follow those different lines, and at each little point,
punctuated in the room, are these lovely surprises of anarchy.
I do have one thing.
I think it just feels a little bit cold in places.
-Bit too clinical, maybe.
-A little bit.
The brief in the kitchen was for an innovative update to a tired and
Now its contemporary, clean lines and luxurious materials create
Bronze-mirrored cupboard and drawer fronts add warmth and reflect the
exposed parquet flooring.
The marble print wallpaper and new worktops add depth
and brightness to the room...
..while the exposed plaster wall adds character,
contrasting with the smart services.
-This is a bit classy, isn't it?
-This is fierce. Isn't it?
I mean, what have we got going on here?
We've got concrete. We've got, like, bronze mirror.
What I love is the reflection of the floor that you get.
It suddenly looks incredibly warm because of the wooden floor.
And it also creates that amazing illusion of space.
-Like the floor just continues all the way down there.
You know, one of my concerns with Daniela, a little bit stage set.
I mean, if you're going to do something like concrete,
it's got to look sharp, it's got to look urban.
-Yeah, I know.
..not working well, is it?
I think she's done a really good look in here that is different
and has actually followed the brief.
Her quality and certain things are not 100%, that's for sure.
The opinions of the clients will help the judges decide
who will win the competition.
Come on through.
Look... You can't avoid it.
-You can't avoid Napoleon.
I think my instant reaction is that that's not something that we would
-choose for ourselves.
-How about the big unit over here?
I know that was one of your worries, wasn't it?
-Yeah, I think that does look very good.
Yeah? I really like it, yeah.
Is this going to be a place, you know,
-where you're going to hang out?
The sofa looks great. I can really see us sort of sitting here.
That's a massive improvement. That really changes the room.
Kitchen, another transformation.
I like it, but it wouldn't be something that I'd have gone for,
like in terms of the layout and the style.
I think she's done very well.
She's looked at what our likes and dislikes are,
but at the same time, she's put in her own creativity, her own ideas.
Meanwhile, Oliver's deadline is quickly approaching.
Go on, now. Put it on the bed, put it on the bed.
He's consistently impressed the judges with his eclectic designs.
Get out of the way.
As he finishes his master bedroom...
-..and his kitchen...
-Spot on, yeah.
-..has he provided enough of a surprise
to impress the judges?
Oliver's four days are up.
Oliver's brief was to create a fresh New England-style kitchen that was
light and airy.
72 hours ago, it was cramped and uninviting,
dominated by unused cupboards.
Now it's a welcoming, cool and breezy space.
Light green tiles and timber shelves
add texture and depth and open up the narrow room.
New worktops and an additional breakfast bar give the room a smart,
It is fresh, isn't it?
Really fresh. The brief asks for something that was quite Hamptons in
-And it's very Hamptons.
East Coast American, laid-back, soft,
and I think he's managed to do that,
especially because he's put this open shelving in
rather than cupboards.
And he's thought about it as well.
He's used like textured wood,
so we're getting that nice, rustic, seaside element, too.
He's been very clever with the clock,
and he's drawn your eye up, because these windows are so tall.
And I just think it's a beautiful, small galley kitchen.
In the bedroom, the brief was for an opulent scheme,
befitting the grand proportions of the room.
Four days ago, it was sparse and lacked personality.
Now it's a dramatic, sumptuous room.
Oliver has used bold metallic palm print wallpaper set across the
panelling as a backdrop for the grand four-poster bed.
Antique furniture and a chandelier
add masculinity and drama to the scheme.
Well, he asked for opulent, didn't he?
And it's certainly that.
I absolutely love this wallpaper.
-It's right up my strassa.
It's sort of like a very deep turquoise colour with very warm gold
background, so it's really warming this room up.
I like the fact that he hasn't just put the wallpaper in the panels.
Someone who was less confident might do that.
He's kind of got this four-poster bed,
which he's done incredibly well,
because it was an existing bed.
He's painted it a great colour.
He's put these newel posts on either side.
My criticism is he hasn't gone far enough.
You know, we're talking opulent here.
You've got to have texture and throws and velvets and silks
and layer it all up. We want more. Well, I want more.
Hang on, guys. We've got velvet.
We've got tapestry.
We've got more velvet, more tapestry, we've got tassels,
we've got wallpaper.
That's why I've got such a big grin on my face.
I'm LOVING it.
I think Oliver's given us a really classic scheme.
I love it, and I think it works really well.
I just think he should have been a little bit more consistent
by dressing the bed a bit more, then it would have been amazing.
It's a tricky space, obviously.
Long and thin.
By taking some cabinets down,
he's opened it up and made it more spacious.
There's so much room in here now.
-Got a new chair.
-Got a new chair, yeah, exactly.
Oh, bloody hell. Oh, my God.
I don't know if that's a good reaction or not.
"Oh, bloody hell. Oh, my God."
It's got that warm feeling about it, which I wanted.
-And the four-poster bed.
-It's got your four-poster bed in it,
it's got the four-poster bed.
I'll be in there tonight.
It's been an exhausting four days for our finalists,
but their fate now rests in the hands of the judges.
Sophie, it's been fantastic having you with us.
What have you thought of the designs and the whole experience?
It's been absolutely brilliant,
and I've seen these two designers with fresh eyes.
I knew nothing about them, nothing about their history,
and I can't get over how different they are.
You've got two designers who do very different looks.
Now, how do we judge those two against each other?
Oliver's designs make me feel like I've gone away for a weekend
and I'm in some different experience,
and I feel very warm and content in those rooms.
Like putting on a comfy pair of slippers,
I just want to hang out in his house.
Dan, you've always been looking for a twist with Oliver.
-Did you find it this time?
-I loved it.
I enjoyed it, but it didn't power me.
It didn't surprise me.
Well, I know you want to know what the client thought.
I know it's important for your decision.
-He adored it.
-And that's why Oliver is a brilliant designer,
because he understands his client. He's absolutely client focused.
-How about Daniela?
-She's unbelievably ambitious.
She absolutely loves design.
As a result, she wants to deliver so much of it.
-And she puts so much on her boards.
-Well, that's where she's in danger,
because the boards are so beautiful.
You have really high expectations,
and the danger is those expectations aren't met.
I had a really interesting response from the client.
It took a few minutes, took a while to get,
but they really liked her original ideas.
Are you looking for a designer who can nail a brief
and create a home for a homeowner,
or are you looking for a designer who can push the boundaries?
I think we are looking for both.
So what we've got are two very, very different designers,
but very close together.
The judges will also need to consider the designers' projects
throughout the competition.
I'm here and I'm in the final and it's actually,
it's made me rethink my whole life.
I have given it my all. Blood, sweat and tears.
A lot of tears. Been away from my family, you know,
it's been incredibly hard. It's the first time I've done it.
I look back on everything, you know, so fondly, you know.
I've learned a lot about myself.
I've learned that I've got design ability.
Both of you have got an incredible gift.
It's an ability to create magic in the most important space
in every person's life -
-Oliver and Daniela,
what an incredible journey you have both been on,
and I feel so honoured to be a part of that.
Both of you, I've really enjoyed watching you develop,
and you've actually inspired me a lot.
It's been a complete buzz to be here today,
to judge all your hard-fought efforts.
It's been a real nailbiter,
both of you are incredibly talented designers in your own way.
But the judges have made a decision.
And the winner of the Great Interior Design Challenge
That's cool. That's cool.
-This is yours. CRYING:
-Thank you so much.
Give me a hug.
It was close.
-Don't doubt yourself.
-I'm massively disappointed, of course.
I mean, who wouldn't be?
You don't go into a competition to lose, do you?
But, hey, that's the way it is.
It's lovely, fantastic.
-Thank you, Michael, it means a lot.
-Thanks a lot.
Oliver is exceptional at designing that particular look
that he's good at,
and he will excel in the future with that.
But in terms of his range, for me, that was the difference.
Sadly, Oliver didn't win,
and the reason why is he just didn't go that extra mile,
that extra little finish and thought.
So... I won.
Thank you so much.
-So grateful, and, yeah, just I've really worked hard
and I feel like it's finally paid off, so I'm so happy.
She constantly surprised me,
showed me things I've never seen before.
Every single room she designed was a different feel, a different look,
She really pushed the boundaries.
Thank you so much. Thank you.
-It's been so lovely meeting you both.
-Very well done.
Some people might think that interior design is
just a matter of slapping some paint on or rearranging the cushions.
How wrong they would be.
As all our designers have proved,
it takes dedication and late nights and some real skill.
It is serious stuff,
because the most important piece of design you're ever likely to
experience is your home.
Transform that, and you can transform your entire life.
If you think you've got what it takes to take on
the Great Interior Design Challenge, e-mail us for an application form.
It is the grand final. Two of our best designers have battled their way through sweat and tears to get here. Now just one can be crowned the champion and winner of The Great Interior Designer Challenge.
However, the amateurs find it harder than ever to win that coveted title, as in their biggest challenge to date, they have to complete three rooms each in converted apartments in an 18th-century mock castle in Broadstairs. The designers have 72 hours across four days in which to complete their rooms but this time their teams are bigger and they will have a larger budget of £4,000 each. However the designers are tackling and taking on a kitchen for the first time ever and our designers soon find out that working in older properties is certainly not without its challenges.
Judging this epic battle are Daniel Hopwood and Kelly Hoppen, helped and joined by former judge and interior stylist Sophie Robinson. Nothing escapes these three, so the battle is intense. Both the designers are tested to the max, clients are exacting, demands are challenging and for the designers there is more than just a trophy on the line.
Architectural historian Tom Dyckhoff explores the castle and explains the significance of such a beautiful building in British history.
All eyes are on the two finalists, as only one can walk away as winner of The Great Interior Design Challenge.