If anyone knows about trends in home design — the good and the bad — it would have to be the matched set of Canadian brothers who seem to dominate the programming on HGTV. Drew and Jonathan Scott, the towering twins (they're both 6-foot-5) star in three shows on the network, in addition to producing video content for their website (www.thescottbrothers.com), and hosting a radio show. They're also hosting the "Top 50 Country Countdown" on Great American Country in a marathon from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Dec. 28.
While the Scotts are best known for their real estate and home improvement prowess, they began their professional lives as actors. Drew had minor roles on "Smallville" and "Breaker High." Jonathan is an illusionist.
"The whole reason why we got into real estate is that we didn't want to be starving artists," Drew said.
They brush off questions about why people view their shows: Is it to see home makeovers, or is it to watch the brothers and their megawatt smiles?
"People magazine named us two of the sexiest people alive last month," said Drew, who handles the real estate side of the business. "I was laughing because everyone loves the contractor. I'm just the pity vote that came along with Jonathan."
"Mostly people are just tuning in to watch Drew," Jonathan, the contractor, countered. "I'm the one there who does all the work."
Despite the joking, they are quite serious about helping
homeowners find inexpensive properties to renovate into dream homes on "Property Brothers."
"I always laugh when people ask us if the show is real, or if we're making it up," Jonathan said. "It's 100 percent real. We tell homeowners that we don't want them to pretend to be anything. We don't lie about anything, including the fact that Drew doesn't do any work."
Amid the brotherly bickering, we asked the Scotts for some of their favorite — and least favorite — home trends, and also what we can expect to see in homes in 2014.
Current favorite trend: Mixed materials
Jonathan: "I love blending more modern elements with touches of vintage and a lot of repurposed materials. Taking repurposed wood and mixing it with steel for a sort-of industrial look. I love creating a space with character and having something that's functional for today but doesn't feel cold and too modern."
Current least favorite trend: Chilly modern
Drew: "One of the things that I really don't like is when people say they want something that feels modern and slick, but it has no personality. I just think it looks cold and cheap. I also don't like it when someone wants a room that's all vintage. It ends up just looking old. A few vintage pieces goes a long way."
Current favorite trend: The outdoor room
Jonathan: "So many people want to increase their living space, but it's not cost effective or feasible to do a full renovation. So they're stretching their indoor space outside and they're turning their patio area into an extension of their indoor living space. We've been enjoying doing that. It's very cost effective and nowhere near the cost of an addition, but you're creating this great entertainment space for having family together or friends over. "
Emerging trend: New technology
Jonathan: "There's a drinking game you can play when you're watching HGTV. Whenever someone says 'granite' and 'stainless,' take a drink. You'll be drunk by the first commercial break. I think that will change. What I see happening is a new wave of white appliances. Not the generation of cheap white appliances, but very cool white glass refrigerators that you can check your e-mail on. Or a refrigerator that will keep track of what items you need and tell you. Technology is getting less expensive, so I think you'll start seeing more of this."
Emerging trend: The stay-at-home room
Drew: "Everybody seems to love the idea of having family and friends congregate at the home as opposed to having to always go out and see a movie, or always go out to a show, or to play pool. So people want game rooms, workout rooms, yoga rooms, and home theaters. They're incorporating this into designs more and more."