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Where Are They Now?
Fans of the OG home makeover show Trading Spaces were on the receiving end of a big reveal on Tuesday: The show is making a comeback!
“I am excited to announce that TLC’s most successful and most iconic series . . . Trading Spaces is coming back," the network's president and general manager Nancy Daniels said at a Discovery Communications Upfront.
TLC has not yet let on whether any of the original cast members will be returning for the show's reboot, set to air in 2018, but that hasn't stopped fans from guessing which of their favorites might turn up. We checked in to see what Vern, Frank, Genevieve, Hildi and the gang have been up to since they traded their last space back in 2008.
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Gorder, 42, left Trading Spaces, where she got her start, in 2007. She hosted the short-lived HGTV series Battle on the Block in 2010, before landing her own show, Dear Genevieve, which ended in 2013, and becoming a judge on the network's reality competition show, Design Star. Most recently, she's made several guest appearances on Rachael Ray. Off screen, Gorder also runs her New York-based interiors firm and designs several product lines, including a collaboration with Land of Nod (out this summer).
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Hildi Santo Tomas
Known for her, ahem, theatrical designs — she's covered a bathroom in stapled-on faux flowers, rendered a wall-size portrait of herself in a living room, and famously pasted real hay to a homeowners' walls — Santo Tomas (right, with guests at an event at the Savannah College of Art and Design), 55, was a big part of the show's can't-look-away chaos. Since departing TLC, she's never appeared on another show and her Wikipedia page states that she's living in Paris and is "rarely seen in public."
She's also become something of a cult figure: Buzzfeed dedicated a listicle to her most outlandish creations and Curbed published an ode to the "unlikely queer icon" in 2015, seven years after the show aired its last episode.
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Vern Yip, 48, one of Trading Spaces' most even-tempered talents, has held onto a spot in the public eye. He judged Design Star alongside Gorder for seasons four through eight and hosted Deserving Design on HGTV for four years. He lives in Atlanta with his partner, Craig Koch, and two children, and recently released a book, Design Wise. His Georgia home was featured in PEOPLE in September.
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Trading Spaces' beloved host, 47, with the oh-so-aughts flipped-out pixie haircut held down hosting gigs on Home Made Simple on the Oprah network and Hallmark Channel's Home & Family in the years following Trading Spaces. In 2013, she revived her role as Roxy Hart in Chicago on Broadway, which she'd also starred in before her TLC days.
After Tuesday's announcement, she replied to a fan on Twitter saying, "I hope I get to host again."
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Douglas Wilson, 52, fell toward the "Hildi" end of the spectrum when it came to respecting homeowners' wishes on the show — he once redesigned a bedroom to look like a prison cell. After Trading Spaces, he released a decorating guide, Doug's Rooms, and hosted Moving Up and America's Ugliest Rooms on TLC. Santo Tomas and Wilson also reunited at a SCAD event in 2016.
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Soul patch-sporting carpenter Ty Pennington, 52, has had arguably the biggest TV breakout post-Trading Spaces. He left the TLC show after four seasons to host Extreme Makeover: Home Edition on ABC, where he stayed for nine seasons until the show ended in 2012. He also has a line of furniture at Sears.
Born Gary Tygert Burton, Pennington modeled for J.Crew, Swatch, Diet Coke, Levis and Macy's before tackling TV.
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Pennington's replacement, Carter Oosterhouse, 40, cemented the carpenter-model archetype (he's the face of Nautica's Voyage fragrance) in home makeover TV. In 2007, he launched two series of his own: HGTV's Carter Can and The Inside Job (a spinoff on the DIY Network). More hosting gigs followed, including Red Hot and Green, Million Dollar Rooms and The Great Christmas Light Fight. Oosterhouse married actress Amy Smart in 2011 and welcomed a baby girl, Flora, in January of this year.
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Known for his love of all things country and propensity for painting decorative wall murals, Frank was a homeowner favorite on the original show. After, however, he wasn't shy about voicing his opinions on its shortcomings: “They took a perfectly wonderful little show and beat it to death, slowly, with a lead pipe,” he told Texas publication Fort Bend Lifestyles & Homes, adding that he keeps in touch with Santo Tomas, Wilson and Oosterhouse. As of 2015, the designer and his wife, Judy, still had a business they founded in 1989 called Mosey n' Me, which sells patterns for craft projects. (It's named for the couple's daughter, who was killed in a car accident involving a drunk driver when she was three.) While it's unclear if the company is currently in existence, you can still find his adorable cross stitch DIYs on craft supply sites.
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