It's been less than a month since Queer Eye, a reboot of the early-2000s makeover show, hit Netflix, and it's already showing signs of becoming a cult series. The internet is ablaze with unanswered fan theories and questions: Does Antoni Porowski actually cook? (His "highly suspect" guacamole suggests otherwise.) What's with Tan France's obsession with patterned shirts? And how does décor expert Bobby Berk manage a full home makeover in a matter of days? So naturally, when we got the opportunity to quiz Berk, we had questions—a lot of questions. Here, he sets the record straight about what it's really like to film the hit series.
The home makeover takes just three days.
Each episode is a weeklong process, and Berk is given just three days to completely redecorate a contestant's home. "On Monday, we have production meetings and find out about the guy and his town. On Tuesday morning, we do the truck ride and meet the guy, and then at about 4 p.m., I get the first possession of the house," he tells MyDomaine. "I need to get everything done before the reveal at 9 a.m. on Friday."
The Fab Five are surprisingly hands-on.
"I design the whole thing and pick out the aesthetic and main furniture pieces," says Berk. Thankfully, he has a team on standby to oversee the installation. If it's a large makeover process, the team works through the night.
A lot of the furniture is West Elm.
Given the tight time frame, Berk has to source furniture and home accessories quickly and says stores like West Elm are his go-to. "Luckily, I have a lot of great suppliers. West Elm even stocks extra stuff in its Atlanta store and lets us pull up with a U-Haul," he says. "We know everyone by name at IKEA in Atlanta, too!"
Contestants keep everything.
Perhaps one of the biggest perks of being a contestant on the show is that they get to keep all the furniture and accessories Berk chooses. "We get asked that a lot, and, yes, they keep everything," he clarifies, even kitchen utensils and decorative items.
Most contestants say their favorite home store is Walmart.
Contestants are given a questionnaire before filming to offer hints about their personality and décor style. "They're asked about their favorite colors and so on, but when it comes to their favorite home décor store, I would say seven out of 10 say Walmart," says Berk. "The questionnaire doesn't give me much to work with."
Can't get enough of Queer Eye? Read our full interview with décor expert Bobby Berk.