The Fab Five sure do make it look easy. They roll into town and give deserving heroes a new look, a new space, and a new attitude in just a matter of days. But did you ever wonder what it really takes to make a QE episode (and makeover) come to life? Well, today we’re pulling back the curtain on the production and sharing 9 things you didn’t know about your favorite show – including how Bobby actually creates those inspiring new spaces.
Does Bobby really design a room in a week? Do the heroes have any say in their makeovers? And how does he find all those amazing products? All will be revealed – just keep scrolling as we spill all the secrets – and 9 things you didn’t know about Queer Eye.
Need to catch up on previous Queer Eye makeovers? Check out: Angel, Josh, Navarro High, Todd, Jereka, Jamie, Chris, Sarah, and Reggie from Season 6; and all the makeovers from previous seasons HERE. Plus, learn how to create Angel’s Bookshelf, Josh’s Small Space Tips, and Reggie’s Wall Treatment with our Queer Eye DIYs.
1. The Fab Five meet the episode’s hero on Tuesday, and complete the makeover by Friday.
Yep, in just 4 DAYS Bobby (and team) totally transform a space. But prior to meeting the heroes (and starting filming), Bobby and the production designers spend a week reviewing photos and floor plans, developing a design, and sourcing products to use. That ensures he has a design plan in place and can pull everything together in the tight timeframe.
2. AFTER MEETING THE HEROES, Bobby adds personal touches to the space
While most of the design is planned ahead of time, those personal touches come once Bobby has met the hero and can learn more about what they really love, from colors to styles, to sentimental pieces. He is also able to walk through the space with the hero and designate which pieces they want to keep, toss or donate.
3. Bobby works with a team of three designers
It definitely takes a team to make each makeover happen. And Bobby works with a group of four other hard-working designers, including Production Designer Tommy Rouse and Art Directors Joshua Smith and Tyka Edwards, in order to pull off these designs in such a short amount of time. And while they are finishing one makeover, some members of the team will jump into the next makeover and begin to prep things out.
4. ALL THE PRODUCTS FOR MAKEOVERS ARE SHIPPED AND STORED IN A GIANT WAREHOUSE
All the furniture, lighting, rugs, pillows, and plants you see in the finished spaces are stored and staged at a very large warehouse prior to design commencing. The design team can then keep everything organized and accounted for before it gets loaded into a truck for installation.
5. local artists, carpenters, and painters also help out with makeovers
In addition to the design team, Bobby seeks out lots of talented local artisans to help add unique elements to each makeover. For Season 6 in Austin, they created custom murals, neon signs, wall art, built-in bookcases, window treatments, furniture, and more.
6. REVEAL DAY INVOLVES LOTS OF HANDS
On the final reveal day, it’s usually a whirlwind of activity. The team pulls up a truck with goods from the warehouse and everything gets unloaded and styled. There are typically around 10 people (along with the cast and crew) involved in prepping the space and making final touches before the hero walks in the door for that wow moment. And yes, heroes get to keep everything used in their makeovers!
7. UNUSED PRODUCTS GET RETURNED OR DONATED
Bobby always likes to have multiple options on hand during installation for styling a space (and to be prepared in case something just doesn’t work). So anything that doesn’t make it into the space will get returned to the vendor or donated to an organization in need.
8. SOMETIMES THE TEAM HAS TO RETURN AFTER A MAKEOVER IS COMPLETED
Normally, Bobby and the team have to quickly move on to the next project after completing a makeover. But after wrapping Josh’s makeover for Season 6 Episode 3, they had to make a few essential improvements to the utilities. Josh’s new trailer home didn’t have water and electricity yet due to a water main break. In fact, when they filmed the reveal, the house was running on a garden house and generator!
9. THE FAB FIVE THREW TAN A BABY SHOWER DURING SEASON 6 FILMING
The Fab Five are certainly busy when filming a new season. But not too busy to celebrate one of their own! The cast and crew threw style guru Tan an adorable baby shower prior to welcoming his son, Ismail, in July 2021.
How do I nominate someone? Is there an application?
We have not announced the next season just yet, but I will be sure to post all the info on how to nominate a hero. Stay tuned! xx -B
Oh this was so informative! I keep smiling!! 🙂
Love Tan’s baby shower for Ismail. What a sweet gathering that had to have been for them. Wishing the best for all.
I wish you would come to the UK. All you guys are great in what you do. And how you help people I would love your help
We would LOVE to go to the UK – Until then stay safe and inspired! Thanks so much. xx -B
Thanks so much for reading! So happy we got to throw a little shower for Tan. xx -B
Dear Bobby, I never write “stars” but felt compelled to tell you how much we enjoy the fab 5. I’m a 63 year old grandmother, my husband is 69! Probably not your typical demographic. Your show inspires us and teaches us every episode. So great to watch such positivity. Sincerely Barbie
Thank you Barbie! Your love and support means the world to us. Please stay healthy and inspired always! xx -B
How can I “Bobby Berk” a couple bedrooms and a small kitchen in my house? Is there a template I can follow? Love what you do.