Our HGTV Pilot “Master Plan” Aired! (and here’s how to watch it)

If you missed our quick media blitz on Saturday, our HGTV pilot, Master Plan, aired!

The Grit and Polish - Porch Family in Kitchen 2

Our Porch House renovation // project featured on HGTV’s master plan

I woke up from a nap on Saturday (a weekend luxury for this tired mama) to find a text message from a friend saying that our show had already aired in California and would air in Washington later that afternoon. Thanks Christine! A quick peek at blog comments and sure enough people from around the US had already tuned in. At that point, we had about 2 hours before the show was going to air locally so we shot out some messages and scrambled to find somewhere to watch it ourselves (we don’t have cable at the Farmhouse). We ended up at the local brewery who thankfully let us take over their TV for 30 minutes, while 2 of our kids took their afternoon naps on our laps. So our first time seeing the show – hours after many of you had already seen it – was with a bunch of locals over beers at Whipsaw. It was perfect.

How to watch now (updated 2/7): For those of you who missed it, Master Plan will re-air on HGTV soon. And if you don’t have cable, we’ll let you know how else you can watch it. Once we hear an air date, we’ll get the word out on Instagram and Facebook.

The Grit and Polish - Porch House Front ExteriorThe Grit and Polish - Porch Kitchen Shelves and Cabs 3.2

It was a trip watching ourselves on national television but less so than I would have thought. Probably because we were still in shock that today was “the day” and out of breath from all the scrambling. I will say that Wilder loved seeing himself on the big screen (Brooks slept through his cameos) and it was really fun seeing myself pregnant again, while holding a now 6-month-old baby Daphne. Seeing our hometown, Ellensburg WA, on HGTV was a huge highlight for Garrett and I as well. But the biggest trip had to be for family, friends, and locals who missed our media blitz and just happened to be sitting at home watching HGTV on a Saturday afternoon when our faces popped up. Ha!

For those of you who watched Master Plan, wanted to watch it, follow this blog, or have supported us along this journey… THANK YOU! We’ve been working on “show stuff” in bits and pieces for 3 years now and it was fun to see it culminate in this pilot (you can read about our first sizzle here and our eventual pilot here and here). We thought the show turned out great thanks to all the hard work of our construction crew (notably Tyler Lee of 3rd Gen and Ryan Frye), Scott Sternberg Productions, Brenton our affable show runner and his awesome crew, Shawn at HGTV, and our neighbor Aaron who let us film in his backyard and fixed that beautiful pocket door overnight. Also, I apologize to any brick masons who had to watch us butcher their craft on national television 😉 DIY for life! 

If you’ve been a long time follower of the Grit and Polish you know that all of our projects receive a huge helping hand from friends and family and the Porch House renovation and Master Plan pilot were no exceptions. Without these lovely, supportive people in our lives none of this would be possible. Love you all!

The Grit and Polish - Porch House Living Rm 16.2The Grit and Polish - Porch House Kitchen Flowers on IslandThe Grit and Polish - Porch House Sunroom sunThe Grit and Polish - Porch House Master Bed Nightstand close

All photos from our Porch House, renovation featured on HGTV’s Master Plan pilot episode


related posts

Porch House page // The Porch House’s kitchen butcherblock // adding vintage charm to the kitchen // Porch House kitchen before + inspiration // we’re filming a pilot for HGTV // we’re STILL filming a pilot for HGTV // Porch House powder bathroom // Porch House master suite


-Garrett and Cathy


Filming Our Mini TV Pilot (Yes, really!)

This year has been filled with a lot of craziness and excitement!  There was the new house and a top-to-bottom renovation, 9-months of pregnancy and the birth of baby Brooks, our 10-year anniversary and a momentous graduation, tons of hard work and a whole lot of family and fun.   Even with all that, by far the craziest thing we did in 2015 was film a mini TV-pilot.

Yeah.  That still sounds crazy to me too!

The Grit and Polish - Mini Pilot filming at Ravenna 2

It all started back in February, when we were approached by an LA-based production company who had found the Grit and Polish through our feature on BobVila.com.  She wanted to pitch a show about our family to a large TV network. I’m not going to name names, but the network starts with an H and ends with a V.  The premise of the show was basically what we do on a daily basis: renovate houses and move our family into them.  They dubbed it “Inside Job”.

After a phone call with the producers, we met them via Skype.  They asked us all about our renovation process, our family, and our lives and recorded the whole thing.  Then they sent the interview off to the network.

We heard back a few weeks later that the network liked us and had commissioned a sizzle, which in TV-speak is a 5-minute mini pilot.  We signed “shopping” agreements (contracts giving the producers exclusive rights to us) and began on the process.

The Grit and Polish - filming a mini pilot at Ravenna 3

During April and May, the production company sent two crews up to Seattle to film us for a total of three days.  We started out at the already-renovated Ravenna House where they filmed us doing small projects, touring the house, talking about the early days of our romance, and interviewing us about buying and renovating houses.  You know stuff we can’t shut up about even if we tried.

The Grit and Polish - Filming mini pilot at Dexter with Wilder

Luckily we had closed on the Dexter House a day or two before the first crew came down from LA so they were able to capture us touring the house pre-renovation and then as we gutted the kitchen.  Wilder got to take part too and was pretty eager to show off his skills with a drill.  Brooks was just a big bump at that point 😉

The Grit and Polish - Filming mini pilot at Dexter 3

During our three short days in front of the TV cameras I learned a ton.  Like always turn off your mic before entering a bathroom.  And just how much footage it takes to put together a five minute video (seriously, three whole days of filming!). But I was also surprised by how much fun the process was.  Garrett and I had a blast and were just so exhilarated by the whole thing.  Well exhilarated and totally exhausted.  TV is a quite a business.  My hat’s off to Chip and Joanna Gaines!

The finished sizzle video was super impressive…at least we think so.  It wrapped up everything we do and who we are in five minutes and made us look good doing it!  After watching it for the first time, I said, “Wow! I would definitely watch that show”.  Which sounds kinda conceited, but when it comes down to it, it seems like the kind of thing you should say after watching a video about your own life.

The Grit and Polish - Family Filming at Dexter Small

In the end, the big network passed on our sizzle.  Apparently something to do with the flip sector being saturated.  So we won’t be on your TV screen any time soon.  Which is kind of disappointing, but after such a fun and unexpected adventure, it’s really hard to be anything other then happy for the experience.  The whole thing felt like a mini break from our lives (even though it was all about our lives), like a glimpse at a whole different and exciting path.  But mostly it was just fun.  And we are thankful that someone out there thought what we do is cool enough to consider making a show about it.

So our 10 seconds of fame is up.  Our contracts have expired and we’re back to renovating without cameras around.  But I wanted to share the experience with you guys, since it has everything to do with this blog and you guys and was a really exciting part of our 2015.



p.s. Thanks to my mom for taking most of these pictures!  She and my mother-in-law were around during filming to watch Wilder…how great are grandmas?!

p.p.s. Have you guys watched Andy and Candis’ new show, Old Home Love on DIY and HGTV?  I still haven’t seen an episode, but I’m pretty sure it’s awesome since I love what they do!

p.p.p.s. I’m so excited that our first Christmas as a family of 4 is finally here!  I picked up these monogramed stockings from Etsy to mark the occasion.  When they arrived, Garrett asked me, “do they make more designs so we can get one for the next kid?!”  Not totally sure if that’s funny or horrifying at this point…maybe both! 😉

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