Who is Orlando Soria? Soria, who runs the men’s lifestyle blog Hommemaker, is known for being a young designer – he has more than 158,000 followers on Instagram; he also made his small-screen debut as Emily Henderson’s on-camera assistant in the short-lived HGTV show Secrets From a Stylist.
In each episode of Unspouse My House, Soria teams up with a contestant who has gone through a ‘big deal’ – one that has significantly affected their living situation. (A man has been divorced for almost a decade and is fed up with his ex’s ugly French cuisine, another woman is single for six months and still broken.) Soria then sets up their house to scare away the lingering bad vibes. There are six episodes in the first season.
Soria, who runs the men’s lifestyle blog Hommemaker, is known for being a young designer – he has more than 158,000 followers on Instagram; he also made his small screen debut as Emily Henderson’s assistant on camera in the short-lived HGTV show Secrets From a Stylist. (Soria had already been approached by Unspouse by producers.)
However, it was not easy to get to this point. Soria graduated with an MFA in painting from the University of Pennsylvania during the 2008 recession and describes his early adult life as ‘over scraping’. Earning a living from what inspires him creatively didn’t come at a cost (he’s received more than a few phone calls from credit card companies).
“If you have the ambition to have some kind of bigger voice in the design community and put it on TV, you have to start expressing that you can write through Instagram, a blog, some kind of writing – ultimately those that end up with opportunities to create mainstream content are usually the ones that created content, anyway , “advises Soria. “Doing what I do is great, but there aren’t many jobs that do what I do. You have to choose your path – go for the billionaires or try to become a TV personality. There’s no middle ground. ‘
From sizzle reel to primetime, Unspouse only took about a year to make. HGTV produced the pilot and ordered a first season before one of the episodes aired, and moved the premiere date from September to the next week – the team only had about a month’s worth of post-processing. That said, Soria has been in the ‘entertainment-adjacent world’ long enough to know that nothing is guaranteed and that the show, despite all the trust around it, can still fail. Until the pilot was announced to the audience, Soria waited for someone to come up to him and say, “Kidding,” à la Ashton Kutcher on Punk’d, and it would all be taken away. (“They pull the [SD card] out of the camera and it’s like potato chip,” he jokes.)
Despite the looming pressure, Soria remains hopeful that he will get the chance to tell more of these stories – stories meant for the masses that their own designer might not be able to afford, rather than those who have curated to appeal to one percent. “I could have gone to work with extremely wealthy clients, or the route I took, which is to talk to thousands of people about interior design and make their homes more beautiful,” says Soria. “The added bonus for design suckers like us is that there’s that traditional home makeover before and after porn that you can see where you see the hideous house turning into a great house.”
How could the ex who caused it all feel? “I think he’d be happy for me,” Soria says. But: “I don’t care if he feels happy or not. I told him never to text me again. ‘
Watch the premiere of Unspouse My House on HGTV on June 6 at 9:30 p.m. Et.
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