Aug 21, 2014
10:30 AM
Style & Shopping

'House Hunters' Finds Dream Home for One Connecticut Couple; Aired Saturday

'House Hunters' Finds Dream Home for One Connecticut Couple; Aired Saturday

Bob Capazzo

Erin and Eric Harkrader's dining room was one space updated on HGTV's "House Hunters," which aired Saturday, August 23.

One local couple got the renovation of their lives courtesy of HGTV’s "House Hunters," which has dedicated an entire season to Connecticut homes.

Erin and Eric Harkrader’s (below) new home got an overhaul by Greenwich-based interior designer Samantha Knapp and CNN Construction Contractor Chris Fratarolli.

Their episode aired this past Saturday, August 23.

“The House Hunters experience was great,” says Erin Harkrader. “It was more involved than I had been expecting, but it was really interesting to see how a show is made, and the end result is fantastic.”

The newlyweds (right) were searching for a home with a traditional layout and large kitchen to accommodate their love of entertaining.

“We knew we had very different styles, so we were looking for something that combined the two,” says Eric Harkrader, a Connecticut native. “We also knew we planned on being in the house for a long time, so we wanted something that had been taken care of and the basics were in really good shape.”

But once they settled on a property, there was a lot of work that still needed to be done to make it their ultimate starter home. Erin Harkrader, originally from Maine, says there was, “a bit more involved than the average makeover show,” including opening walls and redesigning the kitchen.

Their interior designer, Samantha Knapp (left), who is also the co-owner and creative director of Tiger Lily’s Greenwich, a family-run interior design studio that specializes in design, furniture repair and custom upholstery, had her work cut out for her in finding the right layout for the couple and marrying their two different styles.

“Generally with a lot of older homes [there are] divided spaces,” says Knapp. “Our generation…wants to open up the floor plan. You’re looking for that natural opportunity. [We created] an open space between the kitchen and the dining room and opened the entry way to the living room. There was a lot of great work.”

With custom upholstery from Tiger Lily’s and a one-of-a-kind piece of artwork by Bridgeport-based artist Jahmane, Knapp was able to add a variety of personal touches to the home.

“[We were] able to show that with a small budget you can still have something hand touched,” says Knapp. “That really shows in this episode.”

The result is a bright, open home that flows effortlessly from one room to another. 

(Photos above and below by Bob Capazzo.)

“I don't think anyone can prepare themselves for the final reveal. It's a surreal experience,” says Erin Harkrader. “In our case, it was exciting and positive, and we've only grown to love the design more. Aspects of the design that we didn't realize would be so useful have turned out to be some of our favorite things.”

For more information on Tiger Lily’s Greenwich, visit their website at tigerlilysgreenwich.com.

For more episodes and information about the show, visit the HGTV website

Contact me by email at khartman@connecticutmag.com and follow me on Twitter, and connect with Connecticut Magazine on Twitter, on Facebook and on Google +

'House Hunters' Finds Dream Home for One Connecticut Couple; Aired Saturday

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