Last night, a travesty occurred on Channel Seven’s House Rules – and we’re not talking about one contestant wiping away their sweat on a towel AND THEN PUTTING IT ON DISPLAY.
Oh no, this is far worse.
When judges Wendy Moore, Drew Heath and Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen walked into the bathroom contestants Troy and Bec had renovated, they were faced with a design feature that broke the number one rule of (good) interior design – fake plants.
In response to the brief that requested "lots of greenery", the pair decided to install a "vertical garden"of plastic shrubbery by the side of the bath.
"You wouldn't even think it was fake and it doesn't need watering," Troy declared triumphantly.
The judges unfortunately didn't feel the same way.
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Lawrence described it as "extraordinary" while Drew dubbed it "the strangest interpretations I've ever seen". Neither were compliments.
"We are being very nice that we're not being more teasy about this extraordinary thing going on here...This slot with what can only be described as prosthetic plants in it," said Lawrence.
"The real joy? The fact they left the price tag on just so everyone can understand how expensive plastic plants are".
Yes, Troy had purposefully left the price tag clearly displayed on the feature to ensure everyone knew they had spent $300 for the privilege of plastic plants.
Viewers were quick to join in on the horror and criticism.
— Rebecca Senyard (@ThePlumbette) May 28, 2017
— Michelle ???????? (@MichelleMackey1) May 28, 2017
One look and even a five year old can tell those plants are fake, Troy. #HouseRules
— Arkady (@Arkady2009) May 28, 2017
I agree wholeheartedly. No fake plants is my number one house rule - even though I have a black thumb and no gardening skills whatsoever. (Seriously, I think I managed to kill my last house plant with TOO MUCH sunlight, if that's at all possible).
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Yet despite the public support, when I spoke about my hatred of fake plants at work this morning I was treated like an outcast.
"But you can't kill them!," said one colleague. "They make a space look so lovely yet require no maintenance!" added another.
The truth is I used to be one of them, regularly seduced by the cute (and cheap) fake plants in rose gold pots you see in the shops. Then when I moved house and started to get excited about redecorating with said metallic pots, I stumbled upon a comment from a stranger that changed everything.
"The whole purpose of plants is improve the air quality and bring life to a space. So why would you introduce more chemicals and plastic with a fake plant," it read.
It was like a light bulb went off above my head.
Yes, plastic plants are less messy and will truly never die. But that's also what makes them so bad - they're much harder to get rid of and much worse for the environment. And spoiler - they collect dust and grime, so yes they also need cleaning and upkeep.
Not to mention that while they may bring the look of greenery, they have none of the benefits.
Opt for the real deal and you can purify toxins in the air (researchers at NASA recommend at least one plant per 100 square feet of home or office space), make a house a home with good energy, repelling insects and making a space smell great - naturally.
Plus, it gives you the perfect excuse to post a humblebrag of your market bunch on Instagram.
It really has made a difference to my room, bringing colour and life to my space. Picking my flowers carefully means I can often get a few weeks out of my $10 market bunch and the same goes for plants - if you're lacking a green thumb, research or ask an expert for the most low-maintenance and resistant plant.
If budget allows, ban the "prosthetic plants" for good. And if you ever find yourself contemplating burning $300 on the stuff? Get out and smell the roses.
Do you agree or disagree?