Blog Cabin

May 13

Behind the Scenes: Filming a Blog Cabin Episode

Kitchen Crashers at Blog Cabin 2013

I had the privilege of being a fly on the wall during the filming of the “Kitchen Crashers” episode of Blog Cabin 2013 (May 4-5). This was my first opportunity to watch the filming of a DIY Network show. What a thrill!

The crew was an absolute delight. Producer Jay Baker greeted me as if I was one of the gang. His big Tennessee smile made me feel immediately at ease. And Chris Grundy and Alison Victoria? Top-notch talent, humble, gracious … and oh so funny. Chris proved a laugh a minute, while Alison, without missing a beat, whipped out the classic comebacks. On-screen chemistry in spades!

Cameras were catching every moment of the ad libs, few of which will hit the cutting room floor, I am sure. The crew muscled through a grey, cold rainy Saturday to capture scenes for a captivating how-to project. Chris and Alison first picked through the reclaimed wood pile and then headed to a makeshift construction area near the dock where they sliced down, then ripped beams for a very cool kitchen furnishing (Hint: It has legs. And don’t be surprised if some matching coasters surface). Cabinet installation followed by a field trip were also on the day’s filming to-do list.

Candid Snaps: Blog Cabin 2013 Location
Candid Pictures of Blog Cabin 2013 Area

I had the opportunity to chat with Jay in between takes. I was fascinated by his creative process and his approach to this year’s episode. “My thought is to always to land at the place, take a look at the environment and figure out a way to involve as much of that environment into the show as possible,” he said. “We are in a special place that people will travel extensively to get to. We all have. So let’s show people why.”

Small kitchen size is a challenge this year, but Jay plans some workarounds; directing such talented hosts definitely helps. “You get someone with Chris’s energy level around someone with Alison’s energy level: They just self motivate. They are great at that. You just try to repeat that over and over and over because that’s why someone at home would want to watch this.”

For Grundy, being the Blog Cabin 2013 master of ceremonies has been a blast from the get-go. Although this year’s home is a tad smaller than the 2012 Maine home, the coastal location, beautiful water views and friendly locals make up for the building challenges. Mutual affection amongst crew members also makes for a stellar experience. “I love working with all the people that are here. I like having fun and all these people make me laugh,” he says. “And Alison Victoria — from the moment she shows up in a boat, everything gets better.”

Note: Although Cabin Cam comes down today, we have alot more to share, including a Q&A with our remodeling experts, an interview with the interior designer and content related to’s Remodeling of Blog Cabin 2013 package. Stay tuned!


  1. I will really miss the cabin cam…..(sigh)…….but, I suppose you need to keep some things a surprise.The work today has been tremendous and wonderful to watch. I love everything that has happened with this cabin!! I REALLY WANT TO WIN THIS!!! I know, we all do…..Thank you, Mary, for being a great "hostess" to all of us.

    TishaStanley on May 13, 2013 at 4:02 pm
  2. Mary, thank you so much for all you've done to keep us in the loop! Also a big love shout out to Chris Grundy, Alison Victoria, Matt Muenster, Josh Temple, Matt Blashaw, Jason Cameron and Anitra Mecadon for all their creativity and hard work, and also a hearty thank you for everyone involved in the design and construction of this beautiful home and yard! It has been so much fun to follow all your hard work! The cabin cam will be so very much missed, not sure how I'm going to stand the long wait until the online tour begins in July! Mary please beg the "powers that be" to reconsider and keep the camera? If they want to reserve something like the dock area as a surprise perhaps they could just relocate the camera to somewhere where we wouldn't be able to see that secret area? Hopin' and wishin'……:S;)

    SID on May 13, 2013 at 4:04 pm
    • I totally agree with you Sid in everything you said..Love To All involved in the 2013 Blog Cabin "Cottage"…
      Mary please let the Camera stay…and if they are doing something they don't want us to see, turn it on Panorama View. It's a long time til July!!!:):p^_^B)<3 We Bloggers will be totally lost without the Camera! Please????

      Jennie/Florida on May 13, 2013 at 10:29 pm
  3. thank you DIY for the wonderful ride and insite to the future ,with all the ups and downs what a real time show it has been great for you to allow us to enjoy it to the fullest,, lastcheck in Karens husband Carl…

    karenlin91 on May 13, 2013 at 4:05 pm
  4. Dear Mary and the DIY Team, I have really appreciated all the posts. I will miss the cabin cam. I can't wait to see the end result of this Jewel of the Beach. I can't imagine it getting any better, but knowing the work of DIY and the creativity of the team, the 2013 Blog Cabin will be the best creation yet!!! Love it already! Becky<3<3^_^

    bythebaydreamer on May 13, 2013 at 4:18 pm
    • Thank you for the note on the grape arbor. We'll miss all of you too! :) <3

      bythebaydreamer on May 13, 2013 at 8:09 pm
  5. The cam doesnt need to come down, it needs to be raised up.:D

    540sam on May 13, 2013 at 4:21 pm
    • !!!! YES !!!!! UP UP UP ,,Go Sam;-)

      karenlin91 on May 13, 2013 at 7:26 pm
    • I'll second that… Oh that dog, looked like a golden canaan or something similar, it was adorable. ;)

      MaryPA on May 14, 2013 at 9:02 pm
  6. I am amazed at all of the work that got completed today, and grateful the camera stayed up long enough for us to see the yard nearly completed. The cabin was already beautiful, but now it is homey and welcoming too. Thanks to everyone involved in making this cabin so fantastic. I'll miss the camera, but now I will probably get a lot more work done myself:p.

    Windsmurf on May 13, 2013 at 4:30 pm
  7. Isn't it truly amazing how much can be done by 20+ people, all working together to create this masterpiece? The new sod is being rolled now, so there will be no seams showing. Many landscapers neglect to roll their sod, and it always looks lumpy, with seams showing everywhere. I saw a Culvers restaurant recently, where the sod was never rolled, and it still looks awful, 2 years later. What a magnificent, wonderful home for anyone. My only hope is that the new owner takes care of all this nice greenery, and allows it to remain like a park. Some people do not know how to manage wonderful landscaping. Enjoy the rest of your day, gotta run.

    Builder on May 13, 2013 at 4:44 pm
    • I agree totally, Builder, the landscaping is beautiful, and let's hope the new owner will take pride in the property and maintain it. Just a question, though. Where will they be able to store all the lawn equipment and supplies needed to maintain it? Someone said that Chris Grundy said there would be no storage or garage. :So.0:o:'(Boo

      Boo on May 13, 2013 at 7:10 pm
    • It might be kinda neat if they left one of those storage units to store lawn supplies, mowers, trimmers, etc. They have lots of room., and are very, very sturdy. If the owner does not like the color, it can always be painted, and moved to a different location, tucked along some trees in the background.. Right now, those units look like a fence, like one blogger asked.

      What ever happens, this still remains one magnificent home and building site, for one lucky owner. Let's hope the new owner is someone who has been viewing the entire building process, and not someone who just entered a contest, because it was there. That would be so sad, since there are so many wonderful bloggers on this site, and it will be heartbreaking if one of them is not the LUCKY winner, like Carole Simpson was of the other new home. She was a very deserving winner.

      Builder on May 13, 2013 at 9:44 pm
    • Very good idea on both—Read what builder has to say guys I know you can't do anything re: picking winner but he has a great idea re: storage area. I'm all for it

      bogartand bacall on May 18, 2013 at 12:07 am
    • I'm with you, each, Builder AND BogartandBacall! Great Concept and of course, a Bloggie from the get-go SHOULD win!!! Have a great weekend! Love to all! B)xD:p<3 Kitty

      DwnSoDwnEaster on May 18, 2013 at 2:36 pm
  8. I agree with blogger friends…. sad to see the cabin cam go. It is so exciting to see the new landscaping
    and yard coming alive with Spring! Thank you DIY crew for providing and sharing with us the step- by -step process of the rehabilitation of our"' dreams can come true cabin."=) Happiness and good health to all and enjoy each day!!

    dona on May 13, 2013 at 4:49 pm
  9. For the longest time I've dreamed of being out on the BC porch looking at the beautiful view of the Core Sound, but after seeing the landscape transformations, I would be just as content to go sit out on the dock and look back at the beautiful view of the yard & house!!

    Freakin" Amazing JOB!! Fierce work this year, the best BC yard EVER !!!

    Mel on May 13, 2013 at 5:15 pm
  10. Nice rocking chairs on the front porch. We will miss a chance to check the progress everyday and imagine all that might be happening inside.

    zulumom on May 13, 2013 at 5:18 pm

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Blog Cabin is the groundbreaking multimedia experience based on a very simple idea: You Design It, We Build It, You Could Win It! This truly interactive series asks Internet users to vote on the design features for a real vacation getaway. Expert hosts will transform a 1990s waterfront home in Panacea, Florida that will become a luxurious home for a lucky sweepstakes winner. Plus, a one-hour Blog Cabin special, hosted by tool expert Chris Grundy, will highlight the incredible transformation.
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