Designer Katie Stout and Carpenter Karl Champley win top prize in Ellen’s Design Challenge on HGTV

Take a look at any of the bold, unique furniture pieces Katie Stout created on Ellen’s Design Challenge with the help of her partnered carpenter, Karl Champley, and it’s clear why the pair stuck around until the final episode of the HGTV design show. Aside from a slightly dramatic twist at the end of the competition, the Brooklyn-based Stout is quite deserving of her win. We’re excited to bring her and Champley to Dwell on Design Los Angeles to speak to the show’s fans.

Here’s a sneak peak at a conversation topic that might arise during next month’s on-stage event:

Dwell: What was your most memorable experience during the making of the show?

Katie: I have to say the cow table. (She says with a big laugh, and we all join in.)

Karl: Good for you!

Katie: We did very well for the first two challenges, and then on the third I wanted to take a risk. I was not even thinking about what would happen, and then something went awry. (She and Karl both laugh this time.) Karl and I just said, ‘Let’s go with it!’ Then he made this really funny udder platter to go on top of the table. This was one of those moments where it could have seemed like the end, but instead we just thought, ‘No, this is great. It’ll be fine.’

It’s moments like this, where Stout — a graduate of the prestigious design school RISD — shined the most each week. Her continuous go-with-the-flow attitude, accompanied by her ease of creating on the fly, plus her use of crayons to quickly design the furniture Champley would eventually build, demonstrate the genuine grace and professionalism she exudes, which cannot be denied. We also related, 100 percent, to her embarrasing excitement when she met Ellen DeGeneres for the first time, after presenting the cow table. It doesn’t get more real than that!

Of course, no matter how great the designer, a team can only get so far on the coattails of one or another of its members. With that said, Stout started off a winner when she was partnered with the consumate professional, Karl Champley. Not only has this Aussie been involved in the building trade for more than 20 years, he’s also had years of experience working in front of the camera as a host on DIY Network shows “Wasted Spaces” and “DIY to the Rescue.”

Dwell’s Editor in Chief, Amanda Dameron, who also served as a judge on Ellen’s Design Challenge, will speak with Katie Stout and Karl Champley about their experiences during the competition, how the show has changed their lives — Stout took home the $100,000 designer’s prize — and what’s next for these creative design stars. You won’t want to miss this exciting event on Saturday, May 30, at 4:00 p.m.

Originally submitted by Brandi Andres

(All Images Courtesy of Ellen’s Design Challenge)