Malibu Seen

Inner Vision

So, you’re finally ready to hunker down and brace yourself for a major makeover. You’ve got yourself psyched only to find… Surprise! Your designer is blind! That’s the idea behind 44 Blue’s innovative, new A&E series featuring blind designer Eric Brun-Sanglard, also known as Eric B.

A dead-ringer for Terminator-turned-Governator Arnold Schwarzenegger, the series follows Eric as he feels his way through homes, apartments, offices and a chocolate shop with his naughty, but endearingly sweet sidekick Alex Hedison mixing it up along the way.

Once you’ve gotten over the shock that the guy picking out colors for your new baby’s room can’t see, things get really interesting.

The makeover couples are blindfolded and asked to join in the process. They have to make tough design decisions “seeing” the world the same way Eric does.

He takes them on fascinating field trips and sensory shopping excursions to ceramic studios and even salsa dancing, using everything but their eyes.

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44 Blue co-founder Rasha Drachkovitch, who has produced hundreds of hours of programming, describes “Designing Blind” as one of the most original shows ever produced. “There’s never been anything like it,” he told Malibu Seen. “In that sense, it’s a bit of television history.”

More than just another design show, Eric takes couples on a spiritual journey as well. In addition to those spiffy new window treatments, you’ll find that a bond between father and son is restored, twosomes are moved to tears, one man pops the question, a business starts up and a baby is born.

Working on the project has been an unforgettable experience for executive producer Meredith Scott Lynn. “Eric has taught me a lot,” she says. “Basically, I’ve learned that you don’t need sight to have vision.”

To get the job done, Eric has an array of specialized tools-tape measures that talk to him, blueprints that see for him, computer software that speaks to him. He works closely with his crews and even digs in at demo time. That’s certainly miles away from the stuff you see everyday.

“Design shows are a dime a dozen,” Drachkovitch says. “But what really surprised me was the amount of emotion that comes out of this show. You look at the world differently and ultimately you may look at people with disabilities differently too.”

So don’t be in the dark. Tune into “Designing Blind” and tap into your inner being. Meet Eric B and watch the magic unfold. You’ve got to see it to believe it!

“Designing Blind” airs on A&E Sundays at 5 p.m.

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