As previously reported by Adweek, the Style network is getting... well, not a facelift, but certainly the network equivalent of microdermabrasion. The DIY-ish fashion cable net will start to feature more narrative-focused programming and reality shows about big personalities and high price tags.
The new StyleMedia will also include plenty of brand names, which were a major focus at an NBCUniversal press breakfast this morning held at fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg's headquarters. The net's new look and upcoming rebrand sounds like it will fit into that unit's women's lifestyle category in much the same way the Cooking Channel complements the Food Network.
The highest-profile show Style announced was Betsey + Lulu, a reality series produced by Top Chef and Project Runway shingle Magical Elves. The series follows designer Betsey Johnson and her daughter Lulu as they deal with living together, Betsey's 70th birthday and Lulu's single motherhood. Notably, the series was one of the few offerings that didn't appear to be a franchise hopeful. Other entries on the slate had names with interchangeable subjects like Empire Girls: Julianna & Adrienne and Party Fabulous Vegas, while the slate's other two offerings (Ultimate Home with Bill Rancic and Chicagolicious) are spinoffs of established series.
The development slate looked similar to the rest of the material on display, with the exception of Endemol's Built, a series about the beefcakey apartment renovators of—no kidding—Manhattan-based construction service Hott and Handy, who redo Manhattan apartments and work shirtless. Clips from the pilot drew plenty of laughs and a few cheers from the early-morning audience.