On Air

Mike Clarke


At the end of a year of lockdown, Habitat reveals TV’s impact on our home lives

Almost half of Brits have spent up to 30 hours a week watching TV in lockdown

One in four now make the box their first port of call when it comes to interiors inspiration

Blockbusters like It’s a Sin drives trend for pink, whilst Selling Sunset fans seek Californian cool

Nostalgia binging makes a mark, with drinks trollies and display cabinets on the up thanks to Only Fools and Horses and Fawlty Towers streaming on Netflix

Habitat has partnered with Changing Rooms legend Carol Smillie, to impart her tips on getting the TV look

Research out today has revealed that a year of watching lockdown TV hasn’t just been a boredom banisher; it’s influenced the way renovation-mad Brits are decorating their homes.

With the average Brit’s day reduced down to their own four walls – TV became a window to the outside world. Almost half (49%) have been spending up to 30 hours a week watching TV to get through the monotony, whilst more than 40% of Brits listed it as their favourite way to forget about the stress. Meanwhile, 30% said sorting out their home did the trick – making it no surprise that the two worlds collided.

Modern blockbusters like It’s a Sin haven’t just made a mark on TV, they’ve impacted Brits’ home style. Habitat reported a 70% increase in online searches for retro-styled cuddle armchairs and searches for pink-coloured furnishings are up by 63%, as fans steal inspiration from the iconic ‘Pink Palace’.

Selling Sunset has driven a year-round quest for ‘Californian Cool’ – with Habitat reporting a 1630% increase in searches of garden furniture, and searches for sun lounger surging by 264% in winter, despite the Artic conditions.

Line of Duty, newly back on our screens, is also providing inspiration. Those blue boxes of files and orderly shelves have inspired Brits to add some ‘law and order’ to their homes with storage searches at Habitat up by 122%.

Meanwhile one in four (25%) have turned to nostalgic escapism in a bid to escape the stress of modern day, with over 33% influenced by old favourites such as Only Fools and Horses streaming on Netflix. Del Boy saw his drinks trolley as the height of sophistication, now ‘intertaining’ is bringing it back into fashion with Habitat reporting a 278% increase in online searches YoY.

Even Fawlty Towers has made its mark, with the display cabinets favoured by Sybil seeing a resurgence – with a 103% uplift in online searches at Habitat. Brits have also binged on familiar US shows like Friends to provide comfort in times of uncertainty. Habitat has seen sales of large coffee cups surge by 63% since January 2021, with Brits taking inspiration from the coffee house, ‘Central Perk’.

Alongside the classic sitcoms, retro property shows, such as Changing Rooms are on the up, with 67% watching old favourites to pass the time over the last year. One in four Brits now make the TV their first port of call when it comes to interiors inspiration.

Former Changing Rooms presenter Carol Smillie, to offer advice to Brits on achieving their own TV-inspired homes. Carol says: “Having spent lockdown renovating (and yes - watching TV!) I completely relate to the Brits seeking interiors inspiration from their favourite shows. It’s great to hear that Changing Rooms is still making its mark too. My own lockdown TV-spiration has to be It’s a Sin – I invested in a whole host of pink cushions and throws after watching that!’.

Lockdown TV-spiration League Table:





Changing Rooms

1.      Brightly coloured feature walls

2.      Statement chairs

3.      Dramatic mirrors


Only Fools and Horses

1.      Del Boy’s drinks trolley

2.      Chandeliers

3.      Trigger’s broom


Line of Duty

1.       1. Storage cabinets

2.       2. Manager’s chairs

3.       3. Tumblers (as used in interview rooms)



1.      Large Coffee Cups

2.      Peephole Picture Frame

3.      Huggsy 



1.      Four poster beds

2.      Statement chairs

3.      Duke of Hastings’ spoon


Normal People

1.      Vintage-style glassware

2.      Eclectic vases

3.      Connell’s chain


Fawlty Towers

1.      Display cabinets

2.      Framed wall art

3.      Tea trolley


Selling Sunset

1.      Statement garden furniture

2.      OTT entrances

3.      Marble effect


It’s a Sin

1.      ‘The Pink Palace’ inspired pops of colour

2.      Bright blazers worn by Ritchie

3.      Dramatic lighting


The Sopranos

1.      Tony Soprano’s bathrobe

2.      Tony Soprano’s therapy chair

3.      Tony Soprano’s mirror (the one he sees Pussy’s ghost in)

 To listen back to the interview with Carol Smilie head over to mixcloud.com/cvfmradio. 


ITV talent show The Voice just crowned a winner on Saturday as Molly Hocking was announced as The Voice UK 2019 winner and they are now looking for a 2020 potential winner.

Its talent scouts are out around the country already, looking for the next potential star and are coming to Middlesbrough this coming Thursday.


  • Community Voice FM (CVFM) Ltd is not for profit media organisation based in Middlesbrough: we operate a grassroots-led radio station. 104.5 CVFM Radio started broadcasting in August 2009 serving the diverse population of Middlesbrough and the surrounding areas.

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  • The internet creates more of an appetite for media – it doesn’t replace physical books, radio or TV. – Marissa Mayer