The Block recap: Main bathroom week and first challenge (5.9.16)

Jodie Humphries 6 September 2016

The Block 2016 episode 9 recap

How much do the contestants really know about Art Deco?

The teams got to check out the winning guest bedroom while Karlie and Will enjoy their winning spoils of a night in a luxury house. Before entering the room the teams see the note that informs the judges that the door for the room is being custom built, as are all their hallway doors, which is why it isn’t installed.

Kim and Chris really wanted to hate the room, but couldn’t help liking it. Julia and Sasha as well as the boys were also extremely impressed, but Carleen and Dan weren't so impressed. Carleen was quick to bring the snark, pointing out a small imperfection on a wardrobe: “when you get 9’s you are nearly perfect, I wouldn’t say (this is) nearly perfect.”

The next couple to be inspected were Kim and Chris. Their room impressed all the other couples except -- you guessed it -- Carleen and Dan. With snark mode now fully engaged, Carleen suggested the flower arrangement on the desk was from the 80s.

Andy and Ben’s apartment was next, and again the room did not impress "experienced" renovators Carleen and Dan. This time it was Dan taking swipes, saying he felt the room was tacky and that the boys had bastardised the heritage timber. Julia was a little surprised at the boys' final score, as she felt the wardrobe could have been better designed. Kim and Chris picked up that the artwork behind the bed was a photograph of the building and joked they would copyright it if it was of their apartment.

All the couples then headed onto Julia and Sasha's room, provoking yet more moaning from Carleen and Dan, who criticised the wood that framed the door compared to the skirting around the room. The other couples were more impressed, with Kim disagreeing with the judge's comments that the room felt soulless.

Not happy Dan

Not happy Dan! Source: Channel 9 

And so finally to Carleen and Dan's Carleen and Dan’s mish mash of a guest bedroom. None of the couples could understand the harshness of the judges feedback, although Andy did offer the suggestion that they may want to tone the colours back a bit for art deco. Dan added that he felt they were being judged harshly, with Carleen adding: “the expectation of you’ve got experience so you should be great isn’t always the winner for you.”

Dan and Carleen bedroom

Dan and Carleen's bedroom. Source: Channel 9 

As the couples now have a completed a bedroom, it’s time for them to move out of their pods, which can then be removed from the roof of the building. But before this can happen the couples need to get everything they want out of the pods. A frenzy of activity saw everyone pulling anything they can out in order to either use in their apartment downstairs or sell to add money to their renovation budget. Andy and Ben also go on an unsuccessful hunt to find the Wi-Fi dongle they accidentally plastered into their pod's wall.

Packing up the pods

Packing up the pods. Source: Channel 9 

With main bathroom week now underway, Kim and Chris again are well on their way with layout planning and design. Then Kim spots the bath that Andy and Ben took out of their pod that they have put for sale on the street outside The Block and gets the help of a passing stranger to work on getting the bath from the boys for a lower price than the $500 they have on the sign. After watching Andy try and haggle the poor bystander up to a higher price, Kim steps in and confesses her plan, but adds that she no longer wants the bath as Ben mentioned it was not full-size.

Carleen and Dan have shaken off their scathing feedback from the judges and move full steam ahead with planning their main bathroom. They have a plan to take a small amount of space the architect has allocated for the bathroom to create a study at the front of their apartment. Dan then goes on to organise the setup of the core drilling for the bathrooms, which will potentially impact several floors.

Core drilling with Dan

Dan starts the core drilling. Source: Channel 9 

Julia and Sasha are wanting to continue the luxe look that gave them the win in main ensuite week, but after blowing the budget on that project they need to be more cautious with their master. The girls get their core holes drilled, which pushes Dan’s patience as he can’t put sheets on the roof of his bathroom until this core hole is done. The girls contemplate changing the location of the bathroom wall to make room for a desk in the dead space that sits at the front of the apartment, but in the end they decide to leave it as is.

Meanwhile Karlie and Will have opted to not include a bath in their main bathroom, instead taking some of the space allocated to the bathroom to allow them to stick with the apartment layout they want.

The boys also make a bathroom excision, opting not to have a toilet in the bathroom itself as there's a separate WC in the laundry that is next to the bathroom. They are using the extra space this creates for an extra-large bath.

The always-ahead-of-the-class Kim and Chris hit their first roadblock when Foreman Dan informs them that the screed they have laid for their bathroom, a day before any of the other couples, is too thick and heavy for the temperamental heritage slab of the building and will need to be redone. However this didn’t hold them up too much with Kim first to arrive at the shops to get all the interiors for the bathroom. As a result of the judges' feedback the couple is planning a grander look in their main bathroom.

Kim and Chris bathroom slab

Kim and Chris run into a screed situation. Source: Channel 9

The other couples then also arrive at the shops to get their bathroom needs sorted, with Carleen and Dan opting to go for a similar style in the bathroom as they have in their main ensuite as that design seemed to impress the judges. Julia went in with all the confidence of having it all sorted, however this doesn’t last long as her typically indecision surfaces when confronted with all the choices. With Sasha working hard managing things at their apartment, she is none too impressed about getting calls from Julia trying to decide on tiles.

Once again Foreman Dan hands out his awards for the cleanest sit, with Kim and Chris quietly confident that the boys wouldn’t win again and they were in with a chance. However their hopes were dashed when yet again Andy and Ben won, with the prize being an electrician worth approximately $5,000. Chris, who takes a lot of pride in keeping their site clean, was clearly unimpressed.

The teams were then called to design school to compete in their first challenge, which was a lesson in art deco from former Blockhead Jenna. After going through some of the history of art deco and being shown some different elements that they could incorporate into their renovation, they had a pop quiz, covering both art deco and previous seasons of The Block. The winning couple will a kitchen appliance upgrade worth over $50,000, which is the biggest challenge prize in The Block history.

Challenge results:

Andy (10) and Ben (16)26/50
Will (12) and Karlie (16)28/50
Carleen (9) and Dan (12)21/50
Chris (12) and Kim (13)25/50
Sasha (15) and Julia (19)34/50

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