Out of the tens of hundreds of reality television stars who may or may not be on camera to make friends, there are only a couple who have translated their access inside the homes of millions of Americans into business success stories and burgeoning media careers.
One is Real Housewives of New York’s Bethenny Frankel, who has leveraged an emotionally intelligent, but no bullshit Northeastern attitude and a love of booze and calorie counting into the building and subsequent $120-or-so million sale of Skinnygirl Cocktails, as well as daytime talk show produced by Ellen DeGeneres that’s likely to be picked up in the very near future for national syndication.
The other is Laguna Beach and The Hills’ Lauren Conrad, who parlayed the spotlight in what may or may not have been a pair of scripted MTV teen dramas into no less than three fashion lines – The Lauren Conrad Connection, LC Laured Conrad, and paper crown – a spot in the New York Times Bestsellers List for each of the five book titles she’s penned so far – L.A. Candy (2009), Sweet Little Lies (2010), Sugar and Spice (2010), Lauren Conrad Style (2010), and The Fame Game (2012) – and a new original web series all about DIY fashion and home decor that shows off Conrad’s Martha Stewart side.
Produced by EQAL Media Studios (whose parent company – EQAL – was started by the individuals behind early YouTube sensation lonelygirl15 and now “combines technology and people to power power 24/7/365 digital media properties around consumer brands and celebrities”), Conrad’s Crafty Creations features the 26-year-old on a set inside Kathryn Ireland’s showroom where she teaches you how make washer bracelets, stenciled accent pillows, floral arrangements and more with clear instructions and a smile accompanied by the soft sounds of a guitar. Check it out:
The viewership isn’t quite at the Ellen-DeGeneres-is-going-to-produce-a-nationally-syndicated-show-where-Conrad-is-the-new-Stewart level (the program currently tops out a tens of thousands of viewers per episode), but if enough of the TV personality, author, and fashion designer’s fan base tunes in, expect to see Conrad show off her do-it-yourself skills on some kind of television sometime in the not-so-distant future.