Designer, Cheryl Torrenueva has become a hot commodity in the TV design world. She graduated with a bachelor of interior design from Ryerson University and could never have predicted what was yet to come.
On a whim she entered HGTV’s Superstar Challenge, made it to the finals, and the rest is TV history. Cheryl’s big break came when she was chosen to be the feisty on-camera design manager for HGTV’s Colin & Justin’s Home Heist. A few years later she started working in the USA as a design producer for HGTV USA’s Secrets From A Stylist, with her work featured on The Rachel Ray Show. She holds the throne as one of the top on-camera designers in demand on Food Network USA’s uber-successful Restaurant Impossible and Food Network Canada/Cooking Channel USA’s Restaurant Takeover.
For the past decade she has continued her TV career as a designer, creating both elegant and innovative spaces for HGTV Canada’s hit shows: Home To Go, Rooms That Rock, and Food Network’s Restaurant Makeover. She also art directed for HGTV’s Disaster DIY, Design Interns and SLICE’s Superstar Hair Challenge. In between shows she is a regular contributor to The Marilyn Denis Show, Blanco Canada’s Kitchen Design Council, Metrie’s Design Council, and has designed feature spaces for IDS Toronto, Sony Canada and various Home + Interior Design Shows.
Cheryl is now tackling her latest role as a resident Judge on The W Network’s biggest competition show, Game of Homes, which premiered March 17th.
What are the top 3 must haves in your closet?
Form fitting dresses, killer stilettos, and graphic patterned fabrics.
What’s your go-to outfit?
I usually start with dressy leggings with some kind of faux leather, zipper or pleated detail. Then depending on the occasion I can dress them up with a silk blouse and blazer or go super chill with a T-shirt and floppy hat.
What’s your go-to store?
BCBG fits me like a glove and they have the perfect balance of edgy work options, and sexy silhouettes for an evening out on the town. It’s my one stop shop. I also love Gotstyle in Toronto because if I’m looking for a more relaxed vibe you can often find me shopping in the men’s section for Zanerobe pants. When I’m filming and covered in dust on a construction site I tend to mix in fun and affordable options from Joe Fresh, Zara, or H&M so that I don’t have to worry about getting paint on me.
Who’s your favorite designer?
Oh gosh, I have so many…Gwen Stefani, Elie Saab, Jenny Packham, Victoria Beckham, Lucian Matis and Rosie Assoulin. I love their ability to accentuate the body and create unique looks that are confident and eye catching. It’s all in the details.
Are there any trends at the moment you love or hate?
I currently OBSESSED with wraps, capes, and ponchos…love them all! Great layering pieces with lots of movement. I’m enjoying wearing lots of lace and sheer fabrics this season with a modern bohemian flair.
I hate anything that’s too slouchy or that resembles pajamas. I think that you should always look your best because you never know who you might run into on the street. You only have one chance to make a first impression.
What advice would you give to young women trying to find their personal style?
Trends are just guidelines, and until you try them on, you’ll never know if they will work for you. Feel free to take pics of while you’re trying them on so that you can see how they work for you. Go for styles that work with your body type and highlight your best features. It’s taken me 10 years to realize, I can’t wear low waisted jeans!
What was your favorite style decade? (Grunge, hippy, 40’s)
70’s glamour all the way!
Do you have any beauty or fashion tips you’d like to share?
Keep your beauty routine simple to minimize the time that you need to get ready in the morning. Have 2 to 3 “go-to” outfits that you always have ready to go. I usually have these on hangers in my laundry room so that I can grab them before a shoot, or when I’m about to travel. You can always layer on jewelry or a jacket to dress them up. If you have already done most of the work then you’ll have more time to snooze in the mornings.
How has your personal style changed over the years?
I feel like I’ve really come into my own this past year. I had an amazing stylist, Nikki Harvie, while I was filming on Game of Homes and she really helped to pull all of the styles that I love together to create something unique. I went through so many phases from the top bling phase, J-Lo Glow, the modern businesswoman, to a more relaxed LA vibe, to leggings and basically all black all day. I love eclectic style right now, it’s a mix of all the elements that I love and I get to change it up every single day. I’m not a one trick pony when I’m designing, so I would never do the same thing with fashion.
Define the word style? Or what does the word style mean to you?
Style is the true expression of my thoughts and feelings. It just gets better with age.
Do you think the media affects fashion and trends? Is this a good thing?
Yes, I think the media definitely affects fashion and trends, but the flip side is that you never really know who’s controlling it. Ultimately, I tend to stick to authentic influencers in both fashion and design that I can relate to the most, and then make my own decisions as to whether those trends will work for my taste.
How would you describe your style?
Sassy + Classy. Rocker edge with a modern silhouette.
What’s your favorite accessory?
My engagement ring!