New show 'Consumed' with too much stuff

Producer says guilt number one reason for clutter

A new TV series is looking for Metro Vancouver families with too much stuff.

Producer Barry Gray says there are many reasons a family home may be burdened with too many possessions.

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It could be a blended family or parents whose adult children are still living at home or have moved back home due to circumstances, said Gray. Were looking for families who arent afraid to talk about their situation. They also have to realize this is not going to be done for them, this is not a free makeover.

Gray said the HGTV show Consumed, produced by Vancouver-based Paperny Films, will help families find the root of their problems and offer advice on how to fix them. That advice comes courtesy of Consumed host Jill Pollack, a Los Angeles-based professional organizer who will move in with the family for a month. Gray said families who are chosen must make a real commitment to change. He noted there are many reasons a person collects possessions including the lure of a two-for-one sale or the inexpensive prices at thrift stores or garage sales. He added this is not a show about hoarders, but instead focuses on families overwhelmed by possessions.

Its about families with working parents who are too tired to tackle the basement on their weekend off, says Gray. Theyre come up against a wall and dont know where to start. This is a show that doesnt judge, but instead gives the families and the viewer some practical tips.

Gray said Pollack offers advice on family relationships and dynamics and on how to put a home back together. Each of the 13 episodes already produced but as of yet unaired begins by clearing out a home of everything except the necessities needed to live. After a month the family is allowed to see their possessions once again and then must decide what stays and what goes. In one episode a family taking part in the show removed five moving vans full of possessions from their home.

After 30 days they put their home back together, but this is not a magazine spread, said Gray. There are a lot of laughs and tears as the families learn how to do it themselves.

Gray said many family members, in particular women, are very sentimental about objects passed down from one generation to another. He notes its typically, but not always, women who keep family traditions alive from one generation to the next. That makes it tough for some to get rid of family possessions they treasure.

Theres something Jill says that makes great sense, says Gray. Just because the object is gone doesnt mean the memory is.

Gray says guilt is the number one contributor to clutter. The guilt of getting rid of those treasures can often cause a family member to hang on to them.

They feel guilty because they think that by getting rid of an object theyre letting that loved on down, said Gray. The first thing they have to do is get rid of that guilt.

Any families from Metro Vancouver drowning in stuff and willing to air their dirty laundry on TV can call casting director Rachel Knudsen at 604-873-9777 ext. 251 or email

Twitter @sthomas10

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