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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Sophomore LHP Shane Sdao (38) reacts after a strikeout during Texas A&Ms game against Texas at Disch-Falk Field on Tuesday, March 5, 2024. (CJ Smith/The Battalion)
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Sophomore LHP Shane Sdao (38) reacts after a strikeout during Texas A&Ms game against Texas at Disch-Falk Field on Tuesday, March 5, 2024. (CJ Smith/The Battalion)
A Sunday salvage
May 12, 2024

Architect to the stars

 
 

Commonly known as the “Architect to the Stars,” David Applebaum, Class of 1983 with a degree in environmental design, is living the Hollywood life, complete with LA’s right of passage of being featured on a reality television show: Bravo’s “Launch my Line.”
Similar to Lifetime’s “Project Runway,” “Launch my Line” is a reality show featuring 10 industry professionals coupled with 10 established fashion experts to create their own clothing line, with one team being eliminated at the end of each show.
“It was a lot like architecture school. They give you a couple of guidelines to work with and it is a really, really difficult thing to do, but when you finish it is just a really great experience,” Applebaum said.
Behind the set of the reality show it was ducers would purposely set up situations to stir up trouble and some cast members purposely started fights with others to get 15 minutes of fame.
“There were some people there that were just interested in being on television, but honestly I was so busy sewing and doing my work that I was not involved in any conflicts,” Applebaum said.
Applebaum was eliminated on the second episode with criticism from judge Stephani Greenfield for not following the challenge.
“I appreciate that you tried to be simple and sexy but it just didn’t give me beach,” Greenfield announced on the show.
Applebaum said he got one of the best and worst experiences from being on the reality show. He said one of the worst experiences of his life is when producers took cast members to a room to pick out the material they would use for the entirety of the show. Cast members went in the middle of the night when it was hot and they were not allowed to use the restroom.
“It was one of the worst experiences of my life,” Applebaum said.
Despite this experience, Applebaum took away what he said is one of the most valuable lessons any career-minded person should know.
“I think that today we really have to learn to be flexible,” he said. “It is one of the most important skills to know and you have to realize that it is OK to reinvent yourself. It was a chance for me to see how important it is to change or alter your direction.”
Before being featured on “Launch My Line,” Applebaum was already designing homes for the likes of Bob Hope, Frank Sinatra and Cuba Gooding Jr., to name a few of his cliental.
Applebaum turned down a Harvard acceptance letter to instead study at UCLA, where he said he felt the most comfortable. He said it was one of the only schools that would foster his creativity.
Of course, “the architect to the stars” said he would never be where he is today without the preparations A&M gave him during his undergraduate studies.
“Texas A&M absolutely put me where I am today,” he said. “Most schools are either just about the nuts and bolts or are all about the art and theory. [Texas A&M] was a great launching pad for my career because they taught what you needed to be in the real world.”
One professor in the college of architecture Rodney Hill made such a lasting impression on Applebaum that he said he is thankful to this day for being placed in his class.
“He was a very good student, very organized,” Hill said. “He went on to become president of an architecture club here at A&M. I figured he would be successful; there is no way he wouldn’t be.”
Hill said Applebaum was very much in control of himself, and he would never let an opportunity pass him.
Kayla Alford, sophomore architecture major, said she is inspired by the work of Applebaum. She said it’s a plus having a graduate from the Texas A&M Architecture school featured on a TV show. “The fact that it was for fashion was even better. Not only can you have your career in architecture, but you can also do more outside of designing buildings and houses.”
Applebaum said he wanted to leave architecture majors knowing that above all else you need to be flexible, and if you find your passion, the rest will fall into place.

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