Trouble in Kips Bay

The Kips Bay Decorator Show House is an annual fundraiser for the Kips Bay Boys and Girls Club wherein big-name interior designers dress up a pricey Manhattan home for society ladies to tour. Only this year, there's no home. Scandal!

The Show House raises roughly $1 million annually for the club. Each year, a host of distinguished designers are recruited to do up a room in a multi-million dollar Manhattan mansion or townhouse on the market, and oglers pay $30 to salivate over the exquisiteness of it all (the photo above is from the 2009 exhibition). This year's show is scheduled to begin in just six weeks on the Upper West Side, a first for the east-side-centric event.

But there's trouble. The house selected for the show, at 26 West 76th St., was sold last week for $19.5 million. And the new owner apparently isn't interested in waiting six weeks to move in for the sake of all those poor Kips Bay boys and girls—we're told the sellers have ditched plans to host the show in favor of closing the sale as soon as possible. This leaves the designers, whom we're told had already drawn up plans and started picking out materials suited to their rooms, in a lurch. It also leaves the Boys and Girls Club struggling to find a new place to dress up at the last minute.

Lindsey Herod, a spokeswoman for Celerie Kemble, one of the featured designers, confirmed the mix-up to Gawker. "All the club's board has told us is that there's no way they can continue at that property, and that they're preparing to release an official statement." We left a message with the club, but haven't heard back.

[Photo via Apartment Therapy]