First of all let me state: I heard the complaints loud and clear about not including the winning and auf-ing designers in the title of the post. So, never again – readers – never again. However, there will be spoilers in this post, because obviously it is a recap! Do not read to the end if you like suspense! In the words of the impenetrable Tim Gunn: “Carry on.”
Heading into the fifth episode of Project Runway, the designers are faced with an unconventional theme challenge. And you know what that means – a whole lotta fugly hot messes moseying down the runway hoping to slide under the radar as “not the worst” and one or two hopefuls vying for best of the worst. This is also about the time in the season when the designers are starting to get to know each other, and therefore dislike each other, so perfect time for a TEAM CHALLENGE!
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The episode opens with the designers receiving “presents” that consist of: athletic attire! Southern Sassypants, Anthony Ryan sums it up best when he groans: “oooh nooo” uh-huh. Nothing worse than tube socks in the wee hours of the morning (hence why I still haven’t lost the baby weight!)
While everyone else grudgingly climbs out of bed and laces up their sneaks, Cecilia can barely open her eyes and is apparently in the depths of despair over Julie leaving (is there a little something more going on there?). After a few more cheerful prompts from Becky, Cecilia pulls it together and joins the herd to meet Tim Gunn and Heidi Klum (wearing what appeared to be tye-dyed hammer pants with a matching Miami Vice blazer?!) at The Armory. There, the designers learn they are to face a fate worse than athletics and sweat pants – a TEAM CHALLENGE! And even worse, the team captains will be decided via foot race.
Before the race begins, Cecilia decides to formally withdraw from the competition, explaining her heart just isn’t in it. C’mon honey take a prozac and light a fire under your heels!
And everyone else is auf! Olivier is head of over heels – literally – as he falls down on the track thus dooming him to work as an underling for some maniacal dictator queen. After Olivier receives some emergency ER treatment, the teams are decided –
Team All About Anya – Joshua (TC), Anya, and Becky
Team Chiff-off – Bryce (TC), Kimberly, and Danielle
Team We Hate Bert But Love Cameltoe- Anthony Ryan (TC), Laura, and Bert, predictably chosen last, since no one wants to work with his very childish, immature self.
Team Granny Skirt – Viktor (TC) and Olivier and since Cecilia elected to leave, Tim and Heidi make the totally spontaneous, executive decision that they can choose any one of the eliminated designers to join their team and return to the competition! And for some reason they chose bland and confused Josh C?
The challenge is to design a look to pair with Heidi’s New Balance sneakers– “think basic with a twist!” she demands. Wait – didn’t we already have this challenge last season? The designers must incorporate the materials used in Heidi’s sneaks, either: denim, suede, or both into their designs. Each team is responsible for three looks that must be a cohesive collection and the winning look will be manufactured and sold on Amazon.com as part of Heidi’s New Balance line. Well, at least they don’t have to deal with Nina Garcia in their faces this week – although Heidi is just as bitchtastic (maybe more?).
The designers are given 30 minutes to argue sketch and then it’s off to Mood to bicker some more. Becky is frustrated that Joshuanya are excluding her because they question her taste and have delegated her the “work horse,” and oh lord was Joshua a b.i.t.c.h. And, of course no one is getting along with passive-aggressive, poopy-pants Bert. While the designers are cranking out “Victoria Beckham goes to the smoothie bar at the yoga studio” outfits, The Heidster and La Gunn show up to tell them how badly they are missing the mark and extend the deadline until 4 am because they don’t want to watch a runway show full of overly designed cocktail dresses paired with sneakers. Which gives the teams more time to butt-heads, argue, and tantrum. Um…. Eyebrows McSequins (aka Joshua) needs a Valium, a massage, and an anger management class.
The guest judge for ‘design not-really exercise outfits for Heidi’s product pimping’ is Model/Designer and fellow product hawker Erin Wasson.
Ok, Let’s trash discuss some looks!
Team Granny Skirt: It was clear that Drabivier (aka Olivier) influenced the color palate, although I actually loved the black and grey. Sadly, only Viktor’s look seemed chic and well put together, the other two looks seemed a little sad by comparison, although the judges raved about the collection. Josh’s felt sloppy and in disarray when shown next to the other two – once again the judges did not agree. And though they complained about Olivier’s skirt, no one seemed too upset.
THE WINNER: Viktor: Surprisingly adorable! Loved the intentionally rumpled material. The jacket was fantastic and the dress; it was breezy, funky, yet elegant. Not sure about the asymmetrical hemline which looked a bit sloppy, but overall great look for running errands. The judges praised this as expensive, impeccably executed, and they loved it. Congratulations, Vikor!
Josh C: … hmmmm… well, le sigh. I liked elements of this ensemble. I did not like the length of the pants paired with flat shoes as it was majorly stumpifying even on a 5’11 stick-thin model. I did not like the cheaply rendered imitation McQueen harness haphazardly thrown over the drapey t-shirt. I did like the combination of the pants with the shirt, but I wish some jewelry had been added to zsu-zsu it up. The construction looked very good considering the difficult materials. The judges surprisingly liked this and praised it for being “road warrior” and innovative. Um… ok, they’re the experts…
Olivier: Hello hips! That skirt was granny, granny frumpy granny with wal-mart quality looking material. Ugh. Did you see Nina’a face? The skirt was so distractingly awful I forgot to look at the shirt (which was also a complete snoozefest). Olivier obviously has no clue how to dress an actual woman’s body based on his work these past few weeks. The judges dubbed it “farm” and “Sound of Music.”
Team Chiff-off: This was all pretty-much a well executed snoozefest of clothes most people would forget about five minutes after viewing. Michael Kors thought it looked as if several different people designed each look – agreed. Bryce was really thrilled by what they put together and sure it was ok, but nothing special. Everyone was confused about the sudden integration of the turquoise top.
Bryce: Well I’m sure Heidi appreciated the length given the girl’s crotch was practically hanging out and Michael Kors loved it – all of it, the sleeves, the darts, the shape, and thought it was versatile and well constructed. I enjoyed the buttons up the side, but thought it was pretty bland and basic otherwise. Did anyone else think it had a boxy, unflattering fit, or just me? In my mind, the fact that Bryce was so excited about this says something about his design sensibilities, like, they don’t exist.
Kimberly: It really seems like she really thought about the challenge. The construction was flawless, but I really don’t think this had much “design” going on. Like Bryce’s, these were pretty basic garments you could find anywhere, albeit excellently rendered. The jacket was cute, but I agreed with Heidi it should not have been paired with those shorts. Also, I agree that the details got lost pairing it against such a dark colored shirt.
Auf Wiedersehen Danielle! Well, Danielle really loves green chiffon. A lot. She used it last week to less than rave reviews and low and behold here it comes again – déjà material! It did look like a flopped soufflé. Michael hated it and thought it was sloppy. I think Urban Outfitters has been carrying that shirt and her shorts for the past 5 years. In other words – boring. Nina again commented that Danielle is overly ambitious for the time allowed and called her a “weak link.” The judges ultimately found her designs boring. Best of luck, Danielle!
Team We Hate Bert But Love Cameltoe: Cluster F*ck! All of it. What was this the cameltoe collection? All of these designers are great at construction – what happened here? None of it went together at all. Of course, Laura and Anthony Ryan chose to blame Bert, who chose to blame back. This was not all Bert’s fault, not by a mile. This was bad leadership and three people who were unwilling to compromise and really had no concept of what they were doing and wound up lost in the details.
Anthony Ryan: Cameltoe bed sheets paired with flightless wings. That’s all. It was terrible. Awful. Anthony knew it was so bad. Nina called it pajamas. The judges were rightfully appalled (disgusted, really) and Michael Kors deemed it achieving the impossible: “big and tight at the same time.”
Laura: So dated. Yuck. And this did not go together at all. Not to each other and not to the other looks in the collection. What was going on here? And why was the model wearing my 6th grade swim team Speedo as a top in a fashion show? The vest was unsightly and had no relevance to the other pieces – the judges called it a mess and loathed the top.
Bert: Bert! This was not the challenge. This was not at all active ware. I mean, sure it was cute and well constructed and I would totally wear it immediately. And again with stylist – stop it with the Brooke Shield’s Calvin Klein Ad hair. Despite Anthony Ryan stating his model looked like a cocktail waitress, the judges felt it was the only good outfit from their team and was sophisticated. Um, exactly.
Team All About Anya: As a collection, theirs was the most cohesive, although Heidi felt they used the extra time strictly for bedazzling purposes. It fit the challenge, was interesting and decently unique and represented a singular idea. Plus, I think women would actually purchase these clothes over any of the other collections. The judges praised Joshua’s leadership dictatorship ability (umm… don’t they mean Anya’s because without her that would have gone up in smoke!) and were impressed that you could clearly see his involvement in every garment.
THE WINNER – Joshua: Joshua went in Anya’s closet, borrowed her clothes, and sewed his own name on it. Seriously. This was cute, young, on-trend, well-executed, and fit the challenge. Good thing he had such an omnipresent muse! While Heidi was confused by the vest, Nina and Erin really liked it. Erin also praised the details that weren’t immediately noticeable, but really added interest to the look. Congratulations, Joshua!
Becky: Suddenly Seeking Susan! This had Joshua allll over it. After he realized the judges would rip him a new one for tossing this down the runway he forced it on Becky and started shimmying up Anya’s aesthetic. Joshua took some responsibility but, then tried to say Becky decided to make the shirt for the skirt they didn’t want to use and called her clothes “dowdy.” It was well constructed, and ok, but pretty 80’s and the red stripe thing was ridic – not to mention there was way too much going on and the fit was off. Over-designed, comes to mind. Nina loathed it, particularly the fit of the t-shirt, which was too short and the skirt, which was too tight.
Anya: Once again Anya designed for herself – the neon stripe was about the only thing on that dress referencing Joshua’s design sensibilities. The construction was exemplary this week courtesy of Becky. Anya should be a stylist or fashion editor. She has great instincts, but she really only designs clothes she would wear. Heidi loved this, felt it went great with the shoes, and was current and sexy. I agree. It was sexy without being vulgar and daring without being trashy. Michael felt it was over-tailored for the material, but I think not sharply tailoring such a drapey material would be a mistake (see: Olivier’s).
Because all these “collections” were a big ol hot mess of crazyness, the judges were completely flummoxed about who to rant at and who’s feet to kiss, so they made all the designers stand at the guillotine until they forced them to rat each other out over who made what and why.
After the judges’ deliberation, Viktor AND Joshua are both declared the winners! Viktor’s look will be manufactured and sold and Joshua’s Team’s maxi dress will be manufactured and sold. Both Josh and Viktor have immunity for next week and their teams are safe. Alls well that ends well! Danielle is auf’d and Anthony Ryan was saved by the other judges as Heidi lets him know if it were up to her alone, he would headed to the work room to pack up his space.
Next week, the designers are working with children to make Halloween Costumes and Olivier breaks the rules!
What did you think of the winner and loser? Were you as unimpressed with Bryce’s garment as I was? What did you think of Cecilia auf-fing herself? Was Joshua being a tyrant or a strong leader?