Here we are in the fourth week of Project Runway 7, otherwise known as the point where I can remember all of the contestants’ names. The heard has only thinned slightly, but the personalities are coming out. Last week we lost one of the more memorable designers, Ping, but her time was up. Will time run out for the other bottom dweller, Jesus, will the judges tire of Jonathan’s faux-hawk, or will Anna’s emotionality get the better of her? Let’s find out!
Mmm, Mmm good?
On the morning of the fourth challenge, Jesus finds he still has faith in his design abilities, Jesse wants to shake off any residual Ping crap left on him, and Mila and Maya bond over their shared love of dogs and flat irons. They head to Parsons where Heidi confirms Mila’s immunity and sends the designers off to meet with Tim and a group of “inspirational” women, for whom they will be creating a Fashion Week gala event garment. Awww, no field trip this week.
Tim is in the workroom with Lisa Walker the VP of Innovation for Campbell’s Soup. Campbell’s works with the American Heart Association’s Go Red For Women program. The upshot is there is a big party during Fashion Week for the program where everyone wears Campbell’s red dresses. Some of the attendees are women who have survived heart ailments. Twelve of these women will be the models/clients for our intrepid designers. That’s right folks, toss out the Size 2 dress forms! It’s time for the “real women” challenge.
The dresses must be Campbell’s red and incorporate the Campbell’s branding. There is even some Campbell’s print fabric, if anyone goes that tacky. The winner will get to go to the gala with the inspirational client and the dress will be sold on PR’s website. All this branding has me conflicted. Sure it’s a good cause and Campbell’s Select Harvest soups are part of my lunch routine, but their condensed soups caused the downfall of mid-twentieth century American cuisine.
Seeing red…lots and lots of red.
The designers and clients have thirty minutes to bond and sketch. Jay starts to cry when his client tells him her story, Seth Aaron gripes that his model is not svelte, and Jesus is super-happy his client is tiny. He also gravitates toward the tacky Campbell’s print fabric. Amy’s dress will be long and flowing while Mila wants to incorporate the star design in the dress. Anthony, wearing his Member’s Only jacket, bonds with his model; his mother had heart surgery as well and they get teary and laugh together. How very Lifetime: Television for Women.
At Mood, there are piles of Campbell’s red fabric and $100 per designer to shop. Manic shopping ensues and it’s then back to Parsons where Tim tells them it is a one-day challenge, so make it work! Anna traces the Campbell’s logo on some red chiffon while Maya works on a heart-shaped dress while trying to avoid looking too much like Valentines Day.
After some time in the sewing room, the models arrive for a fitting. Anna’s model seems to like the garment so far. Jesse has run into some difficulty on the bolero jacket and will have to tweak the fit. Jesus’ model loves the look so far, and then he launches into a sob story about his single mother. Editors, I think you dropped this clue accidentally. Put it back in the drawer, please.
Seth Aaron has some discussion with his client. He has some tacky appliqué heart detail on what may be the top of the dress. Maybe it was the sight of that or his client’s love for Rami, but she launches into a discussion about draping fabric. Janeane is just simply inspired by her client and wants to make her happy, which unfortunately does not include dunking her dress in a bucket of water, but that’s exactly what happens. Emilio finds the struggles of the women to pull his head out of the “me” zone and see there is more to life than challenges. Dude, you’ve only been there about a week! Surely this is too early for tunnel vision!
Tim comes in to make his rounds. Jesse intends to slim his model’s figure and make jacket. Tim warns that without the jacket, there isn’t much by way of fashion going on. Anna’s traced Campbell’s logo gets a “Nice!...actually.” from Tim. Mila shows Tim her star design and he’s impressed. She says she is having a tough time with fit, but Tim thinks it is great that they have to design for real women. Jesus explains his client wanted something short and fitted and cleavage bearing. Maya explains the heart shape and her plans for making a cocktail purse with the Campbell’s fabric. Amy is working on the foundation and plans on letting her client’s surgery scar be revealed as a badge of honor. Tim then moves on to Seth Aaron and asks when he decided to go Grecian. Tim doesn’t dislike it, but just doesn’t see Seth Aaron in the dress’s style.
As Tim departs, there are only two and a half hours on the day. Seth Aaron scraps the dress, calls for his mommy, and starts a new one. Emilio sees issues with Anna’s construction, thinks Jay’s dress is a train wreck, and says everyone has time issues.
The amount of red shocks in the workroom shocks the designers awake the morning of the runway show. Pretty much everyone is worried about time, standing out amongst the other red dresses, and fitting the dresses. Tim sends the models in for their fitting, hair, and makeup. Seth Aaron is amazed that his design works with the model’s body type really well. Jesus’ cocktail dress is now also sporting rhinestone straps, which causes more than one raised eyebrow from the other designers. Jonathan says the last 30 minutes are a fashion emergency of Chernobyl proportions. Somehow, I’m shocked he knows about Chernobyl.
The perkiest exit ever.
Finally, it is time for the runway. Judges are Heidi, Michael, Nina and Marchesa co-founder Georgina Chapman (a/k/a Mrs. Harvey Weinstein). The red that floods down the runway can be seen here, but I’ll take a pass at commenting on them anyway.
Jonathan’s racer-top long dark red gown with a tiered skirt. It’s not too terrible and looks gala-appropriate. His model looks like she is going to have a panic attack though.
Emilio’s attempt to sway Heidi by designing maternity wear for a non-pregnant woman. It’s just a wrap of fabric around the model’s body with a ribbon under the breast line.
Maya’s gold and red shiny short dress that looks to me like someone tied drapery on the poor model.
Anthony’s short, fitted dress with a red skirt and the Campbell’s print on the top, with a short, sleeveless red jacket. He did fit his model very well, and aside from the logo fabric, it is pretty solid.
Amy’s long, flowing red dress. I’m not sure why it took her ten hours. Maybe two at the most.
Jesus’ short, tight red dress, with Campbell’s logo fabric down each side, and held up by rhinestone straps. If this model is looking to start turning tricks, she’s got her wardrobe ready.
Anna’s fugly dress that makes her model look like she gained twenty pounds in two hours. What is up with the flesh-colored fabric at the top? Blech.
Jay’s long red dress with a flowing skirt and a more form-conscious top. It’s somewhere between gala and mother of the groom, but it works for the model.
Jesse’s red strappy dress with a shiny white cocktail jacket. Yawn.
Ben’s long, open-back gown with a gold inset waist. Aside from the gold, it looks fine. Not a wow, but not terrible.
Mila’s take on making Macy’s red and white star logo into a dress.
Janeane’s strapped red dress with a flounce of ivory at the top and peaking out of the bottom into an almost-train. The model walks as though she’s never worn heels and may, at any moment, puke.
Seth Aaron’ third take on a dress, with a black skirt, and a red faux-wrap sleeveless top. His model works the runway like she’s really glad to be there. I think she was the only one who looked comfortable up there.
After the fashions are shown, Heidi calls Mila, Maya, Anna, Amy, Jesse, and Jesus forward. They’re the top and bottom trios. The rest of the designers scamper backstage and breathe a sigh of relief. Out come the models and the judging commences.
Mila’s dress made Georgina smile, Nina liked the branding, and Heidi and Michael think the dress works great for the model. Jesse intended to design something to flatter his client’s figure. Heidi thinks it is merely okay but doesn’t stand out. Michael thinks it’s a bit majorette with the jacket and Nina thought the branding was weak. The shape of the top of the dress is good, but Jesse made some bad fabric choices.
Jesus explains his pleating of the label fabric on the side and the rhinestones straps was to make the dress more glamorous. Michael says that Jesus just went down the tacky checklist and ticked everything off. Georgina says it a bit more softly—there’s just too much going on and the eye doesn’t know where to go. Heidi drops the big one and questions his taste. Nina thinks he went overboard on clichéd items. Next up, Amy says it was important that her client feel comfortable; she wanted a strapless top to show off the scar. Nina loves the fabric, movement of the dress, and it looks modern. Georgina and Michael both see elegance in the dress.
Anna says she used color to break up the model’s figure. Nina and Michael both think the racer back cut of the top make her look bigger. Georgina questions the flesh-colored fabric at the top. Finally, Maya’s client also wanted to show her scar. Heidi sees something interesting in the draping and the heart shape. Georgina finds it well suited to the model. Michael again says “interesting.”
The designers are sent away while the judges deliberate. Jesse’s dress gets a thumbs-up on the neckline and accenting of the “bosoms” but they didn’t like the jacket and skirt. Jesus’ dress really missed the mark; he can construct but he has no taste. Anna’s dress was just a bag tied in the middle, but at least a somewhat contemporary bag. Mila’s braiding and star were fun and perfect for the model. Amy handled the fabrics really well and it was the right silhouette for her client. Maya’s dress was liked but no one really knows why and she made a cute bag.
The designers are brought out to hear the results. Maya is in and Amy is the winner. That leaves Mila in as well. Jesse and his majorette jacket are safe, so it comes down to Anna and Jesus. Jesus’ dress was too much, tacky, and cheap. Anna made serious mistakes in construction and design. Anna, however, is safe and Jesus is out. He is in good spirits; he knows he’s young and still can learn. Let’s hope Lesson #1 is “Stay away from rhinestones.”