Let’s face it. None of us wanted to be in our homes watching Project Runway last night. We wanted to be braving the blizzard, with ridiculously expensive tickets in hand, and lining up to get the first look at the PR show in Bryant Park. We can’t all be that lucky, so I’ll have to content myself with “surviving” my local “blizzard” of barely 4 inches of snow that was gone by noon and to my DVR.
Finally, and end to all-black designs.
The morning after Jesus’ departure brings shots of Seth Aaron topless and Anthony smacking Jay with a bible. See what evil is wrought when Jesus is out of their lives? Anna and Anthony both see great things for themselves even though they were both in the bottom three in the last challenge. Mila changes up the intro a bit to confess that she was bummed no one congratulated her on coming in second. It could have been that gloating she did in the waiting room.
At the Parsons’ runway, Heidi confirms Amy’s immunity and cautions the designers that their next creations must be picture perfect. It’s another fieldtrip with Tim, and off they go to the Hearst Building and meet Joanna Coles, EIC of Marie Claire (a/k/a Nina’s boss). Whist standing in impossibly high heels, Joanna introduces the challenge: design a garment to be worn by a celebrity on the cover of Marie Claire. This is a huge deal, says Tim because it is unprecedented in PR history. Also it is a big challenge because the celebrity at issue is none other than Heidi herself. Joanna goes on to remind the designers that cover looks will be cropped at least from the waist up, they never use black, it will be a spring issue, and there will be copy around the picture, so patterned prints don’t usually work well.
Back at Parsons, the designers have 30 minutes to sketch before heading to Mood. They only have one day for the challenge, and you can tell the designers are getting tired of the crazy time constraints. As the go-to black has been removed from their color choice, the designers ponder over colors. Anna wants icy blues and greys, Jonathan and Ben also sketch using blues, but Ben’s sketch has even more colors on it. At this point, it looks a bit, well, whatever the opposite of matchy-matchy is, but I have faith in the guy.
Mood brings $150 a piece and 30 minutes to shop. Janeane buys all kinds of fabrics, Mila nearly face-plants at the stairway, and then it’s back to Parson’s for construction. It’s all going pretty well; everyone is quiet, busy, and working on his or her garments. Everyone except Seth Aaron, who is either hopped up on drugs or has ADD. He will not shut up; with that many pairs of scissors in the room, he should be lucky he got out of there without being stabbed.
Anthony is working with a turquoise fabric, as is Anna. Anthony says he’s integrating the judges’ prior critiques while staying true to himself. Anna, on the other hand, second-guesses herself on the decision to make three pieces in nine hours. Janeane realizes she should be doing the opposite of what she is, as the colors she chose now scream “bridal” to her and she does not do bridal.
Six hours remain on the day. Mila thinks she has a handle on the time constraint, Janeane thinks she’s screwed herself on her design, and Anna wants to overcome her prior construction problems. Now for a word from Catty-Land on sizing up the competition. Jesse thinks maybe half the people remaining are competition for him, most likely Emilio and Mila, though he just doesn’t like her aesthetic. Mila doesn’t see really see anyone as her competition, though she throws a bone to Jay and Maya, saying they’ve made some nice stuff.
Tim comes in for his visit and notices the somber nature of the room. He checks in on Anthony first, who is not his usual chipper self because he doesn’t really know what the dress will be. Tim is worried and tells him to use an editing eye. He then checks in on Mila’s dress of pale stretch wools; he sees her signature in the look. Janeane shows Tim her “oceany” colors and wave theme. He cautions her against making clown clothes. Tim is impressed with Ben’s use of color—he’s got yellow, brown and dark teal going on—but Ben’s plan for a light purple metallic belt gives Tim pause and he suggests that the belt be questioned. Anna already has a loose ice blue tank top and silver skinny vest constructed. Tim wonders if it is her, and she says it is. He also cautions her to keep her editing eye. Emilio shows Tim a hot fuchsia cocktail dress that he’ll work some ribbons in to be accents.
The models arrive for the fitting. Anna’s shorts are not fitting, but other than that, it’s fairly uneventful. Back at work, Mila is starting to annoy some people. Jay thinks she’s a bit fake and Emilio thinks she’s full of herself. He adds that as a person she’s fine, but as a designer she’s only really good at the one-note look of color blocking.
The end of the day brings Anthony wanting more time, Janeane worrying about finishing, and Emilio wondering if his dress is too short. The next morning brings even more chaos in the workroom, as it should be. The designers always complain about the time constraint, but imagine how dull it would be if they had a whole week to complete one garment. That’d be a documentary, not a reality competition show.
Janeane observes that she and Anna both seemed to have missed the mark of the challenge and very well could be in the bottom together. Anna scrambles to get her shorts finished. Tim comes in to scare the bunch into working harder and gives them one hour to get the models and outfits ready. After a significant application of makeup and fake hair, the models and designers are ready for the runway.
Sing, sing blue silver. Or not.
The judges are Heidi, Michael, Nina, and Joanna Coles. The pictures of the designs can be seen here, thanks to lobeck.
Amy’s print handkerchief dress. Amy thinks print is appropriate for a cover, despite Joanna’s early admonitions about the use of print.
Seth Aaron’s shiny grey jacket and pants suit, straight out of the late 1980s.
Jesse’s short emerald green cocktail dress with a basket weave design down the front. It’s cute, but the lighting may be tricky for a magazine cover.
Anna’s pale grey shiny vest, pale turquoise loose tank, and short black pin-stripped shorts. I’m not sure who would wear this, at least altogether at once.
Anthony’s bright turquoise cocktail dress, with a cascading layer of same fabric strips down the front.
Janeane’s light beige dress, with a puffy underskirt/slip and a bolero made of light , sheer teals.
Mila’s pale peach, ivory, silver, and grey color-blocked short cocktail dress. The color blocking forms arrows at the hips and hem to point to her model’s belly.
Emilio’s bright fuchsia, short cocktail dress with ribbon detailing at the neckline and on the straps.
Jay’s short in the front, long in he back ivory dress with a mess of flower fabric details on the one strap. It almost reads pregnant bride.
Jonathan’s romper in champagne and yellow that does, indeed, look a bit like a spacesuit, as he described it earlier.
Maya’s grey and ivory short cocktail dress with a layered wide, rounded collar of peach and grey fabric. It isn’t bad, but all this paleness worries me for a cover look.
Ben’s kimono-inspired dark teal dress with brown and yellow insets, and, thank the fashion gods, a black leather belt (not the metallic he showed Tim earlier). This would photograph really well.
After the show, Seth Aaron, Jay, Maya, Jesse, Jonathan, and Amy are called forward as safe. The models come out and the critiquing begins. Ben talks about his vibrant colors and Madame Butterfly inspiration; Michael thinks it is a good choice. Nina and Heidi both love it, especially the open back. Joanna sees it as a real contender. Anna says her choice of colors was inspired by Heidi. Nina points out the garments give no silhouette; Joanna doesn’t think the three parts go together; and Michael doesn’t think it meets the Marie Claire reader’s style.
Anthony says that he wanted to celebrate Heidi’s figure. Michael is glad that Anthony has finally exited the costume drama and entered into the modern world. He’s done one-shoulder in a new way. Nina likes the dress for Heidi very much; Joanna loves it so much she’s ready for next spring. Anthony is so over-the-moon at this point with praise, I’m pretty sure any more would cause him to pass out. Janeane says she was inspired by the sea. Michael thinks there is too much going on and Heidi doesn’t see it as fashion-forward. Joanna sees only a polluted sea, filled with plastic bottles. Nina is a bit nicer—she says the dress is too sweet, too bridal, for Heidi, with which Heidi agrees via a naughty wink.
Mila was going for a strong, feminine, yet soft look and slimming at the waist. Michael says the peach comes off like ace-bandage, and cropping will turn it into a jogging bra look. Nina thinks the arrows are pointing at the model’s crotch and it won’t work at all. Joanna doesn’t see confidence in Mila’s design. Emilio then says wanted a strong color and detailing at the top with the ribbon lacing. Michael appreciates him making jersey look structured, which a difficult task. Nina likes the color and the detail in the front, but the ribbon detail on the shoulder straps looks junior. Emilio whips out his scissors, removes the straps and undoes his model’s ponytail. They like the look much better.
The designers and models leave so the judges can debate. As for the bottom three, Janeane’s was the opposite of strength; Anna’s point of view is unknown, though her construction improved and she made separates; and Mila’s dress was the color of hospital food. On the positive side, Emilio had a great color, line, and cleavage situation. He also was willing to change the dress on the runway. Ben’s dress was eye-catching, confident, and would do well on the cover. Anthony’s dress would work even if really cropped, fit Heidi’s coloring, and screams spring.
With the decision made, the designers are called back out on the runway. Heidi reminds them that the winner gets an awesome reward, so there will be no immunity. She then announces Anthony as the winner. He is overwhelmed and pretty much has to be shooed off the runway. Ben is in, as is Emilio. Mila is safe, so it is down to Anna and Janeane, as Janeane predicted. Heidi says Janeane didn’t live up to her interesting inspiration and Anna’s outfit was forgettable. Anna is out, but Janeane cries more than Anna does.
Anna is sent to pack up her workspace. She’s sad to be eliminated but had an amazing time and amazing things are going to come. If you’re a Bachelor fan, it’s time to raise your glass to Anna.
Next time, it’s kid models. Fashion gods, save me!