Previously on Project Runway: everyone was forced to make performance outfits for male strippers. There were two teams, neither of which did a good job. Like, at all. That may be because they had one day to make menswear for men who are not built like male models, and on top of that they have to be tear-away clothes. Everyone makes “suits”. Michelle is annoying, and Patricia runs out of time again, but Amanda’s pants are deemed the worst and she is sent home. (click for more)
Richard is very thankful he survived the last challenge, because his team threw him under the bus. “I won’t forget it.” The girls decide their goal is to get rid of the guys. Layana says Richard is tacky, not accounting for her crappy jacket she made last challenge. Daniel claims he has been trying to stay calm.
Heidi comes out in a really short skirt. They are sitting below you, Heidi. They don’t need to see that. She says something about “spring” in your step and sends them to Lord & Taylor to see Tim.
Layana thinks this is her challenge, but you will note they don’t actually know the challenge yet. Tim says before he explains things, he has business for them. The “judges” have reconstructed the teams. Oh, come ON. We all know it’s the producers. Just say there are new teams and quit making poor Tim Gunn lie to everyone. Stanley and Patricia (he freaks out and she promises to stand her ground), Michelle and Daniel (she almost says something nice). As you can see, they kept the teams from last week, just paired everyone off. That is so Layana, Samantha, and Richard will be stuck together, right after everyone said Richard sucks. But the teams aren’t for drama, they’re for collaboration. Total bullshit. Just be honest that you only want drama and that’s why we have this whole stupid season.
Anyway, the challenge is to be inspired by the “Lord & Taylor rose” which somehow has been a symbol of the store for forever, and make ready-to-wear outfits for Spring 2013. Winner gets to have their stuff sold in stores. Samantha says she’s been shopping at Lord & Taylor since she was little, which is odd to me because the image I have of her style, and the image of Lord & Taylor? Do not go together. Each look should retail for under $250. Or maybe each item? Eh, you know most of them will make dresses. It’s easier. Each person will make one look, because heaven forbid we even PRETEND this is about teamwork. I know the last challenge was, but this one could be also. OK, if I get agitated every time they pull this I’ll never finish. One day for the challenge.
The teams caucus but I am pretty sure Tim never said the looks have to go together. Daniel goes for a jacket and shorts. They may have ruffles. Patricia is creating a textile, clearly. Stanley says “You know what you could do” and then as he’s explaining his idea Patricia rolls her eyes and bitches in interview about how controlling people suck and you just have to smile and nod and then ignore them later. He wasn’t controlling you, and your clothes aren’t that great anyway, so get over yourself. So much for “I’m going to stand up for myself”. Richard talks and looks at Samantha and completely ignores Layana. Heh. Samantha is worried they will not have teamwork, as if teamwork matters at all. Although if she has to play referee all day that would keep her from working, so there’s that. Daniel buys hot pink at Mood, and I can’t remember if that’s a color that’s in this season. Layana gets a floral print, which I do know is supposed to be in. She tells some poor worker person that all the fabrics there are horrible. Samantha almost runs Tim over running to the cashier.
Stanley tells Patricia something, and he says he doesn’t like to lose so he doesn’t care if he looks bossy. He’s really micromanaging Patricia, to the level of telling her how to make her garment. She snaps at him, and he says she needs to listen when they have discussions instead of being defensive. Patricia just stares at him as if that isn’t exactly what just happened. THEN she complains that he’s aggressive. Stanley hasn’t even raised his voice. No one is aggressive here, except for you and your crap time management skills.
Richard is still not speaking to Layana, and Samantha knows this will not go well on the runway. They replay the footage, which just emphasizes how bitchy Layana was about the whole thing and how she has like, two inches of midriff showing. Layana thinks Richard has hated her since she won the first challenge and that he holds a grudge. If you’ll recall, she threw him under the bus yesterday. Layana still talks about the benefit of criticism. For the team, of course. Michelle tells Daniel she likes his pink, but in confessional she says she hates pink because it’s too happy. Sigh. Daniel promises her he knows what he’s doing. Patricia soaks her muslin in water and balls it up. No one knows what she’s doing. She says she’s just trying something, and Stanley mutters “I don’t like losing”. He wants to know what’s going on because they’re a team. He reminds her that her design has to be something they can manufacture for stores, and she gets defensive and claims she has been thinking about that. First of all, none of Patricia’s techniques can be mass-manufactured, and I am pretty sure that is her point. Second, now she’s complaining that she just wants to try things because that is the creative process and that would be fine if she didn’t run out of time every. Single. Challenge.
Tim time! Layana and Richard lie and say their team is fine. Samantha has some colorblocking, which is a lot of work but she says she can do it. Tim suggests separates instead of a dress, but he likes how it looks and her heart-shaped cutout in the back. Layana has a long floral dress with black leather trim. It’s OK, although maybe if the leather was a different color? Samantha likes it fine, but Richard (and then Tim) says the leather is too heavy for a spring look. Too hard. Layana insists on it, so Tim says if you can defend it, then fine. Richard has pink and black, in a simple V-neck dress. Layana, of course, thinks it’s too simple. Tim thinks maybe they’ve seen it before, and while Richard says they haven’t, they cut to a shot from a previous runway to the same dress, only in black and gray. Layana is still talking about it in confessional, but she’s really smug, like she’s so great, so hopefully she’ll stop soon.
Patricia has a top and capri pants, which looks fine now, but she’s got some organza and whatever. Tim says she needs to think about cost, because Patricia heard what I did at the beginning of the day, that each item should be under $250. However it’s actually supposed to be each OUTFIT. Because she is a total hypocrite, Patricia says she’s going to do whatever Tim has told her because she is totally concerned about the price and manufacturing and keeping things simple. Stanley has a shift dress, but Tim is bored. Stanley doesn’t agree and he says he’s going to do what he wants. Yes, but Patricia should do exactly what he says.
Michelle is making a “rain vest” and a dress in chartreuse. The dress sketch looks cute, but the vest is black and Tim hates it. For some reason, Michelle was really fixated on the vest as her “passion”. I don’t know. Daniel’s jacket has a pointed shoulder and a red belt. He goes on and on about how great the pink is, and Tim nails him and asks why he’s so insistent on that. Daniel says people have been railing on him for the color but he loves it. Michelle pretends she doesn’t like it because she just doesn’t like pink, but Tim says “Joan Collins” and “not sophisticated”. Daniel says “Who doesn’t love Joan Collins?!” Sigh. Tim tells him to use Michelle and maybe make his shorts in some other color. As he leaves Tim tells everyone to use their team members to look at their outfits.
Daniel says he’s been making separates this whole time and he should make a dress, so he’s taking his jacket apart to make a dress instead. As he’s explaining this in confessional, he actually breaks down and has to stop talking. Then he snaps his head back up and continues his thought with no quaver at all. It’s weird. He asks Michelle if their outfits should hit for 21-year-olds, and Michelle says “No, it just needs to be young.” He’s asking you what age is “young”, so stop just repeating “young” a million times and say “Yes, 21 is fine”. The point of this argument is that Michelle told Daniel (and Tim) that no “21 year old with $500” is going to buy Daniel’s outfit. So he’s upset that she acted like he wasn’t doing anything right. Well…the jacket was pretty dated. Anyway, Daniel has decided Michelle has told him he needs to design for a 21 year old with money, which is actually not what she said. However, if he did that, then he’d be fine, so this is even more pointless that usual. Daniel tells her he doesn’t design for 21 year olds, except that this challenge seems to be demanding exactly that. He says he’s trying to make sure everyone knows that’s what he’s doing, or something, and then says he’s very busy and can’t talk to her and it’s fine, he just wanted to make sure everyone knew she told him “21 year old”. Ugh, when you are bitchier than Michelle, there is a problem. Yeah, it was rude of her to say that maybe, but this argument just makes Daniel look like a child. He interviews that he “designs to make people happy” and apparently he lost that several challenges ago, and we’re supposed to feel bad or something. Now Michelle can’t bring him down because he’s “a happy person, no matter what”. It lessens your message when you’re crying when you say that. Oh, they’re tears of HAPPINESS. Whatever.
Stanley now loves Patricia’s design, but it’s unclear how much of this design is what Stanley told her to do. Model fittings. Stanley and Patricia both like their designs, and they praise each other and hug and make up. Michelle just has her vest to try on. Samantha likes her look but knows she has to finish it. Michelle doesn’t have time to finish her vest, so she has to hope her dress will shine by itself.
Back at the apartments, Daniel brags that he knows Michelle was mad at him because he “shut her down” and she knows she was lying. Right. Michelle is telling the girls how she never said that. Patricia tells her Daniel just will have to deal with it. Daniel CLAIMS he let it go. Michelle says if Daniel goes home, she’ll feel bad for him but she doesn’t care because he dug his own grave.
Day of the show. Daniel and Michelle hug and he says “water under the bridge” while she interviews that she is too busy to worry about it. Of course in his interview Daniel wonders if this is “young enough”, complete with weird voice and hand waving. I’d like to point out that Layana’s outfit (the one she herself is wearing) has pointed shoulders that are exactly like the ones Daniel had in his old jacket. Hot makeup guy Scott. Samantha discovers she hemmed the top too much and so in order to cover up the seam in her skirt, she has to hike it up and it’s very short.
Rachel Roy is filling in for Zac. I’d care that Zac hasn’t bothered to clear his schedule for this show, but we all know the judges are not important to the sequence of eliminations. Guest judge is Bonnie Brooks, president of Lord & Taylor. Patricia: peach capri pants, in a kind of shiny fabric. The top has spaghetti straps and a big horizontal ruffle over her chest, and a swath of chiffon like a wrap dress across her midriff. The top is slightly darker than the bottom but they clearly are supposed to be the same color. It’s simple (for Patricia) and it looks pretty cute. The back is weird, though, as if she attached it at the top and then it’s open all the way down her back. Stanley: pink sheath dress. The hem is below the knee and it has a boatneck. Seriously, that’s all there is to it, and in addition the waist could be fitted more closely. Richard: long V-neck dress in black with one pink swath. The pink starts on one shoulder (it’s sleeveless) and then goes down diagonally. It’s not very complicated. Samantha: very short top and skirt in three layers. The bottom is a black, then a pink, then beige. The skirt is kind of full and ruffly, and the top is sleeveless, with the pink showing a little bit, and then with the heart cutout in the back. It’s so short it’s looking kind of junior. Layana: long floral dress with black leather halter straps and belt. The top is the kind that comes up in a point under her throat, with the straps that go around her neck, and the belt is narrower in the middle than at the sides. The straps are all that is on the back. Daniel: pink sheath dress with short sleeves and the slightly pointed shoulders. He’s draped the fabric so it gathers over one hip, but in a pretty subtle way that I like. The hem is maybe not the greatest though. Michelle: chartreuse shift dress, boxy, with a strip of sheer beige material at the hem and the shoulders. It’s got a loose fit, and it hits at about the knee, but it looks modern. Right above the sheer is a strange band which maybe is the sheer over the chartreuse.
Patricia and Stanley are safe, so they get to leave. Michelle and Daniel are the winning team. Oh good. Michelle did really well. Samantha looks wrecked. The beige in Michelle’s dress, at least at the bottom, is actually leather. Leather straps, too, with the sheer between. It looks great. Heidi loves it, and she loves that she didn’t make a literal rose. Oh yeah, they were supposed to be inspired by the rose. Eh. It’s smart and easy. Oh, everyone wants it. Daniel actually thanks Michelle for “kicking [him] in the pants” and making it younger. Seriously, he goes on about listening to her. When they show the close-ups though all the hems are terrible. Nina wishes for more risk, but she likes the shoulders. Heidi flat out tells him it’s not new and there’s no point of view.
Poor Samantha has to talk about her outfit. Heidi says there are too many things going on and it’s junior. Rachel liked it, because there are a lot of design elements and it’s adorable. But maybe as a tunic. It’s an attempt to show risk, but this challenge didn’t call for risk. That’s true. So everyone said nice things except Heidi. So of course, Heidi loves Richard’s dress. Nina says it’s generic, but Bonnie thinks maybe beachy, but it’s a little much for the beach? Also her shoes match her handbag and Rachel says never do that. Layana added edge with her leather. Nina likes the detail, but the print is too old-lady. Bonnie thinks there is a customer that would like it. Heidi hates the print too. She implies Layana would have won with a different print. Heidi demands to know who should go home, which is a question they only ask in order to cause fights. Stupid. Samantha says Richard because his dress is simple. Richard likes all the dresses, but Samantha’s has construction issues. Layana says, and I quote, “I would be more interested to see a collection from Samantha.” That is not what they asked you. Also, of course you think Richard should go home.
The judges say they all agree Michelle’s dress is awesome, and they go on and on about how great it is. They don’t even mention Daniel at all. Nina thinks Layana’s dress would be fine if it was in another print. Samantha’s dress didn’t fit the challenge, but the other judges fight Heidi because they see some design in it, and maybe it would bring new customers into the store. Also if it was a junior line, the heart cutout would be perfect. Richard’s dress is boring and not worth a lot of money, although it is easy to make and has good lines. So it seems like it has come down to boring but well-constructed, vs. creative but poorly made.
Oh, they’re casting another season. Joy.
Michelle is the “clear” winner. So she’s pretty thrilled. Layana is in. Richard is in. Aww. I like Samantha. Layana looks irritated, because of course. Samantha is glad for the experience and she’s excited to keep designing.
Four months later they get Michelle and Layana to go to Lord & Taylor to look at Michelle’s dress in the window. Which dress is retailing for $259. NOT $250. Just saying.
Next week: it’s the Create Your Own Textile challenge. Layana breaks down. Michelle wears a crazy hat.