Previously on Project Runway: the designers were told they were going to work on their own, and then were given eliminated contestants to sew for them. The challenge was to make a celebrity editorial look for Nina, who specifically told them not to just make a T-shirt and pants. So of course Michelle made a T-shirt and pants. They were well-made though. Stanley got really bossy, which seemed out of nowhere and I think was put in just so you could hate someone other than Michelle or Layana. He won, and Daniel did well also. And Layana, I guess. Patricia got stuck with Richard, which was unnecessary because I think they have enough eliminated contestants to not use him. He never knew what she was talking about, and so she kept complaining that she had to change her design, and some of that I’m pretty sure was Richard and some was Patricia. Her design was ugly, but she followed the challenge. Unlike Michelle and her well-made T-shirt and pants. So the producers decided to string Michelle along and not eliminate her, for…stupid reasons, I’m sure. So no one was eliminated and we drag out this show for another week. (click for more)
Oh, and also every show from now until the end is TWO HOURS. Why? Who knows why. Probably because the producers wanted another 20 minutes of ads. Certainly not because they have any quality programming. I hate this show.
Everyone sits around the Scrap Bin and stares at each other. Michelle says she can’t really get excited about her second chance because she thinks maybe her second chance won’t be good enough. I’m not a big fan of Michelle, but I kind of agree with her here and I think they should have just eliminated her. Don’t string her along when there’s no way you’ll let her redeem herself. Now she’s all self-doubting because she had convinced herself she really was great, it’s just that her team sucked. Tim comes in and pretends the judges thought Michelle was just SO talented they gave her another chance. Can we just get on with it already?
Back on the runway Heidi and Tim tell them it’s time for the final challenge. They carefully do not say how many people will be at Fashion Week. Tim says this is the biggest challenge of the season. Heidi drops some hints and then says they’re each going to a different European country to be inspired. Well that’s impressive. Daniel hasn’t left the country before so he’s kind of freaking out. They will get inspired and also buy their fabrics. Layana is going to Barcelona, Patricia to Paris, Daniel to Berlin, and Stanley to London. There is no envelope for Michelle. That is because they were going to get rid of her, but couldn’t because she did such a good job, I guess. Think about it. Either you knew who the final four would be some time ago, so you could get plane tickets with the proper names on them, or you bought all these last minute, and just didn’t feel like spending the money on Michelle. That is crap. So she’s supposed to get inspired by New York. They’re also getting sewing assistants again, although different ones and they’ve been assigned already because they are also going to Europe. Layana gets Samantha, Patricia and Kate, Daniel and Amanda, Stanley and Richard, and Michelle and Tu. Everyone has to make a “high end runway look” with $1000. They’ll have all day tomorrow wherever they are to look around and buy fabric before they come back to New York.
Everyone celebrates and uses flip cams or whatever they gave them. I guess they don’t want to pay for cameramen. No, wait, there they are in London and there are regular cameras. Who knows. Lots of scenery. Everyone looks at buildings, because everyone is always inspired by buildings. Daniel takes a bunch of pictures of the Berlin Wall. He is seriously moved. Back in New York Michelle sits around in the apartment and mopes. I can’t blame her too much, although can’t they pay for cabs so she can drive around and be inspired? I think Kate and Patricia are taking pictures of torn up paper. Like, there is paper that is torn and then someone drew on top of it? Patricia wants “gritty Paris”. Layana takes pictures of buildings and patterns. Stanley also takes pictures of buildings. He’s going dark and slinky. Daniel takes pictures of buildings. Do you sense a theme? At least he finds a cool looking building and isn’t just using the Eiffel Tower. Oh, they do pay for Michelle to take a double decker bus tour so she can see the sights and try to move forward. Guess what she takes pictures of? OK, buildings, but also weirdly soot stains from chimneys. Daniel wants to do something different. He and Layana both seem to be making jackets. Daniel is also making a bias-cut dress which is not like him. Michelle is going for cashmere.
Stanley is discovering fabric is very expensive and he may spend $850 on four yards of fabric. Daniel gets totally screwed and is sent to a store with no leather or silk. Patricia completely overspends and gets pissed when the shopkeeper takes fabrics off the pile. She wants to have all the control over what goes and what stays. Somehow she does it. Stanley buys his expensive fabric anyway and says he is cutting it so close (…ha) that he isn’t even going to use this fabric for the model fitting. As in, he’ll fit the model in muslin and then cut the fabric, because he can’t afford to make it and then adjust it. Daniel has to buy vinyl. He says it looks like leather, which maybe it does but not really. But a better question is why are Stanley and Patricia at high end stores and Daniel says he’s at some corner fabric store? Layana has also been sent to a store with no leather. She ends up buying two different patterns of black lace, because those are the patterns she wanted anyway. Mood is great for Michelle, who spends $500 on her cashmere and the rest on some leather. Patricia and Kate go to the Louvre and she starts talking about how everything was worth it and maybe she really is good enough to be here and so forth. Patricia kind of turned out to be a crier. I’m a crier too, though, so I won’t be mean about it. It seems genuine.
In the morning Michelle and Tu get to the workroom first and start working. Patricia appears all giggly and as everyone comes in they’re all loud and huggy and distracting. Michelle is PISSED. Finally they all get to work. Lots of muslin. Layana knows Michelle is pissed but she has the nerve to interview that SHE wouldn’t be pissed, SHE would be thinking about how she was going to defeat them. Bitch please. You would be crying some fake tears and force everyone to stop working to say how sorry they were that you didn’t get to go. Don’t pretend you’re better than that.
Then all of a sudden it says “Workroom Day 2”. So that’s all we get to see of Day 1? What? Shut up, show. Samantha calls Patricia a “fly bitch” for her layering of a million things. Michelle seems in a better mood today. She says as she’s creating she’s getting out of her funk. Daniel has taken some of his vinyl and is making boots out of tubes of vinyl and some wedges. Sigh.
Tim time! Daniel shows off his jacket, which is white on white so it’s hard to see the details. It’s not his usual jacket design, anyway. Stanley has a capelet, and Tim likes the reveal. Patricia has a giant bag of fabric to layer and whatever. It might be good but it also might be crazy. She has three pieces, but they don’t seem to go together. Tim doesn’t get it, and he tells her she’s not getting it either, he can tell. I think he talks her into making a top and not a jacket? Or not calling it a jacket? I’m not sure. Tim really likes Michelle’s leather breastplate, and she’s making an ombre skirt to go with her soot pictures. Actually…that’s not a bad interpretation. Tim says to go for it. Layana is making a coat and a top but she wants the model to keep the coat closed. Tim doesn’t think she has time to do everything. She basically blows him off, and eventually Tim just shrugs.
Michelle starts painting her skirt, which does look like smoke and soot stains but also looks dirty. I mean, it looks like it’s supposed to. Model fittings. Richard claims you can see their trip in Stanley’s dress. Right. Layana is not ready, naturally. Samantha tells her to put the jacket together, and she’s like “I cannot!” but she’s not really clear on why.
Day of the show. This two hour monstrosity is only half over, which means they spent about half an hour on the trips, and then half an hour on the construction. And most of an hour on the runway. Anyway, Tim tells everyone they get two hours for prep today, probably because Layana is so far behind. Daniel’s fake boots look like exactly what they are: cheap vinyl tubes. Hot makeup guy Scott. Michelle wants her model to look “expensive and clean”. Like a high class call girl. Layana manages to finish. Everyone talks about how great it would be to go to Fashion Week, because every season this show thinks we don’t know how many people were at Fashion Week.
Heidi rubs it in that Michelle didn’t get to go anywhere and asks everyone else if they had fun. Guest judge today is John Legend. Eventually Heidi says “some of you” will go to Fashion Week and “one of you” will be out. I was trying to analyze if that meant they were always going to have a final four, or if they really like everyone, or what, but then I realized they have so many decoys that they’re paying for like eight collections no matter what they do. So they probably just decide last minute. Layana: black and white coat that hits at about mid-thigh. The background is white, and then there is the black lace over the top. Black strips make an abstract geometric pattern over the lace. The sleeves are tight black ¾ length sleeves, and then the sleeves on the top (flowy pink silk) stick out. The top of the coat and the white is cut so it looks like a V-neck with a black turtleneck underneath. Also black pants. Michelle: gray cashmere dress with a mullet hem. The hem is about tea length in front. It’s very full and then over her bodice is the brown leather breastplate, which is shiny and embossed. The soot isn’t really super obvious which is nice. I like it.
Stanley: black dress with a capelet. The dress is long and slinky, with a high halter neck and collar. And then the exposed zipper in the back ruins it! GAH! I hate exposed zippers. Patricia: black pants, and then a jacket with her million layers or however many. The sleeves are very full, almost a leg-of-mutton shape, and there’s a cowl collar across her shoulders in a darker fabric. The layers look cool, but kind of puffy and shapeless. The fabric just sits weirdly. Actually the sleeves look almost like pods, slit up the inside for her arms. Daniel: long black skirt, that is very short in front and floor length in the back, but it’s cut asymmetrically. Also her “boots” come up higher than the hem of the skirt. The jacket is white, closely fitted, and a simple black top. I know there is detail on the jacket but you can’t really see it. It’s very simple but not very exciting.
The details in Daniel’s jacket are pretty cool. Nina says he’s captured the underground feeling of Berlin, and it’s edgy. She also likes the “boots”, which I think are lame but it does look better to have her legs covered. The top of the dress fits perfectly and has a racerback. Everyone really likes it. It’s actually modern. Stanley actually put the sequins on the inside of his dress. Why? You can hardly see them. Nina likes the hint of luxury. It’s very simple, but also super elegant. Layana did get some Barcelona in her lace and the black shapes that look kind of like tiles, but everyone hates the pink sleeves. Nina says it’s just so old-fashioned it’s tragic. It’s not Layana. Aww, too bad. Layana meekly says she likes it, and everyone tells her that what she herself is wearing (black long sleeved scoop neck top and red mullet skirt) is much better than what her model has on. Layana takes the coat off and of course the judges love the random pink blouse with big bell sleeves. She refuses to apologize for the jacket. Patricia talks about her layers of fabric. Zac wrote “trash couture”. He likes the idea of what she was talking about but he doesn’t see it in what she did. Nina thinks she wasted her inspiration city of Paris. Also the pants are boring and a weird length. The shape of the top is unusual, though. So why are Layana’s black pants just fine but Patricia’s are stupid? Michelle talks about how much her fabrics cost. Just talk about your outfit. They don’t care. Nina says it is a comeback and she loves the leather. Heidi of course is obstinate and hates on the fabric, although the skirt moves really well. That skirt isn’t that dirty looking. The dress without the leather is really A-line, like a band at her breasts and just hanging down from that.
Now is the part where everyone talks about why they should get to the finals and who should go with them. Heidi has them pick out two others, for a final three, but she already told them one person will be out so there is a break in communication somewhere. Not really surprising. Everyone always talks about how great they are here. It all blends together after a while. Everyone wants to take Michelle to fashion week. Huh. Patricia, Layana, and Daniel all pick Stanley and Michelle to go to Fashion Week, actually. Stanley picks Daniel and Michelle. They all say those two are the best and that they have great visions and especially that Michelle has strong convictions. Michelle wants to bring Stanley and Layana. Pff, Layana. Whatever. But very interesting, no one wants to bring Patricia.
Back in the Scrap Bin everyone sits around and Michelle actually babbles about craft and inspiration which is kind of lame. Layana cries about how the judges hated her jacket that was so awesome. Whatever. Stanley created something beautiful. Zac thinks he has the most experience, and he is polished and confident. They are impressed that everyone wants him to go to the finals. Michelle surprised everyone by not making sportswear and did really well. Nina says she’s a fighter. They know she will work really hard to impress them. Daniel’s taste level worries the judges, but he did a really great job with this challenge. Heidi would like to wear that outfit. Layana is the most commercial, so when she has to be creative she struggles. Nina says there is nothing wrong with being commercial. Remember when being commercial was the kiss of death on this show? John says based on today he doesn’t think she belongs, and they do worry about how stubborn she was about the jacket. Patricia always does weird things so she would surprise them. Nina says she is a great textile designer, but she is not ready to put on a show. Yes. I love Nina. “Fashion is not art. Stores are not museums.” Zac, of all people, tries to defend her, but Heidi agrees and says it could be super crazy. Maybe great? No, Nina shouts “ARTS AND CRAFTS HORROR.” Heh.
Stanley is in. Daniel is in. Michelle is in. Was I wrong about that whole thing? Was the last minute save not to save Patricia but Michelle? Did they think they had to get rid of her because she didn’t listen to Nina? I’m confused. Whatever. Layana is out. Interesting, I thought maybe they’d keep her around to talk about how great she is. Patricia is in. I bet they are hoping for some crazy from her. Layana stands behind her jacket and says at least she didn’t get sent home for something she’s ashamed of. That’s true, at least. Plus there’s going to be a reunion show so let’s hope for some conflict there.
Next week: $10,000 for 12 looks, Daniel’s hair is big, Stanley is really not done with anything.