Already one lighter, the remaining 15 designers gear up for their second challenge and little do they know it will be a “hairy “ordeal! Heidi tells the designers that their next challenge will really “unleash” their creativity. With a few eyebrows raised, some of the designers immediately think fetsishism and an S&M theme. But it’s actually quite the contrary….they run off to 14th Street and Avenue B to meet Tim Gunn at none other than Petland Discounts! It’s Unconventional Challenge Day! Hooray!
But instead of making looks to dress pets, the challenge involves creating very real fashion pieces using pet and animal materials. Tim warns the judges don’t like a whole lot of regular fabric being used in these unconventional challenges, but that they can use muslin for structure. Their budget is $300 and they have 30 minutes to shop the pet store for materials. They scoop up everything from chew toys to pet food, dander shampoo, to dog sweaters, to hamster wheels. One designer even checks with Tim to make sure the real animals are off limits! Anthony tries to scoop up materials that no one else is using since leashes and fish plants seem pretty popular, while Bert breaths a sigh of relief that he has immunity for this quirky challenge. Perhaps the most notable purchase is by Bryce who nabs what he calls “puppy wee-wee pads.”
The designers unfurl their merchandise back at the workroom and seem to fully realize the bulk of their challenge. Joshua M. talks about his advantage coming from a theater costume background, then realizes he’s missing some crucial pieces to his tubing. Becky starts pruning her fake purple leaves and Viktor has a ball ripping up and dyeing his we-wee pads. Bryce and Danielle are also using the pads, causing Bryce to predict a “wee-wee pad fashion show.” The term is used so much, in fact, that I considered making it a drinking game as the episode went on! When Tim Gunn comes in for his critique, he loves Viktor’s violet-dyed wee-wee pad dress but is concerned about Bert’s black cover-up garment which bears little resemblance to fashion, much less pet store fashion. He also thinks Joshua C.’s belt made from a cat scratching post has potential, but that he needs to make his overall outfit more memorable.
The day of the runway show, the designers are doing everything from glue-gunning the garments to their models to wrapping a paper bag dress around them. L’oreal and Garnier help the models express the animal magnetism in their looks (get it?) while a final sweep of the room showed everything from leashes to kibble to serious anxiety. Stacey Bendet of Alice + Olivia pops in as a guest judge, sporting a dark do and a big, over-sized bow. Two notable designs that stood out for me on the runway were Anthony’s bird seed frock and Anya’s rope leash bustier top. Both looked stunning coming down the runway while Julie’s dog food bag dress definitely left something to be desired. It seemed the one material that was most surprising in its versatility was hamster bedding, which provided fabulous texture and dimension to both Cecilia’s cocktail dress and Olivier’s skirt.
Time for judging! Olivier, Anthony and Joshua M. get lauded for their innovation while Joshua C., Fallene and Bryce fell by the wayside. Heidi said she wanted to pee all over Bryce’s wee-wee pads (which may be a first for Project Runway!), Joshua C.’s umbrella dress was a unanimous snooze fest, as was Fallene’s “candy corn teeth” outfit which the judges agreed lacked movement. They all loved the creativity behind Joshua M.’s sporty ensemble and Anthony’s use of proportion and creativity but ultimately—it was Olivier’s sophistication and immaculate tailoring that scored him this week’s win. Joshua C.’s hum drum umbrella dress was just wrong in too many ways and he was bid Auf Wiedersehen. Stay tuned, this season is just starting to get underway!
“I can really only go up. Let the empty bed be our motivation.” – Joshua C.
“Sorry Bert, we are gonna be your friends. Your evil friends.”– Viktor
“I used to have rabbits….but they all died.” -Olivier
“I love playful, whimsical, humorous. I don’t take fashion too seriously.”– Fallene
What can I do with pet food?” – Cecilia
“Think outside the box!” – Fallene
“The litter box.” – Cecilia (muttering)
“This is not fashion, this is trashin’!” – Viktor
“Wow, its like a Depends dress! You never have to get up from your bar stool!” – Tim Gunn to Viktor
“My brain’s starting to bleed just thinking about this.” – Tim Gunn to Anya
“The only time you need to do too many accessories if its a big bore. This is not a big bore! “ – Michael Kors to Joshua M.
“I’ve been hating this thing the whole time.” – Fallene to the judges on her bad outfit
She looks like she’s at a Autumn Harvest Festival. She’s Miss Pumpkin!” – Michael Kors to Fallene
“You should have done a ballgown covered in kitten toys.” – Stacey Bendet to Fallene
“It’s getting hot! I’m going through Man-o-pause!” – Michael Kors
Until next week! Be sure to check out our other favorite site dedicated to all things Project Runway…Blogging Project Runway!
Photos: LifetimeSee the Top Ten Summer 2016 Trends for Women Over 40
Tags: "Project Runway", Blogging Project Runway, episode 2, Heidi Klum, Michael Kors, My Pet Project, Petland Discounts, Project Runway Memorable Quotes, Project Runway Recap, Season 9, Stacey Bendet, Tim Gunn