Admittedly, watching season after season of Project Runway can, at times, become a bit superfluous. The weepy designers complaining over the same challenges, Michael Kors‘ making snarky comments, etc. But last night’s NEW challenge was completely entertaining, so much so it’s a wondered this obvious challenge wasn’t done before.
Heidi announced to the designers that they were to create a look for a client who knows a lot about fashion (nothing new there) but when it was announced that they’d be designing an outfit to take Judge Nina Garcia from day to night, I was impressed. The designers on the other hand seemed a bit nervous and I don’t blame them. Nina is by far the most intimidating and hardest to please of the judges. It was clear from the beginning that the designers were going to have a rough go at this challenge since right off the bat Nina was saying everything she didn’t like, what she wouldn’t wear and what she didn’t want to see on the runway; which put the anxious designers even more on edge. After having time to sketch, the designers had a chance to show their ideas to Nina and get her feedback. The number of “nos” that came out of Nina’s mouth and her inquiries about a Plan-B were off the charts. Cecilia hit the nose on the head when she said that Nina knows what she wants and it would be impossible to talk her in to anything else. And what Nina wanted was something classic with an edge, which sounds easy enough, but really left the designers scrambling.
The visit to Mood was as hectic as ever. Cecilia was having a hard time finding anything affordable in her color palette. Becky and Anthony picked the same fabric (how that happened is still a mystery) and Anya followed her gut and took a chance on a mustard-colored print. Nina’s visit to the workroom hardly bolstered any of the designers’ confidence and had them scrambling to come up with a new Plan-B or pretend confidence in their flagging designs. Anya was able to dye her mustard-print a darker color, but because of her lack of sewing ability she needed Laura’s help and expertise to finish her jumpsuit. Julie also needed help completing her dress; her assistance came from Cecilia and an extra-large bottle of glue.
When the garments hit the runway it was easy to spot the top designs. The judges, including guest judges Joanna Coles (Marie Claire Editor in Chief) and actress Kerry Washington, loved Anya’s jumpsuit, thought Viktor’s skirt and shirt combo was youthful and very “now.” But Kimberly’s navy pant paired with a gold multi-dimensional top was the winning design and would be featured in a Marie Claire add placed on the top of New York city cabs as well as worn by Nina herself as well as be featured in the magazine. Danielle’s green blouse was bordering on matronly and had Joanna Coles wondering if Danielle was depressed. It was of little surprise that Cecilia’s muddy colored dress was among the bottom as well. Joanna, who was full of harsh commentary, said that if Nina had worn the dress into the office she would wonder if she was looking to get fired. But even her dress was not quite as horrible as the “drock” (dress-frock-coat?) that Julie designed. Even though it is obvious Julie has a lot of sewing and tailoring skills, it’s also obvious she doesn’t have much fashion sense. That is why Julie is out.
The jumpsuit you’re going to have a challenge sewing-wise, are you going to be able to do that? – Nina Garcia
It feels a little Dynasty. – Nina Garcia
I thought I was going on a Carnival Cruise. – Julie
No. – Nina
No. – Nina
No. – Nina
Ok, you’re always feeling confident. I leave you feeling confident and then I see your look on the runway and I’m like ‘Oh, my God!’ – Tim
The only thing I’m concerned with is I’m not sure if you usually wear a bra. – Joshua
It’s mousy and mousy. – Nina Garcia
I can see it looking very prison jumper. – Kimberly
Honestly, I’m sweating through my suit. – Tim Gunn
Is that glue? Yikes. – Tim Gunn
If Nina came to work in this design I would think she was looking to be fired. – Joanna Coles
It honestly looks like a blouse she would wear in the 80s. – Michael Kors
If Nina came in wearing this I honestly would think she was ill. – Joanna Coles
Unless you’re going to a Joan Crawford Saint Patty’s Day party. I mean who is wearing this blouse? – Michael Kors
Until next week! Be sure to check out our other favorite site dedicated to all things Project Runway…Blogging Project Runway!
—Bonnie J Brown