PR: The Grownup’s Table

Posted on October 03, 2011


One of the best things about Bert as a contestant – and probably the number one reason why the other contestants are threatened by him – is that he’s an utter pro when he’s on that runway talking to the judges. He knows his references and he knows how to explain a garment when presenting it to people. He doesn’t always make the most modern-looking clothes, but of all the designers this season, he’s the one most likely to know how to present a collection to a room full of buyers and editors. That’s not a small thing and the judges know it.


We’re going to get hell for this in the comments section, but we think this look was wildly over-praised.

Silver shoes paired with this? Oh, honey. That’s a no.

This was a great fabric choice. It evokes the post-hippy era of Indian and Eastern-inspired prints that were all the rage in the early seventies, both in fashion and in decor, as well as evoking glittery late seventies disco looks. The thing is, a fabric like this could easily enter Tackyville depending on how the designer utilizes it.

And we’re sorry, but this is pretty tacky.

Here’s what we don’t get – and what makes this look tacky to us: why would you make a pair of black satin hot pants to wear under this? A complementary or matching color might have worked, but black just makes it look like it’s mismatched.

Then there’s the fact that we just don’t get what this is. Is it a dress? A cover-up? The judges kept praising it by saying “The top would look great with a pair of jeans!” And yeah, it would, but that’s not what Bert chose to do. He chose to do this weird dress/shorts hybrid that just looks, well, kind of ugly to our eyes. Ditch the skirt and make a pair of shorts that actually look like they go with the top and you have a look that’s pretty showy, but at least it’s cohesive and put together. This looked like too many ideas for one look.

Which is kind of interesting, since he went in the exact opposite direction with his second look: one very simple idea, perfectly executed.

We don’t know if the asymetrical hem was a deliberate choice or just an execution issue and that’s not a point in the design’s favor.

And the strip of fabric around the neck was probably not the best styling choice to make.

But these are our only complaints and they’re minor.

It’s very chic in that “Jackie in New York” kind of way. Perfectly seventies, but also perfectly timeless. We love the wide V neckline, placing the straps all the way out on her shoulders.

And yeah, maybe the judges overpraised the silver aglets on the cord sash, but it really did help to make the look. It was an inspired touch that only someone who knows what they’re doing would think to do.

We said going into this episode that if Bert didn’t nail this challenge, he’d be going home (much the same way self-proclaimed menswear designer Olivier was sent home for making shitty menswear). We don’t think he aced the separates as well as the judges seemed to, but he definitely knocked it out of the part with the second look. Sometimes making a simple dress demonstrates better instincts and sense of style than making something complicated and showy and we were happy to see the judges reward him for that. Too often, the showiest look tends to get the highest praise on Project Runway.


[Photo Credit: Barbara Nitke/ – Screencaps:]

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  • Anonymous

    You didn’t Win but, we’re gonna whore out your second  garment for  our Piperlime market…cause youse our Bitch! WTF!! You know at this point, I’ve given-up trying to figure out the workings of the BM Pimps. I’m just trying to ride this PR season out the best way I can. Anyhooooo, I gotta say, though I wasn’t crazy about Bert’s “Booty Panties”, I loved his sheer overlay piece.  I would totally work that piece.  And yes, I can understand why the BM powers that be, snatched his second piece for their gain. It’s a very wearable piece in fact, I own a similar dress.  It is not at all surprising that his piece sold out and better than Ms. I just Learn To Sew Yesterday’s boring already been there done that (wait for it) Maxi Thang!
    And, I wouldn’t be ME if, I didn’t mention how much glee I got that Bert once again showed-up Laura -The -Brat’s Fuggly Piece of Crap (i did kinda like her second piece shhhhh)! Way to go Bert!

    • Anonymous

      I felt exactly the same way vis-a-vis Mean Girl Laura. And I loved the look on her face when they were praising his garments.

      • Anonymous

        Ah yes, Miss “maybe my taste is too refined for Nina” Laura–NOT.  Isn’t payback lovely?

        • Did she forget so quickly that Bert “paid off” any future negative comments toward him on her part? He said something to that effect during last week’s “team” challenge. Go, karma! Go!

      • Anonymous


    • It’s fun watching Laura get schooled by Bert.

      • Anonymous

        Luvvvvvvv it! Maybe “Luv” is too strong…Naw! Luvvvvv it!!

    • Anonymous

      Laura’s smelling-bad-cheese face was almost as priceless as Kors’s face when he saw the back of Josh’s pants. I really think this episode is ripe for patented T Lo screen caps.

      • Everyone *MUST* press like on the comment above !! TLO SCREEN CAPS! if not.. do it for democracy.

  • Anonymous

    Didn’t notice it on the runway, but that first look makes her look wide!

  • As soon as I saw Bert’s Offering I thought that he would have batted it outta the park if that coverup had been paired with a super sexy 70’s halter bathing suit.  We would’ve known EXACTLY who this woman was and where she was going.

    I love the dress, however. Typical Bert. Its classic, and beautifully made.  Its a dress that a smart woman would want in her closet forever.

    • This is how good Bert’s second dress is: it sold out on Piperlime, even tho PIPERLIME DUMBED IT DOWN.

      That wide v-neckline TLo praised: Plime dumbed it down to a more conventional (and boring!) neckline.

      Those agelets the judges paraised: PLime dumbed it down to limp string belt, conventional and boring.

      But Bert’s dress is such a classic, even Piperlime couldn’t ruin it.

      But I agree with TLo on the black hot pants.Even In the ’70s those hot pants (or bathing suit) would have been turned out in a more matchy match color –and better for it.

      • Piperlime cut the skirt with less fabric, so it too is more boring than the original.

        • Yes! Bert’s version gave the model more of a waist, because of the flare of the skirt.

          Piperlime dumbed it down, so that the string belt does all the work of pulling in a baggy waist.

    • Anonymous

      You are so right! A bathing suit would have been brilliant.

      I am still pulling for Bert, however.

  • The finishing on the neckline and hem of his second design look way off! I agree the scrap of fabric around the neck looks very cheap. Wasn’t here a scarf on the Piperline wall he could have used? A pair of purple, red or gold hot pants would have worked nicely for the first look. The skirt wrap needed more fabric.

  • jeneria

    I don’t understand why they would produce Bert’s look as well as Anya’s.  I hate it when they do that because it’s so obvious that Piperlime preferred Bert’s look, but the judges’ love for Anya awarded her the win.  So who matters:  the client (Piperlime), the judges (Anya), or the producers (Anya)?  Some transparency would be nice, especially when Viktor’s looks are completely bypassed. Admit that his stuff was too complicated for Piperlime, why is that so hard? 

    • That’s something that has always confused me.  I don’t know if I am recalling this correctly, but in the Bitten challenge in season 4, I believe that when presenting the challenge they mentioned ease of reproduction as a judging criteria.  Do they still do that and it’s just doesn’t show up on TV, or are the contestants just supposed to have enough foresight to guess that?  If TLo interviews Viktor or someone, I would be interested in hearing if they mention that in the criteria or at least the judging, or if it goes unmentioned.  Maybe because the price point of Piperlime is higher than that of Bitten, they don’t want to bring too much attention to that.

    • I think they should make it clear at the beginning of the challenge that he garment is supposed to be simple and easy to mass produce, but again, this season has been known for the ambivalence of each challenge and the lack of any kind of explanation to what the judges really want to see

      • MilaXX

        I don’t think they need to say it needs to be easily massed produced cause I don’t think that always the case. It just was with Bitten and with Piperlime. When Macy’s was the manufacturer they could do a more complicated design. They did Angela’s suit, florshons(sp?) and all.

      • Anonymous

        That’s why they added the second challenge when they realized everyone was doing separates. “Single piece, under $50” is their code for, “simple and easy to mass produce.” It could have been clearer, but it should have been enough for the contestants to figure out that they were all heading in the wrong direction with their first looks.

      • Anonymous

        Tim made a point of saying that in the workroom at least once:  This is the Piperlime Challenge.  Think about ease of production.  Or something like that.  Seriously. 

        • Because I’m guessing that the judges probably pointed to Viktor that they liked his pieces but they were too complicated to reproduce, and it was edited out because Piperlime did not want attention brought to how much of a mark up there is.

    • I assume it’s because there were two things up there that would be easy and inexpensive to manufacture, and why not take them both when you’re getting the designs for free?  And you don’t have to pay any royalties out on the design to the designer?  It’s not often you can use talent as indentured servants.

      • Anonymous

        And all that free advertising on the episode. Think of how much traffic this episode drove to the Piperlime site! Bert’s sold out pretty quickly, with no advertising, aside from links on their site.

        • That is not free advertising. Piperlime is a paid sponsor of Project Runway and I’m sure they pay through the nose for the privilege. Tim’s admonition to “use the Piperlime wall thoughtfully” is a stipulation of the sponsor’s contract as are showing the logo and naming a challenge after them.

          • Anonymous

            LOL Good point. My “duh” moment…

      • jeneria

        I get that from Piperlime’s perspective, but then why not award both of them a win?  How did they determine that Anya’s was better than Bert’s?  The ultimate prize was getting the look produced and sold on Piperlime, but they still arbitrarily gave Anya the “win.”  I just don’t see what the point is.

        • There isn’t one.  Much like the prize for making the finals is showing at FW… or the prize for being within the last 10…

          I thought they could have easily done all 3 top 2nd looks. 

      • Anonymous

        Are you sure they get no royalties? I wondered about that.

      • I’m guessing here, but (as with most shows) anything produced by a designer under their umbrella (and on their turf with their cameras running) is PR’s copyrighted “intellectual property” and the only royalty paid out is: The designer’s name gets on the piece. Everyone probably signed a very thick contract to that effect.

        Not sure about their final shows since those are produced at home.

        A couple more cups of coffee and I’d be a little more sure about all of this.

        • Since the fabric for the final collections is paid for by B-M, those pieces are undoubtedly the property of the production company.

    • Anonymous

      Wasnt Bitten SJP’s line?  It was supposed to be a “low price” line.  The clothes were cheaply made so they could sell them at a lower end store.  Piperlime’s prices are not cheap.  Though not expensive by any stretch of the imagination.  That’s why they picked Bert’s simple dress.  Bert is a favorite, the dress is extremely simple and easy to manufacture. Plus they knew it would sell.  That’s why I dont understand why they made it even cheaper by not adding those metal end pieces. 

  • Anonymous

    Bert’s first look reminded me of a John Kloss-type of disco era outfit. I could see Shelley Hack or Farrah Fawcett in it with ease. I loved the second look. Would that I had a body 20 years younger, I would be all over it!

    • It does have a Love Boat disco scene thing going on with it—almost cliche.

      Would fit right in on the Supertrain disco floor:

    • Anonymous

      The second look borrows liberally from Kloss, too — especially in the placement and design of the shoulder straps:

      • Anonymous

        I loved John Kloss lingerie back in the day.

  • And as an aside, can I tell you what evil glee I get out of seeing that neither of Bert’s models looks pissed off to be wearing his stuff on a runway?

    LOVE it.

    • Anonymous

      Bert is very professional in the workroom, as well as during the judging, from what we have been shown.  He has a calm respectful manner with clients, models, and Tim.  I would not be surprised if the models prefer working with Bert for that reason.

      • Agree.  I’m puzzled as to why he couldn’t act professional in team challenges.  I was surprised at how difficult he was to work with.

        • i could be wrong but i dont think it was him. i think he was blindsided by the mean expectations people had of him & didnt know how to respond. had they not had those expectations & been very vocal about them, i think he wouldve acted more or less like he does in the later episodes, if quieter. sometimes it takes time to relax.

          • Anonymous

            All I know is that if I had Bert on my team, I would be pumping him for information about the era, different designers, etc. His experience makes him really valuable, and the other designers were stupid not to realize that and work it to their advantage.

          • Like teenagers with their parents. they have used his age and experience as a weapon against him instead of taking advantage of the opportunity to learn something. For their sake, I hope they grow up soon and realize they don’t know everything.

  • I loved the dress (but so would NOT pay $98 for it!!!!!!) – the first look was a train wreck…

  • Anonymous

    Bert’s first model should have been wearing gold-glitter roller-skates (as if Piperlime actually HAD a pair on the accessories wall) and purple satin hot-pants! Oooooh and big Roseanne Rosannadanna (I miss you, Gilda) hair!!! And how come nobody thought of high, high slits in skirts? That’s what I remember most. 

    • Anonymous

      1 million points for the Roseanna Rosannadanna reference.

  • Anonymous

    I agree. I liked the fabric on the first look, but felt that it needed to stop just at the waist. And then paired with a pair of jeans (I know, they probably don’t want to waste time on that) it would look chic and modern.  I’d totally wear it (ha!).

    And regardless of the critiques here, I was just way too happy to see Laura get an intellectual bitch slap. All that smack talk about how bad Bert is in the confessional, and then she has to listen to him being praised after hers was panned. Ah, Karma.

  • When I checked last week, Bert’s dress was sold out on PiperLime…

  • Anonymous

    I thought Bert’s top was actually kind of fabulous although you’re correct about the black shorts  being a jarring note. I really enjoyed Bert being such a clever contestant this week as well as his playful humor. It was in sharp contrast to  Anya’s angsting and the deadly serious vibe everyone else was giving off.   

  • Anonymous

    I think if he would have lined that bottom piece and made it a wrap-around, tie at the top skirt, he might have won this challenge. Loved the fabric and the sequinned tube top underneath. Like the second piece as well. One thing I noticed in this episode was Bert referred to the garments a couple times as the merchandise. He is such a pro and he understood very well the briefing – to produce something to sell.

    • Anonymous

      Oh when you mentioned the wrap around tie at the waist skirt – I just recalled making wrap wide open leg pants with that thin waistband tie.  Then thinking more about it – I wounder whether Laura’s sheer “over” pants could have mimic-ed those 

    • Yes, I was also thinking he should have made the bottom a lined, wrap-around skirt, a la the Danskin skirts I lived in back then. I know for sure that I’d be totally in love with it, not that that’s worth much. 🙂

    • Anonymous

      Totally agree with this.

    • Anonymous

      “I think if he would have lined that bottom piece and made it a
      wrap-around, tie at the top skirt, he might have won this challenge.”

      Maybe, but still a very, very long shot. Unless Anya had been taken to the hospital with food poisoning before she’d finished her garments and had to miss the runway.

  • Anonymous

    Oh yes about Bert and how he presents himself.

    Regardless of how much drama was connected to Bert in the earlier episodes, I loved his references for his outfits. Shelly Hack/Charlie’s Angels for the first, Candice Bergman/Ali McGraw for the second. That was a great way to present it.

    He did make it too complicated for the first outfit. Loved the fabric. Damn sight more inviting and tasteful than anything Laura bought. However he should have just kept the top and matched with a skirt or pants. His model would have looked stunning that way

    • Anonymous

      I *loved* his comment to the stylist: “She’s going to be Shelly Hack.” Six simple words.

      • $5 says that NOBODY else on the Runway even knew who Shelly Hack was. 

        • Anonymous

          Or Candice Bergen and certainly not Ali McGraw…that was Prehistoric!!!

          • I can guarantee you some of them knew who Candace Bergen is — she was Murphy Brown to people in my age group, who never saw the 70s.  More than one of those designers hits that same age bracket:)

        • Judy Raddue

          Viktor was probably the only other designer who got it. Of all the young ‘uns, he’s the only one who’s displayed any interest, let alone knowledge, in actual fashion history – not only in his comment to Clinique Counter, but also mentioning how he had a safari jacket growing up.  

  • Bert’s first look was pure Mrs. Roper. So I guess he hit it the nail on the head.

    • Anonymous

      I thought the same about that damn dress Anya wore on the runway.

      • Anonymous

        Even more so. Mrs. Roper was more caftans than hot pants.

    • Anonymous

      Too funny.

  • I thought Bert’s dress was divine. Loved it. Almost bought it too. I mentioned in another comments section that Olivia’s aglet-induced multiple orgasms were hilarious. Thing is, back then, that’s what you did with a thin tie belt. It’s not innovative (at least in Bert’s eyes), it’s just done. But it’s a finishing technique that hasn’t been revisited in a long time and isn’t super-noticable, so it comes off as underutilized in the ’70s revival department.

    Second one was a miss. Jeans, coordinating color shorts, or coordinating color one-piece bathing suit underneath would have done it.

    • “It’s just done.” I love how you put that. Great clothing is often in the details. You want just the right ones and not too many of them. It’s the difference between “Meh” and “I want that!”

    • Maybe Olivia thought they were tiny Ben Wa balls. 

  • Anonymous

    I thought the strip of fabric around the neck was perfect.  She looks accessorized without having to let jewelery steal the scene of this look.

    • Anonymous

      I also liked it – well, actually I didn’t like it as a look, but I think it was a nod to the 70s that fit in perfectly.  I hated those small tie around the neck not quite scarves (as a kid!), but they were all the rage.  Much like the aglet, I thought it was just a small, thoughtful nod to the 70s vibe.  

      • Judy Raddue

        It’s pure Charlie:

      • Very Ali McGraw.

  • Anonymous

    That first one, the weird top thing.  I hate to say it, but he should have made a romper.  Rompers are really popular right now, and that’s what they asked for.  Something trendy now.  He could have kept the wilma top to keep it a bit more modern, but I think a romper would have worked and would have been easy for Piperlime to reproduce.  They picked a jumpsuit, afterall.

    The 2nd look was a good choice.  I would wear it, with a bra of course.  Maybe w/o the Fred Jones neckerchief.  But I agree, they did spend a lot of time praising the silver things.

  • Anonymous

    Sometimes making a simple dress demonstrates better instincts and sense of style than making something complicated and showy


    I mentioned this in another thread, but it’s certainly worth repeating here.  There is a video on Piperlime’s site that is very instructive as to how Bert thought about the second look.  And think he certainly did:,3976450,textLinkProjectRunway&clink=3976450

    • Anonymous

      Thanks for the link.  It’s very interesting to see just how analytical Bert was in designing his second look.  And he neatly explained why he did the neck “scarf” out of the fabric.  There was pretty much a reason for every detail as opposed to the slapped together looks of several of his competitors.

    • Anonymous

      Thank you for posting the link to the video where Bert explains the construction and design to the client.  His 2nd piece is deceptively simple – from the double-faced fabric, to the self-piping along the neck opening.

      Here is a fitting quote that I recently stumbled across:

      “At this point, it’s all ending the way it started, with simplicity.  In the beginning you do simple things because you don’t know better.  Now you do it because you do know better.”   – Geoffrey Beene

  • Anonymous

    I was very confused by Bert’s coverup, but couldn’t explain to myself why it bothered me. Good for you for making that clear. I did like the fabric, and have generally found printed sheers can be flattering on a larger body type also, depending on what is underneath. I too would have preferred jeans or a dress.

    In fact I’m nutty enough in fashion to put Look 1 over Look 2, but shorten the sheer skirt considerably. I’m not bothered by Bert’s hem or neckline. They look to me like simple rolled hems that are machine stitched. A bit of flair is natural in that type of hemming. As simple dresses go, quite cute.

    • Anonymous

      Liked for  your opinion on the additional video – that’s how I feel about it.

  • Lori

    Bert’s dress is my favorite piece of anyone all season.  (The proportions on Vic’s safari suit bugged me).  I’m going to burn it in my brain so when I look back on this season, if I must, I will remember one thing that is chic and effortless. 

    I said this before, but I still have a fantasy of Joe Zee guiding Bert on “All on the Line”.  I know Bert doesn’t have his own line but I think he could benefit from Joe Zee more than most, and he seems smart enough to accept the guidance.

  • Anonymous

    so…are bras just illegal on the runway or something? Love the fabric choices, hate both pieces, major points for good presentation and attention to detail.

  • Anonymous

    The first outfit is straight up late-night Skinemax IMO.

  • Susan Crawford

    I liked that sheer, chiffon fabric in the first look: the colors referenced the 70’s, but T Lo is right about the overall garment. I just wasn’t sure what it WAS! And that’s because of two things. One, those black short-shorts. I think they cheapened the look and put it more in the 80’s and early 90’s eras. Two, the assymetrical, high-low hemline. Now suppose Bert had made the garment more like a classic 70’s caftan, with a simple split up the middle. He could have kept the black shorts, but they wouldn’t have been so obtrusive. Or he could have made a tunic-length top, and a pair of uber-skinny black ankle pants: the top is the bo-ho 70’s and the cigarette pants are classic YSL from that era, but also very current. The skimp was cute and something that will sellsellsell. BTW, I didn’t even notice that “scarf” around the model’s neck until I saw T Lo’s screen cap.

    Bert’s maturity and savvy really DOES show up when he is defending and explaining his pieces to the judges. He is so articulate and firm in his commentary, but he also knows how to listen and “get” what the judges say without losing his cool. I’m hoping the final three will include Bert – he has a LOT more to show us, I think!

    • Anonymous

      I agree that’s Bert’s demeanor on the runway really helps him, especially compared to Josh.  Bert doesn’t seem crushed by criticism, but he doesn’t ignore it either.  While he got defensive early on with the designers, he seems extremely comfortable with the judges even when they aren’t loving his stuff.  TLo was on the nose when the said you could see him presenting and actually having a productive conversation with buyers and industry professionals.  There are several designers in this season who I cannot see doing that, let alone with grace. 

      I’m with you Susan Crawford, rooting (once again) for Bert!

  • Anonymous

    I have liked Bert (not loved) him for a while, but did not share the love for these looks. The fabric reminds me of something from much later -those sheers, with a print but a tone on tone plaid or stripe – other with a gold thread running through it.   I could not see what that first outfit was supposed to be.   
    I do recall hot pants with a long over skirt, usually open in the front, as being from the 70s, no?

  • Anonymous

    Can anyone tell me if Piperlime changed Bert’s skimp design for market?  It sold out so quickly that I never got the chance to see if any changes were made.  The dress is deceptively simple, but as the video showed on the Piperlime website, Bert was specific about the shoulder strap placement, and the Piperlime rep talked about putting bra strap restrainer thingys to keep the shoulder and neckline set wide. 

    • I glimpsed it on Friday before it sold out. I thought it looked very much the same as the original, though evidently the aglets were replaced with something cheaper.

      • Anonymous

        For the public’s sake I hope whoever bought the dress has the boobetts for the second look.

        • There is a video on Piperlime in which there is a discussion of how to fasten the bra straps so they would be hidden, but I think a strapless bra would be the way to go.

          • Or tape the bra to the right spot with double stick tape.  I do that all the time.

    • Anonymous

      It looked like they changed the neckline; Bert’s wider neckline was better. Also the hem, I think. And the little aglets weren’t on the very end of the ties, but up a little farther.

    • BTW, you can still bid on the original at It’s up to $90.

      • Anonymous

         I would, if I thought I could fit into it!

      • Anonymous

        Thanks for the link! I wish they gave the models’ measurements for these, or at least some idea of the actual sizes.

        Heh – the auctions list Victor’s looks as the winning designs! Some sort of Freudian (/Adlerian?) slip? hrrm…

      • thank you for posting the link.

        you can bid on all of the stuff from project runway there! or from at least this season’s worth of PR. had i the money & were i thin & tall as a reed, i might bid on bert’s first outfit. i really did like it that much. especially if i could close the skirt & ditch the underthing. for a bigger underthing.

        people who want viktor’s dress–the exact dress is right there!

  • Anonymous

    I would wear the top part of the separates in a heartbeat with a pair of skinny jeans some cute flats or sandals. I mean, that’s pretty much your point, yes, but I’m just saying. It has a lot of potential.

  • That dress was sold out last time I checked on Piperlime, and this was a day or two ago.. So good for him. I sort of never lost my love for him, I’m so glad he’s not just the compulsory shit-stirrer of this season. 

  • Anonymous

    The second dress is pure Ali Macgraw. He nailed it. The first looks like someone was trying it on in the dressing room and didn’t want to bother removing her shorts. I agree is was too over-praised. 

    I like it when Bert keeps it simple and classic and that’s really his forte. Clearly, judging by the success of his dress on Piperlime, there’s a market for it. I hope he gets to capitalize on it,

  • Anonymous

    I’m impressed that you knew those silver thingies (which lets face it, is what most of us call them) were called aglets!

    • Anonymous

      It’s a classic crossword puzzle word so more people know it than you might expect.

    • Plus, the awesome Phineas and Ferb dedicated a whole episode to aglets, along with the super-catchy tune “A-G-L-E-T”.

      • All Phineas and Ferb tunes are catchy.  I catch myself humming or singing them all the time.  (Particularly the one from the One-Hit Wonder episode:)

  • Would a bra on the second model have been to much to ask? All I saw was headlights. Hate the first look.

    • I think Bert did it to traumatize Olivier – BREASTS!!!!  OH NO!!!!!

      • Ah, but Olivier showed a sheer top on a bra-less model in his final collection. You could clearly see her little sunny-side-ups through the blouse. How will that play on Lifetime?

    • No kidding! That was so obvious in the pictures especially.

  • I didn’t care for the first look either. But I noticed this week that there was no ‘black AND white’ this week.That is to say, the judges either “loved” both looks, or “hated” both looks from each designer. Like Josh’s 2nd look wasn’t as bad as they made it out to be, but they hated him this week, and that’s all she wrote.

    • That’s so true. It explains why they didn’t tear Anya a new one for her first look, too. Like we’re supposed to pretend that just because one look is good (or bad), the other will be the same.

    • Good point. I noticed this with Laura. Her second look was decent, but they dismissed it without meaningful comment after rightfully demolishing the first look (which should have been burned).

  • Anonymous

    I actually really liked the top in the first look – but the shorts and wrap around thing – ugh, NO! I wish that he had made some simple black cigaret pants to go with it. It would have been so great. The second dress – soooo cute.

    Bert is a pro. I do not think he is right for PR, but I do hope that he finds another job within the industry after this is over.

    BTW, one of my favorite lines of the entire season was where Bert go his job at Halston! LOL. As the contest goes on he becomes more relaxed and more fun. Also, his critiques of other work was almost verbatim what came out of the mouth of the judges.

    • Anonymous

      What was that he said? He went to the balcony, third row to get his job at Halston? Something like that. Hilarious pre-AIDS comedy gold!

      • Anonymous

        Something like that. (After Laura asking Bert if he went to Studio 54): Laura: Is that how you got your job at Halston? Bert: No. (He is very casual and then gets this great wicked look and smile on his face). Bert: I got in in the third row balcony. I think it was Laura’s look of shock that really cracked me up.

        • Anonymous

          Not so much shock, I think, as confusion.  Didn’t she say something like, “I don’t get it.  Is that a joke?”   And he just smiled, and did a disco step.    

      • Anonymous

        I’m not sure if he meant a job at Halston, or a job (of a different kind) from Halston!

        • Anonymous

          I know, right?

  • I feel like my opinion on Bert can be graphed by a mathematician, a wide arc that starts in positive territory, swoops down, and now is making its way back up. In this latest episode, he was professional and mannerly and presented good designs. I’d love to have that dress. And I’d wear that top with jeans or as a beach cover up. Even at 15 and 110 pounds, I could not rock the hot pants but that fault lies in my thighs, not the design. Good job overall. It’s nice to have a wee bit of professionalism crawl from the swamp that Bunim-Murray hath stagnated.

    • Anonymous

      He’s on a roll, gaining speed, and I love him! Final 3 for Bert, please!

      • He had better be in the Final 3. And none of this “you and so-and-so will make collections and we’ll decide between the two of you” crap for Bert. He deserves a Final 3 spot.

        • Anonymous

          Sounds like they’ll be doing that, though, because Tim made a reference to making four home visits in that interview.  He doesn’t like Bert–wonder what we’re not seeing.  Because Bert had a couple of obnoxious episodes, but he seems pretty mellow now.

          • That’s the impression I have too. If they want to do that with two other designers, I guess that’s OK (although I kind of hate it). But I think Bert’s proven himself enough that he shouldn’t have to jump through any more hoops.

          • I hated it more when the collections that weren’t chosen weren’t going to show.  Now it’s just kinda “Whatever.  He/she would have had to put in the work whether it’s a decoy or not…”

  • Anonymous

    Like you I’m not sure about the black hot pants, but other than the color that look references mid 70s disco club wear to my eye, with the metallics, the gauzy print, the off-the-shoulder neckline. The second dress is a classic, and ‘Ali McGraw’ is the exact reference, I do believe. What I really like about this dress is the modern neckline. 

    The only two designers I’m remotely interested in at this point are Viktor and Bert.

  • tom

    I find him kind of annoying but do like the fact that he comes across as a pro.  I really don’t understand that 1st outfit because with that fabric it really could have been evocative of the ’70’s especially if  he had gone the ‘granny dress” route.  The 2nd is plain, simple, and wearable.  As Lori said (9 min, before me), I could see him being one of Joe Zee’s proteges. Unrelated to this post but I love Joe Zee.

    • Lori

      Thanks, because Disqus ate my comment, as it’s prone to do from time to time, and I thought I was losing it until I read your post. 

  • I agree completely about the hot pants — why black?  It just didn’t make any sense to me with that look.  Nothing in that fabric suggests black would complement it, and when you already have that many colors happening, why would you need to add another? 

    As for the odd skirt thing… I’m still not sure how I feel about it. I don’t really understand it’s function in one’s wardrobe.  And the point of separates is that they can be separated and paired with other things for multiple looks.  While I could see the blouse working with many other things, what else would you ever do with that wrap thing?  I mean, I could see it as a swim coverup, but that’s about it, since I can’t imagine ever wearing it with shorts and a top like this.

    His second look, however, was absolutely brilliant.  It was so simple and so chic.  I do think the asymmetry on the skirt was deliberate, though. 

  • Anonymous

    Many of the designers produced a first look that had all kinds of problems but did much better with the second, simpler look.  That was the case here.  Though I do think that if he’d made the coverup thingy an actual dress it would have been brilliant.  And very 70’s.  He could have left the design as is except make it an actual skirt.  The “tennis” dress is really cute but doesn’t excite me very much. 

  • I’m still not sure what that first garment is. It is one piece or two? I do love the fabric, though, and think the top part of it is beautiful and very wearable. And that, Anya, is how you make a one-sleeved garment.

    I love the little dress, and was thrilled that it was also chosen for Piperlime. An actual win would have nice, though, and well deserved.

    • Anonymous

      Three, I think. There’s the sheer top, the sequin bandeau top under that, and the shorts.

      • And the cover up bit — so if we count that as a garment (which I’m still not sure we should), that makes 4:)

        • Anonymous

          I wasn’t sure if the cover-up and sheer top were one piece or two pieces.

          • 2 because she took off the wrap on her way back down the runway — which I never like.  If it takes more than shrugging off a jacket, it just seems clunky on the runway. 

          • ya, they were a top & a sort-of skirt. when she took off the sort-of skirt i kept waiting for her to wrap it around her shoulders sort of capestyle. in my tired heart of hearts i know that wouldve been ridiculous but the batman fan child i was in the early 70s was nonetheless disappointed.

          • If I were in my closet, that’s totally what I would do with it all the time — in the privacy of my own home, so no one would see me doing something that silly, but still.

          • Yes, that’s what I’m confused about. Are the sheer top and the sheer bottom one piece or two?

  • Anonymous

    I love Bert, seriously. I think he’s awesome and great entertainment. Hated the black shorts. Love everything else.

  • I’m back on team Bert, lol.  I’m glad they’re not giving him the bitchy edit anymore.  Totally agree about the weird black panties, maybe he was going for the big runway diaper thing that seems to be popular, should have used a different color. I did like the top, and do think it would be great with jeans. Maybe he only had enough money to make it look like a bathing suit cover up, and had to hope the judges got the idea.

  • MilaXX

    I agree the first look seems incomplete, I’d rather a skirt than that sheer bottom over the shorts, but I adore that simple second dress.

  • Anonymous

    i am really hoping that Bert makes it to the final 3. 

  • scottyf

    My Geriatric GQ Hunk

    Before I forget: the virtual fittings for our virtual tuxedos are on Wednesday. And we still have to text the changes to our virtual reception menu to the virtual caterers.

    Everyone has pretty much voiced many of my feelings about your garments in this episode. I wasn’t really sure where the girl in your first outfit was “going.” And I think making the hot pants in a complimentary color found in the print would have really made them pop. As they were presented, they looked like underwear to me. As far as your second piece…well…it’s no secret as to the way I feel about your aesthetic. This garment deepened my profound admiration for your style. And having it sell out within hours of it’s release on Piperlime’s website says it all.

    The reason for this cologne infused missive is to once again re-iterate that I don’t think you’ve “changed” or “mellowed” over the weeks. I think you’re the exact same person we met in the first episode. What I think is that (like all of the other contestants) you are the recipient of edit-created character development based on the story arc decided upon by the directors, and producers. No one makes that kind of a profound personality change in a few short months of shooting a reality show. But I guess if people want to believe that Reality TV is actually real: so be it.

    I don’t care if you make it to the end. I hope you do, but I think you’ve already done what you came there to do: show the world that you are still a creative force of nature. I would be willing to bet an even greater force given the trials and tribulations that got you to where you are now. And you don’t have to cry about it on national television, or keep bringing up the fact that you gave a competitor almost ten times what Anthony Ryan gave. You don’t have to refer to how you overcame obstacles to get a garment to the runway. Your clothes speak for themselves. And they speak of effortless beauty, cool confidence and unrelenting sophistication.

    Oh, and if on one of your nights in the Studio 54 balcony you brushed across a dark-skinned, light-eyed black boy about ten years your junior…I enjoyed it too. 🙂


    • I think Bert, more than a lot of people on reality shows, comes across as a complex person. It’s like the editors tried to reduce him to one thing, but he made it impossible. He has dignity coming out of his ears.

      • Anonymous

        Oh, nicely put, accidental housewife!  I think you’ve got it just right about Bert.

        Whatever it is, one of the very few enjoyments of this godawful season for me is seeing him joke around, laugh, and enjoy himself. Especially, but not solely, when he makes a joking remark to Ozark Barbie and she has no idea what the heck he’s talking about.  And he doesn’t explain!

        • Thank you.

          Even when he was at his cranky-assed worst, I couldn’t stop liking him. But I agree it’s great to see him relaxed, having fun and just being himself. Designing must be in his blood. He seems to be achieving his goal of challenging himself after being out of the business for so long. Now this is a compelling story.

          And it really is hilarious when “Ozark Barbie” (Ha!) doesn’t know what he’s talking about. I think he really enjoys confusing her.

          • i really hate to say it & in all kinds of ways too, but after all the crap he’s gotten from her even after all of his various nicenesses– oh, you know, i dont blame him.

            i’m sure i’ve said it too many times already but i think hers is one of the more competent final collections. even stil & more importantly, she really truly absotively posilutely needs to be pulled down several different pegs & by more than a couple of inches too. either that or she should just do what she probably will do {unless she’s decided to compete w/ anya for a showbiz career, another competition she will lose}: go back to wherever, missouri & be the fanciest fancy fish in her small to medium sized post-barbie pretenders-at-trophy-wife stocked pond.

            i wonder if she will ever understand why nina has issues w/ her.

          • I don’t blame him either. I think confusing her is his method of torture. Why be rude when you can be subversive?

            “either that or she should just do what she probably will {unless she’s
            decided to compete w/ anya for a showbiz career, another competition she
            will lose}: go back to wherever, missouri & be the fanciest fancy
            fish in her small to medium sized post-barbie pretenders-at-trophy-wife
            stocked pond.”

            Ha! Brilliant. Also true.

      • Anonymous

        I was impressed with his mature reaction to Josh in the Designers Dish video on the Lifetime site, where Josh is whining about not being born before the eighties, and accusing Viktor of “trying to get aggressive” with him. 

        Burt is able to reach Josh by hearing and acknowledging his back-story, and then bringing broader perspectives and pragmatic issues up to him, which Josh, in turn, seemed to be able to consider, without an uproar.

    • PR shoots in a matter of WEEKS, so it’s not even as long as most reality shows.  Making a true change even less likely and more a matter of adaptation.

    • Anonymous

      Poor scottyf. Next season is going to have to be a doozy – The Best Project Runway Season Ever – to be as entertaining for  you as this one.

  • Anonymous

    You’ll get no argument from me. I thought the first look was going to land him in the bottom.
    The second look, though, was fabulous.

  • Maggie Muellner

    Agree with you about the black satin hot pants as a jarring choi

    • Anonymous


      (you’re welcome)

      • Anonymous

        Thanks! I made that entry at work, where I can’t seem to sign in with Disqus, and the whole thing hangs up in the wierdest way. The entry posted before I finished it, and when I realized and came back to finish it, it opened up the edit field and then wouldn’t actually accept the edit.

        What I wanted to go on to say was that I think Bert made a conscious decision to try something splashy and blingy because he has been taking in the judges critiques of his work as too safe and bordering on boring. He figured he needed to go big or go home, especially on a 70s challenge. And how happily ironic that his impact piece was that sleek skimp dress.

        • Anonymous

          Great! I was wondering where you were going with that.

  • Anonymous

    I so agree on the first “dress”.  I thought I was going crazy with all of the praise that the judges were giving it..but I thought it was tacky and didn’t make sense.

  • Toto Maya

    I also thought his first look was tacky and didn’t understand why the judges praised it. And his second look ws boring. Yes, it was still better than most of the looks up there. Bert was adorable this episode and I’ll be sad if he goes home.

  • Anonymous

    Totally agree on the first look.  Booty shorts with a disco… wrap thing over the front?  Maybe you only understand if you went to 70s coke parties or something.  The second look was great.  I don’t understand why he didn’t win as well.  I still find it hilarious that Pauperlime chose two of the lower-budget second looks to manufacture.

  • I completely agree about the first look.  He tried for too much and I wish he had put some length on the hot pants.  And maybe a black shoe instead of a shiny one.  But that dress – I love that dress.  I wonder if it’s still sold out on Piperlime.

  • Anonymous

    I think MY praise for Bert’s first look came almost entirely from his being able to find such an ABSOLUTELY 70s fabric in the Mood Caverns!  It’s like he asked Swatch to lead him to the fabric no one has touched in at least 20 years, and he found this.  Very Studio-54 and roller-rink.  And it didn’t hurt that his model was doing a dead-on Shelley Hack!

    That second dress is super-cute.  Also, aglet praise for knowing what they were and finding them in Mood LOL.  Unfortunately we big girls couldn’t pull that off (20 pounds of ass in a 5 pound dress), but it looks great on the right girl.

    • Not necessarily — I think the dress would size up very well, depending on the proportions of the “big girl” in question.  I find there are VERY few things that really depend on size;  more often, certain pieces only work on certain body types.  For instance, if you’re busty for your size, it doesn’t matter what size it is, you still need a certain amount of coverage up top to not look awful.

    • Anonymous

      Big-time Shelley Hack, but I think the shorts were more Cheryl Ladd:

    • LOL Swatch’s role! That is quite the disco-fabulous fabric.

  • Anonymous

    I loved the fabric of the first look and how the whole thing looked from the back. Didn’t like the little shorts–the black was just too harsh for the warm colors of the cover-up fabric. I wish he’d made a flowy dress from the fabric and skipped the idea of the shorts. 

    I don’t love the second look, but agree it is very ’70s and very Ali McGraw. 

    It’s so nice to see a grown-up on the runway. Bert is calm, cool, and collected when dealing with the judges (and Tim and his model) and I think that goes a long way with them. I’d like him to win, but I hope that he gets something out of this whole experience if he doesn’t. 

  • Ella B. Mudge

    I found that first top sort of tacky-yet-pretty and thus, it was sort of interesting.  Agreed with TLo about the black hot pants.  Looking at Bert’s finale collection, even if he didn’t make it to the top 3, he’ll probably be able to land something in the industry to keep him going until he’s ready to retire.

    • I hope so.  I think being on PR was part of Bert’s strategy to get back into the industry now that he’s gone through rehab and dealt with his partner’s death.  He’s good at what he does, and I hope he gets lots of offers.

  • I have always liked Bert, probably because he is a good-looking man about my age, and he just seems comfortable in his skin. Someone one would actually enjoy talking to on an airplane, say. Perhaps that vibe is part of the “presentation skills.” I am not so sure about his needing Joe Zee–I think he could be an assistant to Joe Zee.
    Has anyone else picked up on the “missing toothbrush” story, or whatever? Somewhere in one of the shows or workrooms I heard someone talk about Bert losing his toothbrush, and then when Anya lost her money someone said that everyone expected Bert to lose his money, not Anya. So there must have been some  incident early on when he established his senility by getting upset over some misplaced object, which triggered the hate. Then people got over it.
    I thought that was a funny scene showing Josh how to turn a strap (or whatever it was–I don’t see it on the finished look). Comfortable in his skin is just what Josh is not, and it was amazing the way he looked at Bert, as if he couldn’t believe you could live that long and still make dirty jokes. While teaching somebody how to do something.
    Re this week’s looks, the hot pants made no sense as everyone else is saying. However, it is interesting that in the Workroom Bert explains to Tim that he doesn’t expect Piperlime to produce the skirt–it’s just there for the look, but the top and shorts are what he is selling. Given that, it’s a pity he didn’t do something better shorts-wise.

  • Anonymous

    Agree about the first look, but I totally disagree about the second.

    Here’s the thing: that dress is about as simple as a dress can possibly get. I’ve said it once here, and I’ll say it again. Sure, this challenge meant that you couldn’t do something too expensive and time consuming to replicate (like Victor), but we can’t forget that this is a design competition. And there’s very little design in that dress. I used to make that dress out of scrap fabric for my dolls. I wasn’t creative and I didn’t want to be a designer, but it was a dress. And that’s all I can say for this look. It’s a dress. I can’t really muster any feelings for it because there’s really nothing there to have feelings about.

    The dress is so simple that you’re forced to praise plain silver aglets. I mean, really.

  • I don’t think you are disagreeing with the judges as much as you think. The judges loved the top, thought the shorts were bad, and they didn’t give him the win that look. The overall look was not great, but the top was cool enough that I think it got an appropriate amount of praise.

  • Anonymous

    I think Bert does well on the runway because he kind of treats the judges like peers, perhaps because of his age or his experience in the business. He never gives off that shaking-in-boots-in-front-of-Nina vibe that other designers sometimes do.

    I agree somewhat on your assessment of the first look. But I think I know what he was going for. This had some lightness and breezy-ness to it and was utterly different from anything else on the runway. Same thing for his second look. Making the front and back different neutrals was a brilliant decision.

    • Anonymous

      So agree with your observations about how Bert acts on the runway–agree with you and with TLo. Except for the horrible prom dress challenge, Christian was the same way on the runway, even though he was so young. He just had tons of confidence and knew how to discuss what he had done and how the look was meant to be.

      • Even when I’m not fond of designer or their work, I always appreciate it if they can explain it and defend it while still be objective enough to concede that certain suggestions would have been better.

  • Anonymous

    I thought the first look was pretty Bad Girls. It’s a Shame it didn’t win. It just cries Take Me Home. Enough is Enough with the Bert bashing. Bert’s thinking “I Will Survive” and he’s looking forward to the Good Times. 

    • Anonymous

      Perhaps if he had styled the model’s hair like Toni Tenielle?

    • Anonymous

      Well kiss mah grits, I think your comment is dynomite!  Our boy Bert is stayin’ alive!

  • Anonymous

    Excellent point about Bert’s ability to handle the runway critique process.  Back during the “clock” team challenge, Josh was asked by Tim where his girl was going and he said anywhere – it’s a coat.  Josh doesn’t realize that the more specific you are about your girl and where she’s going and what she’s going to be doing once she arrives, the better the garment.  Bert put his first girl at the roller rink disco party and the second girl at an open-air art gallery opening in Malibu.  That’s why Josh will be eliminated sooner than Bert.

    • That’s certainly an excellent reason why Josh SHOULD be eliminated before Bert, but as our two gay dads have pointed out countless times, talent occationally takes a backseat to loud mouth, flashy, offensive contestants that are the producers’ bread and butter.  I hope you’re right & Bert stays a while, but I’m afraid the final three will come down to Anya, Victor, Ms. Clinique Counter.  *Sigh*

      • Ugh!  Better not be Josh!  He’s like a gay male Kenley…with less talent.

    • Anonymous

      From your lips to God’s ears…

    • Anonymous

      Geez, I hope so.  I’m so bored with Joshua’s diva screeches and glued-on sparkly bits that I could scream.

    • I did love that response from Josh, though — definitely his best moment all season.

  • I loved the fabric on the first look, but hated what he did with it. HATED. 

  • Bert’s first look was my favorite.  This probably makes me tacky, but I don’t care!!  haha   Love the fabric and it’s a pretty little top that I think would still be flattering on my non-model figure.  Same with the flowy skirt-cover up.  I live in a beach city and I would wear that with jeans or shorts and wear the wrap to the beach as a cover up.  I would never attempt those particular shorts though.  But to me, that is the beauty of separates, the versatility and integrating them into your wardrobe.  And for the first look they were directed to make separates, right?      

    I’m glad Bert gave up on being a bitch because he seems like a pretty nice guy.  

  • Anonymous

    I didn’t have mad love for either garment – though, of course, I liked the second dress a lot, but the hem bugged me too much to love it. The second dress was easily the 2nd best look of the competition (I’d have given 1st to Viktor) and glad he got recognition for it.

    1st look had all the right elements but combined to less than the sum of its parts. I like the suggestion made earlier it be presented over a swimsuit, then it would have looked like a fancy cover up/pool part hostess gown, or TLo’s that  you ditch the bottom half and reboot.

    So glad that Bert got the exposure of Piperlime’s exploitative little boon.

  • Judy_J

    Unlike Josh, I was around in the 70’s, and I think both Bert’s looks were evocative of that time.  I don’t really get the black satin hotpants paired with that beautiful gauzy fabric, but I understand where he was going with that.  My real problem with the shorts was that they were, well, too short.  But Bert has shown that he is a pro, and I do believe unless he does something really stupid, he will be iin the final 3.

    • Anonymous

      I think they were very 70s in that dolphin-shorts-on-Cheryl-Ladd kind of way, but was definitely not in love with them.

      • it’s not a great picture but it’s quintessential early 70s:
        lori maddox lightning • rodney bingenheimer • sable starr
        coalesce everyone but the center=bert’s first ensemble.

        ps. i love bert’s first ensemble.

        • margaret meyers

          I think he was just equating the 70s short hot pants with the even shorter granny panties we see in so many collections.

        • Anonymous

          What do you bet Nicole Richie snaps it up from the Project Runway auction?

      • Anonymous

        Or tap pants – the kind tap dancers used to wear. Those were fabulous, back in the 70s.

    • He could have made the shorts just a tad longer and still gotten the same affect, but I think the model looks great in them. Plus, he made the specifically for the runway, not to be considered for Piperlime, so the extreme shortness doesn’t bother me.

      Most important, they’re actual shorts and not granny panties. May Bert personally lead the charge against granny panties! I’ll be behind him 100%, making banners and carrying signs.

  • Anonymous

    No disagreement from me. I wanted the top but wouldn’t have touched the shorts even when I was 20 and had the legs and butt for it.

  • Anonymous

    I’m unconvinced of the perfect execution in that second dress (though I think both looks had good points and clearly were good enough to move him along in the competition). It makes the model look like… I don’t know… her entire body is slumping slightly. Meh.

  • Anonymous

    Are bras banned on the runway? Do we really need that much nipple?

    • Anonymous

      Even if they aren’t, it might be impossible to wear a bra under that dress — look at how Bert placed the dress straps literally on the shoulder. (If Piperline was literal in following that pattern, so many women who helped sell that thing out are going to be sorely disapointed because the fabric almost requires a bra.)

      • Anonymous

        That’s why Bert and the Piperlime rep were talking about adding sewn-in bra strap fasteners.  (I love those. Whenever I see a dress with them, it gets extra points.)

        • Anonymous

          I love hearing when designers talk about little things like that, when most people wouldn’t even think about them. Bert’s been around the block and he knows his shit.

      • They make strapless bras.  It’s high enough in both the front and back that a strapless would work under it.

  • I didn’t like his first outfit AT ALL. I was flabbergasted that the judges liked it, even a little. I did however, love the second dress and completely ‘got’ the praise / production value of it (hey, it’s already sold out). My suspicion is the judges praised his two looks simply because they knew the second one was a winner, and they had to come up with *something* positive to say about the first one.

    • The glittery one did capture the disco vibe without being literal, and he made sure the model got seventies hair. He slid by on styling, and sparkles, with that one.

  • Anonymous

    I just remembered a NYTimes Article from September about how Halston had been sold again and they are looking for new people. Maybe Bert should go back and try to bring the fashion house back to life!

  • Anonymous

    I’m glad you guys liked Bert’s chemise for depressives. I thought it was a boring afterthought. Seriously — how bad has this show declined that the judges effectively award a second win for adding silver aglets to a belt?

  • Like Bert’s separates when the model isn’t moving. If skirt were seamed rather than split all the way up past Milpitas, and if the shorts were less obvious through the sheer, the whole thing would be very Bianca Jagger. The skimp dress is more 70s sorority to me than 70s sophisticate, but awfully nice all the same. Love the double-faced  silk, but design would succeed in many fabrics. 

    Do visible tattoos on the models bother anyone but me? Makes me want to grab a Pan Stik and rub them out (the tats, not the models). 

    • Anonymous

      I think they detract, but I’m old.  On the other hand, it has occurred to me (since I’ve been underwhelmed with the hair, makeup & often models this season) that maybe what I’ve taken for un-covered bruises on a couple of models might actually be poorly covered tattoos.

      In which case, I’d prefer the tats.

      ETA: I don’t know why it bugs me so much to think I’m seeing bruises on models, but the women are held to such idealized standards of height, size, & beauty that for some reason a single visible bruise seems like the equivalent of engine oil under un-manicured fingers.

      • Right on. (Speaking of old…).

      • maybe it’s cos sometimes people who seem to live glamorous lives really dont & it’s worrisome to consider wherefrom the bruises mightve arisen.

        • Probably from running into things — that’s where all my (MANY) bruises come from.

    • Yes.  They drive me nuts.

      I’m fine with tattoos when they are appropriate for one’s life.  Mine, for instance, is on my upper hip because my degree is in accounting and I don’t need clients seeing that — turns out people like their accountant boring and conservative:) 

      But if your livelihood is based on selling an image crafted by a designer, your tattoo that has NOTHING to do with that image is not appealing. 

      Ex: a tattoo on Angry Little Peanut’s model from S4?  Totally fine and in line with the image.  A tattoo on Kanyebow’s model from the same season?  Not so much.

    • Actually, I think a lot of people are put off by visible tattoos on anyone. A few seasons ago (I think it was season 6), most of the chefs on Top Chef had lots of tattoos. Considering how common tattoos are, I was shocked by how many people complained about them. But, then, I love tattoos. I’ve always wanted one but will never have one. I don’t think I could handle having one put on.

      And now I have a vision of you trying to “rub out” a model with a Pan Stik. That’s some dedication right there.

    • Anonymous

      I don’t have a problem with tattoos, per se.  However, I think tattoos on the models detract, and distract, from the looks they are showing.  We’re supposed to be seeing and thinking about the clothes, not wondering what’s on the model’s arm (or neck, or back, or wherever).

      • If you are going to be a model and you are going to have a tattoo, then at least learn to make sure YOU know how to cover it up.  Don’t rely on the make-up artist to do so, YOU should be able to cover it.  (And it’s not that hard — I can cover them and I don’t have that experience)

      • Anonymous

        Well said.  I personally love tattoos but I think on models, it’s definitely distracting.  I feel like your eye is automatically drawn to their tattoos before you really see the outfit they’re modeling.

  • Anonymous

    I think his top would be glorious with some jeans. The dress was okay. I think the simple looked contrasted nicely with the “loudness” of the first look. 

    Now that the producers have decided Josh is the villain, Bert is getting a better edit. Anyone else notice that? 

    • Anonymous

      yep. Also, when Bert has been cranky, he’s often had a point to be cranky (let’s be fair: team challenges SUCK), while Josh is just a screaming banshee over nothing.

  • Katey Dager

    I didn’t notice how pretty that first fabric actually was until you posted the closeup picture. I thought it was just as tacky and cheap-looking as the look as a whole. 

  • Anonymous

    I don’t think Bert has changed significantly so much as he was putting on an exaggerated act before. If you watch some of the clips on the Lifetime website, after the whole New Balance challenge debacle, he got mentioned that he behaved so badly on the runway because he thought that’s what “they” wanted. Then Josh yelled at him for not being himself, or something.

    Basically, I think he was told to play up the cranky, but once it got to that point, he decided to back off a bit.

  • Anonymous

    I never suspeted aglets were important enough to even have a name, and have to say I was pretty floored that the guest judge gushed over them.

    • i think she studied up some on fashion before her PR appearance & was overwhelmingly pleased that she could bring out one of her more obscure references.

      • Anonymous

        The word “aglet” is not at all obscure to anyone who does crossword puzzles on a regular basis!

  • Anonymous

    The judges’ comments about Bert’s designs being dated and old have him occasionally going off and doing something that is not his aesthetic. I think that’s why he did the black sort of boy short, something I doubt he would have done on his own.   He’s best when he follows his instincts. 

    I’ve loved his aesthetic the most from the beginning, even when he was in his asshole phase.  That second dress is pure Bert, and I’m glad the judges recognized it even though it was in kind of a backhanded way. 

    • I can totally get what you said about Bert trying to step out of his comfort zone on the shorts. The last bad critique he got, he was told that if he kept making boring clothes, he’s out. If I remember right, his idea was to make something that looked like the cut-off jeans that men and women wore in the 70’s and they were really scandalously short back then. Maybe if he made them in a more tailored and in a less satiny light-colored and less thin fabric, it would have worked better.

      The second look is undeniably Bert’s. It’s one of those outfits that only Bert (in this group of designers, at least) could execute this well. 

      • Minimalist is VERY hard to do well without going into boring.  I was very, very impressed by Bert’s second look for just that reason. 

  • Anonymous

    I really liked the first look, EXCEPT for the color of the hot pants; you nailed it there. A diferent color would have changed (and improved) the whole look. An I thought the use of the silver aglets on the second look was one of those small but brilliant touches that makes a garment look more expensive than it is.

  • Anonymous

    I kind of loved both looks.  I loved them more than Viktor’s to be quite honest.  I agree that the shiny shorts should have been in a color that matched the overall look, but I consider it a minor distraction because if I saw that look online I’d probably want it, it would just stand out in a special way.  The simple dress was very sophisticated and I can understand why they would go with that one to sell

    As far as I’m concerned, Bert was the co-winner. They sold his dress too, so how is it that Anya gets bragging rights to the win but Bert doesn’t?  That’s total bullshit!

  • I thought the first looks was pretty tacky too, at least with the skirt/cover-up attached. It would have been so much nicer with a less-booty-showing pair of shorts and left alone.

  • margaret meyers

    If he had made a little spangly tube top/same color hot pants jumpsuit to wear under that gauzy skirt it would have been a 70s Roller Disco Moment.   Those hot pants needed to be the tawny gold of the tube top or a harmonious purple, llike see in the fabulously 70s gauze. 

    Bert found two great 70s fabrics.  That textured weave in the tennis dress was a new fabric in the 70s, when they were really figuring out how to achieve luxe fabrics out of chemicals.  The nipple action is so 70s, but I don’t think he can take credit for that. 

  • Anonymous

    I totally agree with TLo here.  I didn’t get the sparkly outfit at all, but that little dress was great.  It’s probably the first thing all season I would actually wear. 

  • Anonymous

    The dress was nice.  Versatile and classic.  It did remind me of the Charlie girl.  The other outfit was too Xanadu for me.  I like the idea of the sparkly sheer top but I did not like the actual fabric choice.  The styling certainly didn’t help.  I agree with others, the color of the shorts was a mistake.  

  • Lisa

    That’s an interesting theory of why the younger designers may see Bert as a threat.  Good call…

    I do disagree with you guys about his disco look – I love it, I find it really fun, and far from tacky.  I do agree with you, though, that the little shorts should have been a matching color – something in a deep shade of caramel would have been nice.

    And honestly?  I’m very happy that they decided to sell his dress, but I’m not as enamored of the little dress as a lot of folks were.  I’m weird that way!  

  • Kate Pearce

    I actually liked the way the first sparkly top moved and I could see it teamed with a pair of jeans just adding a bit of effortless seventies chic. The second look was very simple but beautifully made, which I like about all of Bert’s clothes. 

  • Anonymous

    I didn’t mind the 1st look Bert  did, save for those awful black shorts , I guess he was going for the granny pant trend, but bisque or beige would have been better.
    I thought the judges were going to blast the 2nd look for being to simple. It wasn’t simple enough for Piperlime not to ruin the subtle open V neckline though.

  • i loved bert’s first outfit. i looked at as many close-ups of the fabric as i could find &, let me say, he made that fabric shine. i dont always like metallic india gauzes but, in this case, the way he cut the top took it from the realm of simply being a pretty fabric to one of extraordinary beauty. particularly in the collar thru sleeve area– tho, for my first of caveats, how much i wish it had two sleeves! i hate singular sleeves w/ a passion near to that i generally feel only for, say, the music of 1982.

    i get what he was doing w/ the shorts & their everlovin hot pants reprise, & also agree w/ so many of the intelligent blog authors & commenters hereupon that they needed to be in a different color. my great love of the time just previous to when i was able to leave home persuades me they would have been best picking up a purple in the fabulous fabric overcovering them & then, of course, in the manner of 70s does 30s cigarette girl nostalghia, cuffed at the bottom but, in this way i think my fondness may be creating fog.

    had i still the money i would definitely hire bert to make something for me. a version of this outfit sans hot pants & w/ two where there is now one, would surely be a possibility. to me, w/ edits, it’s stunning.

    i hate to say that i still wouldve given viktor the win. the reason again being too personal: his pantsuit reminded me of the first personal fashion icon i ever knew, she was about five years older than me, looked something like a prettier version of viktor’s model & was named kendall when she went to daniel webster junior high. she had an outfit just like it. almost heartstoppingly gorgeous, especially to a depressed ten year old, i can promise you.

    bert’s second dress reminds me totally of lesbian chic before most people really comprehended there were lesbians in our midst. i think the word & what it represents came into common usage in the late 80s but there was, indeed, an advance guard made up of both the necessarily natural & the cogent chic that pre-dated the lumpen via items like helmut newton photographs & the controversy surrounding the marriages of people like billie jean king & helen reddy. this was a 70s conglomerate & the dress looks like it was made for one of the abovenoted to be shot by another. w/ leg braces or something.

    • Anonymous

      edi, I always get such a kick out of your comments 😉

      Your hot pants comment reminded me that I had a pair of rayon velvet purple hot pants myself. Late 1972. Oh man, what I would give to fit in those babies again. And me too on the singular sleeve, ick.

      I lol’ed at the idea of Billie Jean King and Helen Reddy being married to each other—I do know what you meant;)

    • Damien Washington

      Do you live in my building? Wanna go halfsies on a bucket of chum?

  • Anonymous

    That shiny top was SOOO Flashdance!  (was that the 80s?)

  • Ageed. tacky disco top/skirt/coverup.

  • Anonymous

    That cover-up jawm wanted SO to be a wrap skirt – maxi.. that CLOSED.

  • Anonymous

    All that matters is that bitch Laura was WRONG yet again.

    • margaret meyers

      She has a very good Fashion Week runway show coming up.  It was one of the strongest shows from the PR crew.

  • Geno Boggiatto

    Bert’s separates look was awful. I suppose the top is alright, but I just had a hard time separating the look of it from the awful shorts and tied on skirt thing (what WAS that??). Just couldn’t get past that. And I have to say, manufacturing Bert’s look without awarding him the win was total BS. If they really wanted him to win they should have just given it to him, instead of giving it to Anya and then also giving someone else the reward. Make a decision, don’t water down the winner’s reward by giving it to a runner up as well.

  • Michelle Cunningham

    A-G-L-E-T love your column but I’m ashamed to say that as a parent of kids who watch Phineas and Ferb this was the first thing that popped into my head!  It’s a fab word and I”m SO happy to see Bert do well, finally.

  • Anonymous

    I don’t get how the simple dress is 70s. Explain please.

    • Mary McClelland

      research 70’s fashions – specifically halston, YSL, CK, etc. 🙂 

    • Anonymous

      I think I had that dress in the 70s. The belt was perfection.

    • I definitely had one of those dresses in the 70’s…bright green with a narrow yellow belt. I wore it everywhere.

  • Damien Washington

    I’d place his simple dress as more “Ali McGraw in New York” than Jackie-O, but otherwise, thank you for making me see so many things I miss on the show. And you’re spot on about Bert’s strengths: Bert can sell his work to anyone, on any corner, anywhere. Josh is more concerned with “teaching the judges a lesson” and grabbing camera focus. I can’t believe how much my dislike for him grows with each week. I hope he loses his money next week, along with his shoes, a couple of caps, and an eyebrow. Maybe he’ll provoke the dog at Mood or something…

    Just kidding! Probably…

    • Totally Ali MacGraw! The hair, the scarf, the dress… definitely.  I thought the same.

  • Anonymous

    I finally got “my” reference to Bert’s first look:  it was a very short tight jumpsuit made out of a psychedelic “hang ten” print, paired with a solid orange slit skirt– basically, hotpants with a cover-up.  It was my first (and only) home-ec project!–  However, it was the same color story as Bert’s first look, absent the black hot pants, which bothered me to death.  Why not a burnt orangy brown?   The black shorts read as “too-short biker shorts” to me.     

  • Anonymous

    I was, with some reservations, actually fond of Bert’s first look. If the shorts had been better, I think it would have worked. His second look, though, was the actual winner of the challenge to me, given the constraints of designing for Piperlime. Simple, easy, and pure-70s but simultaneously modern.

    Bert does have a wonderful advantage over everyone else in this season in terms of being able to talk about his work, to explain what he was going for and how he made each garment. From what we’ve seen, I think he knows how to manage the business aspects of design better than anyone else there – which is perhaps best illustrated by the contrast between him and Anya in their consultations with Heather Archibald from Piperlime (linked earlier by Lilithcat).

  • Anonymous

    I would wear the second dress… my friends all said the same thing.  That fabric would complement any body type.

  • Anonymous

    No arguments here.  When you said you’d catch hell, I yelled at my computer: “You liked that?!”  Mollified when you continued the way you did.

  • Anonymous

    Agree 100% about that first look. Where the hell was that girl going? The beach? An evening at Plato’s Retreat?
    But the dress was perfect. 

  • Anonymous

    I can’t agree that the silver shoes were wrong on Bert’s first look. Of course, this girl would be wearing metallic shoes! My guess is that they didn’t have gold, so Bert went for the silver. Fine with me.

    • margaret meyers

      Metallic roller skates.  The granny pants and flowing wrap give it a roller disco tang.

    • Fine with me too. And they’re total kick-ass shoes.

  • Anonymous

    Loved Bert’s 2nd look and the nice smile on his face when receiving compliments from the judges. I would love to see Bert outlast Laura.

  • Anonymous

    Thank goodness I’m not the only one who thought that first look was tacky as hell.  I was expecting it to get shredded, and instead the judges loved it.  I will never understand…

  • Once again, I admire Bert’s design experience, knowledge and history. I think this makes him stand out from the other contestants on PR.

    The difference between Bert’s and Anya’s Piperlime videos was interesting to me. Anya hardly had anything to say about her design, aside from that it was not finished and this, that and the other thing needs to get changed for the Piperlime design. However, Bert explained why he included all the various design elements and did this or that with the fabric, and why he chose the fabric. His presentation skills to a customer are really great.

    Was it Bert that muttered, “I can’t believe it,” when Anya was announced as the winner? And did anyone catch what he muttered as he was walking off the runway? I really want to know! I love his grouchy mutterings.

  • Anonymous

    i have to admit i didn’t like either of bert’s looks.  although i am liking him more.  he’s opening up and showing his soft side at times.  the first look i was sure would be in the bottom, though i did love the fabric.  when they were talking about wearing the top with other things i said “what do they mean, top?”  i thought the orange thing was all one piece, whatever it was.  and those pants!  they aren’t just hot pants, they’re ho pants.  the second look, the “skimp”, a term i haven’t heard before.  to me, it was just plain skimpy, which looks cheap to me.  the fabric looked so thin and clingy with no color in the front half.  the hem only looks asymmetrical from some angles, so i doubt that it was intentional.  i don’t know about jackie in the city- she wouldn’t be parading her nipples in public, i’m sure.
    love the shoes, though.

    • Skimp is a term for a garment that is simple and therefore looks like nothing. It also refers to the effortlessness of the garment. Bali has been using this term for one of their most popular briefs for years. It refers to the fact that (when worn properly fitting) wearing them is like not wearing underwear. It’s not a term you hear often anymore, but Tim knew exactly what Bert was talking about when Bert said he was “doing a skimp” during Tim’s workroom visit. 

      As for the nipples showing, it’s not due to the fabric being skimpy or cheap – it’s that the model didn’t wear a bra (obviously). Jackie in NY would wear a bra, or at least those adhesive things that hide your nipples.

      • Now I am The Bee

        And it must have been cold on that runway! 

  • Both this look were ridiculously overpraised. Ive been over Bert for weeks, but the judges love him, so unless he takes a huge misstep, hes staying. Particularly that first look, i totally agree with TLo

  • I know that “it won because Piperlime can produce it” seems to be anti-fashion in some ways, but that’s the reality of most designs. It can be the best, most interesting garment in the world, but if it can’t be produced except by some couture shop, very few people are going to be able to wear a garment.

    I’d like to see more challenges with specific corporate clients and see how the designers work with them. Instead of “give me the most outlandish thing/that dress a starlet would wear on the red carpet” challenges we get, have them have a particular set of directions from a client and see where they go. I liked the Sarah Jessica Parker episode for this very reason (even though the price limitations were way on the other end of the spectrum for that) because it limited the designers to edit themselves to the basics, and face the realities of selling your garments to the public.

  • I want a YSL-style peasant dress out of Burt’s first fabric

  • Anonymous

    I would have rock the first top with my Gloria Vanderbilt jeans!!

    I think he made those booty shorts with Hedi in mind. If you look what she’s worn all season it’s been black, short and tight!

  • Anonymous

    Oh TLo — You read my mind.  When I saw Bert’s first look come down the runway, I thought, “Buh Bye!.”  I wouldn’t ever think to accuse him of overdesign…but the first look had a little Clinique on it  But then the cracktastic judges saved the day…and all was good.

    I think he was channeling stewardess on Braniff with the accessories on the second outfit.  I didn’t see the platinum and bronze colors he spoke of…but I guess they were there.

    No more hot pants, Bert….no more disco sequins…unless you are trying to show Clinique how it’s done….but even then it’s a risk.

  • Lisa Starrfield

    His white dress sold out already on Piperlime when I checked yesterday.  Anya’s isn’t available yet

    • Anonymous

      His dress sold out within a day or two.  Hers is also sold out, but it took a lot longer!

  • Now I am The Bee

    I really liked Bert’s take on the 70s here.  I could see the influence in the first outfit–loved the flowy top, but I think it would have been so much better without the “skirt” or whatever that was.  As a tunic–it would have been perfect.  Just thigh length maybe.  The fabric was perfect for the look. 
    The hot pants, though, were not good.  Not quite a diaster, but I keep thinking of the pair that MKnight did in PR3.  They were perfect.  If these had looked like those–the whole look would have been stunning–very Studio 54. 
    The dress was lovley!  And very well styled, I thought.  This woman was out in Miami Beach doing lunch with the girls.  It was an easy breezy look with the sandles and the hair up. 
    I am very happy Bert is hanging on–us old farts need to stick together–and I’d love to see him in the final 3.  Crossing my fingers that he doesn’t screw it up…..

  • Anonymous

    My sister and I both loved the top, the satin hotpants = hotmess but I feel that way about all hotpants. I’ve just resigned myself that they are going to be here for awhile.  I don’t think he deserved as much praise as he received for the first look but I didn’t think it was auf worthy either.  I really liked the 2nd look.

  • Anna Maria Diamanti

    I liked Bert’s first look just fine once she removed that lower half wrap/skit/whatever. I thought it perfectly encapsulated the “updated 70s look” idea–a cute disco-inspired outfit you could wear to a club now. Although I agree the silver shoes were a big N-O.

    That little dress was amazing though. I’m completely fascinated by trying to find the line where a “simple” look goes from boring/lacks design to chic/elegant. It’s like obscenity: I can’t define it but I sure know it when I see it.

  • Anonymous

    Yes to what T&L said.

    Plus, props to Bert on not giving them enough footage to keep the “bitchy Bert” story arc going (I guess that’s what happened). 

    I hope that he’s working in his field again now.  I hope I find out where and can afford at least a couple of his classic pieces.

  • Anonymous

    I quite liked both looks. The mini short was a mistake and took the look on the border of tacky but that’s it.
    I was nodding happily when the judges said the top woul be amazing on a pair of slim jeans.
    One of Bert’s strength is that when he get an idea about a challenge, he knows exactly what he needs to do to nail it and he thinks about the sweetest details.
    Both looks have flair and he gave those 2 girls a sassy feeling.

  • Anonymous

    I quite liked both looks. The mini short was a mistake and took the look on the border of tacky but that’s it.
    I was nodding happily when the judges said the top woul be amazing on a pair of slim jeans.
    One of Bert’s strength is that when he get an idea about a challenge, he knows exactly what he needs to do to nail it and he thinks about the sweetest details.
    Both looks have flair and he gave those 2 girls a sassy feeling.