PR: Team Shrieky

Posted on August 17, 2012

All things considered, what with all the shrieking and poo-flinging going on in the monkey cage that the workroom has become, both teams produced a lineup of looks that eachhad their ups and downs, but mostly came across as competent if unexciting entries. In other words, for all the drama, there were few outright disasters.


Although it’s telling that both the winner and the loser came from this team. We were a litte torn on which teams should have had a higher score overall, but we were leaning pretty hard toward the other one. And we found the idea of tie to be a big velvet bag full of bullshit.



This is how everything photographed. Of course everything looks magnitudes better in staged photos, so we’d normally suggest ignoring them, but it was obvious that the judges based their decisions on how it was going to look in a magazine. And they should, of course, because that was part of the challenge, but it led them to making some fairly ridiculous pronouncements about what constitutes workwear for most women and it led them to praising some outfits that looked pretty assy under the harsh lights of the runway.


Alicia Hardesty and Elena Slivnyak

We’ll give Insane in the Ukraine some credit for finding yet another way to marry her aesthetic to the challenge, but this silhouette has got to stop. And the pants look pretty sad. They work, but there’s nothing interesting or exciting about them.



Dmitry Sholokhov

It’s a great little dress (if highly referential of several other recent designs), but the back cutouts did him in. If only he’d made a jacket for it. Although we’re not sure how he could have put a jacket over those shoulders.


Alicia Hardesty and Elena Slivnyak

It’s fine. Competent. Appropriate. But it’s not exciting in any way. Even a little color would have helped here.

Anyone else getting tired of the suede crayola pumps on that accessories wall? Designers: they won’t magically transform your outfits.


Raul Osorio and Sonjia Williams

We guess we’re coming around on Raul’s auf’ing. This is okay, but the only part that makes it interesting is the skirt, once again made by Sonjia. We don’t actually love that skirt but it’s the only thing going on in the outfit. We don’t think either of Raul’s tops were particularly bad, but for all the drama he presented, he should have had more to offer than department store finds.



[Photo Credit: Barbara Nitke for – Stills:]

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  • Frank_821

    Notice how the model’s hair is covering up Rauls’ top and possibly hiding the need for those darts Elena commented on

    I am shocked how different Dmitry’s dress looks in the picture. It actually bothers me since it’s rather misleading

    • Vickiefantastico

      That bothered me too. With a more bold color, it looks so much better, but that isn’t what he actually made. Didn’t the other designers complain about his use of the navy? I love Dmitry, but he does use rather drab colors. The Photoshopping really helped his design, but it feels dishonest.

      Much like most PR shows these days, I guess…

      •  See I liked it better in person than in the photo. 

      • LesYeuxHiboux

         Elena said “no one wears navy anymore” which made me laugh. It’s the go-to neutral in my closet because it suits my coloring down to the ground. I’d wear his dress in a heartbeat, to work (with a cami under or a vest if I could find one that worked, because lower-back cutouts will never be work-appropriate unless you work in an image industry).

        • I laughed because it looked to me like she was wearing a navy top when she said it.  The color may have been different under the lights, but it sure looked navy on my television!

  • MissAnnieRN

    Crayola pumps definitely need to go.  Elena’s weird shoulder thing has not grown on me.  I have grown to hate it more than Raul’s fussy blouse.  That model looks like she works in an office where women are encouraged to wear football pads underneath their clothing for lunch time pick up games and this is their adaptive office-appropriate solution to hide the pads.

    Seriously – what women wants to have a silhouette that looks like that?  But Raul was boring, and boring gets the axe over drama and risk taking.

    • DeborahJozayt

      It’s for women who work with Terry Tate, Office Linebacker!

  • ASK26

    I liked the first Elena/Alicia outfit more than you did. 

    But Raul being forced to do tops that worked with BOTH of Sonjai’s very busy skirts hurt him  (I still think his blouse was one of the only items I could see wearing to work and would buy)  -Sonjai’s second skirt was SHEER with a baby carrier at the crotch. 

    • MissAnnieRN

      Possibly, though she did say “show me a sketch, anything Raul, so I can start making the skirt and feel confident they will go together.”  In the end he couldn’t get his act together and she rightly soldiered on and made something without waiting for him to get his shit together.

      • CozyCat

        In fact, she got so frustrated that she finally said:  “I can’t wait anymore.  I’m just going to do what I want.” 

        I can’t blame her.

      • KathKo

        Raul was not a team player, bitching around, getting snotty over his teamates and doing his own thing without listening to others.
        And the parting comments about not being able to do a garment in the time constraints of the show ? Honey, after 9 seasons of the show if you’re not able to work magic in 5 hours, you have nothing to do here.

        • Catiline

          Yeah honestly, for all Elena’s crazy, she did at least start out making a marginal attempt to meet the others halfway.  Raul was being a crab-ass about every little thing right from the sketching session.  I think Sonjia deserves points for not using something off the Lord & Taylor accessory wall to strangle him.

  • This part of the collection was just sad and depressing.  If those came in the office I would run for the tissue box and offer sympathy to the wearers.  The draped skirt was unique, but looked a little as though it was a wrap skirt that was falling down.

  • Dmitry’s dress was sooo freakin’ cute! I would wear that to work in a heartbeat.

    Of course, in my size.

    And, of course, with a jacket over it to cover the cutouts. 

    But once 5pm hits, off with the jacket! Hello, cut-outs…and body rolls!

    •  Well obviously if they put that dress into production the cutouts would have to go.

      • Not necessarily. If it ever goes into production and it’s been decided to forgo the cut-outs, then the surprise of the dress is gone. The cut-outs can stay. Nothing a little jacket or blazer on top couldn’t handle.

  • I was glad they didn’t have a winning or a losing team, just because I do think that often allows really weak designers to sneak through when they should have been in the bottom. There were some good ideas in this collection but for me the colour choices were poor and not all the looks worked as a whole. I’ve given up on the idea that ‘work wear’ means ‘things actual women wear to work’.

    • Just as I’ve given up on the idea that “wearable” means “something an actual woman might wear.”

  • Jenny Hill

    I think Sonjia was making a skirt for a working mom. You could carry a baby in that sling.

    • Stephanie Swanson

       that’s the first thing I said!  Baby sling skirt.

    • HM3

      I decided the skirt was one of my favorite pieces shown last night (though they were few and far between). It may not work for EVERY woman’s silhouette (the overall illusion does widen a woman’s hips), but it is unique, and takes a traditional choice of “office” fabric and makes it dance. Sonjia may not have the technical prowess of Dimitri, Ven, or Insane from the Ukraine, but her work is always interesting and pleasantly surprising from a design standpoint.

      Edited to add: interestingly, it also seemed to look better moving than in photo stills. I love the way it looked walking down the runway, but these photographs make the piece appear flat and disjointed.

      •  I know a few women that would love that skirt — if you don’t have much of a hip, that skirt would be great.

        • HM3

          We hip, hipless women need a little love, too.

          •  I know!  And you are really hard to dress if you buy off the rack — that’s how I got started designing stuff.  My best friend is a plus size, but she has no hips and no ass, and plus size stuff is not cut with her in mind.

      • annieanne

        That skirt was my favorite piece in the whole show. Beats the hell out of the droopy turtle that won last night. It’s unfortunate she was stuck with that nonentity of a top that Raul made.

    • Fordzo

      That was my first thought, too.  My second thought was “crumb catcher”.  

    • Hilary Oliveira

      The baby bjorn skirt!

  • bluefish

    Dmitry’s dress looked really nice and fresh on my tv screen last night.  These photos aren’t doing it justice.  Thought it was easily the best looking garment of this crazy episode.

    I liked Sonjiya’s skirt very much.  I like her too.  I don’t get the way she dresses herself at all though and think it’s a shame.  Most of these designers dress as though they’re in the midst of a mental health crisis but her style in particular I find really really peculiar.  What she had on last night was just nuts. 

    I always appreciated Austin Scarlett’s ability to present himself even if I wasn’t always wild about a particular garment of his.

    And yes to the BS adding of these Minnie Mouse shoes as a way of making drab, dreary, depressing looking clothes pop.

    • MilaXX

       I love the way she dresses and wish I was young enough to get away with blue hair.

      • Derek_anny

         Blue hair is all about attitude, and nothing to do with age.  Same goes for fuchsia and green and purple and… 

        • MilaXX

          Eh I’m of the opinion that their is a certain style/manner of dress that comes with the more out there hair colors. It’s one of the reasons why Kelly Osborne’s lavender locks don’t work for me. That hair color clashes with couture. For me since I have to work and function in an environment that requires at least a nod to corporate attire, I’ll pass on the blue hair for now.

          • Derek_anny

            See, I like her Madame Mim hair. I think the trick to pulling it off is to behave as though it’s your natural color. You could go with a darker blue, like a navy. (even though nobody wears navy anymore, apparently)

          • MilaXX

            lol we’re opposites. I think Kelly’s doesn’t work for that exact reason and I hate how it clashes with the more couture looks.
            As for me, well even navy unless it was blue/black would be noticeable, and again I don’t think it wold work with my more office-y looks. Between the 7 ear piercings & my dread locs I think I push the envelope enough as is.

  • Mehhhhhhhhhhh. They’re either not appropriate for work, or would not be worn to work for actual working. Out of the separates, individual pieces could be used in work-appropriate outfits. Nothing is chic and tasteful at once.

    These pictures don’t show it but Sonjia’s striped skirt was way too sheer. It was nice otherwise.

  • VestigialMe

    Thank you about the shoes. I’m getting so sick of seeing them.

    • I’m just going to go off on a tangent from that.  I loathe suede shoes for men and women.

    • MoHub

       The shoes, the cutouts, and visible zippers—especially the zippers. Ban them all. Now.

      • enonymous

        Here here on the zippers!

        • Pennymac

          Agreed! Especially diagonal ones!

  • royinhell

    Dmitry’s dress:  In photos, it’s a color-blocked vibrant blue and black.  On the runway, it looked black and less black.  Is the lighting that poor? 

    • Tis the power of Photoshop!  Look at the models’ skin in the photo and compare it to the runway photo; lighter and desaturated skin sans the clothes which were colored enhanced.  And I’m sure they are a different color in real life.

    • Terrie_S

      It was black and navy. Brighter lights = more contrast and brighter color.

    • DonnaL

        I disagree.  On an HD television, I could clearly see the navy as opposed to the black.

    • Derek_anny

       In the photo, the navy is almost as vivid as the shoes and clutch.  On the runway you see the same shoes and clutch, and the navy is much less vivid.  I think the argument for photoshop is valid.

  • bububear

    That last skirt could eliminate the need to carry a purse to work.  You could keep your lipstick, phone, lunch, and a small child in that thing.

  • GillianHolroyd

    Note that both times Alicia’s models were posed standing with their legs apart… so the horrible crotch length would be less noticeable. Although Nina complimented her on the pants at one point.

    And Dmitry was robbed.

  • PaulaBerman

    I love Dmitry calling Ven a “one way monkey,” and then realizing that he meant to say “one trick pony.” Best line of the night. I also have to say that Dmitry is my fave, and the only one who was on his own making a head to toe look. Interesting how that went down. I hope he can show a different silhouette and wow the judges next week.

    • Catiline

      I died at the “one way monkey” line.  And yeah, I think it’s interesting that for all Raul kept whining that he wanted to do his own thing and show himself as a designer, it was Dmitry who stealthily did exactly that.

      • Call me Bee

        As did Melissa.  She was the only other one to do a head-to-toe look. 

  • GorgeousThings

    “but for all the drama he presented, he should have had more to offer than department store finds”

    Frankly, that statement applies to all of them. I thought Dimitry’s was the best, even though it had work-negating back cutouts. But even that was Nordstrom-level style, not high fashion.

  • I thought it was interesting that Heidi (I think? Can’t remember if it was her) said she could see a lawyer wearing Elena’s jacket. I am a lawyer and there is no way that I would ever wear that to work. 

    • Terrie_S

      Not a lawyer, but I work in that field and I agree. NO ONE, not a lawyer, paralegal, whatever, would wear that.

    • NDC_IPCentral

      There’s too much laxity at IP Central in terms of what folks wear (and that includes the men, for sure), but that jacket would really prompt some hooting and ribbing if it waltzed into my firm.  Then again, while my remarks here stress what is appropriate for an attorney, maybe, maybe this jacket might be appropriate for…. oh, a high-end Manhattan realtor showing a trophy apartment to some Russian oligarch looking for an outsized penthouse.

    • Melissa Brogan

       Joanna Coles thought Elena’s crazytown jacket could be worn by a lawyer. Heidi smartly replied that she would be scared if her lawyer showed up looking like that.

  • EEKstl

    Didn’t read your Kelly Rowland post til this morning and as soon as I saw that dress I, too, thought of Dimitry’s look from last night.  Overall I did like this collection better, including the photographs.  Much better than those Spiegel Catalogue shots from Team 5.

  • CozyCat

    Dimitri has got to do something other than a sleeveless shift dress at some point.  He’s gotten away with it because each has had a distinct and innovative detail.  But at some point the judges are going to notice.

  • holdmewhileimnaked

    would dmitry have seen the victoria beckham before the show? i dont know which came first: the taping or that particular collection.

    to me, both his dress & hers–blue winner, big collar–are ridiculously reminiscent of mid-80s betsey johnson. then again, both of these guys are so young that i’m not sure they’d know these things existed. i mean, theyre undoubtedly available for the knowing [mondo was clearly influenced by her work of that, her era] but if one is not so devout & devoted? maybe theyre not so visible, internally or externally. i dunno.

  • kikisayshi

    Alicia really likes to make drop-crotch pants.

    •  drop it like it’s crotch, drop it like it’s crotch…

  • BrooklynBomber

    All pretty terrible. As much as I didn’t like the other team’s designs, either (really? a Wilma for work?), I thought it photographed better. So this team winning for its dark, dull photos; ugly pants; ill-fitting skirts (interrupted by a couple good pieces) seems like a lot of b.s. And, frankly, I was surprised either team got an overall “Well done” from the judges. I thought the overall response was going to be, “What happened?!” “I’m underwhelmed.” “I’m disappointed.”

    • MilaXX

       Wasn’t this the team that had Elana throwing yet another hissy fit because she didn’t ant to use the props? I’d say the photos definitely reflect that.

      • BrooklynBomber

        I don’t remember that, but it must have happened during one of the times I was dozing. But I also think it’s because the clothes are so dark.

      • Stubenville

        And her comment about the model’s pose looking like she was, um, uh, on a toilet? (Don’t want to repeat the bleeped words in polite company.)

    •  I thought it was well-done.  Basically “work” clothes are mall clothes.  There were a lot of pieces here that I could see selling.

    • barbiefish

      [deleted as comment appeared in wrong place]

  • TropiCarla

    That blue skirt was SLAMMIN. Almost everything else was meh, except for Dmitry’s dress, which made me sit up and take notice and mutter to myself that it was totally Vicky Beckham. My heart fluttered with pride when I saw the TLo tweet that said exactly that. I felt like I earned a Bitter Kitten merit badge.


    Those pants….. seriously, if that is her strong suit then she is in trouble.  I was surprised that Nina praised them.  I was so waiting for Michael’s “That crotch is INSANE!”  More polterwang!!  I would wear the puffy shoulder jacket before those pants.  
    I am also signing up for the Dmitry fan club!  “one way monkey”!!!  hahaha!!! 

  • EverybodysStarling

    Sonjis skirt was as seethrough as her last dress. Try working that in office. 

  • MilaXX

    Looking at  the still I really dislike the outfit made by Alicia and Elana. I also like Sonjia’s look a whole lot more.

  • Lilithcat

    Dmitry should have nixed the cut-outs, and the dress wouldn’t need a jacket.

    • Stubenville

      Agreed, the cutouts were unnecessary.

    • Susan Crawford

      Absolutely. And maybe gone for a zipper that wasn’t so obvious? I just can’t understand why so many PR designers over the past few seasons are so freaking obsessed by industrial-strength zippers. (Except that they are most likely MUCH easier to work with than smaller, color-matched, or invisible zippers – a real consideration in terms of the lack of time they’re given, and – in many instances – the lack of expertise in finishing garments properly.)

      • Sweetbetty

         The most recent issue of “Threads” magazine features a cover story on “Professional Techniques for Sewing Exposed Zippers”.  I makes it appear that the exposed zipper is trickier to do than the traditional type.  The magazine, BTW, has a lot of tie-ins with PR.

        • Susan Crawford

          WHY am I not surprised that there are tie-ins?! Sigh. Each week, don’t you kind of cringe when poor Tim has to make continual reference to all the HP and Brother products, to Marie Claire, and on and on and on? Sure, I know it pays the bills, but enough already!

          Thinking about it, I guess inserting a gigantic zipper that weighs more than all the fabric in the garment without having said faric snag, pucker and bag IS pretty tricky. But all that exposed metallic hardware is getting old for me.

          • Sweetbetty

             I’ve noticed Tim kind of stumbling over the accessory wall phrase.  He must get so tired of repeating that over and over.  And then there was that big plug for HP when Tim reminded the designers how fortunate they were to have that technology available that allowed them to do things that weren’t possible in the past. 

  • NDC_IPCentral

    Only Dimitry’s – reworked to eliminate the cut-outs – would be considered appropriate work-wear in any of the Fortune 100 companies’ corporate law departments in which I’ve worked or in the law firms where I’ve also toiled, generating billables.  I thought the pants were poorly made, the jackets either too OTT or pretty sad.  The crumb-catcher skirt from Sonjia says “work” only in the striped fabric, but not in the design.

    As the commentariat has noted in the Shrieking Howler Monkey post, PR10’s designers seem (save for Ven) not to have any idea about what constitutes work-wear for the vast majority of working women.  I do appreciate that what is acceptable encompasses a wider range of looks than was the case when I first started at A Very MAMMOTH Major Corporation’s Law Department in the early ’70s, but even today there are fairly well understood appearance dos and don’ts.  Alas, those memos about acceptable work attire still need to be circulated with regularity, but they exist because what is worn in the work environment sends a message, and the employer has the right to dictate what that message is.

    •  Even if you could get by with it, it doesn’t mean you should.  My brother had an internship one summer at Newell, and several people that my mother knew there couldn’t place the name when she mentioned him later — until they were reminded of how he dressed while there.  They all remembered the young guy would wore a dress shirt and tie to work in the IT department positively.

      A dress like Melissa’s or with cutouts would have the same effect, except for the last word there — it would get you remembered as the woman who dressed inappropriately.

  • Scarlet39

    I loved Sonjia’s skirt, and (putting aside the construction issues), a simple top was just perfect for it.  The skirt is the star of that ensemble.

  • demidaemon

    To me, what made this the winning team was stronger textile choice. The blue they chose for the dress and skirt was arresting, and, even though black has been a bit over-used this season, it was a smart neutral to pair with the blue. On the other team, the only thing that looked remotely expensive was Ven’s look. Everything else looked cheap, matronly, or cheap AND matronly.

  • I’m just so tired of one-day challenges.  Of course everything is going to be boring and middle-of-the-road.  There’s no way to do anything really interesting because there’s no time to construct it.  And unless the designer’s name is four letters, starts and ends with “A” and the middle letters are “N” and “Y”, the judges will ride them about construction flaws.  It takes time to sew good stuff!

    •  Wow, I need more coffee because i had trouble reading “A-N-Y-A”. Instead I first thought “A-N-D-Y” and then “A-N-Y”.

  • HM3

    I liked the IDEA behind Dimitri’s dress, but it is absurd to include it in a challenge about “dressing for the workplace” (in theory, since–as everyone has already mentioned–what the challenge IS and what the judges WANT are two completely different things). The shoulder pads need to cover the entire top of the model’s shoulders: the way they’re coming up short looks awkward and ugly. Additionally, the prominent back-to-ass zipper and lower-back cutouts would be damning in any office environment I’ve ever stepped in, and raise a question of taste. The back of the dress is TACKY, and begs for the wrong kind of attention.

    • kimmeister

      What slayed me was Heidi’s reaction to the cutouts – she thought they were so little that it wouldn’t bother anyone if that dress was worn to the office.  I know that being a supermodel is worlds apart from being in a corporate office, but seriously, does she really have zero idea of what people can wear to work??  I work in the high tech industry in California so it’s not like there are strict standards of what constitutes appropriate workwear, but no one in the halls of Google or Apple would have lumbar peepholes.  Wrinkled cargo pants, yes; that dress, no.

    • kimmeister

      What slayed me was Heidi’s reaction to the cutouts – she thought they were so little that it wouldn’t bother anyone if that dress was worn to the office.  I know that being a supermodel is worlds apart from being in a corporate office, but seriously, does she really have zero idea of what people can wear to work??  I work in the high tech industry in California so it’s not like there are strict standards of what constitutes appropriate workwear, but no one in the halls of Google or Apple would have lumbar peepholes.  Wrinkled cargo pants, yes; that dress, no.

      • formerlyAnon

        “lumbar peepholes” !

        Nice. How DO I work that in to something though?

  • holdmewhileimnaked

    i actually like the howler minkey marmoset’s jacket–i just thought i should throw that in cold, before i actually watch the show over the next hour or so. i dont want my opinion to be changed by her attitude. then again, after last season i dont have much faith in people actually being IRL they way they present on PR. i couldnt stand anya, true, & still cant–but a lot of that’s from looking up what she was up to, not to mention about, before & beyond her time on the program. she’s a dreadful all-rounder. other than that, i can only say: who knows?

  • mjude

    besides being worn out by this episode i dont think any of the pieces were exciting. 

    • bitchybitchybitchy

      Truthfully I was surprised that the judges reacted as positively as they did to the collections.  When does a Wilma Flintstone shoulder blouse ( I think that was Nathan Paul’s contribution) say workplace appropriate?

      • carolclark12

         When Michael Kors includes it in his collection.  Wasn’t that leopard print one shoulder heinous thing Heidi wore during last week’s judging by him?

  • marilyn

    It is interesting how the designers parceled out the work.  They did not take responsiblity for an individual design, but made separates that were then randomly put together.  I think that it makes the collection somewhat disjointed.  Okay, everything is gray or black with a shot of royal blue.  That is the connection.  Interesting that both Dmitri and Elena gravitate to the same 1980’s design standard (large shoulders, blousey tops, tight skirts/pants) in those depressing grays and blacks.   I feel that I have already seen anything Elena designs, because I was an adult in the 1980’s and saw it when it was new.  This collection did not have anything new.

    Those PR producers are pretty wily:  Who would have thought that Elena would come out of left field to upstage the whining designers we already pegged as dramas in the making.  At least this will make it interesting, when she does a 180 degree turnaround later on and they all pretend to be friends.  I agree that Raul’s comment about hating Elena was unprofessional, but it was honest, something we don’t see a lot of on this show.  After all, this is entertainment.

  • alula_auburn

    The models all look really depressed.  Not fierce, miserable.  Especially the two in the Elena/Alicia ensembles.  Well, the the last one looks pissed, but not in the fun “model’s gonna KILL you” way.  And she can barely stand to touch the purse with the tips of her fingers.

    And honestly, when I’m looking this much at the models, and filling in amusing emotional backstory, the clothes are pretty damn dull.

  • Apocalipstick Now Redux

    Another attorney speaking up here.  Dmitry’s dress was my favorite, but the back cutouts took it out of the workplace.  The neckline is absolutely fine but fill in the back, and put in cap sleeves instead of mini-shoulder pads and you could spend the entire day doing uncontested divorce hearings in that thing.  Jackets are no longer a must for the courtroom unless it’s a high end or highly contested case.  Sleeves are always a must unless you’ve got a cardi or jacket.

    The Sonjia skirts were not work appropriate.  The sling skirt because…ugh…A SLING and that blue skirt would have split the moment she sat down.  It would have looked weird if it were any looser.

    The Alicia/Elena …if the pants weren’t so hideous, you could do testimony prep in that thing.  I mean, it’s boring and loose fitting without looking like a t-shirt and sweat pants.  It’s still ugly.  The balloon sleeve jacket was silly and stupid.  Raoul’s gill flap blouse with a jacket would have taken it to 67 year old tax attorney territory.  Ruffles like that are aging.

    I think they should have made all the models carry briefcases or iPad cases.  Boring ones.  Or worse, had to wheel around file cart.  Then they’d see how ridiculous those outfits were for the office.

    • mhleta

      {I think they should have made all the models carry briefcases or iPad cases.  Boring ones.  Or worse, had to wheel around file cart.  Then they’d see how ridiculous those outfits were for the office.}  Excellent point! Next time, rather than an editorial shoot, the models absolutely should have to endure some sort of executive adventure challenge, including sprinting through an airport with a laptop case and a wheely suit case….in those crayola heels. 

    • muzan-e

      Thank you for mentioning the flappy gills. Even as an intern (newspaper, not legal), that Raoul blouse would’ve had me laughed out of the building; the big jacket and huge-neck dress would simply have drawn bewildered stares.

  • SewingSiren

    Team Shrieky-
    1. Elena- I like the blouse. I think she did an excellent job considering she didn’t have the fabric she bought. It also has the little peplum that most magazines are promoting (and Nina is wearing) as a work look. The multi flounced sleeve cap is too exaggerated, but she herself was doubting it and the other team members and Tim encouraged her to keep it. The unstructured jacket with leather epaulettes  and little black shell are just filler pieces. Some of posters seem to think she’s doing the same thing over and over again , but I looked back to check and she probably has the greatest variety of garments : 1st brought a quilted coat with hip emphasis , made a knit dress with color blocking and winged cap detail over long sleeve. 2nd Mini dress with short sleeve and extremely boxy shoulder, reminiscent of bamboo armor. 3rd gown with organza overlay darted neckline and softly padded cap sleeve. 4. Oversized car coat with raglan sleeve and many styling seams, blouse with collar and gathers at placket and skinny trouser with slit detail at ankle. 5th fitted blouse with layered cap and slouch jacket with leather epaulette and some kind of shell top under the jacket. Amazing really. no wonder she’s grouchy.
    2. Alicia- I1 basic skinny pant and 1 basic full pant. I think the designers are better off doing jackets, skirts and dresses. Pants look foolish if they are too “designed” and otherwise they are just a back drop for the top. Which these are.
    3. I like Dmitry’s dress. I think many women could wear it. But not for work due to the cut out. The back is quite similar to the back of his ignored candy dress. I like the color blocking and I don’t think it’s that similar to the Posh one. She copies so much from her old friend Roland Mouret that I don’t care anyway.
    4. Sonjia would have been better off making her own blouse , then maybe her skirt would have been recognized. I like this one better than the blue which was very well made, but basic. This draped one is very her.
    5. Raul- They should have just left him to make his own damn look and let it stand out like a sore thumb. this is a waste of leather. Who wears a baggy leather tank and tucks it into a skirt? Both is tops looked like sleeveless pull overs no shape nothing.

  • Aside from your recaps, my favorite part of PR is the inevitable FML expressions on the models faces.

    • Susan Crawford

      As horrible as it was, I sort of miss “Models of the Runway” (or whatever that show was called). But then, I’ve always had a very high tolerance for ridiculousness. Otherwise, why would I have watched every episode of Project Runway???

  • BuffaloBarbara

    Are the Crayola pumps really big this season or something? (I can’t say I’ve seen them in real life, but then, I’m not exactly living in fashion central.)

    These stills always look different than I remember the outfits looking, especially in the colors.  Melissa’s looks purple here, and I’m pretty sure it was blue.

    Anyway, I can’t argue with Raul’s off.  Two uninspired blouses, one with a very ugly ruffle on it, and they’d already reached the conclusion two episodes ago that he didn’t have what it took.  He didn’t do anything in his second chance to prove otherwise.  Not really on board with Melissa’s win, which is a pretty party dress.  In this, for work-wear, I think I’d have gone for the non-shoulder-enhanced pantsuit.  Boring as hell, but who can spend all day at work worrying about spoiling her clothes in the process of, well, working?  Dmitry’s would have been the easy call except for those cut-outs, which would have caused wasted time talking to HR about the dress code.

  • dsco3031

    What’s with Alicia and Elena’s saggy-crotched pants? The saggy crotch is a terrible look, and while preferable of course to camel toe, can take a perfectly nice pair of pants and make them look sloppy.

  • Hilary Oliveira

    my friend and I call that last one “The Popcorn Skirt.” Cause it would be awesome to wear while eating popcorn, if some fell, you can catch it in the skirt!

  • tignor

    The last skirt of Sonjia’s would be great when I have a ton of stuff to copy and I need some place to hold some paper clips. Maybe the stapler too.

    Seriously, no woman needs a kangaroo pouch. I love huh, but not this skirt.

  • Dimitry’s dress could have won last week’s challenge. I love the color combo and thought Elena was nuts for hating on it. But of course, she’s nuts. Anyway, what is with the frickin’ exposed zippers?? Women don’t wear exposed zippers to work. And I really don’t understand why this team had such a dour color pallette. Makes it so boring to look at.

    • dharmabum8

      I think Dmitri was probably stuck on Heidi saying that his look was well executed but lacked sex appeal last week. You want sex appeal, I will give you cutouts!

  • That last model is gorgeous!

  • Why didn’t Tim, or someone on team 6 tell Dmitry that women don’t wear dresses with cutouts like that to work? Otherwise, I really loved his dress.  When he was explaining the dress to Tim, I was kinda surprised Tim didn’t try to talk him out of it. 

    • CPK1

       I don’t think the cut-outs are such a big deal given their position and relative size. I am a professor and I could def. wear that to work.

  • Judy_S

    I liked Dmitry’s dress on the runway, except for the tedious zipper. It was the one garment that made me wish I were young and slim enough to wear it. It really did have a touch of “power,” unlike any of the other garments.
    I did not like Sonjie’s striped skirt. It looked VERY odd in motion–the front drape stayed immobile while the part in contact with the body moved. Made me a little seasick. 
    I wasn’t crazy about Elena’s tops but I didn’t hate them either–I would not have put her in the bottom 3. I like that she sticks to her esthetic. I just wish she would stick quietly to it.

  • dgh

    The second Alicia and Elena look (skinny pants, nondescript top and indoor AC-appropriate jacket) is nearly the only one from either team that would be at all acceptable in my giant, non-fashion industry, mainstream west coast corporate office (and by acceptable, I mean remarked on in a good way, rather than “OMG what was she thinking?)
    The winning look is lovely but in my office it would be assumed you weren’t in a position this morning to change out of last night’s dress. The one-shoulder blouse would merit a managerial suggestion that you go home and change, right now. And this may surprise “it’s just a little skin” Heidi, but many corporate dress codes (yes! We have dress codes!) expressly ban the display of any bared midriff of any amount. But she’s quite right to be scared of any lawyer wearing that preposterous overwrought euro-goth blouse-jacket thing.

    •  Yeah, no one would ever wear that without a jacket, which would be a problem with the shoulders.  In production, you’d have either lose the shoulders or the cutouts if you wanted it as a “work” piece.

      • dharmabum8

        You could wear a cami underneath, something that would look cute peeping through the cutouts, instead of a jacket, and voila, a two way monkey is born!

        • Sweetbetty

           Now I’m picturing a cami printed with those smiling monkeys I see on kids’ clothes and sleepwear with a monkey peeking through each triangle.

  • mom2chj

    Can’t for the life of me understand why a crazy dress with a neckline that is trying to eat your head is more appropriate for work than Dmitry’s dress. Are two small cut out in the back more distracting than a GIANT cowl neck gone insane? Really? Obviously none of those people work in the real world because they were so wrong with their praise about what would work in a workplace and what wouldn’t.

    I don’t think that they have any real rules; they just hand out the win to a pre-determined winner. Maybe they have a lottery before every show and then they have to justify their choice?

    This season is really frustrating.

  • mhleta

    Nina ADORED the lesbafarian’s pants and said Raul’s second top was AWFUL.     I. Don’t. Get. It.

    • Indovina

      It’s simple: the magic of pants.

      Per the judges’ secret rules:
      Whereas PR designers automatically default to a dress or a skirt;
      Whereas pants are more difficult to fit properly;
      Be it resolved that any designer making pants, assuming said pants are not absolutely horrible and/or the judges like said designer, automatically receives credit for the attempt as though it were a completely successful realization of the idea.

  • mhleta

    No contest, this team’s looks were far and away my favorite and fit the challenge much better. I’d call this Team New York Badass and the other Team Bal Harbor Country Club. 

  • onetinkerbell

    “…it was obvious that the judges based their decisions on how it was going to look in a magazine.”

    Except, if you look at the pic of Elena’s first jacket from the photo shoot, either the texture of the layers didn’t read at all when photographed, or she did some sewing afterward. Since I don’t think she did any extra sewing, I think this is one garment that looked better on the runway.

    Not only do I cringe at the color of those suede pumps but they’ve been too big for every model I’ve seen them on.

    Plus, Nina liked the wide-legged trousers! Did she not see the crotch on those? I was certain Kors would comment on that and yet it got skipped over somehow.

  • holdmewhileimnaked

    i’ve only so far gotten through half the show [other half i’ll watch this evening] but was elena really that much worse than gunnar & munster? she’s on edge & entirely too speedycranky [pun intended] but those two guys were just poisonous. does she get worse? i like dmitry the best of who’s left [along w/ sonjia] & so i’m primed to take his word for it [plus he looks way more like my relatives than she does]. but still.

    • Indovina

      I’m not sure if half way through the show is to the photo shoot yet, which might change your mind on her, but I didn’t find her so bad. She’s moody, difficult, prone to complete overreaction, and has definite trouble understanding how to communicate her ideas to other people, but she seemed genuinely focused on the team effort and I think her attitude stemmed largely from her perfectionism and concern for her team doing its best work (rather than on just doing what she wanted).

      But, then, I am becoming more and more inclined to play Kramer to Elena’s Soup Nazi.

      • holdmewhileimnaked

        that’s where i stopped–at the photoshoot. i will watch it this evening. from what i’ve seen so far, i would way prefer working w/ her than either of them. i’m gonna see what i think later but i bet this is gonna stay my opinion.

        the only thing that has me wondering [& not really about that] is: where did her burn go? theyre supposed to have been there less than a week now, correct? even if it were only a minor burn it [or its bandage] should still be visible. more, obviously, a comment about what cooks on the show, pun intended, than the contestant who cooked–but it’s still curious.

  • KathKo

    The first look from Alicia/Elena I love. It’s the bulky jacket Elena NEEDS to get out of her system, but it works well with the pants and, it might be sad looking but it’s the kind of look that make us, office worker, drool over in an editorial : it’s wearable, practical while having that twist that make it and it’s wearer, special.
    I found the second one very blah. I’m afraid that Elena can’t do much out of her exagerated shoulder. I’d say, she’s next to go.

    Dmitry’s outfit is, on the other hand, not wearable nor practical for an office. Still, it’s also an drool worthy outfit. I can just picture thousand of office workers wishing they were skinny enough to pull that one off… And bold enough to actually wear it with the unpractical but so sexy cutout. It’s a fantasy of an office outfit.

  • marilyn

    I don’t like Sonja’s skirt with the lines in it.  That fabric was not suitable for the application because of the lines.  It looks bad.

  • what is this PR obsession with exposed zippers? i don’t remember if it was last season or the one before that where the same thing kept happening in the zipper department. i know adding invisible zippers can be a pain sometimes but not every look will be improved with a giant zipper.

    • It’s been going on for several seasons- the worst aspect being pants with huge zippers up the crotch.

  • lisaepc

    Is it wrong of me to have thought when first seeing Sonji’s skirt was if I wore this to a lunch with clients I’d avoid the crusty rolls…then again a poor jr asst could use a hidy-hole to stash an extra bun for later tee-hee

  • Catiline

    Am I remembering correctly, or did Elena actually refer to Raul as “Eddie Munster” in one of her asides?  Because as nuts as she is, that utterly cracked me up.

    • Judy_S

       Somebody referred to him that way. You wouldn’t think she would have that reference handy, though–if it was Elena, maybe she got it from someone else.

  • MattCooper27

    I’m not sure if anyone else has mentioned it, but Raul seems to be more of a Squiggy in the Laverne and Shirley mode (albeit it scruffier though no less pompous) than an Eddie Munster who at least sported a Peter Pan collar and occasional tie.

  • Meelah

    Heidi Heidi Heidi…I work in the financial industry and you could NEVER! wear the dress that Dmitri made.  Firstly the fact that it’s almost too short.  You don’t wear anything that makes your ass a focal point meaning a zipper all the way down the back isn’t a good idea.  Lastly you never wear anything that shows any peekabo skin.  The triangles in the back would never fly and you’d find yourself in someones office explaining why you’re dressed inappropriately for work.  I liked the dress just didn’t get what planet Heidi was on when she made the comment that it was financial industry ok. 

    Elanas shirt looked like a vampire football player’s top. 

    Rauls frill top wasn’t that bad.  I have several tops that I wear to work like that.  The frills might be a bit too long but not bad enough to get him thrown off.

    I’m team Sonjia but I was confused when she took Dmitri to task for calling out Elena.  

    Everything else was just Meh…

  • Call me Bee

    Wow–it is painfully obvious that no one associated with this episode–designers, judges, producers–has ever worked in a regular office with dress codes.  I understand that the Marie Claire has offices in NYC (which we all saw in that awful show about interns, Running in Heels…) but really, that’s just not the real world.  Having worked in professional offices, I could wear Dimitry’s dress–with a jacket or cardi, and perhaps Elena’s “smaller” jacket with the leather detail.  I actually like that a lot. 
    Absolutley hated both pairs of pants.  How they decided that Alicia would make the pants will be a mystery.  She’s made a couple pairs with insane crotches already. 
    Sonji’s skirts were excellent, except the folded/pleated one is just impratical in a real office.  It was a interesting design, however, so I hope she pulls it out again. 
    Both blouses were throwaways.  Cannot argue with the auf at all. 
    Melissa’s dress was very cool.  A bit impractical for the real world, but then again, when Nina was talking to the designers at the very beginning, she wanted to see work wear with an editorial edge.  Vague as that is, it seems Melissa’s dress fit the bill.  So congrats to her. 

  • guest2visits

    I LOVE that skirt of Sonjia’s; it’s elegant, it’s different and totally wearable for a range of occasions. I love that fabric.
    I also thought Alicia should’ve put together slightly better constructed or tailored pants. And there was nothing really fashionable
    about them. I did like Elena’s second jacket. Kind of a miracle she turned out two fairly constructed items considering she spent
    so much time having a melt down. AND the mysteriously missing fabric. I’d like someone to post what actually happend to it.

  • formerlyAnon

    I preferred Alicia & Elena’s first look here to the winner of the challenge. (Commence the public stoning).  

    Yes, those shoulders are nutso, but based on most places I’ve worked, no farther out of the norm than the winning dress. And overall, I think their ensemble would be more comfortable to work in and is probably more flattering to those who can wear pants without imperatively needing to cover the rear & midsection with an extended top or jacket. All those rumples down the front of the winning dress are going to make a most women look unkempt and lumpy.Of course, Dmitry’s should have won, if only he’d skipped or somehow covered the cutouts.

    • holdmewhileimnaked

      stoning, yes, but i like it too.

      i would be totally thrilled to have that jacket &, since this is all fantasy as she only made one & it will no more fit me than will the pants, then, yes, i’d love to have those [very early 70s] pants as well. i’ve already owned version upon version of the winning dress.

  • CarolinLA

    When you wear crayola pumps, you’re begging people to look at your feet instead of your clothes.

  • CarolinLA

    The back cutout was so stupid.  

  • patticake1601

    All I could think of as I watched Sonjia’s skirt walk down the runway was… jelly belly.  I just couldn’t get past the front of that skirt jiggling as the model walked. 

  • jilly_d

    I fail to see why Nina praised those pants so much.  Both pairs had a crotch-screpancy, and it looks like the wide-leg pair also has some sort of……tush-screpancy.  Alicia, it’s cool to do gender-bending clothes but it does NOT mean you have to make room for balls in a pair of ladies’ pants.

    • mhleta

      The lesbafarian has flying well off the radar. She’s a cool customer, very much the polar opposite of Elena, and for that I find her a welcome relief. I didn’t love the pants either. If that’s the best of her skills, I’m not sure she’ll last much longer. 

  • Alicia/Elena (1st look): Alicia’s pants work for me. No, they’re not particularly exciting, but they’re quite appropriate for work (for any workplace, really). That requirement formed the largest part of the challenge. Best of all, this is the first pair of pants she’s made that does NOT have a dropped crotch. I think she tailored them well, especially given the time constraints. Elena’s jacket is indeed crazy. I embrace exaggerated shoulders and a severe aesthetic, but these balloon sleeves look kind of clownish. Joanna thinks someone who works in finance or law could WEAR that jacket. WTF???

    Alicia/Elena (2nd look): It’s somewhat dreary, but it’s work-appropriate. I wish the jacket were sharper (it’s unevenly cut, for one thing). I do appreciate the leather (pleather?) shoulder inserts– more so the idea than the execution.

    Dmitry: It seems to be referential. Is Victoria’s design so innovative and original that no similarity between it and another designer’s garment could be a coincidence? Probably not. Could it have influenced Dmitry? It is quite reasonable to suspect it. I like the color-blocking in the front. I find the front somewhat incongruent to the back. The pristine structure of the front clashes with the evening-oriented, zippered back. I do not mind the slivers of skin. Are they work-appropriate? Not in many workplaces but certainly in the fashion industry.

    Son/Raul: The skirt is fine. It’s not particularly flattering, but it is interesting. The drapery serves as a counterpoint to the simple and unvoluminous tank-top. I won’t say I hate the tank-top, but I find it quite elementary in design and kind of flimsy in construction.

  • RJay

    Doesn’t Alicia do menswear?  I was looking forward to her pants.  I expected well done.  She disappointed.

    And rolling on the floor at Heidi fighting that the “little bit of skin” on Dimitry’s dress was okay for the office. Your office maybe .. not mine!

  • Jane_Lane

    You know, I’ve watched all ten seasons and the all star season of this show and I still have no idea what exactly is meant when Heidi says they’ve added up their scores. Are they actually scoring the garments or is that some BS was of trying to make it sound less arbitrary and subjective?

    • mhleta

      EXCELLENT POINT! They’ve never explained the rubrick for scoring these outfits. Is there a score card? Are there numbers? Do they just give a single number like Olympic judges? I’d really like to know, now that you mention it.

      • Sweetbetty

         It seems to me that on one of the reunion shows where they take questions from the public someone asked that question and some sort of explanation was given but I’m sure that was just BS to please the audience.  It’s all arbitrary and at the whims of the producers in my opinion.

    • Susan Crawford

      It would certainly be interesting to know how the scoring is done. Any former contestants out there who might want to post and enlighten the commentariat? Mr. Keeter? Laura B.? (And I would love to see the PR judges holding up score cards like Olympic judges do – THAT would be a hoot!)

      • formerlyAnon

        They’ve always been so vague about the scoring and the contestants (as far as I know) so silent about it, that I’m sure it’s all intentional to allow them to dictate whatever outcome works with the story arcs. I imagine the contestants are either unsure of the details or constrained from discussing them.

        • Susan Crawford

          Yes, this is probably very much the case. I would imagine that contestants sign a contract that covers a world of things: agreeing to post-season publicity events; ownership of clothing made during the show; maintaining press silence about the identity of the winner until the final episode airs; and on and on. And most likely there’s something in there about accepting the conditions of the judging process. (Without actually spelling out those conditions and parameters in much detail.)

          Let’s face it, we ALL know a lot of the judging comes down to these points:

          “I would TOTALLY wear that!”
          “I would NEVER wear that!”
          “No-one would wear that.”
          “Every girl would wear that.”
          “It’s very editorial.”
          “It isn’t very editorial.”
          “I’m confused by this design.”
          “I have questions about your taste level.”

          And one of my all-time favorites:
          “That fabric looks like the inside of a vacuum bag.”

  • ccm800

    H&M hits the runway

  • StephenTrask

    I must say, I clicked on the provided link embedded in the critique of by reality show bf-of-the-moment Dmitry’s dress and I have to say that aside from the color fact of color blocking (as opposed to it’s execution, and the colors themselves I don’t see the connection between the example dresses and what Dmitry (did I mention he’s my bf) offered.  His neckline is drastically different, the opening of the skirt isn’t nearly so pinching and the dress itself has a much more relaxed fit, while still retaining it’s shape and flattering form.  the fit and the more relaxed opening allows for this relatively high fashion look to be incredibly appropriate for the work place.  It adds both a functionality (easier to sit, walk eat lunch without spanks) as well as a casual dressiness that says everyday wear as opposed to a stiletto heels and a tiny clutch at an art gallery cocktail party aesthetic.

    • Amy Ennis

      Guuurl! I’ll fight you for him! I could sit and listen to that accent and look into those dreamy eyes all day long. 

      • StephenTrask

        You’re on.  No biting or eye poking.  

  • quiltrx

    I like that last skirt, except for the back which looks all “swobbly” (what was her name seasons ago that said that about Daniel–was that his name–‘s zipper?).

  • I wouldn’t have worn anything the other team wore to work though! Except for Christopher’s. The rest were evening wear for middle aged to elderly ladies. 

  • Amy

    I’m still trying to figure out how “lawyers” and other “professionals” could wear some of this stuff. Joanna, just because someone tells you they are a lawyer doesn’t mean it’s true!

  • Is it just me, or does that photo with the model in the blue skirt look like one of Dracula’s girls just seconds away from either ripping a throat out… or just saying something bitchy to the alpha vampiress in an effort to get the #2 vampire spot?

    So it is said… I ~AM~ on some heavy meds right now for a blown eardrum and double ear-infection, so there is a slight chance I’m just loopy. But come on, she even has her head tilted down for maximum fang flash as she bolts out of the seat!

    • LambeeBaby

       Ok. I’ll buy that one. Apparently the medication as tapped into your “creative genius” 😉

  • altermyego

    When the contestants were doing their to-the-camera comments about Raul, did any one else notice that when Sonjia was complaining about his ruffled shirt, what was she wearing? A shirt with a big ruffle down the middle but in denim with white buttons! I thought is was uglier than Raul’s ruffle shirt but it’s the irony of it all that really gets me.

    Then when Elena was complaining about Raul’s shirt being navy blue – ‘who wears navy blue?’, what was she wearing? A navy blue shirt!!! Oh the irony.

    Did anyone else catch this?

  • Susan Crawford

    I liked Alicia’s trousers that were paired with Elena’s Sidney-Opera-House-Shouldered top. Considering the time frame and the stress of working with the poop-flinging marmoset, I give Alicia props.

    Sonjia’s skirt, while a little over-done, was also one of the pieces I really liked. It had some flair and yet was wearable in a work setting. (And it would be easy to accessorize for an after-work event, too.)

    Raul really got hammered, and while I think his fellow-designers made valid points about his work, it WAS sort of funny to hear Sonjia being all anti-ruffle-front whilst wearing . . . a ruffle-front. Admittedly, her shirt (was it light denim? Chambray?) was nowhere NEAR as over the top as that jabot Raul created, and I think her critique of him, if I recall, was mostly focused on the proportion and floppiness of the ruffling he was doing.

    I really did NOT get Elena’s snark about “who wears navy blue?” Ummm, for one, Elena, YOU do! And while navy blue might not be the most exciting crayon in the box, it shows up every season on runways all over the world. So obviously that was a dumb question.

    I have to say, too, that there is a lot of reliance on loud, blaring colored suede pumps – not only on PR, but in general. I have nothing against the idea if it is used judiciously, and not as a short-cut that replaces thoughtful styling choices. And if you do a brightly colored suede pump, please resist the idea of adding a matchy-matchy bag to the mix.

    Not sorry Raul is gone; hating his exit lines (while sort of secretly agreeing that Elena deserves to be under the bus); hoping he learns some better sewing skills; praying someone will sneak into his bedroom one dark night and snip off that Eddie Munster widow’s peak.

  • What about Nina’s perception that all female office workers work in a law office or a bank?  As funny as “no one wears navy”

  • GTrain

    I liked Elena and Alicia’s outfit and the front of Dimitry’s. Why he felt the need to tacky it up I will never understand. Melissa’s my fave but ni way is that work wear for most people.

    • Sweetbetty

       Dmitry was trying to appease Heidi and her insatiable need for “sexy” in any garment. 

  • emoxic

    ugh. raul was really rude on the way out. “lets go down the line and point to who i don’t think are bitches and then point out the one i hate and curse”

  •   The parameters of the challenge were both “work wear” and an “editorial look”. As soon as I heard Nina Garcia say that, the challenge was down the drain. It’s impossible to do proper office clothes and still make something that looks interesting in a photo shoot. Or it could be possible if there aren’t any time restraints.

    I would love to see a challenge where all the designers had to use the same type and colour of fabric (someone mentioned that here a few seasons ago IIRC). It would cut down on the shopping (and filming) at Mood and give the designers the same starting point.

  • In Dmitry’s defense, the past two challenges have been very similar. Both focused on workwear that could also be fashionable. I’m hoping once they move on to a challenge with vastly different parameters he can pull it off. (I hate when they do challenges like that in such close proximity. Remember last season when they had the band and the seventies challenge back to back?)

  • adnama79

    The cutouts in the back of Dmitry’s dress don’t add to the design and make it inappropriate to wear to most offices.  Instead of making a jacket, he should have just not had cutouts.

    The skirt Sonjia made is interesting, but the first time I saw the model sideways, I thought “KANGAROO!”