We have to admit, this was one of the better episodes of Project Runway we’ve seen in some time.
Sure, the setting helped.
As did getting a personal tour of the House of Valentino.
Josh should’ve been thrown out for wearing those pants.
But we think a big part of the success of the episode was that the designers were given a truly difficult fashion-related task that didn’t just come down to silly time restrictions and jumping through hoops.
Don’t get us wrong. There were silly time restrictions and jumping through hoops, but that’s not what made the challenge fun. It was the unleashing of creativity and the demand that the work be as impeccable as haute couture. Or as creepy slow-speaker Carolyn Murphy called it, “HHHHHote koootooooor.” She also said “Bone Jor, designers, which caused us to throw things at our screen. What can we say? She bugs.
Sure, it’s impossible to do true couture in the time they were given, but it was fun to see how close they got to the mark. They should do more couture challenges on PR. The unconventional materials challenge is more than played out at this point and probably should be retired.
We’ve hit the wall. We can’t even be polite and say congratulations anymore. It’s ridiculous at this point how much the judges are fellating Anthony Ryan. Which isn’t to say this is bad. It’s probably one of the best things we’ve seen from him. But it was clearly NOT the best thing on that runway.
This was. By a MILE. It was the only garment on that runway that looked as if it could – and should – be walking in a couture show. Absolutely the best thing Emilio’s ever done on the show and to be honest, we’d probably put it in the top PR looks of all time.
Now granted, this garment, like all the garments this week, rested a lot on the fabric choice. That’s to be expected, though. When you give them a $4000 budget for fabric and mere hours to put a look together, everything’s going to be weighted toward the fabric choice and not toward the design or execution.
This was a bit of a disappointment from Uli. It’s interesting, certainly. And a bit unexpected. But what struck us most about this garment was how much it looked like something that would be walking in a Marchesa show. Were just not all that crazy about the gold metallic strips int he front and back, the illusion netting, or the fact that she use the lining not so much as a lining, but more like a second skirt.
But the judges and producers decided they hadn’t pissed all over the concept of haute couture enough, and gave both Josh and Uli the opportunity to rip their garments apart on the runway and do them over, in the space of an hour. There was a time when such a thing would have us wailing and gnashing our teeth, but we’re inured to the vagaries of the show now, and it barely raised an eyebrow between us.
What she came up with was perhaps not quite on the level of couture, but as Cynthia Rowley noted, it made a perfectly fine “Fuck you” to the judges. She took the lining they hated and made an entire dress out of it. A simple dress, sure. But it was elevated by that gorgeous jacket.
And it’s Schmauf Wiedersehen to Josh, which surprised the hell out of us. We were sure Uli was a goner. But even though the judges praised it, we think that bed sheet fabric on the bottom was what really lost it for him. It’s not just awful, it’s ridiculous.
And while he wisely ripped apart the parts that the judges criticized most, it didn’t actually help that much. He turned an awkward and strange-looking gown into an awkward and strange-looking cocktail dress. We have a feeling the judges didn’t want to let him go – in fact, we wonder if that last twist wasn’t an attempt to save him and send home the Bravo alum. Unfortunately for him, Uli just did an all-around better job. And she didn’t choose a fabric that looks like it belongs in a little girl’s bedroom.
[Photo Credit: David Russell – Stills: tomandlorenzo.com]