Saturday, September 26, 2009

Project Runway S6 Ep6 Part II: Say WHAT?

As we start the day, poor UA is struggling to finish his last-minute dress and feels that he'll be in the middle. Everyone is all cranky and rushing.  Irina's still being a bitch.  Gordana's trying to get her accessories together.  Models are do'ed and made up, Tim gathers everyone together, and they all head to the runway.

STILL NO NINA AND KORS.  Argh!  Heidi, uncharacteristically covered up and wearing very cool sparkly black pants, introduces the guest judges: Zoe Glassner again, designer John Varvatos, and costume designer Arianne Phillips.  Let's start the show!

Irina shows us a sexy black dress that looks much better once the model takes off the shower-curtain cape.  There are nude v-shaped cutouts and the sleeveless bodice is very form-fitting, with a long skirt.

Carol has done a beautifully-shaped long jacket over a vinyl bustier & arm-warmers, leggings, and some sort of bellydancer-belt sort of thing that I don't like at all.  I don't know that it's actually Action/Adventure, more like domainatrix-type at the local Goth club, but whatever.

Shirin's Saloon Girl dress is adorable!  Her model flounces for all she's worth to show the movement in the layers of ruffles.  It's not earth-shattering, but fulfills the challenge well enough.

Here comes Christopher's Period dress.  My immediate reaction is that I hate it; he's become dangerously one-note with the huge fluffy skirts and close-fitting bodices.  There's a useless wide belt thing that is not flattering.  There are nice touches, though: the bustling in the back is done well, and there are some details in the top's collar, front and back, that are pretty special.  It's still just too damn similar to most of the things he's done.

Next comes Nicolas's Evil Ice Goddess.  Eeeeh... it looks like a high-school play costume.  Cheap, kinda tacky.  Big translucent leafy-looking things stuck all over the neckline.  The model's hair is way over-soaked with frosty crap but her makeup is amazing.  This is completely standard low-brow Scifi stuff, which I suppose fulfills the objective, but it's so fucking expected.

Althea's outfit bears a very similar look to the one for which she won, in some ways: low bodice, open blouse (okay, the winning design had a jacket), but with a skinny skirt with a high waist.  It's very Althea and pretty pleasing, though I'm not crazy about the white blouse, and the hem of the skirt is a bit odd.

Oh dear... UA's dress is one big ol' iguana mess.  It bears a similarity to the Pee dress with which he won, but is even worse.  He did the best he could with almost no time, but this just looks like what it is: slapped-together strips of leather.  For some reason, the model rips a small strip of fabric off her forearm.  Don't know what that's supposed to be about.

Here comes Louise's dress... ack, it's awful!  Boring, boring, boring.  Dark and dull and crafts-y.  Film Noir is so up her alley, she should've been able to turn out something fantastic.  To her credit, Louise is not happy with the dress, feeling like she didn't really nail the time period and that the dress isn't as amazing as some of the others.

We at Chez Boogie gasped when Epperson's model stomped out in his creation.  It's *awesome*.  Very, very Firefly.  It's ruffles and leather and fitted and flouncy and rough and refined.  It's the first thing Ep has done that I really, really love.

Gordana has created a beautifully-done flapper dress with elbow gloves and a cute headband.  Unfortunately, it's an exact replica of a flapper dress, with nary a twist or update in sight.  Uh-oh, I think the judges are going to give her shit for this one.

Logan has created a look almost worthy of Aeryn Sun.  It definitely fits the Action/Adventure bill better than Carol's outfit did, but I hate the little curly-rib doohickeys that embellish the top (I don't know if his inspiration was ammunition belts, maybe?).  It's a beautifully-fitted leather jumpsuit paired with high boots, and Kojii stalks for all she's worth.

The judges want to talk to Nicolas, UA, Christopher, Louise, Gordana, and Epperson, who have the highest and lowest scores.

As I feared, the judges appreciate the labor that went into Gordana's dress, but find it very not-special.  I died a little for Gordana when Zoe Glassner basically called her a "dressmaker," which is an insult on this show.  Poor Gordana.

As I hadn't anticipated, the judges love Nicolas' cliched dress.  Seriously?  Cause that's not innovative at all.  Arianne seems to think this would look better on film.  Erm, we're watching it on film, and it looks like crap.  Which means it looked *worse* at the actual runway.  Eeep.

I imagine Louise is about to get shredded by the judges for her blah garment... what a surprise, she is!  They're not impressed with how dark and drab it is, and point out - rightly, I'm afraid - that none of the detail in the dress would read on camera.  Zoe even says it looks cheap.  Louise is just glad to finally get some feedback, which she hasn't yet gotten, as she's been safe every week.

Another surprise: the judges practically wet themselves over Christopher's dingy-ass dress.  Man, I really hate that thing around the waist.  Glassner puts forth the dreaded "wow factor."

UA is up next, and as expected, the judges hate his dress.  They like his story, but think it looks shoddily made.  Heidi calls it a "hot green mess" and says that he's a good designer and can sew, but you couldn't tell from this outfit.  He mentions having to throw it together last-minute, and the judges sympathize, but yikes.

Finally, the judges love Epperson's outfit.  So do I!  He did an amazing job, especially considering how crushed he was to have to do a Western outfit.   Heidi points out that he's done something that they haven't seen before, which is so important in a designer.

Decisions, decisions, decisions. Gordana is in.  Phew!  Epperson is in.  Nicolas is the winner! *record screech*  Say what??  That cliched crapfest over Epperson's beautifully-crafted, innovative look?  Oh judges, I cannot comprehend thee.  Now this doof has immunity next week.

Christopher is safe, leaving UA and Louise on the runway.  Uh-oh, either way this is gonna be ugly.  It's UA's creativity, but crappy execution, vs. Louise's dull execution and lack of innovation.  UA is going home.  Wow, I'm stunned, and so is he.  I mean, I haven't been UA's biggest fan - I thought the dress he won for was gross, and he's been a much bigger talker than deliverer, but I'm genuinely surprised that the judges chose boring over innovative.  Still, I'd hate to see Louise go home, too - as sub-par as her delivery was this episode, I really love her clothes.  She starts to cry as she leaves the runway.

Poor UA.  Even his Unnecessary Apostrophe couldn't save him.  It's nice to see Tim back to his old self, hugging UA and sending him off with a fond farewell.  Bye, UA, it was fun!  Good luck in your endeavors, which, by the looks of recent photos, involve growing your hair into a large point like that guy who danced with MC Hammer.  You can take the kid out of the 80's...

Next week: another team challenge!  Uh-oh.

Project Runway S6 Ep6 Part I: Kermit the Frog Gone Wrong

Previously on Project Runway: Lie-gate failed to shock us, Nina and Michael Kors continued to be absent, and Cueball was sent home for doing crappy work and being shady about it.

We begin with the same thing as we did last week, and the week before that.  There's a formula that's developed, and it's making me cranky.  Designers talk about how, wow, people keep going home and the competition keeps getting tougher.  Nicolas aka Peppermint Patty (thank you, Tom and Lorenzo!) talks smack about people and interviews the same old "I'm here to win" thing.  (Why is Nicolas featured on this show so much?  Every two minutes there he is, in interview, bitching about something.  Please cut it out, producers.)  Designers are getting ready in the morning.  Blah blah blah.

Here comes Heidi, in a gorgeous navy-blue dress.  Hey, it's finally time for a movie-related challenge!  The designers head to a Real Hollywood Soundstage, where they are met by Collier Strong, Tim, and The Great Velvet Bag o' Buttons.  Could be another *gulp* team challenge?  No, thankfully!  Rather, the designers will have to pick from 5 different film genres.  Irina, as last week's winner, can choose whichever she wants, and then the rest of the designers will be randomly chosen to select one of the two spots available for each genre.

The genres from which they may choose are: Action/Adventure, Film Noir, Science Fiction, Period Piece, and Western.  Film Noir goes to Irina, Louise and Althea, while Action/Adventure is chosen by Logan and Carol, Science Fiction will be Unnecessary Apostrophe and Nicolas, Period Piece by Gordana and Christopher, and poor Shirin and Epperson are left with Western.  Nobody wants to do Western.  Who could blame them?

The designers are tasked with creating a film character with a story, and then creating a look for them.  It's not totally clear whether they're doing a costume or an "inspired-by" look.  Whichever it is, they've only got until midnight, with a budget of $150!

The designers get to sketching, and there's a smidge of Carol and Logan talking about how they dig each other (boring!).  At Mood, there's lamentation about the cost of some of the fabrics - Gordana likes a fabric that's $200 a yard, and Chris has the sads because he can't afford brocade.  Are those *feathers* I see in Nicolas's hand?  Finally?  Poor Shirin squeaks for help because she's too short to reach the notions she needs.  (I can relate to that, my co-shortie!)

Epperson really wanted to do a Period Piece look, but will make the best of the Western category by looking at it as a Period.  Gordana decided to choose the 20's as her Period look, because that's when women started to speak out and become more independent.  Uh-oh, what's this?  Louise has lost her bobbin and goes on a long hunt for it.  "Sabotage," sing-songs Irina.  That's so helpful!  Well, the bobbin must be found eventually, as Louise ends up putting the sewing needle right through her finger. Owwww!

Okay, where were we?  Nicolas is doing a look for one of three Goddesses of the Universe that live in Orion's belt, and one of them turns evil.  UA wants some reptilian/human hybrid jumpsuit to be worn by a visiting alien.  He's not dyeing his fabric in the toilet this time, at least!  Louise isn't sure yet who her character is, giving Nicolas the Know-It-All the opportunity to snark in interview about how HE thinks about who his client is and has a concept and blah blah getoveryourself.

Tim-Time!  Gordana's flapper dress belongs to a woman in her 30's who's just discovered oil.  Well, we assume she hasn't *just* found it, since it's not covered in gunk. (Har!)  Irina interviews that Gordana is basically old and boring and the other designers are on a totally different level.  I don't think that level is necessarily a better one, kiddo.

Chris is doing a bustled Victorian-inspired dress, but Tim chides him for not designing arms for the dress.  I'm about to chide him for doing the same damn silhouette again.  Epperson is doing this awesome outfit with ruffles and leather straps.  UA is doing... uh... Disco Iguana Leather panels.  Tim isn't sure if it'll be "sublime, or a hot mess."

Tim kindly points out Louise's complete lack of innovation by telling her that her talent for nuance doesn't show well on the runway.  I'm a bit bemused, and disappointed, to see she's doing exactly the dress I figured she would do.  "I'm obviously doing Western," says Nicolas to Tim, and it's the first genuinely funny thing he's said so far this season.  Tim thinks Nicolas's ice-queen dress is too safe, that he should exaggerate more.

Oh, dear... Models come in, and UA realizes his idea is not going to work it all.  He describes it as "Kermit the Frog gone wrong."  Sadly, he's right: I know exactly what he wanted to do and the idea is awesome, but this outfit is just uggo.  He is starting over from scratch with only 2 hours to go.  Ruh-roh!

We get a quick few shots of Collier Strong consulting with designers and trying looks on models; I am completely drooling over his shelf full of eyeshadows.  Nicolas's model just has the greatest face, doesn't she?

Before we know it, it's the next day!

Next, in Part II: Say WHAT?

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

PR S6 Ep6 Preview!

Looks like the designers will be creating a character for a film genre, then designing an outfit for that character.  This could be fun.

Wooooo, we got us some romance, chickens!


Saturday, September 19, 2009

PR S6 Ep5 Pt. IV: Preposterousness!

OK, let's get to the judging!

They begin by talking to Althea.  Eva loves the shape of the dress.  Hilfiger thinks it's "pretty genius."  Zoe calls it "exquisite" and says that if it weren't made of paper, she'd want to wear it.  Me, too!

Okay, is it just me, or do the judges have it in for Gordana?  She made a perfectly good dress yet somehow is in the bottom three.  Heidi laments that she wanted to see something more unconventional for this challenge.  Gordana replies that she assumed that they were to take an unwearable material, and make something wearable out of it.  Her goal was to disguise the newspaper, rather than elevate it.  I don't think there's anything wrong with that -- yes, her designs have not been ambitious, but they've been beautiful and well-executed.  At the very least, it's safe, not a bottom-three.

The judges fall all over themselves about Irina's trench coat.  Hilfiger mentions Chanel, St. Laurent, Givenchy.  It is kinda Chanel, isn't it?  I still hate the lower half, though.  But damn, the collar and cuffs are gorgeous.

Heidi asks Cueball how much time he spent on his dress.  Ruh-roh!  He then repeats his lie about why he did a second dress, while claiming "I'm not making any excuses."  Lying to the judges' faces?  Such a terrible idea, I had to laugh.  I laugh even harder when he tries to claim that his first dress was like a Dior.  *wipes tears from eyes*  Dior run through an abattoir, maybe!  Nicolas, however, can't keep it under wraps and reveals that Tim actually hated Cueball's first dress.  Cueball can't keep it under wraps, either, and sarcastically thanks Nicolas for throwing him under the bus, adding, "jerk."  Stay classy, you two!

Moving on... Nicolas explains his punk inspiration.  Hilfiger says that it doesn't look punk.  Zoe apologetically says that she wrote down "looks like an insect."  As soon as she said that, I could see it: the cut of the skirt does kinda look like an exoskeleton.  Urgh, now I'm all creeped out!

Last but not least, Christopher's feathered look.  Heidi loves the skirt, and Chris knocks on the bodice to show how stiff and hard it is.  Zoe loves that the top is like armor.  Eva loves that Chris' look is different from everyone else's.  Hilfiger gives it a wow.

Discussion time!  The judges like how different Chris' look was from the others.  They love the architectural look of Althea's dress.  Irina's coat makes Eva sigh and go want-that wistful.  Gordana evokes mixed feelings -- it was well-made, but a little dull.  Nobody likes Nicolas' dress -- Heidi calls it "tacky."  Cueball's dress had a cool print, but the construction was janky.  They also don't really believe his story about the leaky iron.

Decision time:  Althea is safe.  Irina is the winner!  Really?  Hmmm.  The trench was highly cool, but a winner?  I dunno.  Of course, Christopher and Gordana are safe, leaing Nicolas and Cueball on the runway as the bottom 2.

The judges saw where Nicolas was going, but he didn't get there - they found his garment poorly-made and "artsy-craftsy." Let's hope this tamps Nic's ego a little bit. Cueball gave a lot of excuses, and his dress was a mess.  And: Cueball goes home! 

Then there's something we've never seen before: Tim comes to tell Cueball to clean up his space, with a very cold demeanor:  there's no hug, and Tim is actually adjusting his cufflinks to avoid any contact.  After Cueball leaves, Tim vents his anger to the designers: "I am incredulous at that utterly preposterous spewing of fiction that Johnny did on the runway.  It was ridiculous."  Whoa!  Did stuff happen that we didn't see?  Cause we've never seen Tim like that.  (Is it just me, or is Tim kinda sexay when he's angry?)

Next week: Another one-day challenge!  Louise jams a needle through her finger!  UA is making Kermit the Frog Gone Wrong!  Hmmm.  See you then!

PR S6 Ep5 Pt. III: Paper-Pants on Fire!

The models come in that night for fittings, and we get to see more of where the designers are headed.  Nicolas was inspired by the 90's-punk thing and is doing a dress that sort of reminds me of the American Flag deconstructed, with an interpretation of spikes along the shoulder straps.  Shirin's model shrieks as the cold papier mâché bodice is fitted.  Shirin's also done a Leanne-esque origami skirt that looks a lot like those paper  table centerpieces, you know, the ones shaped like bells. Irina's come up with a rather brilliant crumpled-paper technique to create almost a faux-fur collar for her trench coat.  Oooh, Althea's changed her design completely and has used a repeating photo print to create a pattern on her strapless dress.  Gordana's dress is looking great.

Oh, Cueball.  He's such a fucking downer, isn't he?  Once again, his model is in the position of stroking his ego and reassuring him that he's doing okay and blah blah blah it must be exhausting to work with him.  As if that's not enough, he decides to spin a whopper: rather than admit that Tim hated his dress so he started over, he makes up an accident with the iron, saying that water spilled out all over his dress so he had to throw it away.  Oooh, is this The Biggest Lie in Runway History?  I don't know if it's the biggest, but it's certainly the most bald-faced, given that THE CAMERAS WERE RIGHT THERE, CUEBALL.  Does this guy seriously think he can get away with making up something like that?  Are the cameras slowly sucking out his brain cells while they record his actions?  Jeezus.  Chris and Shirin interview about Cueball's lack of passion and follow-through, and to illustrate that, we see that Our Little Downer has basically given up on his new dress as soon as it's just finished, and sits down and does a crossword puzzle.  Whaaaa?

Pumpkin time!  Midnight, and the designers head home.  Cueball insists upon his stupid lie about the steamer issue.  The other guys look at each other like "is this guy for real?"  We did the same thing here at Chez Boogie.

Happily, the next day arrives quickly and it's time to get ready for the runway!  After encouraging the designers to bring emergency-repair kits (with lots of tape), we head off to the show.

Still no Kors and Nina, which gives me that sads.  They both had scheduling conflicts which caused them to miss a few episodes, and their presence is sorely missed.  This week, their spots are filled by Tommy Hilfiger, and again, Marie Claire's Senior Editor Zoe Glassner.  The guest judge is Eva Longoria.  Let's start the show!

Logan shows us an Asian-inspired strapless tube dress that has an asymmetrical ruffle at the top, with a corresponding ruffle at the bottom.  The dye-job he did produced a very cool-looking bamboo-like look.  I like!

Again, Nicolas talked a big game but his dress isn't that great.  It's not terribly flattering and definitely not punk.

Whoa!  Christopher wanted to make a show-stopper, and he did.  A rigid, charcoal-colored bustier tops a huge, fluffy, feathery newspaper-colored skirt.  The length is a little off on the skirt, but the effect is just what he wanted to create.

UA's two-piece look is really lovely; there's a lot of pleating and some asymmetry, and it looks very wearable.  He used different, but complimentary, color schemes for each piece.

Epperson's look made us go "Wow" here at Chez Boogie.  It looks like an exaggerated kimono, with huge half-sleeves.  The back, unfortunately, doesn't look so good, and the skirt is an odd length, but from the front I freaking love it.

Here comes Cueball's second attempt, and oh dear, it's pretty lame.  He layered squares of paper with images on them to create a sort of Pop Art look, which is a cool concept, but he didn't even try to add any extra touches to the top or hemline - both consist of sticking-out triangles with a sort of spike at the top of the bodice.  There's a pretty dreadful "belt" and he's accessorized the dress with awful red shoes.  To his credit, he doesn't like the dress, but is delusional enough to think his orginial dress would've gotten a better response.  Which calls forth the question, why didn't he just stick with his original vision, then?

Gordana's dress looks great!  There's nothing particularly innovative about the design, but the construction is excellent - you wouldn't know it was paper.  There's a bit of unevenness in the hem of the bodice, but the coloring is good and it's a flattering look.

I really want to like Carol's dress, because she obviously put  a ton of work into it, but my gut reaction is just, ick.  It's all tiered and origami-ruffly and horribly orange and crumpled.  It's a Worst-Dressed-List gown, unfortunately.

Shirin's dress is another that I want to like more than I do.  It's too raw-looking, too obviously made of paper; while the skirt looks really cool, it's such a Leanne look that I can't help feeling like it's somehow a ripoff.  It's also ridiculously impractical; you couldn't possibly sit down in it.  The strapless bodice is cute, though we can blatantly see the stuffing in it.

Here comes Irina's trench coat.  She's done sleeves with the faux-fur collar and cuffs and I *love* it!  She's used a Sharpie to put faux stitching on the belt and pockets.  What I don't love, is everything below the belt.  It's too plain, a bit uneven, and looks like she spent all this time making the top perfect and then just said "fuck it" to the bottom (which is probably something like what actually happened).  So I love it but am also disappointed, and don't really know what to think.

Wow, Althea's dress came out fabulous, too.  Like Gordana's, it doesn't have anything terribly innovative in regards to the design itself, but the patterning is amazing.  Althea layered and positioned a repeating pattern  on her strapless gown in a kind of nautilus shell spiral that's very interesting and flattering.

Okay, what in the hell happened to Louise's Headline Dress?  The well-shaped bodice and cute, flippy skirt are topped by what looks like sticks of dynamite above the chest. Actually it also reminds me of those orange roofs on stucco houses, you know those curved pieces? Whyyy?  It would have been really sweet without the rolled-up weirdness.

Cueball, Nicolas, Christopher, Althea, Gordana, and Irina have the high and low scores; everyone else clears the runway.  Judging time!

PR S6 Ep5 Pt. II: Whoa, is that Carrie's prom dress?!

This week, we get to see footage of some of the initial sketches from the designers, which is cool.  Christopher immediately feels ambitious, and is going for a solidly-structured bodice with a long, full, feathery skirt.  Wow.  I'm immediately reminded of Chloe Dao's leaf dress and wonder whether Chris will be able to finish in time.  Althea has sketched a dress and a jacket, but is unsure about how to handle this material, so is up for some experimentation.  Carol has sketched something that reminds me a lot of the dress she designed for the avant-garde part of the Surf'n'Turd challenge.  Nicolas feels that he's going home tomorrow because he has no idea how to work with newspaper.  (Newsflash, Nic: no one else has worked with newspaper, either!)  Irina's initial thought is to give the look of mixed materials, and use prints to do a dress.  She's painting a dubious-looking base design.

Shirin is going to papier-mâché a bodice , which made me do a double-take.  I'm wondering how she's going to get it off the dress form and then get it onto her model.  We then launch into a montage of Shirin being chatty and bubbly and generally going on and on to amuse herself while she works.  Nicolas interviews that she's so annoying and childish and he wishes she'd shut up; we get edits of the designers in the workroom pointedly ignoring her and/or rolling their eyes, which could be reality or could be the Magic Elves.  Aw, come on, she's so adorable, how could you not love her?  Maybe if I was under that kind of stress and trying to concentrate, it'd be irritating, but watching from home, I can't help but find her incredibly likable.

Cueball gets the idea to do an origami dress with origami cranes "holding up" the shoulders.  He begins painting it red and OH GOD IT LOOKS LIKE CARRIE'S PROM DRESS.  Remember that?  When the Mean Kids dumped a bucket of pig's blood on her?  Abattoir Chic.  Fuck, I have to move on or I'm going to need to lie down.

Relief!  Unnecessary Apostrophe has some pattern-cubism-origami ideas and is working on coloring his "fabric" lovely shades.  Louise has an idea to do a Headline dress.  Oooh cool!  So far, she's the only one who's thought to use the newspaper's secondary ingredient: words. 

Before we know it, it's time for Tim's walkthroughs!  Gordana's going to make two garments, one making a political statement, the other a pleated, colorful dress.  The "kooky crazy" music starts as she explains her political-statement idea, and Tim gently discourages that whole thing by encouraging her to stick with the dress she's created.  She hasn't used any muslin; it's all paper.  "I love you," Tim says.  We here at Chez Boogie do, too.  Althea, who has immunity, is talking about shoulder pads and wants to drape red-dyed paper in a fabric-y way.  Tim is unimpressed, and gives her the excellent advice to look at the paper upside-down -- a technique for creativity-jogging that's served many an artist and will serve Althea well here, too.

Irina has made two garments that she's not satisfied with, and has an idea to do a trench coat.  She's concerned that without muslin, it won't work.  Tim assures her it will.  I like the idea.  What I don't like at all is Cueball's pig-blood dress (one snark on which I agree with Nicolas), and Tim doesn't like it either, pronouncing it "a craft project gone awry" and "like a bunch of kindergarteners made it."  Cueball explains the bit about the birds looking like they're holding up the dress, and Tim responds that it looks like the birds have attacked the dress.  Poor Cueball; I can see exactly where he wants to go and it's a cool idea, but he just doesn't have the execution skills to pull it off.  After Tim leaves, he crumples his dress into a ball, tosses it towards the wastebasket, and decides to start over.

I'm going to put on the Dr. Boogie hat and notice that Cueball is highly sensitive to Tim's criticisms; almost every time Tim hasn't liked something he's done, rather than alter or expand it, he trashes it totally.  Poor guy is so insecure and I'm labeling it the byproduct of the addiction issue.  Okay, enough psychoanalysis.  Let's get the models in here!

Friday, September 18, 2009

PR S6 Ep5 Pt.I: All the Snark That's Fit to Print

Previously on Project Runway... Our Intrepid Designers created dresses for their models to wear to an industry event.  Althea won for an incomprehensible skirt, and Q of Questionable Taste was sent home for presenting a very dull dress.  This week, we're promised unconventional materials -- finally! -- and The Biggest Lie in Project Runway History.

Ooh, kittens, this was a GOOD one.

image via

We begin this episode much like we did last week's, with pointless boring blather about how people are going home, and Nicolas talking smack about how basically everyone sucks but him.  Luckily, we're quickly saved by a cheerful Heidi presenting the challenge in an adorable stripey-shirted ensemble: a field trip with Tim, and a challenge involving black and white.

Logan is thinking black-and-white movies, a sensible idea given that they're in LA, but we home viewers have the advantage of knowing it's an unconventional-materials challenge -- and sure enough, Tim brings everyone to the LA Times, to the printing area.  It's really cool to see the massive presses and machinery.  Meeting the paper's fashion editor, the designers learn they've got a scant three minutes to grab all the newspaper they can, for this will be their only material for the challenge!  There are great stacks of the LA Times, divided by sections, which allows the designers to get a glimpse of how the stacked papers create patterns, sparking some immediate ideas.

After a great deal of shoving and hauling and grunting, the designers manage to get all of their materials back to their work stations at FIDM.  Tim presents them with a selection of dyes, brushes and markers, tells them that they can use muslin as an infrastructure but that it cannot show, then gives an interesting little talk about the history of paper clothing.  They will only have until midnight to work.  Yikes!  Let the bitchery innovation begin!


So I'm trying out a new color scheme for the blog, after hearing that a lot of people find it difficult to deal with a black background.  Ugh, this is hard, because the white-on-black just seems more "me," but at the end of the day this thing is for others to read.  So, giving this a shot.  Let me know if you hate it!

Update: In addition to having to remove the jump links, the RSS subscription link went all wonky so it's been removed until I can get it fixed. Can you say "technical difficulties?"  (Knew ya could.)

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Temporary Layout Weirdness

I finally switched to the updated text editor and added jump links to the recap posts, which seems to have broken the page layout - you will temporarily find the right-hand menu at the bottom of the page, for some reason.  Apologies for the mess while I get this figured out!

Update: Looovely, it's the jump links that broke the page.  So I've removed them, for now at least.

Monday, September 14, 2009

PR s6 Ep 5 Preview!

Finally, we get a non-traditional materials Challenge!

Wait wait, so Kors is still absent? You're killing us, producers!

Hmmm, the biggest lie in Runway history? I thought that was that Vincent had talent. Ho!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Christian Siriano Spring 2010 Collection

Oh my god, you guys! My favorite PR winner, Christian Siriano, has shown a freaking amazing collection. Check out Tom and Lorenzo's blog post at Project Rungay for all the images and info. Our genius little Pocket Gay has outdone himself with the stunning prints and color palette.

Blogging Project Runway

Waving hello to new readers from the Blogging Project Runway blog! I'd been debating about adding myself to the Recapalooza for a while, then decided to go for it. I'd love to hear any comments you have about the recaps - feedback is love, as they say. And if you're not reading Blogging Project Runway, you should be! Be sure to check out the other recappers in the Recapalooza, too - they're posted on BPR every Sunday.

I began recapping PR during the 5th season; you can use the Project Runway tag to the right to read back through them. My recaps are generally posted in 3 or 4 parts for ease of reading, and they list in reverse-chronological order.  Enjoy!

PR S6 Ep4 Pt.III: Okay, that wasn't so bad

Remaining on the runway, we've got Johnny, Q, Epperson, Althea, Logan, and Carol.

We start with Carol. Marc Bouwer loves the juxtaposition of the draped top with the "sharp edge" skirt. Jennifer and Zoe similarly comment on how much they love the soft/hard mix. We can see the dress better now, and yes, the skirt has a swirly-leafy pattern on it that's quite nice. The draping is done well, too.

Logan is next. Uh-oh! The judges have "no, cheap, tacky, prom." Yeah, that pretty much covers it. Marc comments on the thickness of the top part, which was apparently caused by Logan gettting the wrong fabric and doubling it to try to hide the floral pattern it had. Logan, you're cute and you're wearing nifty pants, but that can't make up for this dress.

Moving on... Epperson's turn. The judges are pleased. His model explains her inspiration. Heidi looks at her like she's nuts, but she loves the dress - but comments that the model needs boobie help. Marc thinks it's fine. Nah, you're right, Heidi.

Cueball's turn! Man, that dress really is dull isn't it? Jennifer wrote on her card: "The purse is the most interesting thing about this outfit." Heidi says "bridesmaid." Ouch! Zoe comments on the curse of "wearable." Johnny takes the criticism well.

Q's up next. Uh-oh, Heidi says the model's been aged - in dog years no less! Jennifer is bored stiff with the plain fabric. The model is happy, but the judges are pretty cruel -- Jennifer basically says that if Valerie is happy with that dress, then "thank god" she's not a designer. Jeez, lady. She does have a point, though.

The judges love Althea's look -- erm. I can't say I agree, I liked the concept a lot more than the finished look. Heidi loves that the model walked the hell out of the look (she is a really good walker, isn't she?) Jennifer wants to leave with the jacket. So does Zoe. Looking at the outfit carefully again, I really only hate the skirt - the rest of it is good actually.

The judges deliberate. Q's dress is totally boring. Logan's dress gets a raspberry. Cueball was much too safe. Althea is awesome, Carol's dress was fabulous, and Epperson's dress was body-conscious and well-made but was a "new bra situation." (Hee!)

Decision time. Epperson is safe. Althea is the winner! Suck on that, Afghan Lady. Carol is safe. Cueball is safe. That leaves Q and Logan on the runway. (What the fuck is Q wearing? Gawd, that is a horrid grandma top.)

Q's dress was boring and looked cheap; she didn't take chances. Logan's model would stand out for all the wrong reasons. Aaaaand... Logan's in, Q is OUT! Laters, Lawn Chair Fabric!

Next week: looks like we're going to get newspaper to work with! Hmmm...

Saturday, September 12, 2009

PR S6 Ep4 Pt II: Model Mayhem and WHERE'S KORS??

Ah, clothes! Here come the models for their fittings. Johnny's model wants more oomph in the bust. He starts to cut into the bodice and she gets all bossy and he says, calmly but sharply "Don't. Tell me what to do. I don't tell you how to model." He thinks better of that and quickly adds, "Yes, I do tell you how to model, don't I?" Hee. Althea's model is super-happy. Logan's worried that, although Kojii likes his "goth Cinderella" look, people at the party will be looking at her for the wrong reasons. Me, too.

Q's worried that her dress, though it's looking a lot better than it did, is too simple. Shirin is having some major consternation over her outfit. It's obvious that her vision and her model's vision are not meshing. Yikes. I want to see more footage of Gordana's woven gold dress!

Before we know it, it's the next day! Another lingering morning shot of Logan half-naked, with wet hair, wearing silver pants. Ooh la la. He hopes his outfit will distract Heidi from looking at his dress. Ha!

2 hours to the runway show. Chris's dress really is looking like a salad. UA is doing a ruffly thing. Irina's dress looks a bit like an afghan. Althea's model is impressed with her outfit, but Irina snipes in interview that Althea's outfit would have looked better if she'd stapled it together. Okay, Afghan Lady. Nicolas snickers at Epperson's "rag" and says that Johnny's dress looks like he stomped on it. Laaaaaace Chaps!

Garnier, L'Oreal, Macy's wall. Let's get to the runway, already!

Okay, Kors is still absent. WTF? We miss you, Michael! The guest judges are Jennifer Rade, Marc Bouwer, and Zoe Glassner.

First up, Q's completely unremarkable Little Black Dress. It's really simple, one-shoulder, not especially eye-catching, though it fits the model well and I like the strap in the back. However, zzzz.

Nicolas is way too overconfident, if you ask me. His dress is a simple pearlescent sheath with a high gray neck and grey trim at the sides. The bodice does that obnoxious thing where it moves on its own independent of the body. He thinks it's a sure winner. Hm.

Irina's done yet another stupid belt ruffle. There's a cute little cropped jacket over the afghan dress. It's not particularly chic; actually it's kind of dull. Another zzz over here.

Gordana's minidress is gorgeous. It's gold, with elbow-length sleeves and very cool weaving in the front, and it fits the model beautifully.

Shirin's dress came out adorable after all! The blue isn't obnoxious, the dress flows nicely on the model - though it's a little short - and there's some cool straps on the back. Heidi does that "I want that" face where she's staring at the model while writing furiously on her card. Good for Shirin for standing up to her client and not producing the initial idea.

Next, we have Logan's dress. Oh, dear. It is *totally* a prom dress. And it doesn't look well-made, either. The black bodice is simple and thick-looking, with spaghetti straps, and the blue skirt is too big and stiff and moves strangely. On the bright side, it's not particularly Smurfy.

Chris's dress is... it's not badly made or ugly, but I hate it. It reminds me of lime green crepe paper. His model wanted to emphasize her small waist, but the shape of this dress doesn't do that - with its high waist and dropped sash, it makes her look quite straight.

Epperson's model looks hawt in her dress! It comes dangerously close to looking trashy, and the bust isn't fitted well (and she's got some Side Boobage that is not classy) but overall it's not a bad effort. Given the demands she made, it's kind of a triumph that he managed to make her happy.

Johnny's dress isn't that interesting, but it's cute with lots of detailing. I'm not totally crazy about how mono-color it is, and the skirt is a bit too structured, but the model is happy and looks good.

Althea's outfit... yikes, I thought it was going to look better. The skirt looks all bunchy and strange and messy, and the top is ordinary, though the jacket is pretty cool.

Oooh, Louise's dress is beautiful! It's a sleeveless black mindress with a big ruffle around the neck, beautifully fitted and chic.

UA's dress is a completely unremarkable blue strapless minidress with a gigantic fabric flower-poof covering most of the chest. Well, she'll certainly stand out!

Carol shows us a high-waisted dress with an interesting purple bodice and a sleek dark skirt with a texture or print on it, I can't really see what it is, it looks sort of alligator-y. There's a little swingy ruffle on the back. It's quite nice, not to my taste but well-made.

Louise, Irina, Chris, Nicolas, Gordana, Shirin, and UA are safe! Really? I would've put Louise's and Gordana's dresses in the top three for sure. Oh well, next time we'll find out who wins and who goes home.

PR S6 Ep4 Pt I: Please let this one be better?

Previously on Project Runway: Avant garde surfwear, bickering and snickering, a whole lotta turds went down the runway, and The Other Guy Who Isn't Doing Anything, aka Mitchell, got sent home. Let's see if this week's ep is less horrendous!

We open in the guys' apartment, where Nicolas is telling Epperson and Chris that it's "time to weed out the talentless people." Okay, Lace Chaps. I think they've been doing a good job so far, actually. In the women's apartment, Q is quipping that now she'll be known as the "b-i-t-c-h." No, Q, you're just known as being passive-aggressive and having bad taste in fabrics. Gordana tries to impart some wisdom about Q not being assertive enough, which Q chooses to just ignore. Okay, then.

Challenge time! A hawt-looking Heidi tells the designers that they have 13 women who know exactly what they want, and the designers will have to make them happy. Nicolas interviews that these people could "be anything from homeless people to Eskimos." Does this asshole even think before he speaks on national TV?

Well, it happens that their clients are their models! Tim tells the designers that the models have been invited to a special event, and the designers must create an outfit for their model that will make them stand out to potential clients. 30 minutes to discuss, $100- to spend at Mood, and only one day to create the outfit.

Johnny's relieved because he's confident that he knows what his model wants. "It's like designing something for myself if I was a black girl," he interviews, and then makes this hilarious "did I just say something offensive?" face. At least someone is thinking about what they're saying!

Epperson's in trouble. His model is giving him a litany of completely contradictory/nonsensical descriptors. "Sexy, romantic, chic, elegant, classy, fitted, short, punk, tiger." Uh? Irina's model is the opposite - she's very indecisive and doesn't know what she wants until Irina mentions it.

Louise is worried that the red her model is requesting would be too "garish" for an industry event; she wants to do black and gold instead. More worrying is Shirin's model, who wants a bright royal blue catsuit with a plunging back and gold rope trim. "Are you sure this is good for this occasion?" Shirin asks, afraid that it's going to look like a tacky costume.

Kojii, Logan's model, wants something different, something 50's. Logan's worried because he's never done anything like that. Yeah, Cat-Thrower isn't here, Kojii. (By the way, Kojii is so damn pretty, isn't she?) There is some definite apprehension in the air. Except for Q, who is "really excited" about doing something curve-accentuating.

Mood scramble, then back to the work room to get to work. There's some dull footage that essentially just shows that the designers are becoming more aware of people leaving. How insightful! Luckily, Tim comes in for the walk-through.

Althea's got this great black fabric and she's doing a smoking jacket (she initially confuses Tim by calling it a "cigarette jacket"). There's a bubble-ish looking skirt and she's going to do a sash kind of thing. Tim's pretty excited about the potential "wow factor" (a phrase that needs to die die die). Christopher is doing something lime-green ( he refers to it as "emerald," maybe it's reading differently on camera) and very ruffly. He jokes that he thought Tim would call it a salad. Epperson explains all the things his model asked for, which makes Tim laugh, but the dress is actually looking pretty good, though it's awfully reminiscent of Nicolas' first dress.

Q, on the other hand, is turning out yet another drapey turd. Tim apologetically says that it looks "messy," and it does. Logan's dress is looking quite messy, too. There's a blue skirt and some kind of thick-looking black thing going on up top. Logan's worried that it will look like a "Smurf prom dress." Bwaha! Tim blanches at "prom" and says, "Don't use that word again!" Hey Tim, we won't say "prom" if you don't say "wow factor." Deal?

Carol is doing a drapey one-shoulder thing that worries Tim because it's old-looking. Gordana is doing some weaving on her bodice, but we don't get to see it, which is disappointing.

Next is a bunch of footage of Epperson talking to his family, which is touching and all (after talking to his kids, there's a poignant shot of him sewing and crying) but has nothing to do with the clothes. Show us more clothes!

Next up, in Part II: More clothes! Excellent.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Project Runway S6 Ep4 Preview

Yikes, it's a Models of the Runway tie-in!

These previews continue to slay me. Where's the popcorn?

PR S6 Ep3 Pt IV: Crack, anyone?

Okay, now that I've had that drink and a nice long nap, let's wrap this shit up.

Louise/Althea, Logan/Christopher, and Shirin/Carol are the "good enough" group. What?? Q/Epperson and Nicolas/Gordana have the lowest scores, leaving Johnny/Irina and UA/Togwida at the top. This is what I'm talking about with the crack, because this is all kinds of backasswards. Gordana looks like she's waiting for the judges to say, "Haaaa, kidding!"

Johnny/Irina's look is the favorite of Rachel Bilson. Nina likes the back a lot. Azria complements the top of their Truffle.

UA begins explaining his vision for the dress, and Heidi interrupts with a "aren't you the team leader, Mitchell?" Togwida completely fails to explain the garments and it essentially admits that he worked on the bathing suit, but that's it. Hear that bell tolling, Togwida? It tolls for thee, buddy. UA explains all the work he did. The judges, for some reason, really like the godawful neoprene dress.

Low scorers come out. Q immediately complains that Epperson "basically took over," Epperson rolls his eyes, and the two proceed to embarrass themselves by arguing in front of the judges. Heidi makes the most hilarious rolley-eyes face I've ever seen. Even the other designers are rolling their eyes at these two. Max Azria points out that you can't be a designer if you're not a team player. Nina asks about the Turd Suit, "What *is* this?" No one has an answer, including any of us at home.

Time for Nicolas and Gordana to explain their work. Heidi points out that the dye job on their bathing suit is beautiful, but the pants are very messy. The avant garde look she describes, kindly, as "not classy." Gordana, who is getting more awesome with each ep, compliments Nicolas' ideas for the organza top (the only part of the look I personally thought was good). Nina says they went "too sexy." Again, a kind way of saying "SHE LOOKS LIKE AN ALIEN PROSTITUTE ON ACID." If only the skirt were longer and they'd ditched the lacy crap.

The judges deliberate. Johnny/Irina did well. Heidi says she would wear UA's peestain neoprene dress "with some tweaking." Like, ripping it apart and starting all over? However, Togwida doing nothing hits a sore spot with Heidi. Same with all of us, Frau Klum. Nicolas/Gordana just totally missed with the garter/chaps thing. Azria liked the swimsuit. They talk about Q and Ep, and Azria calls Q "weak" because she let Ep just take over. They do like the top of their first dress. But it's not even! This bugs.

Decision time. UA is the winner?! Okay, I want to know where the judges are hiding the crack pipe. To his credit, UA is as surprised as we are. Johnny/Irina and Nicolas/Gordana are safe. Ep is safe. That leaves Q and Togwida standing on the runway. Heidi notes that never in the history of PR has a member of the winning team gone home. Well, that's about to change: three strikes, and Togwida is out. Azria says Togwida is a "nice guy," but sadly he's a nice guy who can't sew. Laters, No-Sew!

Well, that was right up there as the crappiest Runway ep ever. Please let the rest of the season be better than this!

Monday, September 7, 2009

PR S6 Ep3 Part III: Is there something in the water?

Runway Day!

We finally see a smidge of Logan and Chris getting along and being happy with their partnership. UA, on the other hand, is having to do everything for his team. His green neoprene, he worries, is looking like "a ball of lettuce" so he decides to do some hand-dyeing. Tim is concerned that UA will be disqualified for not having his looks finished. UA is feeling like the whole situation is really unfair -- he's doing everything because Togwida can't/won't be focused and work and pull his weight. Tim advises UA to save himself and make sure both models are ready.

PR S6 Ep3 Pt. II - Avant Gaaaagh

Oh, dear. They've shoehorned an avant garde challenge onto the back of a surfwear challenge? Each team will get $200- and 20 minutes at Mood the next day to create their second look, which is supposed to relate to their first look. Forgive me for thinking that this challenge was done the stupid way around.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

PR S6 Ep3 Pt I: Surf's Up! Oh wait, no, that's my lunch.

This week, our designers are brought to the beach to meet with a group of surfers. The challenge? Work in teams of two to design a surf wear look. The catch? Of course there will be one! The best part of the whole beach outing? This:

Friday, September 4, 2009

Oh, for crying out loud.

Last night's Project Runway ep was so many kinds of awful, I wish I could just say "nope, never happened," and we could all go merrily on our ways. The right designer got sent home, but the challenge was idiotic, the "winning" outfit was a complete pile of poo, and the judging made no sense. Nevertheless, I will endeavor to faithfully recap it.

Is anyone watching the Models of the Runway show? I find it filled with the things I like least about my gender - phony saccharine "awwwww"s, bitchfighting, and high-pitched squealing.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

PR S6 Ep2 Pt IV: Don't Count Your...

Okay darlings, let's get this one wrapped up before the new eppy tonight!

We've got the top 3 and bottom 3 up on the stage: Shirin, Mitchell, Louise, Malvin, Althea, and Unnecessary Apostrophe.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

PR S6 Ep.II Part III: Workin' on Ya Leathuh

It's Runway Day! Morning in the guys' apartment. Mitchell is sure he's going home. Malvin's having some doubts. Not in the good way. He actually thinks his "egg nest" should be MORE literal. *puts head in hands*.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

PR S6 Ep2 Pt II: Bawk-Bawk!

At Mood, designers are scrambling. Shirin chirps happily upon finding the perfect fabric to line to coat she's making. Q loses her shit trying to get everything she needs -- Tim tells her to breathe. Q refers to herself as being "focused" and needing to "stay centered." Stay centered? You have to get centered first, girl.