Project Runway Recap: S12 E7

pr12-ep7-episode3 (1)
Alright, shoe-lovers, it’s time for a tour of the Marie Claire fashion closet. 

The Challenge: The designers get a tour of the Marie Claire fashion closet and are tasked with creating a look inspired by a pair of shoes. Tim Gunn gave them a fashion quiz to determine who picks first, which was actually sort of fun, and gave the more pretentious designers reasons to pat themselves on the back for their knowledge of fashion history while mocking their less-informed peers.

Guest Judges: Kaley Cuoco, who has no business telling anyone anything about fashion when she has never appeared on a red carpet looking anything but lost, and Anne Fulenwider, editor-in-chief of Marie Claire.

ALEXANDER POPE
Photo: Lifetime

Photo: Lifetime

Surprisingly excellent. Clearly the winner of the tartan pants competition (Miranda’s pants were made of almost the same fabric), though is that a splitting seam I see over the model’s buttcrack? I hope not. Anyway, Alexander usually struggles with toning down his looks enough so that actually human beings could consider wearing them, but he proved with this challenge that he can make modern, fashionable, wearable clothes. I’d wear that top in a heartbeat.

ALEXANDRIA VAN BROMSSEN
Top 3
Photo: Lifetime

Photo: Lifetime

The clear winner, as far as I was concerned. The boots are so insane, they’re borderline hideous, but if anyone can pull them off, it’s this model. I loved the simplicity of this dress – particularly important when the shoes are this attention-grabbing – and the sort of ethereal, wispy vibe it brought to the majorly S&M shoes. As the judges said, that hard-and-soft combination worked brilliantly. Alexandria’s styling skills are probably the best of any of the contestants, and I’m looking forward to seeing what else she’s got up her fabulous little sleeves.

BRADON MCDONALD
Bottom 3
Photo: Lifetime

Photo: Lifetime

Awful. The rouching effect on the top looks quite ugly, and there’s nothing interesting about that satin poodle skirt. I didn’t want to see Bradon go home, because his earlier work proves he’s got a lot of talent and potential, but this was truly terrible.

DOM STREATER
Photo: Lifetime

Photo: Lifetime

I really wanted to like this, because I think Dom’s use of quilting was creative and cool, but the result is bulky, ill-fitting, and kind of tacky. I don’t think it was a great idea to match all of the colors in the shoes exactly – it comes off as very clownish and not remotely wearable.

HELEN CASTILLO
Winner
Photo: Lifetime

Photo: Lifetime

So Helen made the world’s most basic LBD and a shrug to go over it, and we had to act like she was Coco Chanel herself, inventing the damn little black dress. I could not understand the extraordinary praise this very, VERY simple garment received. Don’t get me wrong – it’s clearly very wearable, and by far the best thing Helen has made on this show. But are we just going to ignore the fact that there’s not a modicum of innovation or creativity in here? This exact outfit has walked down the Calvin Klein runways approximately eight hundred times. If the judges are expecting me to act like Helen created something that we haven’t all seen a million times before, I’m going to need them to share their crack pipes with me.

JEREMY BRANDRICK
Bottom 3
Photo: Lifetime

Photo: Lifetime

Forgettable. The skirt’s got nothing going on, and the sweater looks like toilet paper.

JUSTIN LEBLANC
Photo: Lifetime

Photo: Lifetime

Good silhouette and fit; great shrug. But Justin’s work is still too boring to keep him on the show much longer. I know he wanted to tone down the outfit and show off the shoes, but there were still more interesting ways to do that.

KAREN BATTS
Photo: Lifetime

Photo: Lifetime

Terrible, but there were so many disasters on the runway that this was able to sneak by unnoticed. That seems to happen to Karen a lot, actually.

KATE PANKOKE
Photo: Lifetime

Photo: Lifetime

This is hideous. I don’t even know what I’m looking at. And when the challenge is based around the shoes, don’t you think we should actually be able to see the shoes on the runway?

KEN LAURENCE
Top 3
Photo: Lifetime

Photo: Lifetime

Another wildly overpraised, very basic black dress. I haven’t seen Ken create anything that doesn’t look like an 80s prom dress, and this is no exception.

MIRANDA LEVY
Eliminated
Photo: Lifetime

Photo: Lifetime

It was certainly Miranda’s turn to go home. Though Kate and Bradon made much uglier garments, Miranda has yet to churn out anything but awkward, repetitive silhouettes, so I had no problem with her auf-ing. I do agree with her feelings that not all fashion has to be “cool,” and there’s a huge market for nerdier clothes. In fact, it became obvious that the judges have no other words to describe fashion, as they used the word “cool” approximately eight hundred thousand times during the episode. Grab a thesaurus, judges, because I can’t stand listening to grown adults who are supposed to be fashion experts judge every single garment in terms of “cool” or “not cool.” Overall, this was a pretty boring episode. I don’t need more drama, but a more interesting challenge would have helped.

Judges’ Top 3: Helen, Ken, Alexandria
Diva’s Top 3: Alexandria, Alexander, Helen
Judges’ Bottom 3: Jeremy, Bradon, Miranda
Diva’s Bottom 3: Bradon, Kate, Miranda


© Democracy Diva, 2013.
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3 responses to Project Runway Recap: S12 E7

  1. You forgot the word “fresh.” Things are cool and fresh. The makeup look is fresh. If it doesn’t make the model look like a raddled old whore, it’s fresh. This episode gave Helen her obligatory win so she has something to look back on and will be able to appear on Project Runway All-Stars. I think her outfit was the best thing on the runway this week, with Ken coming in a close second and an argument could be made for him being first, but the peplum is on its way out. It can’t leave too soon for me, and ditto the exposed zipper. Kate’s blouse was cute and could be worn with the right pair of jeans. Jeremy wants to show people he can do different techniques, which is good, but he’s not using them well. I liked Dom’s colors (although she was a bit matchy-matchy) and even the quilting was okay but it did make the model look bulky, and if you can make a size 2 look bulky, you’ve got problems. Dom should have stopped the quilting in the waist area to slim her model. Dior did that with his coats in the New Look: woolen top, woolen flare skirt, and thin cotton at the waistline with a belt so the waistline would look tiny. A modification of that technique would have improved Dom’s look.

    Bradon was doing a riff on a Prabul Gurung spring/summer 2011 look. He should either have done the whole dress in that technique and made it a cocktail dress, or shortened it and made a different skirt or shorts or something. I wish they’d give these designers enough time to work out these issues. It’s like giving Top Chef contestants 30 minutes and a limited supplies and then criticizing them because “if it’s not perfect, you shouldn’t serve it.” Well, if they don’t have time to start over, and they don’t have ingredients to start over, what can they do? Serve it, and hope somebody else’s dish sucks worse. I think it was past time for Miranda to leave, and I’m not sure it helps if you’re going home “on something I can believe it.” What it means is that something you believed in got rejected. And an aside on tattoos. I don’t object to tattoos in general and I strongly believe in the individual’s right to tat themselves up one side and down the other- but why would fashion designers have so many? Fashion changes, why would they think tattoos won’t? Is Helen really going to enjoy having the image of a pair of scissors stabbed into her neck when she’s 50? I doubt it very much.

    • democracydiva – Author

      “Fresh,” “cool,” – they both mean “I clearly don’t know what the hell I’m talking about.” (At least when they’re the ONLY words you use.) And I agree that Bradon could have created something remarkable given more time, but he definitely bit off more than he could chew, and didn’t have the luxury of time to backtrack.

  2. Stef

    I think that Natashia model must be bad luck or something haha..has anyone noticed the dress she wears is constantly on the bottom, and if not the dress she is wearing is bad? On the other spectrum, Ya is constantly on top. Look at Bradon..made consistently good looks with Ya, got two wins with her and then he gets Nat and makes his first bad look and winds up in the bottom the next week with her.

    Just an observation…

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