Friday, September 16, 2016

PR 15, Ep 1: Let’s Get This Party Started!

Usually the PR starts each season with the designtestants on the roof of a high-rise sipping champagne with Tim and Heidi, but this year they were given a full-blown party.

And that should’a been a clue. I mean, I get the snacks and the drinks, but the wigs and the backpacks and all the pillows, rugs, lanterns, napkins and placemats should have been screaming: We’re your challenge! But there’s laughing and chatting and sizing each other up, so the surroundings kinda go unnoticed until Heidi announces that this is the first challenge … and it’s Unconventional!

The designtestants are tasked with taking the idea of this party and all of the bits and pieces of it to create a signature. They can use anything and everything in the room, but no Mood, and so they begin to scramble, grabbing anything and everything while Heidi sneaks over the chocolate fountain for a dipped strawberry and a sly smile.

At the end, the room is destroyed — seriously, it looks like my house on a Sunday morning — and, with no glasses left behind, Tim and Heidi chug champagne from the bottle and wait for the fun …

Let’s rip …
FIRST ROW, left to right:
ALEX I like it, though the top seems to vanish into her skin tone and the napkins, or placemats, circling her waist make it look like she spilled marinara sauce on her dress and is trying to cover it up.

CORNELIUS I liked the trail of flowers down the back, but with that huge arrangement at her neck, it looks like the Garden of Eden is trying to strangle her.

JENNI used backpacks and feather boas and hand-painting and kinda cool. I like it, though it needed a bigger pop of color.

KIMBER got the ‘Who’ edit because we almost never saw her, and this look is maybe why. It’s stiff and looks like placemats made into a dress … which is what it is; no bueno, Kimber.

SECOND ROW, left to right:
LAURENCE is a former model and she is fabulous. Her look, however, is too simple for me, and the placement of the necklaces at the neck — they are part of the dress — make it look like the girl just threw on a bunch of necklaces. Not a smart move.
LINDA It’s cute. It’s junior. It’s mini-quinceañera. That’s all.

MAH-JING Not as cute as my first thought, but that’s neither here nor there. His look? Crumpled magazine pages on a basic silhouette. I’m less than impressed.

NATHALIA Sonja Henie on Ice! It’s good, not great.

THIRD ROW, left to right:
RIK Now, Rik is adorable …. Dimples Alert! I like the look — crafted of undeveloped Polaroid film — but it’s kinda basic. Still, :::sigh::: those dimples.

SARAH created a party dress from party supplies and while it’s colorful, it’s not new or exciting.
Tasha looks a little like a bag lady but Tasha has spunk; she designs for the girl who doesn’t wear heels and I like that idea.

She grabbed Mood shopping bags to make a drop crotch pant — not a favorite, though, of mine — and used pillows and Twizzlers for the crop top; she also nabbed Heidi and Tim’s directors’ chairs and used the fabric to make a purse. Tim had reservations about the pants because Tasha was running out of Mood bags and maybe the back would be plain, but she “made it work.”

I’m loving the way she’s walking … the attitude.

It’s striking and cool but the Heidi-Tim bag seems more of a beg.

Heidi loved the urban cool girl vibe, though up close she wasn’t as fond of the pants; Nina loved the attitude and the proportions and said the look was Tasha. Guest judge, Savannah Guthrie kissed Heidi’s ass by continuing to rave about the handbag, but did say the look wasn’t for “real” women. The Adorable Zac Posen™ loved the textiles Tasha created with the bags and pillows.
I like Dexter’s style, the clothes he wears, but I was worried that, at first, he just, as Tim said, cut a hole in a pillow and put it over the model’s head and then took the wires out of an umbrella and wrapped it around the waist like a skirt. There was no creativity.

Luckily, Dexter took Tim’s advice and, while still using the pillows, he cut them up and created a new look; he also kept the umbrella circle skirt but covered it, and the model’s arms with it. It could have gone Yeti but …

I feel my garment definitely represents me as a designer.

The sleeves! Oh, honey …. No, no. Followed by, the sleeves! I’m feeling ‘em now.

Nina is impressed by both the look and the styling—including the bracelets wrapped around the model’s ankles; she dubbed it a “runway piece” with both volume and movement. The Adorable Zac Posen™  called it Alaskan Poodle, but loved the tribal aesthetic, though he wishes Dexter had gone further. Heidi joked that the rugs could be oh so wrong, but here they are oh so right; it’s wow, it’s gutsy. Savannah muttered something about a good POV.
I was so scared for her because she’s so methodical and so slow and it looked like she’d give us our first nekkid model of the season.

I was also worried that she went with everything yellow, from wigs to bags to candies; yellow is not a color for everyone, but she used them all to her advantage with this Big Canary Yellow dress.

I’m so proud I’m sending something bold down the runway.

I think it’s pretty fabulous and I am amazed that she finished it, but, man, that’s a lot of yellow.

Heidi called it a standout and a “wow” look; she did like the color and all the ideas. Nina gave it the “high praise” by saying it was editorial and inspirational when it could have been Big Bird On A Cat Walk. The Adorable Zac Posen™  said it was of his all-time favorites and loved the texture and proportions of the “magically Muppet-y” dress. Savannah loved the “explosion” of color, though, yeah, it was one color, dear.
Paper lanterns; lots of paper lanterns. And he doesn’t seem so ready to work and doesn’t seem so sure of what he’s doing. But he starts twisting and turning them and suddenly he’s got this gold, white, and blue … very short … sculpture.

It might not be wearable, but it works … ?

It represents me as a designer.

I love the sculptural quality to it and it looks like one lantern wound around her body into a dress.

Savannah said she gasped, and not in a good way; she hates the colors and the length and says it’s not fashion—I muttered, “Look in a mirror before you call something not fashion, okurrrrr?” Nina said she’s seen it before, on runways and on the PR and called it unbalanced. Heidi, on the other hand, loved the colors and the way it moved around the body; she called it poetry. The Adorable Zac Posen™  called it sensitive and well-made and fun.
Brik is a sweet Southern boy … who loves him some glitter because that’s about all he grabbed at the party … bowls of glitter and some ball caps.

Glitter and Ball Caps … sounds like a fun party.

And so he glued the glitter onto some high-waisted bell-bottom pants and created a cool texture and sparkle; for the top he used the caps to make an interesting shoulder detail and a tailored top.

It was cool, but the two pieces seemed odd together.

It looks cool.

The top doesn’t match the bottom and neither matches the hair; I like it all separate but this girl got dressed, and did her hair, in the closet.

Heidi called it “mismatch” though she loved the “futuristic vibe” of the top … but not with the disco pants. Nina also loved the use of the hats but said it was too many things that are all wrong together. The Adorable Zac Posen™ dubbed it Gaga on top and Abba on the bottom and says it’s a hot mess. Savannah called it Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farms hair, Star Wars top, and Studio 54 pants.
He doesn’t; he doesn’t do couture, he doesn’t do volume and he doesn’t listen to Tim Gunn. His fate seems sealed.

When Tim suggested that the look was simple and that Ian ought to pump it up, Ian was not having it … and that’s his right. But you gotta listen to Tim, man, and at least hear him and don’t just disregard the Tim Gunn!

He took mesh photo screens and made a shift dress … yawn … then he created front and back panels of Polaroids and pillow tassels in, wait for it, My Little Pony color because that’s what he does.

What he doesn’t is make something interesting.

It’s beautiful, it’s got enough sparkle, it’s strong.

It looks like a basic shift dress that’s been TP’d by a bunch of teenagers.

When Ian said he took a “basic shift dress,” Heidi said, “Yeah, it’s a basic shift dress. She thinks Ian missed the mark and the chance to go on. When The Adorable Zac Posen™ says the look is messy, Ian whines about all the hand-sewing and how he couldn’t iron it; The Adorable Zac Posen™  did like the colors, though, and so did Savannah and that was all from her. Nina liked the texture and the colors and the icicles hanging down but said it was not creative enough.
Heidi then said it was sad and The Adorable Zac Posen™  said it was a snooze.
Well, clearly Erin was the winner; I wasn’t a fan of the one-note color, but you gotta admit it was a statement.

As for The Losers, it came down to Brik’s Star Wars Disco and Ian’s Toilet Papered Shift.
There was a lot of talk that Ian doesn’t do certain things and one thing he doesn’t is get a second chance. He’s Auf’d.

Savannah Guthrie as a judge? Seriously? I mean her own style on the judging panel was boring and made me so angry I wanted to smack her. She looked that that and then critiques fashion designers? And all because she’s a superfan? I’m a freaking superfan, get me a seat on the panel!

As for the designtestants … the male ones: Mah-Jing is less cute than I thought at first, and Brik is much cuter than I thought — Debra was right, cute and he can rock a man bun. But, oy, Rik and the Dimples! I love his smile.

And I like Alex, too, because he seems to want to help everyone; he talked Dexter off the ledge and helped others with their designs. That could bode well, o r he might spend so much time helpoi9ng that his own work suffers.

Two-toned hair Nathalia and Cornelius—who may turn into the villain judging from previews—are BFFs from school, but might also be frenemies. I’m kinda hoping for frenemies.

And what about that laugh heard round the world? At first I thought it was Alex, but it turns out that the hee-haw guffaw is Jenni. Note to designers: don’t make her laugh!

As for Favorite Looks of Mine: Erin. Clearly; she’s got it, if she doesn’t waste time. Dexter could be the edgy best bet, and Roberi might be good, though I get the feeling that he’s gonna flame-out. Rik and Brik need to hook-up as a tag-team design company because I like their names. And then there’s Kimber? Who? Maybe she’ll get some airtime, but she bettah work.

But best of all is that beefcake Gregory Patterson from Sally Beauty is back … why not just call it Gregory Beauty because that’s what it is?

What did YOU think?


Anonymous said...

I think that I'll sit out watching this season and just come here. It'll be a lot more interesting! I would love for you to be on the panel, Bob, for the same reason. One bone to pick with whoever said it (short attention span), what's with this "real women" shizz? Are the models androids or something? Thank you, Bob, for providing all my Project Runway needs.

the dogs' mother said...

Great recap. The Engineer is watching Thursday
night football so I have to record it and find
time to watch it. Unconventional challenge is a
great way to shake them up. :-)

jawhite21 said...

I agree with Gregory Patterson, without doubt.

Regarding Emiily's dress, however, I've seen that exact outfit before in an old movie. I'll look it up and try to find it, but it's a blue thing with a huge ruffle of overs-stuffed cleavage in lighter blue ruffles. Combined with with blue pumps. I have to sat that it looked better than this--I was a shocked that she wasn't in the bottom.

Biki Honko said...

Great breakdown, as usual Bob. I thought this episode was a great beginning to this season. Hopefully the interest level doesn't fade out as the season goes by as other seasons have.

Gene Perry said...

Tim Gunn warned Ian during critiques that the judges were going to say exactly what the judges said. Ian didn't listen. Ian got dumped. There's a lesson there. ALWAYS LISTEN TO TIM GUNN!

Professor Chaos said...

I was really surprised how much the judges liked Dexter and Erin. Funny you mentioned yeti, because the first thing I said when I saw it was "oh, he took that ugly shirt and gave it yeti arms?"

Erins I thought was pretty good, but I immediately thought "salute to the Lorax?" when I saw it on the model.