Out of the gate my initial thoughts:
I have missed Tim Gunn (loved the pinstripe suit and tie) and his realness. “You have a lump of coal up your rear ends.”
I’m initially on Team Ashley (plus size represents!), Candice (because I love that her daughter changed her life) and Edmond because after 13 seasons of trying he finally made it!
I already can’t stand Merline because she’s hashtag annoying “this is like for real for real” and Blake because he’s coming off as a conceited bitch.
JustFab accessories wall? What’s next season? Payless?
Now let’s get started! Just bare with me because I will have a hard time keeping everyone straight (no pun intended) and there are 16 designers.
The designers are taken to a massive empty Madison Square Garden where they are met by Heidi and my love, Tim Gunn where they learn their first challenge. Sheets of Mood fabric have been strewn over seats all over the arena and the designers have 3 minutes to grab 4 pieces of materials (and grab they do, right out of each others hands in some cases). I can’t even imagine trying to run up those stairs in heels. Anyway, the designers must then create a garment that reflects their aesthetic and they have one day to complete the challenge.
Back in the workroom Tim tells them to use the low-rent (sorry, I’m a shoe snob) Just Fab wall smartly and tell them they get a Brother garment printer to use the entire season. This season they are told they can use their own tool kits but 3 designers ignore this instruction and therefore are tooless (clueless). Guess they assumed they would be provided. They were wrong. As they begin to work in the workroom for the first time, Merline just flat out annoys everyone by singing and not shutting her trap for one second. A few designers were kind enough to share their tools with the clueless and tooless trio. When Tim comes to give his first critiques of the season he starts out praising some like Ashley. He then turns dour and then expresses his disappointment with almost every designer. Some designers take his critiques seriously and others totally ignore him (big mistake) like Hanmiao.
Off to the runway! The judges are Heidi, Nina Garcia, Zac Posen (with shorter hair) and model and host of “Project Runway Junior” (snooze) Hannah Davis. Tim Gunn joins the judges for the show, but will not be judging.
The Top Three
Edmond: His little black tube dress with a long neon lined skirt/train was beautifully executed and styled. Yeah! I was praying for him.
Merline: While I loved the design the burnt orange fabric of her “working-woman’s power suit” was not my favorite, but the judges loved it. It was architectural, modern and sophisticated. She lives to annoy another day.
Ashley: I knew instantly she would be the winner. Nina appreciated she was the only designer who used texture. Her pocketed box pleat maxi skirt in a yellow, black and white bold floral print paired with an open-backed textured white crop top was highly original. Congrats!
The Bottom Three
Let me first say I was so surprised the ugly, poorly fitting and drab grey dress designed by I think it was Gabrielle was not one of the worst. Frankly I thought SHE should have been sent home, but I wasn’t on the panel.
Hanmiao: You just knew the judges were going to hate this massive hot mess in tangerine with some funky patterned material oversized tangerine dress and an even bigger long matching vest. The poor model is lost in the sack-like garment and the judges argue that had this been done in a different fabric, it may have worked.
Blake: The only person surprised this circus tent was called out was Blake, and I’m glad he was taken down a few realistic notches. His styling with a draped necklace also did him no favors.
Duncan: Oddly this was one of the designs Tim was initially more excited about, but sadly Duncan’s inexperience was his undoing. His pink shiny silk draped maxi-dress was overwhelming and executed poorly. The judges also noticed his hem was atrocious. Duncan was sent packing back to New Zealand and Tim told him he never expected it (hugs). We hardly knew ya.
“My name is Ashley Neil Tipton. And I’m fun, funky and fat.” – Ashley
“I just want to make it through the first episode.” – Duncan
“We’re next to each other. We’re gonna be bumpin’ booties.” – Ashley to Duncan
“My magic wand is back home.” – Swapnil
“My suitcase weighed 80 pounds, and I weighed 100 pounds. Suck it up.” – Lindsey
“I have to call myself ‘pistachio’ because pistachio in Chinese means ‘happy nut’.” – Hanmiao
“Remember guys, we only have to go on one date with this fabric.” – Jake
“The way that this drapes on its own really disturbs me. It looks like a receptacle. Like she puts her lunch in it.” – Tim Gunn
“A lot of you have a big lump of coal in your rear ends. You need to get that coal out and turn it into a diamond.” – Tim Gunn
“Not looking cute…. not looking cute.” – Merline
“I don’t understand Blake’s look. It looks like a kite.” – Lindsey
“First thing I thought was Sally Draper and then a picnic table cloth.” – Zac Posen
“It’s a little tortured” – Nina
“I cannot tell if you can actually sew or not.” – Heidi
“What do we got? Picnic, monk and maternity.” – Zac Posen
“I like a designer with more ideas than no ideas.” – Nina
“It’s always the hardest for the very first one [asked to leave].” – Heidi
Be sure to check out our other favorite site dedicated to all things Project Runway…Blogging Project Runway!
– Lauren Dimet Waters
First let me say the AARP commercial with the 55 year old shoe designer and Tim Gunn so warmed my heart. It’s NEVER too late to start a new career. This just affirmed it. I digress.