Saturday, September 23, 2017

Project Runway Season 16 at Fashion Week

I've been terribly remiss in not posting the images from the Project Runway show at New York Fashion Week. The show took place on September 9th, and included six designers. That means three decoys, although I don't know why they would even bother with decoys when at that point there were 12 designers left and there was no way they could show the faces of the participants. The final three finalists may have very distinct styles, so the audience would be able to guess which collection belonged to which designer. Or perhaps that was the original thought. A look at all six collections leaves me somewhat baffled. I can't really tell who may have created what as they are all pretty underwhelming. There are also no real standouts, in my mind.

There are 61 pics in the image below, which allows 10 looks for each of 6 designers, plus a final shot of the judges (which included former Disney kid Zendaya).

Click to enlarge images.

I have selected four looks from each of the six collections. From the looks of things, Ayana's isn't one of them, as there are no modest looks in the group at all. Also notice there are no plus sized models, which I assume is because the designers would not know which models they'd be working with until after the clothes were made and it would simply be safest for them to make the usual size 0-2 garments.

I think the final six could include Kenya, Amy, Brandon, Kentaro, Michael, and sadly, one or both of the Annoying Twins. In other words, I don't think Ayana, Batani, or Margarita make it to the final 6. At least there are no garments that look like the work of Ayana or Batani. Margarita, maybe.

Are you willing to hazard a guess?







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Friday, September 22, 2017

Project Runway Recap - Season 16, Episode 6

Greetings Earthlings! Welcome back for week 6! I gotta say, I found the whole beginning of this episode to be unnecessarily complicated and contrived. First we see Tim cavorting with the models at a "Model Brunch" on a roof somewhere. Like that's a thing. I am sure the models who do shows together always socialize and have brunch together, right? I know I loooove to spend time with people from work when I'm not stuck at the office, don't you?

Meanwhile, the designers are dutifully gathered at the runway, awaiting their next challenge. Heidi prances out in something that looks like a nightie from the former Mrs. Seal Samuel's Intimates Collection and announces that Tim is out eating avocado toast and açai bowls with the models. To prove it, she shows off a bunch of selfies allegedly sent to her just now by Tim, who is having the time of his life with his tribe of Amazons.

Heidi sends a few selfies to Tim in return.

When all of that foolishness is over, more foolishness begins: Heidi sends the designers packing to join Tim and the models, wherever the hell they are. By the time the designers get there, I guarantee there will be nothing left of brunch except for a couple spoonfuls of chia seed pudding and a half-eaten dish of shakshouka with a bit of congealing egg yolk in it. They may look skinny (some of them, anyway), but I've been around models at a buffet and those girls can eat.

Eventually, we get to the challenge: the models will become the designers' clients. The task is to develop a street style look that they can wear on their day off, one that they wouldn't be embarrassed to post on social media (using the hashtag #modelsoffduty). Models are all pretty young, so I imagine on their days off they normally wear things like Minions pajamas, sweatpants with some pithy phrase emblazoned on the ass, and "vintage" (read: holey) band t-shirts that they swiped from their older brothers. The stuff that college kids wear to the supermarket. But maybe I'm wrong. Maybe a model's "street wear" is far more fashionable and doesn't have last week's pizza stains on it.

First, the models choose their designers. It's a very back-in-school moment. The popular girls (the models) are selecting other popular kids (Kenya, Brandon) or their favorite pet nerds (Kentaro, Samantha), and shunning the zitfaced kids who eat their own boogers. Hairy, Baldie, and Ayana are the last three standing, which is not so surprising. Of the three, Baldie gets picked first, possibly because between the Annoying Twins, she seems to have the better ideas. None of the models wants to be stuck in long sleeves and a head scarf on their day off, yet Ayana gets chosen before Hairy. Poor Sian--who was stuck with Hairy last week--suffers the fate of the button bag and gets stuck with her again.

The pairings go like this:

Kentaro + Meisha
Batani +  Monique
Amy + Marsha
Michael + Liris
Brandon + Colleen
Samantha + Jazzmine
Margarita + Christina
Kenya + Sanita
Baldie + Janine
Lena + Ayana
Hairy + Sian

Once paired up, the designers and the models go off to take selfies in the streets of New York, talk about their impending garments, and do some sketching.

Baldie and Janine are coincidentally both wearing navy and black, and they both seem to like what each other is wearing. Baldie has the bright idea to basically do a mash--up of their two looks. A mash-up of their blouses, actually--she plans on making the exact pants Janine is currently wearing. Meanwhile, the other Annoying Twin feels that street wear is indeed in her wheelhouse and is excited to get to work on a giant sweatshirt. Yawn. Kentaro is very happy to be working with Meisha again, a fluent Japanese speaker with whom he bonded during the last challenge. His idea for her is to make her look homeless...but in a neat, clean, and stylish way. Margarita's client/model, Christine, is "peeing her pants" to be able to work with her. Perhaps Margarita should keep in mind that her garment will need to be roomy enough to cover a pair of Depends.

The designers are then off to Mood with $200 burning holes in their pockets, followed by the workroom where they will cut and sew until 1am.

Tim's post-Mood visit to the designers includes the models and a fitting. Hairy talks about wanting to be at the top of her game this week, but it almost seems like her own sister is sabotaging her. Every few minutes Baldie is calling for her help: should she cut the fabric this way? should she sew it that way? does this look good? can they consult on this other element? It seems that between the two of them, there is one competent designer. Baldie seems to have the best design sensibility, but Hairy seems to have all of the technical skills. I am beginning to think they were born conjoined at the head and one of them got more brains than the other during separation surgery.

After a rough challenge last week, Kenya is feeling good about herself and her design. Leave it to Tim to burst her bubble. She's chosen a dark green fabric that he is concerned might make Sanita look like a "long green bean." And is she making fashion, or just clothing? Sanita herself is not quite sure that Kenya heard her thoughts and desires when they were discussing design ideas.

Brandon, who has immunity after winning last week, calls his girlfriend Dina Marie to share "I love yous" and that sort of thing. We know he's not getting a loser edit, and he doesn't seem to be having issues or losing faith in his ability, so I'm not sure why we get this segment. Perhaps to affirm that he is a taken man? Earlier in the episode, in a confidential, he's asked whether he was crushing on any of the models. He wisely pleads the fifth, mentioning the GF. We had heard from two different models in two previous episodes that they all seem to have the hots for him. Were the producers trying to cause trouble? Does anyone know if he and Dina Marie are still together?

There are some amusing moments in this episode, mostly not involving the Annoying Twins, particularly one where Margarita and Michael start critiquing their own looks. He realizes his resembles "cheap Pocahontas cosplay," which at that moment it does indeed. Margarita is having fit issues with her pants (possibly because she remembered to allow room for an adult diaper). The two of them pretend to be Zac Posen; one delivers the spot-on line, "I didn't even bother to score it. I just wrote down, 'trash.'"

Ayana is concerned that her model wants to show as much skin as possible, which of course isn't her thang as a modest designer. So she makes a long peach-hued satin coat that would make a fine bathrobe. One of the AT's criticizes it as such, but as I agree with her, I can't be critical about her constant criticisms. Not this time, anyway.

Speaking of criticism, let us now pause for a commercial break introducing the new Project Runway line at JC Penney.

Argh. That is some hideous stuff right there (although there are a few passable looks). The shiny "track pants" on the left have a matching off-the-shoulder bomber jacket in the same lovely shade of puce. I can see a 80-year-old rocking it quite nicely. The metallic skirt on the right just looks cheap. And the crushed velvet dress. Ugh. The fabric looks to have come from re-purposed season 16 button bags.

The dress's lace-up front takes me back to when one of my younger cousins was hit by a car. Apparently the impact caused his guts to fall out; the doctors put them back and closed him up with enormous stitches. When I visited him in the hospital, I was shocked to see what appeared to be thick rubber shoelaces holding his abdomen together. If you don't believe me, do a google image search for "large abdominal stitches." Warning: you'll get some pretty graphic results, so if you're in any way delicate, just take my word for it.

I need a palate cleanser now. How about photographs of a cute dog?

So where was I? Oh yes, Day Two, and the designers are scrambling to get things completed. Baldie still needs to complete important elements, like a waistband and a zipper. She doesn't like doing those things, so Hairy charitably does them for her while ignoring her own work. Baldie is clearly the bitchier of the two, so perhaps Hairy fears her wrath if she doesn't help? I don't understand why she is so willing to work on her sister's design without insisting on quid pro quo.

Tim comes in and tells the designers they have two hours to send their client-models to their local Avon representative for makeup and to the JC Penney Salon in Flushing for hair.

I have to wonder how many stylists they have in the hair salon. I would imagine it took quite a bit of time to flat iron Christina's hair from it's natural ultra-curly state to the pin-straight 'do she wore on the runway this week.

Tim also admonishes everyone to use that damn accessory wall "thoughtfully AND carefully." Afterwards, the models need 15 minutes to be prepped for a photo shoot before going down to the runway. So runway prep isn't enough? I certainty don't take 15 minutes to prep before I take a selfie. Hell, it takes me only 20 minutes to shower, do my hair, and put on makeup and clothes in the morning before work. I can't imagine these attractive young women need more than 20 seconds to look good.

This week's guest judges are Marchesa designer and Project Runway producer Harvey Weinstein's wife, Georgina Chapman, and some young singer named Kelsea Ballerini who I'm not even going to bother to look up because I just don't care.

The runway show isn't horrible, but it's not the best we've seen this season. Margarita, the Annoying Twins, Kenya, Kentaro, and Samantha are pulled out of the lineup as the top and bottom
.
The judges start with Hairy, and they ding her for using almost all black, apart for a bit of blue, telling her she needed a pop of color. The outfit was "crisply made" but wasn't a fashion statement. Heidi didn't like that the shorts were so short and showed so much butt cheek (which must have been visible from her vantage point, because I didn't notice any cheekage), yet she clearly has no such compunctions about showing her own underboob. Nina noted that Hairy's model looked pregnant, and nobody wants to look pregnant if they're not (and maybe even if they are).

Baldie, on the other hand, was praised for her design with adjectives like "classy," "chic," "expensive," "sexy," and "elevated." Zac thinks it's a great day-to-evening look for models rushing around between shows who want to go out afterward. It is an attractive look, but as it was basically what the model was wearing at the "model brunch," with the midriff and sleeves chopped off, it's also something we've seen before. And we'll see it again....

I was holding my breath waiting for what I knew would be harsh criticism of Kenya's look. "Debbie Harry meets Peter Pan meets 101 Dalmatians," was the first thing out of Zac's mouth. Astonishingly, he meant it in a good way. All the judges liked her outfit, which seemed dated to me. Like early 90s officewear, once women were allowed to lose the pussy bow and wear pants to work. The green color that Tim thought was a detriment was actually an asset in the judges' minds. They said the model had "legs for days," and a certain "je ne sais quois." Ok then.

They also liked Kentaro's design, a funky kimono-shorts thing over denim leg warmers that appeared to be leggings, and a cream-colored top that seemed to be made of a rather thick fabric (and which reminded Kentaro of mayonnaise). His look was "dangerous," "masculine," "crisp," "easy," and had a "Samurai edge."

Samantha's model shared her girly grunge aesthetic, so Sam made pretty much the same style of dress she herself has been wearing every week: full skirt with petticoat, fitted bodice, high-ish neckline. Samantha was a pioneer in the "Lolita" fashion movement, one of the many strange things that comes out of Japan but doesn't exactly make it to the mainstream. The judges felt her look was "verging on costume." They liked it better without the added vest, and Nina preferred the version that Samantha herself was wearing, which was in a gold fabric and somewhat more interesting. Still, it was the same dress.

Margarita received the final critique. The judges noticed the fit issue with the pants and felt the look was dated and not modern, cheesy, and too "Miami."

When the models came back out for the judges' closer look, Tim tells them that Hairy sacrificed some of her time to help Baldie, which is why her own look was kinda crappy. The judges said that was on Hairy, which of course it was. There are no rules against designers helping each other--we see it all the time. Kenya even asked for some help in the workroom this week. But when they are in competition with each other, designers shouldn't help so much that their own work suffers.

Unfortunately, this is not a lesson that Hairy learns this week. She's safe. Samantha is the one who is out. A shame--I like her. I would probably even wear some of the things she creates, but modified to remove the petticoats and lengthen the skirts. A-line skirts have always been most flattering on my frame, and I do find the vintage silhouette attractive. It does verge on costume (or cosplay) so it needs to be worn judiciously (like the JC Penney accessories). But there is room for a look like that here and there.

Kentaro is given the win this week for his rather groovy Samurai Mayonnaise with Denim Legwarmers. Well-deserved.

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Friday, September 15, 2017

Project Runway Recap - Season 16, Episode 5

For this challenge, the designers met Tim at Lyndhurst Castle. Until they arrived, Tim was forced to make small talk with two pretty young girls named China Anne McClain and Dove Bar Cameron, who are promoting Disney's latest piece of kiddie drivel "Descendents 2." Dove and China (the names together could be a shop selling posh wedding-related crap, or maybe a restaurant in Baltimore, where names must include "and" or "&") like most Disney kids, are singer/actors. Ugh. "Singers" of course means that they perform derivative, second-rate, R&B stylings and pop schlock and either will or have already performed on a float in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.

So the intro to the challenge is a little confusing. The designers must take inspiration from the sequel of a made-for-tv live-action feature about the offspring of cartoon villains--Dove plays the daughter of Maleficent, and China is the daughter of Ursula, the delightful part-cephalopod baddie in The Little Mermaid--and also the fabulous gothic revival building in front of them, but they cannot make costumes. To make things harder, each designer must create something that is either "good" or "evil." But not costumes! I suppose they should be thankful that they weren't also treated to a special viewing of Descendents 2 (in which Dove wears a purple wig and China channels Bill Nighy's Davy Jones) to assist them in not making costumes.

As Michael was the winner of the last challenge, he is tasked with assigning the other designers their good or evil theme. Being as both seem equally difficult (no costumes!), it's not an opportunity to sabotage his enemies or assist his friends.

After 30 minutes of sketching, which seems to happen primarily outdoors, the designers pile back onto the bus for the hour-long drive back to the City and Mood, where they have $300 to spend. What with all the tarrying in Tarrytown, not to mention the 2-hour-plus road trip, the designers get (almost) two days to complete their garments.

Watching the designers at Mood this week is interesting, as one can see how fabric choices really affect the final design. Kenya falls in love with a textured burgundy material, but there's less than four yards of it in stock. She buys it anyway. Michael falls for a black and gold lace, which could end up super tacky (I'm not a fan of lace), but he thinks it's evil without being traditionally so. Hairy Twin has armfuls of filmy pastel-colored material, which immediately rings alarm bells, at least in my head. Good alarms, in that she might get herself aufed for making a princess costume.

When the designers get to the workroom, they find that "evil" designers are on one side of the room, and "good" designers are on the other. The Annoying Twins have opposing designations, so they are separated. Which may have been completely intentional. Not separated, however, are Brandon and Kentaro, who have started to call each other "brother." They have gone beyond simple bromance to an actual familial relationship. It is so effing cute. Kentaro is like an innocent elf. He is so full of joy and goodness. Brandon has that calm zen thing going on. They are a perfect couple. Yes, I realize Brandon is straight (not sure about Kentaro), but that doesn't mean that he can't have a spiritual relationship with another man.

Margarita is having a crisis of faith, for no good reason. Perhaps the pressure of so many consecutive challenges is getting to her. She is designing for a full-figured model for the first time, but that shouldn't throw her off her game that much. She goes into a room by herself and calls her parents. And cries. The dreaded "loser" edit. I'm hoping it's a red herring, because Margarita is a pretty strong designer and she'd have to make a real piece of poo to get thrown out this early in the game. But I may be wrong.

The next day, Tim comes in to check on things. He finds Brandon's work to be unexpected because it doesn't have that typical eveningwear look. Hairy Twin is making a fairy princess costume for a four-year-old. She doesn't want that, but with the materials she's purchased, it's hard to come up with anything else. Tim gives her the evil eye and moves on. Michael has let his gold and black lace take over, and the result is rather matronly. Amy is working with a light-colored fabric with a bird pattern on it, but with the pink dress and grey velvet "Erte-style opera cloak," the effect is very Barnum & Bailey.

Ayana's look includes lace and colorblocking in all the myriad shades of baby poop. Kentaro charitably calls the yellow color she is using "curry powder." Pink-Haired John Lennon's outfit is still in the muslin stage, but Tim is finding it gimmicky so the entire concept gets scrapped.

Baldie is working on a dress that is half leather and half not and says, "this is me." So maybe we're not just working with two Annoying Twins here...one of them may have multiple personality disorder. Kentaro is using two very similar shades of pink, which look to Tim as though one of them might be a mistake. Though Margarita is having doubts about herself, Tim seems to like her burnout velvet dress a lot. He does not, however, like Samantha's usual meticulous, layered, intricate work. He calls it a "big craft project," which hurts her feelings. I personally do not like it, although I do appreciate her "aesthetic." It will be interesting to see if she can transform it into something more attractive.

On Day 2, most designers are well on their way to finishing up. Except for Hairy, who needs Baldie's assistance with the top of her dress. She actually needs assistance for the whole thing, which more than halfway through the second day of the challenge still looks like a kindergartner's wet dream. Pink-Haired John Lennon is also having some serious issues and is just starting to cut fabric for his redesign.

The next day, Pink-Haired John Lennon's look is still barely underway, and Hairy has received overnight inspiration for the top of her cotton candy nightmare. Tim comes in and advises the designers to send their models to get made up with "Get A Grip" eye primer and "Give 'Em Gel" eye liner in the "Aren't We Punny" beauty lab and have some hobo on the street do their hair because Lifetime couldn't find anyone to sponsor their salon. He also suggested that the designers "avoid costumeland," while using the JC Penney accessories wall.

Meanwhile, the twins are running back and forth from the workroom to the sewing room, which Kenya just looooves.

They are also throwing some shade. Baldie opines that Kenya's look is "oxblood mariachi band," and Hairy suggests that Brandon's design "literally looks like a napkin tied around his model's body. It's a smock with sleeves and side boob." Sam's "looks like poison ivy. It has a lot of green and a lot of texture...and it looks kinda like a hot mess." It is completely fine that the Annoying Twins say these things because they are such great designers themselves.

In no time, the designers are called to go down to the runway.

The Disney black-and-white cookies are judging this week, no surprise there, along with the usual gang, Heidi, Mean Nina, and Zac. The show starts off with Aaron's toilet paper pinata, at which Zac looks simply horrified. Amy's looks like a Disco Mary Magdalene (tell me it doesn't). Ayana's modest baby poop and yellow dress isn't as horrible as expected, but it's not pretty. The rest of the show is decent enough, with a few exceptions. Pink-Haired John Lennon, Brandon, Michael, Kenya, Hairy, and Samantha are top and bottom, and it's pretty obvious who is in which category.

Heidi starts off by calling Brandon's look a "modern straight jacket" with "peek-a-boob" and a bunch of other comments that seem negative, but she actually loves it. Zac calls him out for making another shirtdress-type garment and suggests that he may be a one-trick pony.

Hairy's dress is "Cinderella on her day off," and a cliché. Nina is bored by it, and we all know that it's very dangerous to bore Nina. Zac feels he doesn't know her as a designer yet. Really? All she's done so far is filmy pastel confections, none of which are particularly interesting or modern. She's been safe all along.

Heidi lists all the multitudinous elements of Kenya's design--ruffles, cuffs, open back, etc.--making them seem negative, as she did for Brandon. But she also loves it. It was "risky" and excellent work.

Samantha says she was inspired by poison flowers and poison fruit, and one can see that in her gown. But she gets dinged on the ugly bottom section, which is flat and boring and looks like an afterthought. It seems too short and a bit dingy. I think the dress would have been better as a mini than as a gown with a flounce.

Michael's lace dress is roundly praised. It's sexy, shows a good amount of cleavage, and the fabric is actually pretty amazing, despite being lace. Michael says he didn't do much cutting, he just let the fabric do all the work. It's impressive, and a nice change from the original matronly look we saw in the workroom.

Dove has to say something nice, so she compliment's Pink-Haired John Lennon's sense of personal style. I guess she has always wanted to be a flight attendant or something, because that's what he looks like today (tell me he doesn't). Otherwise, the judges are seriously hating on it. His model is so pretty, with a great figure, and she usually has a big smile on her face, but she seemed so sad in this. Heidi tells Pink-Haired John Lennon that this is not "Project Kindergarten," which is mean, but deservedly so.

It's no surprise that P-HJL is out this week. Though Hairy and Samantha didn't make anything particularly good, their designs were still much better than this poorly-made streamer-festooned (they are actually supposedly fly-fronts, flies from pants) mess. What was surprising was that Brandon won the challenge. Not that his design wasn't good, but that he had just been called a one-trick pony who only made shirtdresses. And Kenya's pantsuit was so nice, as was Michael's gold lace gown. But I'm ok with it, and I'm sure Brother Kentaro is, too.

Next week: Er...I wasn't paying attention. I could barely stay awake last night. I'm sure Lifetime will run lots of previews in the interim.

Posted by theminx on Opalescentminx.com Because of past content theft, I am forced to add this statement to the end of my posts: If you're reading this post anywhere other than the Opalescent blog, OpalescentMinx.com (also http://minxbeads.blogspot.com) then this content has been stolen. Please do not support this thief!

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Nina Gets a Promotion

Nina Garcia is now the editor-in-chief of Elle Magazine. Does that mean bye-bye for Marie Claire as sponsor of Project Runway, or bye-bye to Nina?

Stay tuned.

Posted by theminx on Opalescentminx.com Because of past content theft, I am forced to add this statement to the end of my posts: If you're reading this post anywhere other than the Opalescent blog, OpalescentMinx.com (also http://minxbeads.blogspot.com) then this content has been stolen. Please do not support this thief!

Monday, September 11, 2017

Project Runway Recap - Season 16, Episode 4

Sorry that this recap is so late - I made a quick trip to NYC to see a couple of shows for New York Fashion Week. While the big Project Runway finale show wasn't one of them, I did get to see the team up between Mychael Knight and Korto Momolu. More on that in a separate post.

Episode 4 begins with Heidi and Tim strapping on backpacks to introduce the next challenge. Heidi is wearing the same black floral minidress she was wearing for the runway show in Episode 3, so I can only assume that this intro bit was filmed immediately thereafter. Otherwise, Heidi should have had time do something more interesting with her hair. This week's challenge is to design sleepwear for Heidi Klum Intimates new line of sexy pjs using textiles that the contestants create themselves by hand. Why the designers are always excited about the Heidi challenge are beyond me. For one thing, she's getting free labor. For another, the design is offered for a limited time. The PR designs are always much more interesting and intricate than the usual basic stuff that Heidi offers, so the production costs are likely higher. But she can only charge so much for the piece, because the price point should fit with the rest of her line. So if she's not making $$$, there's no point in putting the winning design into real production. And of course none of that cash is going to the person who designed the garment. Does anyone actually remember the winner of any of the previous Heidi challenges? Was it a launching pad to their success?

The way some designers react to things, I have to wonder if they've ever watched Project Runway in the past. Why are they always surprised that the very first challenge of the season starts within minutes of all the designers meeting for the first time? Why are most of them shocked and dismayed at team challenges, or unconventional materials challenges, or any challenge at all that is somewhat...challenging? Or are they directed to feign surprise/shock/dyspepsia?

Sorry for my aside (though you should be used to them by now)...back to the show. The inspiration for today's Heidi Klum Intimates challenge is to be found at the Empire State Building, where the designers will be spending the night. The backpacks that were distributed by Heidi and Tim contained rather sheer (cheap? Heidi Klum collection?) pajamas and a dossier of each designer's new model.

The designers are shown parading down 5th Avenue to the iconic Art Deco building while wearing their matching jammies. Ya know, I've been to NY dozens of times, and recently have been staying at hotels very close to the Empire State Building, but I've never been in it. Certainly not while in my jammies. I suppose I should rectify that situation at some point, but the $34 dollars it costs to ride the elevator to the top could buy a nice dinner, even in New York.
The Annoying Twins are freaking out over the idea of sleeping on the top of the Empire State Building. OMG! It's so high! Good thing they're only sleeping on the 86th floor, because being up on the top floor--the 103rd--would probably cause heart attacks. Lucky for them, there's no room for that sort of nonsense all the way up there.

The designers get a few minutes to sketch before sleepy-bye time. Kenya wants to do a romper using the motifs found in the ceilings of the ESB, but she's worried that she's never decorated fabric before. Michael is inspired by the Chrysler Building, which isn't the same as being inspired by the ESB, but it's part of the view so I suppose it counts. Kentaro was dinged for using black last week so he's vowing to decorate his maxi dress with neon colors.

Early the next morning, the designers are awakened by Tim, bearing paper sacks of breakfast sandwiches. Did they come from the Panera in the next block, or the Maison Keyser a couple blocks north? Were they still warm after the 86-floor elevator ride? Did Tim have to pay the $34? Inquiring minds need to know. I also would like to know how much bird poop they had to scrape off those sleeping bags by morning.

After breakfast, the designers head to the studio. They will have fabrics chosen by Heidi to work with, so a trip to Mood to visit Swatch is not in order. Besides working on patterns for their garments, the designers need to get started on fabric decoration as early as possible, in order for things to dry thoroughly. There are lots of paint items available, plus tools with which to make stencils and stamps--even potatoes. Good to know those elementary school art classes won't have been for naught!

The models have been switched for everyone again this week; Kentaro gets to work with one of the plus-sized gals. Rather than panic, he seeks fit advice from the two larger ladies in the cast, Samantha and Kenya. Samantha is shown suggesting how the armhole should fit so there's not too much side boob or cleavage, which is very kind of her. She understands that they can help each other out yet still be in competition. Kinda the way the Annoying Twins work, only not annoying.

Heidi comes in pretty early in the day to demoralize the group. She suggests that the Annoying Twins, who have been running around and chattering with each other all morning do more work and less talking. Heidi thinks Hairy's design might be a bit too basic. She's also not getting Baldie's desire to make a jumpsuit, because women have to go to the bathroom frequently during the night. If it takes too long to disrobe, a woman could pee herself. I have one suggestion: trap door.

Deyonté is doing something with wide mitered stripes that Heidi suggests could be a clown costume. Ouch. Also the angle of the stripes point directly to the vajayjay, which is always a no-no in Heidi's book. Kenya, who is struggling, is working on a piece that doesn't look like it could be sleepwear. It's too fitted and has no ease. Amy wants to put the NY skyline on the rear end of a pair of panties, which gets a no vote from both Heidi and Tim. Ayana's look is daringly sheer. She says there's no need to do a modest look for something that's only worn indoors.

After Heidi leaves and the designers stop crying in despair, they rework what needs to be reworked. Then the models come in for their fitting, which causes more reworking. Finally everybody gets to go sleep in their own pajamas in their own beds.

The next day, everyone is sent to the Cosmetics Your Mother Used to Sell Because Your Father Wouldn't Let Her Get a Job Outside the Home makeup studio and the Comb-overs by Donald Trump hair salon. Tim also advises them all to use the JC Penney accessory wall not the usual "thoughtfully," but "carefully." Or maybe not at all because isn't this a sleepwear challenge? Personally, I don't feel the need to accessorize the over-sized Orioles t-shirt I wear to bed, but perhaps I am missing out on a new trend. A new trend that I really don't care about.

Demi Lovato is guest judge this week. Apparently she's also a fashion designer because she's got a line of sports bras and leggings with Fabletics, a sports bra and leggings company owned by Kate Hudson. Hadn't sports bras and leggings already been designed decades ago? How does having her name on these things make Demi Lovato (or Kate Hudson) a fashion designer? Most importantly, I must ask WHY THESE THINGS ARE CONSIDERED FASHION?

The runway show is pretty decent. Well, it certainly could be worse. Pink-haired John Lennon, Kentaro, Michael, Deyonté, Baldie, and Kenya are pulled out of the line up while the rest are declared safe. The judges start on Michael's look, which is really stunning. They compliment the unique neckline, unusual strap placement, and Chrysler Building-inspired decoration on the bodice. They think this "Deco Cleopatra" look  is sexy, sophisticated, and expensive-looking.

Zac appreciates that Pink-haired John Lennon is wearing tighty whities under his frilly sheer yellow bloomers. As are we all. Heidi loves the print he created on his fabric, but the top is shabbily constructed and the shorts (not just the ones he's wearing) are not flattering.

Baldie's jumpsuit with a silver-on-silver print is really pretty nice, considering she made it. The judges used a lot of the same adjectives that they used for Michael: sophisticated, sexy, elegant. They also thought it could be worn out on the town with heels and a leather jacket.

Deyonté's look didn't seem like sleepwear to the judges The shape was "nothing," boring, and not sexy. It was definitely not flattering. He had a plus-sized model this week and he took an Omar the Tentmaker approach with his baggy pieces. And who wears a top and a long skirt to bed? A skirt? Really? And this man has slept with women before!

Kentaro also had a plus-sized model, but his flowy gown was obviously sleepwear and obviously gorgeous. Samantha had given him good advice about the placement of the straps and armholes (she could have taken the opportunity to sabotage him, but I have a feeling that she's just a really nice person) and the end result was adorable and charming, fresh, quiet, modern, ambitious, and happy.

Kenya clearly struggled through the entire challenge, which was disappointing. I think she's super talented and she's one of the designers I want to see in the finale. Heidi said she would pee her pants before being able to undo the hook-and-eye closure on Kenya's short jumpsuit. (Heidi must have a tiny bladder.) Kenya cries a little. Zac tries to be nice by praising the colors she used, though it really was kind of a hot mess.

Michael is declared the winner of this challenge. You can buy Michael's winning design at Heidi Klum Intimates.

Deyonté is out. He really looked to have some great potential after winning the first challenge of the season, but fizzled out pretty quickly after that. Too bad - I liked him.

Next week, the designers go on a road trip to a fancy house, but they don't get to sleep there.

Posted by theminx on Opalescentminx.com Because of past content theft, I am forced to add this statement to the end of my posts: If you're reading this post anywhere other than the Opalescent blog, OpalescentMinx.com (also http://minxbeads.blogspot.com) then this content has been stolen. Please do not support this thief!

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