'Project Runway': Resorting to anything

Janell reports on Project Runway. Take it away, Janell!:

Previously on "Take That, Haters!": bridesmaid dresses were repurposed, Michael C was an alleged no-talent saboteur who sold his soul to the devil and won (and the Mean Kids Club gave him the stink eye for doing so), Peach made unfortunate choices and lost.

In the morning, April has lost her last roommate and has to move in with Valerie, Gretchen, and Ivy. It took this scene for me to really understand that the cattiness of those three is enhanced because they are roommates. And now they get "young," "unschooled" April. Poor thing. They do the required girly whoops to celebrate the last girls standing.

In their room, Michael C tells Andy that winning two times feels fabulous: "I feel like Gretchen, just a little bit better." He describes how no one was happy for him winning, including Andy, and Andy pseudo-defends himself by telling Michael, "I don't know your aesthetic." Hey everyone, what's your aesthetic? I think mine is "washable."


The designers meet Heidi on the runway. She tells them that they get to kick back and relax at the marina with Tim and Judge Michael. Thanks for that, Heidi, your hair looks good slicked back like that. At the marina, in front of a yacht, Judge Michael tells them that the challenge is to create resort wear. Michael C, from Palm Springs, says he can do it. Andy, from Hawaii, can do it. Mondo says he never goes on vacation, wakes up late and walks around in his underwear and a t-shirt, and that’s his resort wear. He might have a problem.

After brunching on the yacht, as people do, they go to Mood, and then back to the workroom. Tim holds the velvet bag of trouble, and tells them that they’ll be put in teams of two, and each person has to execute the other’s work, because “successful designers don’t make their own work, they outsource.” The pairs are: Valerie/Andy, Michael C/Mondo (Mondo is pretty upset, because he has sheepishly [and I mean that literally] joined the Mean Kids Club), April/Christopher, Casanova/Gretchen, and Ivy/Michael D (she thinks his construction level is not at par with hers, and I wonder if anyone outside of the Club has good construction skills).

Working. April and Christopher are getting along. Casanova has some language problems, so Gretchen draws patterns extra big. It’s like talking louder to someone who doesn’t speak your language -- it’s both useless and insulting. Michael C and Mondo start out with problems because MC isn’t much for sewing or patterning, and Mondo doesn’t sketch, he just makes notes. Will these two crazy kids find a way to communicate? Apparently so, because after a few hours, Mondo admits that he was being a jerk to Michael C and that MC is actually a nice person and good designer. Funny what happens when you actually talk to a person. Not that I would advise such a radical tactic in daily life.

Tim comes in to critique, along with Judge Michael. By the way, what I learn from this segment is that palazzo pants are “in” for resort wear, because too many people are making them. Judge Michael tells Casanova that what he’s making is not a young pant. And Gretchen is still hooked on the lame color palette from the group challenge. In the Ivy/Michael D corner, a lot of head shaking is going on. Ivy says she kept dumbing down her design because she didn’t think MD could sew it well enough.

Valerie is losing confidence. It doesn’t help that Judge Michael told her that she uses colors that no one likes. She gets this week’s weepy phone call home, but I guess only past winners get video because she’s just stuck with a regular cell phone.

It’s the day of the show. Mondo and Michael C are still bonding. Ivy is standing right next to Michael D’s shoulder at the sewing machine, dictating his every move, and he’s getting a little crazy. Ten minutes before the show, Tim allows the designers to work on their own creations, and Ivy jumps into action.

On the runway. Guest judge is “stylish American actress” Kristen Bell. Hi, Kristen! Hope your new movie does well!

Michael C designed a metallic jumpsuit with big palazzo pants.

Mondo designed a colorful print boy short bikini with a green print jacket, and he’s worried that his model isn’t bringing enough bubbly spirit.

Michael D’s design is a long black dress with multiple straps at the shoulder, he likes how Ivy executed it.

Ivy has ended up with a long flowy whitish skirt, and a flowy grayish top, which she says is boring. It is.

Christopher has a draped pattern top with Bermuda shorts.

April has a black, sheer, dark, short thing over some boy shorts (she had a vision of romantic/crazy asylum that I can’t explain), and the model has her hair like April, it’s very her.

Casanova has a fitted, off-shoulder blouse that ties at the waist in back, and palazzo pants that are not as big as other palazzo pants.


Gretchen has a two-toned layered jumpsuit (again with the jumpsuit for her) with color peeking through the sides of pants.

Valerie has some short shorts in a zigzag print, with a long top.

Andy has a cool one-piece silver swimsuit with purple edges, and a nice wrap that goes from silver to purple. It‘s cool, and Judge Michael gives it a nod of approval.

Okay, Andy, Casanova, Mondo, April, Ivy, and Michael D will be judged. Heidi tells them at the beginning that Andy, April, and MD have the highest scores, and they send the bottom three backstage to wait with the others while the models and tailors are brought to the runway.

First, April’s little black dress. Judge Michael calls it a tough punk baby doll, but it’s not too vulgar because of the boy shorts underneath. Judge Kristin loves it, she would wear it on the red carpet (I would love to see that!), and Nina says it’s fantastic.

Andy‘s silver/purple swimsuit. Heidi says it’s commercial, and “tons of hot women would wear it on a boat.” She doesn’t specify if they would all be on the same boat. Nina likes the fabric, it looks expensive. Judge Michael says it’s beautifully done.

Michael D‘s long black dress. He gives Ivy props for sewing it well. Ivy pipes up that it was a challenge working with him because he doesn’t know how garments go on and off. MD agrees, and says they don’t speak the same jargon, because she’s a technical Parsons grad and he’s self-taught. Judge Michael says the end result is fabulous. Kristin says it’s effortless, Nina says it works for women of many ages (I’m guessing the women would have to be hot).

And now the bad designs and their tailors are brought out. Mondo explains to the judges that he doesn’t know resort wear, so he played with colors. Nina says it’s disappointing, inexpensive and junior. Judge Michael scolds him that every designer does resort wear, and then calls the outfit a weird assemblage of clothes from Forever 21. Michael C jumps in and says working with Mondo made it the most fun challenge for him, and it was a good collaboration.

Ivy, regarding her whitish/grayish thing of boring, says she chose a color palette of the ocean (the ocean on a cold, cloudy day when all the resort-going people are at the movies, I think). She says she edited down her design because of Michael D’s limitations, beginning with his inability to do pants. He says he can do pants, but he was uncomfortable making pants in the given time. He also says Ivy’s fabrics are difficult. Judge Michael points out that Ivy had purchased small amounts of multiple fabrics, rather than large amounts of fewer fabrics, and that she couldn’t do much with those small amounts. Ivy insinuates that she personally could have, but Michael D couldn’t. Nina says Ivy is good technically, but doesn’t seem to have good ideas. Michael C has apparently been rolling his eyes through this discussion, and Heidi calls on him. MC says that he worked with Ivy on the group challenge, and he was terrified of her. Ivy claims her outfit is not good because Michael D couldn’t sew it, and Heidi says Ivy is throwing him under the bus. We know how Heidi hates people throwing other people under the bus, it makes the riders on the bus go bumpity bump.

Casanova loves his look, but admits what he discovered when talking to Gretchen: he is unintentionally making looks connected to his grandmother. Heidi says that’s a little unfortunate. Judge Michael says it’s for a 70-year-old woman to wear and sit in the mall and get to her house early to watch tv. But what will she be watching on tv? Nina questions how Casanova can design sexy/almost naked, or design for grandmothers, but he has no middle ground.


Backstage, Michael D tells Ivy, “I told you to throw me under the bus.” Did he? I never saw that. Best friends Mondo and Michael C have their arms around each other. Michael D interviews that Ivy’s outfit is the most poorly-sewn thing he’s done because she didn’t trust him with a good design.

The judges talk. Andy made a wearable, good looking swimsuit. Michael D had lots of cutouts, it was clean and polished, and he had clear idea and managed to explain to Ivy what he wanted. April’s asylum baby doll is editorial, cool, and wearable. Mondo made random colorful clothes that you could find at Kmart. Oh, snap. Judge Michael says that Mondo could be Heidi’s daughter’s personal couturier. Ivy had blandness and bus throwing. Casanova either designs for a hooker or grandmother, but nothing cool.

The designers come back out. Michael D is in. He’s relieved he didn’t win because he would feel guilty. Young, unschooled April wins, and she is the most understated happy a person can be. Andy is in. Mondo is in. Between Ivy and Casanova, Ivy made lots of excuses and blame, bad fabric choices and she dumbed down her design. Casanova’s look couldn’t be further from resort, it lacked sexiness. Ivy is in. She and MD hug, I guess it‘s all bygones. Casanova is out. Backstage, he climbs up to the door and pretends to hang himself by his scarf. He says he’s not sad but maybe a “quart” disappointed. We see flashbacks of his highlights, this is a new thing, they‘ve finally got some extra time to kill. Tim is so sad, and wonders what they‘ll do without Casanova. He says he lives very close so they don’t have to. Hee! In an exit interview, Casanova would like us to know that “[he] grabbed one ball of New York, and New York grabbed one of [his].”