Bravo's Emmy nominated series Project Runway is back for another season with another crop of 16 budding designers hungry to be "in", at least in Heidi Klum, Tim Gunn, Michael Kors, and Nina Garcia's eyes. I was more excited than a seamstress in a fabric store to revel in another fierce season of cutting, draping, and stitching to the finish...but after last night's episode, my evaluation is just...well, sew-sew.
The first challenge brought the designers full circle as they tackled the first challenge ever on Project Runway season one, the grocery store showdown. To add to the nostalgia, Tim Gunn was joined by season one contestant- an airbrushed Austin Scarlett who won the challenge way back when with a corn husk concoction that ultimately launched his career. It was nice to see an old familiar face, albeit one plastered in makeup. He looked like a cross between Clark Gable and a young Joan Rivers.
Innovation was the name of the game. Most went the tablecloth route, others went the unexpected material route, few went the edible route. My favorites? A meringue cookie and candy dress that I dreamed of wearing during my days of playing Candyland. To sum up the fusilli pasta/oven mitt Italian themed dress? Two words - que bella. The tiered paper towel lipstick design was adorably kissable, and the yellow flyswatter dress was bugged out ingenious. Lowest marks, I agree with the judges- pink scully cap boy Blayne's Girlicious design was more like Pukelicious, even a six year old girl at her tap recital couldn't pull it off. Ultimately, it came down to Trashy vs. Psycho. I knew Trash bag girl wasn't going anywhere because in reality television, whoever declares "I'm going home", never goes home. It was Psycho shower curtain/yellow rubber glove dude who heard Heidi's fateful "Auf wiedersehen" and left with his model...no doubt to go unclog a toilet somewhere. If you missed the show, check out all the designs and rate your own favorites here (and if you thought the shower curtain ensemble was the bomb, I dare you to wear it outside...when it's not raining).
It will take me too long so sum up first impressions of all 16 designers, so I'll just cherry pick the ones I think are main contenders. Kenley- I like his chick. A cross between Dita Von Teese and Betty Page with a definite signature style, a throwback to days of old while maintaining a totally modern vibe. I would wear her dress today, tomorrow, as long as my tush fit in it. Kelli- bold, blond, bad to the bone. She's reminiscent of tatted Kat of Miami Ink fame and nailed the innovation challenge with a vacuum cleaner bag design that she manipulated into a truly gorgeous print. I loved the skirt, but wasn't too crazy about the coffee filter seashell bra top, but that's just me. The judges loved her daring bravado and deemed her the one to beat. At least for now...
Stay tuned...we're just getting started.