Friday, March 05, 2010

Hammer and Tongs

With only 10 designers left in the pool, it's time for the but-that's-not-fabric! challenge. Heidi scoots the designers off to meet Tim and "America's favorite designer", which I find to be a completely subjective statement given that I'm quite sure she means Michael Kors and not, say, oh, just about anyone else. And sure enough, there are Tim and the Orange One in the latter's Soho store. Kors lectures the designers on the importance of creating head-to-toe looks and the power of a single dazzling accessory, then sends them off to find the materials to create same in a hardware store. Whoot!

I personally cannot get enough of hardware stores. I think they are just superfantastic, especially the little, old ones that still hang on in these days of big box stores. Some of the designers appear to share my enthusiasm and find all sorts of fun bits on which to spend their $150. Except, uh oh, Emilio, who has a notion to do something with washers and cord and can't begin to get enough material for the money he has. What will he do? (I mean, besides spend all his time snarking about the other designers?)

There are lots of heavy metals in play, except for Jay, who is going to make pants out of a trash bag. We've seen trash bag clothes before. That's a could-go-either-way choice. Emilio lays out all his little washers and ponders them.

The work room sounds more like a smithy than a design space with most of the designers banging away on their metal sheets and screens and gutters and awnings. Jonathan makes a brilliant joke about the periodic table. He's kinda brainy. Emilio rearranges his washers.
And also, he gets bitchy when some of the other designers kid him about his situation. "He has no sense of humor," says The Neighbor. And he also gets to bitch about the noise of all the hammers. It makes it very hard for him to innovate with six washers and 2 feet of cord.

During his Walk About Tim tells Mila that her mod inspired (and color blocked) look is "very exciting". Jesse describes his look as "Elizabethan". "An Elizabethan mini?" Tim asks incredulously. He adds, "It looks like a costume for a school play...and not even a high school play, more like elementary school". Ouch. Tim immediately assesses that Emilio is in the weeds due to a lack of material. "Your innovation can be the first PR presentation of the bottomless dress," he says.

Anthony confesses that he is not "officially impressed" with his design and Tim concurs that it looks "tortured". On the other hand, he declares Jay's pants "spectacular" and marvels that he made trash bags look like leather. Tim is "intrigued" by Maya's ensemble, particularly her massive necklace of keys, which he calls "stunning". "If you can pull this off it will be phenomenal!"

During the fitting, Jay's model cannot get into the pants so he has to re-engineer them. Meanwhile, Emilio has finally figured out that he can make a bathing suit out of washers. The bottoms won't stay up. Gravity is a bitch. And could someone please speak to Jonathan about his
Tin Tin hair? Dippity Do is so last century. As we approach the runway show, Anthony comments that many of the looks (including his own) look tortured. But Emilio now tries to suggest that his pathetic hardware bikini is a "full on" look - as if there were intention, design and planning involved. This strains credulity.

We have 2 guest judges: the fabulous Isabel Toledo (who designed Michelle Obama's fantastic Inauguration Day ensemble) and jewelry designer Stephen Webster.

The Runway
Mila's look is very 60's mod and cute. Jesse's outfit is a mesh marshmallow. (Say that 3 times fast). We like Jonathan's look and Anthony's is no more than OK but Ben's is stiff and quite hideous. Emilio calls his look "strong" but I think it would work best on the girl serving drinks at a craps table in Vegas. Jay's look is terrific, Seth Aaron is lucky he has immunity, Amy did fantastic things with sandpaper and we absolutely love Maya's look.

The Judging
Nina tells Mila that her use of paint tray liners is "extraordinary" and Stephen calls it "wicked brilliant".

Nina asks Emilio why his model has no clothing, Kors dismisses it as "really cheesy" and Heidi says it looks "thrown on". I snort with derision when Emilio actually tries to justify his mess by saying that he "knew everyone else was going to make a dress" and wanted to do something different. Bull.

Kors tells Anthony he's created a "bad prom dress" and Nina dismisses it as "too boring".
Maya, however, is praised by Kors for truly creating a "head to toe look", Nina applauds her restraint and Heidi marvels, saying "you wouldn't think it came from a hardware store".

Jesse is bashed by Nina for a look that "feels like the Tin Man". Kors likes the accessory hair band but says the dress looks like a Hershey Kiss and Heidi says it looks like "a dirty vacuum bag".

She is much kinder to Jay, calling his ensemble "amazing" and Kors gushes "in a million years I wouldn't think this was plastic trash bags".

I pick Maya for the win and believe with all my heart that Emilio should go. The Neighb picks Jay for the win and Jesse to be auf.

And so it went. Jay won for a being "truly amazing" and praised for taking a material that has been seen on PR many times before "but never like this".

Photo courtesy of

And while Emilio is dismissed for something that was "pure Vegas show girl",

Montage created by the clever folks at Blogging Project Runway, from the original photo at

it was Jesse who was aufed for a look that was "disappointing, uninspired and looked like a costume, not fashion". So off he goes, returning to his life as a Johnny Depp impersonator while whiny, bitchy, "no, really, I meant it to look that way" Emilio survives to snark another day.



Blogger rosemary opined...

A hardware store? Really? I'm gonna have to enlarge those photos.

March 05, 2010 4:21 PM  
Blogger Sling opined...

I think the Hefty Britches are lookin' pretty hot!

March 05, 2010 5:19 PM  
Blogger Cliff O'Neill opined...

Re: Jonathan's Tin Tin hair. You are so right! Well, I suppose it's a good match with everyone's Tin Woodsman look, though.

Also, I think I may be developing deep loathing for Emilio. What a total schmuck. There isn't a daytime hooker who would be caught dead working in that "stick a washer in her navel and call it a day" contraption. Grrrrrrr.

Not that Jesse wasn't leaving this week no matter what happened.


March 06, 2010 7:06 PM  

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