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We are three episodes in and one of the best tests of compatibility and willingness to work with others is center stage on this show early on while designers are still getting to know each other.  The challenge was to create an Emmy dress to be worn by past Project Runway contestants and the fabric had to be influenced by the color of a new Lexus car.  It’s more exciting to have partners picked randomly, so when each person grabbed a key to a car, there was a matching key for another person and that would be your partner.

The matchups were interesting, especially Buffi and Elena.  Right out the gate Elena said she doesn’t like to work with anyone.  Have you watched the past 9 seasons!?! It’s going to happen so adjust and deal with it.  The past contestants chosen as the client were: April, Laura, Mila, Anya, Kenley, Irina and Valerie.  I was excited to see Anya and Valerie, but the others I could care less. Why bring on April and Mila who like black and grays and won’t have much of a wow factor? Kenley’s voice is just annoying and Irina is mean and snooty. I don’t think I watched much of Season 3 when Laura was on, so I’m indifferent about her.

The clients did have a voice in creating the vision of the dress they wanted, but many didn’t execute accurately.  Also, when I look at the Emmy’s red carpet there is a lot of eye-popping looks.  A lot of the dresses missed that important factor too.  Let’s talk about those looks first.

Alicia & Raul – Mila

Mila in the dress designed by Alicia and Raul

This pair together was two people who only make menswear.  They got Mila as their client and instead of doing a pantsuit that she could at least look polished with clean lines and impeccable tailoring, they ventured to the wild side and decided to take a chance and make a gown.  And instead of listening to the client and what she wants, they pick a pattern instead of a solid.  Hello, are you trying to impress Mila or set her up to crash and burn? Mila looked so frumpy and hideous that I wouldn’t have walked down the runway in that non-Emmy gown.  It was ill-fitted and the v-neck cut was way too high.  And the hair weave didn’t do anything for the look but make it worse – FAIL!

Christopher & Andrea – Anya

Anya in a dress designed by Christopher and Andrea

It was great to see Anya back on the show and I loved her colorful zig-zag dress she had on once she was revealed as a client.  I wasn’t sure how the pairing would be between Christopher and Andrea, but it took a turn for the worse as Andrea was very slow doing her part and taking 12 hours to do one piece.  That really took a toll on Christopher and he kept trying to be nice and not say it, but on the runway he finally let loose and complained about her work.  As soon as it started happening, Christopher should have spoke up and nipped it in the bud.  I was surprised that Anya picked brown as the color of her dress when she is such a vibrant, bright person I thought maybe a yellow or pink or royal blue would have looked better on her. Another dress gone bad that looked like a prom project with a very bad upper body design.

Buffi & Elena – Laura

Laura in a dress designed by Elena and Buffi

So we already know Elena doesn’t like to work with anybody.  Then to make matters worse, she feels partnering with Buffi isn’t the best fit either.  It seemed like Elena wanted to do everything so it would be perfect and just leave Buffi in the background as the iron lady. I don’t recall what Laura wanted, but the end result was another black dress – YAWN!  It was OK for me, not a showstopper at all.  Laura would fade out at the Emmy’s and it wouldn’t be memorable.

Gunnar & Kooan – Irina

Irina in a dress designed by Gunnar and Kooan

When I saw that Irina was one of the clients, I felt bad for whoever was going to work with her because she is a snappy, snooty, difficult person to work for.  I felt worse that Gunnar and Kooan were the lucky recipients of her wrath because she didn’t hold back and was already talking to them like minions.  She was very clear about what she wanted which is fine, but get your point across with class and not sass.  Gunnar wasn’t happy with her since she was hard to work with and Kooan didn’t even know what to say when she got mad about the stitching in the back of the dress.  Irina will crack a whip any day and you don’t want to be in the way.  Her dress was alright, but again, it would be looked over at the Emmy’s. Of course when asked how she liked the dress she was going to mention the sewing could be better.  Irina, what are you up to now?

Nathan & Sonjia – Valerie

Valerie in a dress designed by Sonjia and Nathan

I was happy to see Valerie return to the show and glad she got Sonjia and Nathan as designers.  Finally we had two people who know what type of fabric to use for the Emmy’s!  I loved what they picked for her dress and the cut in the front was sexy but classy.  The back could’ve been done up a little more, but this was truly the first dress I saw that I would have pinned as a wow factor.  Valerie is a pretty girl, but her hair was looking gray and her makeup a little bland.  Glam her up folks!

Fabio & Ven – Kenley

Kenley wearing the winning design by Fabio & Ven

Going into this show we all knew Ven would be immune from elimination and whoever was paired with him would probably be safe.  Kenley is another person that knows what she wants and the vintage but modern style is her look.  Her dress was the winning design, but it wasn’t Emmy-esque.  I could see her dress being worn to an awards luncheon or the Kentucky derby.  As the winning look, the designer who created the dress would accompany her to the Emmys.  One look at this dress and you know Ven was all over it.  He has continued to impress me and I hope to see something different from him.

After watching this episode, there are a few things I have to point out to designers who want to be on this show:

  1. Be ready to partner with someone who may have a totally different aesthetic than you, but be open to working together to complete the end goal.
  2. It’s great if you specialize in one type of look, but be versed in others especially if you are only good at menswear.  The show mostly focuses on clothes for women, so it would be nice if you knew how to make a dress and gown.

Looking forward to the next show!

Past Commentary

Episode 2

Episode 1

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