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Project Runway Recap - Design Your Heart Out

Andy-warhol-campbells-soup  Last week we sent Ping back to the planet she shares with Ari from last season. Who will be sent packing this week? Let's find out! This? Is Project Runway.

At the Atlas Apartments, everyone remarks upon Ping's departure. Anna says something about how she feels close to the designers, but that it’s hard to make friends because we’re not here to make friends. Maya on the other hand wants to make Mila her new mommy. I’m sure Mila’s flattered that a 20-something girl with a Betty Paige knock-off thinks of her as a mom figure. Anyway, who cares about your five-minute friendships, let's make some dresses!

The designers learn that they will be designing gowns for the Campbell's Soup "Address Your Heart" Gala to benefit Go Red For Women. The models will be "real women" (because models are not real women, remember?) who have all suffered from heart disease in one way or another. The gowns must be red and incorporate Campbell's branding in some way, because Campbell's couldn't possibly sponsor this gala out of the good of their hearts. At least the designers weren't drinking Soup At Hand throughout the entire episode or anything else so gauche. The winning designer will have immunity and their design will be sold on the Project Runway website to benefit Go Red for Women. However, if you go to projectrunway.com, you'll find that ALL the dresses are up for auction, so it sounds to me like a pretty bullshit prize. 

The models come in and talk with their designers about what they want from their respective dresses and also share their personal stories of surviving heart-related illnesses. One model casually says, “Oh, my heart stops," like someone else might say, "Oh, my car makes a weird noise when I start it." Another woman says the top part of her heart doesn’t communicate with the bottom. Again, it's like, "oh no big!" I guess if you have to tell people your medical history all the time you get a bit blasé about the whole thing. The designers seem moved by their models, but Anthony, whose mom recently had heart surgery, seemed particularly affected.

MOOD! Tim stands before a ton of red fabric. It's like the end of Carrie in there.  The designers will have one day and a $100 budget. While they are not limited to red fabric, they are heavily encouraged to make sure those dresses say CAMPBELL'S. So...red, then? There's really not much else to a can of Campbells but red, white and that brassy seal in the middle. The designers will also have access to some fabric "generously" donated by Campbell's, emblazoned with their logo. As the designers rush to cut their fabric and make their purchases, Anna whimpers something about needing to get her boning, and I snort, because I'm fourteen years old.

Back in the workroom, Anna reminds us again how unskilled—er, self-taught—she is, but says she will use her printmaking skills to incorporate a less literal Campbell's logo in her fabric. Maya is doing a sort of abstract heart in the dress, which means another sweetheart neckline. I'm wondering when Nina will be bored by sweetheart necklines; I know I am.

The designers work at a frenzied pace. Janeane thinks she's cursed, because her dress falls in a bucket of water. I'm not entirely clear on why there’s a bucket of water there in the first place. Maybe it's full of all Janeane's tears, although she has been far less of a water-works this week than past weeks. Thankfully previews indicate ol' water works will be back in full force next week.

Tim comes in for critiques. He likes what Anna’s done with the print. He think Mila’s on the right track, and has Concern Face regarding Jesus’s dress, though nothing he says directly indicates as much. Maya waffles on whether to make a cocktail purse to accompany her frock, and Tim says do it. Amy says she wants her design to show off her model’s scar, and Tim says that’s a great idea - the scar is a badge of courage. I'm noting that no one is really heavily using the logo material in these dresses, so I guess we won't see anything like this on the runway:


After Tim leaves, Seth realizes at the last minute he needs to put more of himself in his dress. This dude has a big tendency to drop what he's doing and start over, frequently, and This Concerns Me.

Emilio has LOTS to say about everyone else's work, you guys. He thinks Jay’s dress is a train wreck. He's not wrong, IMO.  Emilio says everyone's going to need to pull something out of the bag, but from what I saw so far on his mannequin, his own frock looks like it's the bag everyone will be pulling from.

Anthony hopes the judges don’t make the ladies feel bad about how they look in their dresses on top of all they’ve been through. Anthony honey, I suggest you just focus on making your model look nice so they won't have to. Take a tip from RuPaul, girl: Don’t Fuck It Up.

Seth Aaron now appears to have changed his design at least three times and now just hopes he can finish.

Emilio is still getting down with OPP and bags on on Mila's garment, saying it looks like a cheap flag at the Thanksgiving Day Parade. People in glass houses, Emilio, that's all I'm going to say. You're not all that.

As the models come in for their final fittings, it appears that Jesus has made a working girl dress. Anna, probably the sweetest person there, tells the confessional camera as tactfully as possible, “it doesn’t really read 'gala party'”. Yeah, that would be because it’s reading, "Hollywood and Vine," Anna.

The models are whisked off to the Garnier salonblahblah, hair and makeup, etc etc. Aaaand: showtime.

Heidi comes out onto the runway looking entirely too adorable. I can see why she’s always pregnant; it’s a great look for her. The models strut down the runway, with Seth Aaron's model doing the best runway strut of them all. After the show, Heidi calls out Mila, Maya, Anna, Amy, Jesse and Jesus and tells the rest they're safe. Mila, Maya and Amy are the top designers, and Anna, Jesse and Jesus have the lowest scores.

I have to say, the crit last night was entirely too forgiving, because I really didn't like a single dress from this challenge. I thought all of these women deserved better. Here are the bottom and top three:

Picture 9
 The judges love Mila's star-spangled dress. I'm a little ambivalent myself. It certainly is flattering and very fun, but I honestly found the stars a bit cheesy. Maybe that was just Emilio's comment from earlier worming its way into my evaluation.

Picture 8
The judges also like the draping of Maya's dress and the clutch. Nina called it interesting and elegant. The draping is very pretty, but something about the top of the gold heart outline doesn't work for me and ruins the whole thing.

Picture 7
 Anna's dress has so many issues, I'm really surprised they didn't call her out more for the construction. They seemed to focus on design, pointing out that the racerback did her model no favors, and that it doesn’t feel like an evening dress. Again, I thought the judges were far too kind. The color she chose to use with the red is entirely too close to her skin color, pushing it into skating costume territory. It's a very ugly dress.

 Nina loves the movement of Amy's dress. The judgest find it to be ethereal, chic and modern, and Michael loves the way the chiffon looks over the shinier charmeuse underskirt, letting a little shine peek through without being overwhelming. I'm gonna be totally honest: I thought it was boring. A snorefest. Maybe it was different on the runway. *shrug*

Picture 2
 This is definitely the best view of Jesse's work last night. The judges thought the dress was kind of sweet, but the jacket made her look like a majorette, and they also remarked that the white sash on the waist is unflattering. I agree pretty much entirely with their critique: the neckline of the dress is gorgeous, and a different fabric would have made the dress as a whole even better, but he really should have ditched the jacket. The walking-away-factor of this look is probably what saved him. Or maybe it was this:

Picture 5
 Jesus's dress is "everything that could be tacky in one garment." Heidi questions his taste, Nina says he went overboard with cliche. Again, they are being far too kind. The shiny, tight, red (cheap-looking) satin? The crystal-studded straps? This is not a cocktail dress. This is a Showgirls dress. Maybe Jesus needs to go work for Versayce. The judges have no doubt that Jesus knows how to make clothes, but remark that taste is something you just can’t learn, and he is sorely lacking. And speaking of walking-away factors:

Picture 6

 Yeesh, the straps are even worse in the back. 

After a commercial break, including Bluefly's tired old "I have nothing to wear so I'm naked"  ad campaign, it's time to announce who will be in and who will be out. Maya in, and Amy wins the challenge. Jesse and Mila are also in, leaving Anna, the okay designer who can't sew,  and Jesus, the fantastic sewer who can't edit. Heidi tells Anna she's in, and Jesus makes perhaps one of the most upbeat exits in Project Runway history. By Jesus! I really like saying your name! HAY-ZEUS.

Amy will be back from island paradise with the recappage next week. Auf Wiedersehen!

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I was underwhelmed by all the dresses tonight too. The winning dress looked like a boring version of something Santino would make. I think the problem with the top of Maya's dress, for me, was that it looked like a serpent was trying to eat her model's boob.


Even before Emilio said anything Mila's dress reminded me of a Macy's advertisement. I was a bit surprised the judges liked it, but then I'm not that great at figuring out what the judges are gonna say!

Suzy Q

I hated Maya's dress. So weird and unflattering. I thought the judges would hate it, too, but I was wrong again! I guess that's why they're not paying me the big bucks.

Mila's dress would have worked better without the big star on the bottom.

Haysoos deserved to leave for that trashy trainwreck.


Just a clarification. Amy's dress is available in a variety of sizes and is a finished product. The other dresses are up for auction and are the original only. Therefor only good for fashion geeks who want something to hang in their sewing room or a person who happens to be the same size and shape as the original model and doesn't mind unfinished seams.

That star dress was hideous! The seams were terrible and she looks like Miss Fire Cracker 1987. Jonathan should have been in the top three.

Anna's dress was a bad wonder woman remake. I also didn't like Maya's dress. Jesse is a prick and I can't wait until he's gone which hopefully won't be long and Jesus has needed to go for awhile now so no surprises there.

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