Project Runway: Shut Up And Sew
August 21, 2015 10:49 PM - Season 14, Episode 3 - Subscribe

Season 14, Episode 3 - In the first team challenge of the season, the designers are paired up and treated to a day on a Celebrity Cruise ship. For some of the duos, the friendly seas are left behind and they hit some rocky water in the workroom. Tracee Ellis Ross guest judges.
posted by bq (23 comments total)
For me, the takeaway from "supplied fabrics" challenges is that they manage to create anything halfway decent because the fabric selection is so random so kudos to Ashley and Candace for pairing two awful fabrics (the stripe was okay) to make a winning design. I didn't like it, it didn't say Venice, but it was reasonably well made and distinctive, point of view and all that.

Edmond & Hanmiao and Joseph & Merline were saddled with the worst fabric, not just bright but garish colors for the Caribbean? two bolts of lavender for St Petersburg? Not surprising they were in the bottom.

And Zac Posen gets on my last nerve. "You didn't finish the hem?" It looked like a knit which wouldn't need hemming but if it wasn't, unfinished hems is like a PR tradition. Hemming would not have saved that garment. It's too bad that Hanmiao goes home when dull designers like Amanda and Gabrielle are still in it.

Blake & Kelly's Greek jumpsuit should've been in the top over Lindsey & Jake's Chinese lantern.
posted by TWinbrook8 at 6:52 AM on August 22, 2015 [1 favorite]

I love that Ashley and Candace are best friends now. I know they made a spinoff show a while back for Austin and Santino. I think the world is ready for Ashley and Candace. They could go around the world making beautiful clothes from ugly fabrics and giggling about bff stuff the whole time.
posted by phunniemee at 7:16 AM on August 22, 2015 [4 favorites]

Whenever you're in a group challenge and you have immunity, the thing to do is just back off and let the other person take the lead. But I can't really fault Edmund too much for it, since Hanmiao seemed really frustrating to work with.
posted by meese at 9:08 AM on August 22, 2015

I don't think there was one decent looking outfit in the entire show, but I'm with TWinbrook8, that the Greek jumpsuit should have placed in the top three. The major strike against it was it didn't seem (unless it wasn't shown) to switch between day and night modes. Awful, ugly, unflattering outfits that didn't fit and weren't constructed well. If this is what the rest of the episodes are like, it's going to be a long season.
posted by sardonyx at 10:46 AM on August 22, 2015

I am inclined to give them a pass on the fit because unless someone has screwed up a swing dress that hangs from the shoulders, the time restrictions are geared towards reality-tv-drama and limiting production costs rather than producing well-crafted clothes. In those few short hours, they have to draft entirely new pattern pieces and fit them to a model and I'm not even sure they get the same model each week this season. For something like pants, the odds are waaaay against them so anyone attempting those gets extra credit.

Of course there have been some very skilled technicians; Kimo (?) and Dmitry could whip up elaborate garments in one day but those guys are rare. I think most of the contestants are reeling from lack of sleep and dumbing down their aesthetic and craftsmanship to fit the time. It takes a couple episodes of Tim advising them to manage their time better before they get the hang of it. One thing Mondo said that I liked, is that he said he didn't do a sketch before heading to Mood. He thought about the challenge requirements and would make a list of notions that he thought he would need and then when he got there, he let the fabric speak to him. Rather than rushing around trying to find fabric to fit a pre-conceived idea.

If we could see the results up close, we'd be appalled at the shoddy construction. Zac Posen is being disingenuous when he examines them, "I'm shocked, shocked that you didn't sew the hem, Edmond." etc.

And then there's the kind of person who wants to be on the show. The days that PR was taken even slightly seriously are long gone. Now it's people who want to be on tv and small-market designers who are looking to get some publicity for their business. I just heard about another show: Fashion Fund, on the Ovation? channel which is backed by the CFDA, Vogue and Anna Wintour, DVF etc. It's a legit program that mentors up and coming designers--people you've actually heard of!! and now they've filmed something about it. Someone has put it up on Youtube. I have no idea if it's any good but going by past winners of the awards, it's the real thing.
posted by TWinbrook8 at 11:34 AM on August 22, 2015

Has there been a trip to Mood yet this season? I breathed a sigh of relief when I saw their name in the workroom, I was worried they were gone.

The final Edmond/Hanmaio showdown was epic. Fuck you, I'm making a new swimsuit! Fuck you, I'm stealing our model and sewing her in my design! Never seen that last one before.

Also, didn't Tom and Lorenzo quit recapping Project Runway?
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 4:23 PM on August 22, 2015

They seem to be podcasting now.

Jake and Joseph: sexist jerks or jerks?
posted by bq at 8:00 PM on August 22, 2015

Agreed that Jake and Joseph's behavior was terrible in this episode, especially the way Joseph tried throwing Merline under the bus at the end.

I wish the show would go back to sometimes having two days for challenges, because despite Tim Gunn's math 2 people working for eight hours is not the same as working for 16 hours.
posted by drezdn at 5:43 AM on August 23, 2015

They haven't been to Mood yet, but I understand they'll get their first trip there next week.

Yeah, Jake and Joseph were terrible. I'm leaning towards them being jerks in general. One of the line's from Joseph's audition was that he enjoyed making people feel small. And I think Jake also made some "I'm mean, lol" comment. So... you know. I think they just fit into this type of character that the producers like to have cast. Blake too, although that didn't come through much this episode.

I wasn't crazy about Ashley & Candice's pants, to me they looked like they had a high waist and a low crotch giving the model a big flat surface there. It just looked weird to me. And I agree with TWinbrook8's comments about the fabric's being a very cross-your-fingers type thing. Joseph and Merline's look wasn't good, but they got terrible fabrics; close up the main fabric they used for the dress looked like a lilac tarp.

I wonder if Mood is dumping fabrics which they wouldn't be able to sell otherwise on the contestants whenever they are being provided with fabric (as in this challenge and the first of this season).
posted by bjrn at 6:00 AM on August 23, 2015

especially the way Joseph tried throwing Merline under the bus at the end.

I shouldn't have been, probably, but I was totally SHOCKED at that. Joseph seemed very aware throughout the challenge that this was HIS design, that HE was controlling Merline (*twitch twitch*), and that HE had "done good" by being in charge. He had Merline doing whatever he wanted, and then for him to turn around and state that the look was entirely Merline's fault seemed either surprisingly un-selfaware, or just plain conniving. Gross, is what it was.
posted by chainsofreedom at 7:43 AM on August 23, 2015 [3 favorites]

Jake? I don't recall ever seeing him before, that's how little an impression he's made on me.

I agree the Greek Islands outfit should have been in the top. It would've been nice to have sen more of it than just the runway.

Hanmiao deserved to go. I thought she behaved appallingly and her design and construction were atrocious. And it's not the first time Tim has steered someone wrong. Nina hated the swimsuit idea, but Tim forced them down that route.

I didn't like the winning outfit. I thought the pants were awful. I didn't really like anything this week. I miss Dmitry :-(
posted by essexjan at 8:08 AM on August 23, 2015

I just stopped watching this episode about 1/3 of the way through. Watching their partners try to stifle Merline and Hanmiao is making me so angry.
posted by amtho at 8:34 AM on August 23, 2015

I mean, I know that the time and other constraints are to blame, partly, but I watch Project Runway partly to see a good creative process modeled. I want to absorb ways that creative people _can_ work together, not to be reminded of why I hate working with other people who think my ideas are incomprehensible.
posted by amtho at 8:36 AM on August 23, 2015 [2 favorites]

You should just plug your ears with your fingers and say LA LA LA LA LA LA until Ashley and Candace are on the screen again.
posted by phunniemee at 8:41 AM on August 23, 2015

It just occurred to me: why is "matronly" the worst possible thing in the world? Now I want to go out and dress like a matron just to shake things up.
posted by amtho at 8:53 AM on August 23, 2015 [2 favorites]

Because women over 38 should all be rounded up and burned lest they get their disgusting old on anyone else.

If the previous 13 seasons have taught me anything.
posted by phunniemee at 9:06 AM on August 23, 2015 [6 favorites]

I hereby declare November 19 to be World Matron Day.
posted by amtho at 9:28 AM on August 23, 2015 [2 favorites]

I had to look up the judges' ages : Heidi is 42, Nina is 50, baby Zac is 34.
posted by bjrn at 11:54 AM on August 23, 2015 [1 favorite]

I liked the winning look, but perhaps I was biased because now I want this season to morph into Candace and Ashley solving fashion mysteries around New York City, with each episode ending with them giggling, clinking champagne flutes together, and cheering "girl power besties!" into the camera.

The drama of this episode was so cringe inducing that when Hanmaio made waves toward the bathroom I just skipped ahead. I couldn't bear. The purple blinged curtain material was definitely hard to work with, but Merline and Joesph's dress/cape was horrific. More horrific, though, was his behavior, so now he has to go. It's true Merline seems a little annoying, but I'm assuming she's getting the absolute extreme worst edit possible, and the idea that Joeseph actively policed her behavior plus curtailed any of her input AND merrily tossed her under the catwalk was gross.

I think I liked the looks this episode because they were a break from the spandex tiny bath towels that flood the runway each episode. I am exhausted by how almost everything is skin tight, and barely covers nipple to crotch. And now, maybe with a torso cutout. I'm not actually into fashion, so I don't know if that's what walks the runway for real, or if young, inexperienced designers just make everything tiny-tiny-eenie-weenie. If being able to breathe and not show pubes is matronly, yes please. The alternative is weird, not sexy.
posted by missmary6 at 12:50 AM on August 24, 2015 [2 favorites]

It's not just ages; a matron is someone who dresses and behaves as though she deserves respect, partly because she's mature, but also because she may be in a senior position within a family or within another organization. She's not trying to ingratiate herself; she's likely to be telling other people what to do, perhaps with a serious look on her face. Or she might be organizing a social event, or attending such an event and lending her wit more than her physical strength or looks. She dares to be a bit dominant even though she's not sexy.
posted by amtho at 4:16 AM on August 24, 2015 [5 favorites]

I want this season to morph into Candace and Ashley solving fashion mysteries around New York City, with each episode ending with them giggling, clinking champagne flutes together, and cheering "girl power besties!" into the camera.

Lifetime, pls.
posted by phunniemee at 5:16 AM on August 24, 2015

I've gotta go with Sarah at P.TV on this one: Swapnil and Tracee Ellis Ross were the saving graces of this bizarro snipefest.
posted by psoas at 3:41 PM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]

The funny thing about Hanmiao's edit is that the judges' criticism actually brought up all of the things she had misgivings about -- the fabric for the swimsuit, the color of the drape, the extra random stuff Edmond flung on there, the fact that a swimsuit was a very expected, safe choice for the Carribean, etc. Wonder if the producers are foreshadowing a fall from grace for Edmond (probably about "taste level"), or if I'm reading too much into it?
posted by en forme de poire at 5:43 PM on August 27, 2015 [1 favorite]

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