August 29, 2009

project runway, season 6

I'm finally sitting down to watch the first episode of Project Runway. Some things that have changed: new location (Los Angeles) and new network (Lifetime), some have stayed the same: Heidi, Tim, Nina, and Michael.

I can always measure my enthusiasm for a season of Runway by how well it maintains my attention. During season 4, I watched every episode on the night it aired right up until Fashion Week. I still remember Christian, Chris, and many other designers. As for season 5, I never even watched the final few episodes and my best recollection is that awful Kenley. And I think that's only because she was recently in the news for serving jail time after throwing a cat at her boyfriend.

We'll see how season 6 will measure up. Here are the designers:

Ra'mon. From Chicago, went to medical school specializing in neuro surgery, but made the switch to fashion design. Interesting. His name is pronounced rah-MON, but I plan to pronounce it like the noodles.

Logan. Self proclaimed "guy's guy" who's not like your typical designer. Ok, we get it. You're not gay.

Johnny. Tried out for three previous season, but did not make it. He credits this to his former crystal meth addiction. 10 points for honesty. Johnny had a bit of a melt down during the first challenge, but Tim talked him off the ledge. The producers have appointed him this season's drama queen.

Gordana. Yugoslavian immigrant at the higher end of the age spectrum. Already, I'm glad she's here. She owns her own shop in North Carolina. Her first dress wasn't at the top, but I loved it.

Malvin. Describes himself as androgynous, an aesthetic that he incorporates into his designs. He says there's "not a vocab" to describe his garments yet. I love this guy, but I was surprised how boring his first dress was.

Carol Hannah. Describes her aesthetic as "pixie meets cocktail party" and claims she "surprises" people a lot. This means she does not surprise anyone.

Qristel. Also at the higher end of the age spectrum. She's been designing clothes for all shapes and sizes.

Shirin. She's youngin' into "multi-functional" garments. Her first dress, though not at the bottom, was ugly.

Nicholas. He is "known" in NYC as the Feathered Prince because of his love for design with "chiffon, lace, feathers, and champagne". He has quite a bit of high end design experience, which is why I was also surprised at his boring first dress.

Mitchell. Went to design school and has been working on the business side of fashion.

Epperson. Perhaps one of the oldest designers at 49 with a family of children. He may turn out to be the most daring designer, I think partly because he feels he has nothing to lose.

Christopher. Coming to LA from Minnesota. Self-trained with no formal design school. He's in the running for my early favorite.

Ari. Introduction involves something about clothing that doubles as a tent and a water purification system. Don't bore Nina!

Althea. A young lady from Ohio who interned for a couple of huge designers. Snooze.

Irina. What I learned during the first episode: she gets her inspiration from her small, white dog.

Louise. She's from Texas, and she likes vintage. She and Ari probably stand out as the most unique among the ladies in terms of personal style.

First Challenge
The first challenge begins at the Hollywood red carpet. Tim Gunn has suggested that this challenge was originally more interesting - I'm guessing they were designing an Emmy for a television star associated with the previous network, and they had to make a switch. The assignment is to design a dress for the red carpet event of their choice. Gross, I just remembered about Lindsay Lohan judging.

Safe: Shirin, Epperson, Gordana, Carol Hannah, Logan, Althea, Nicholas, Irina, Malvin, and Louise.

Highest Scores:
Christopher - This was my favorite dress right away. Just a pretty shape and cool textures.
Ra'mon - I thought it was boring, but the judges could see it on the red carpet.
Johnny - He came through in the end, they really liked the style, but didn't love the color.

Lowest Scores:
Qristel - I loved the idea of the colors, but the style wasn't enough.
Ari - No surprise, her garment is strange and her explanation even stranger.
Mitchell - He had a size snafu with his first model, and the quick fix design turned into a naked model under a sheer sheet of panty hose. You can tell they want to keep him though.

Loser: Ari. Surprising because they usually keep the most unusual designer for a few weeks to keep things interesting.

Winner: Christopher (he was definitely my pick as well)

In the end, I could hardly tell the show had switched networks. Anyone disagree?


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