Friday, October 28, 2011

2.11 Chasing the Dragon

Laurie:  Last night, while the rest of the Project Runwayverse was watching the season finale of Season Nine, we were curled up cheering the Fashion Week runway presentations of the Season Three top picks. Clearly we are running out of steam!  Our big mistake, I think, has been to allow ourselves to begin viewing Season Three before we've finished blogging Season Two.  Such is the crack-like addictive quality of Project Runway. Who knew this fun little project would require so much self-control?

Remember cassette tapes?  Sure you do.  Well, anyway, that's a bit like how my memory has been behaving ever since we began getting ahead of ourselves.  My brain has taped Season Three over the top of Season Two, and I'm having trouble even remembering who's who, let alone who did what and why.  Even my notes have left me scratching my head. But plow ahead we must, and from this entry forth we will exercise more restraint.

Paul:  I am in full agreement with everything you just said.  I am absolutely consumed with wanting to write about Season Three and am really struggling to think of anything I want to say about the end of Season Two.  Which seems unfair. Season Two was a fine season.

Laurie:  And we really are still in Season Two (a lovely little season, right? Let's do try to get back in the spirit of the thing.) and are finally down to the final four.  This is the challenge that decides which three go home to design a line for Fashion Week, and which one just goes home.

Our designers' final challenge was to design an evening gown to represent the line they are hoping to present at Fashion Week. It is then announced that the winner of the challenge will be honored by having their winning gown worn to a red-carpet event by none other than super-model Iman.  This announcement was met with shock and awe.

The designers were given one hour to sketch and $300 to spend.  But first they were taken on a field trip to meet Fern Mallis, then organizer of Fashion Week and Vice President of IMG.  They were given the opportunity to ask her for Fashion Week advice.  The key word of wisdom, which seemed to come with an imperceptible wink in Santino's direction, was "BE NICE".  Essentially no one benefits when people treat one another unkindly (my words, not hers, but that was the gist of it).

Paul:  There is a party.  Austin and Jay from Season 1 are there.  [Laurie: and so were Kara Saun, Heidi Klum, and Michael Kors. It was a surprise party, as you might have forgotten to remember.  I know it's true because I wrote it in my notes!]

Paul:  We are treated to snips of conversation in which Jay relates to the exact point in the competition in which the contestants find themselves.  We are reminded that there will be life outside of this contest and we wonder if Jay is currently filming Eleven Minutes yet.

Again, we suspect that Santino may not be winning on the merit of the outfits he is creating within the challenges, but rather on the promise of what he will be capable of producing for fashion week.

Santino's creation, image via
Laurie:  Yes, I've had the distinct impression that Santino has coasted through more than once on his unique blend of dashing and devilish, and all the excitement that might result were he turned loose on Fashion Week.  (One thing the yet-fledgling Project Runway cannot afford at this point in its run is to bore its audience, or the world of fashion design.  It is clear this production means to be taken seriously in the industry and so must walk the lines all successful designers must walk between edgy and tasteful, between elegant and boring.)

And yet, unfortunately, a ho-hum is what the designers got from the judges on this, the penultimate runway presentation.  I thought the gowns were all lovely and tasteful, with the exception of Santino's, which more than tiptoed over the line into gaudy.  As has so often been the case with Santino, underneath the gaud was the potential for an amazing dress.  The rest of the crew played it "safe",  that curse-word the Project Runway gods reserve for what simple folk like me call lovely, tasteful, and timeless elegance....but to be fair, they may have had a point.  It is the exotic beauty Iman we are dressing after all. 

 Paul:  Oh that's right!  I knew there was a reason I kept humming Abdulmajid.

Chloe's design, image via
Kara's gown, image via
Laurie:  Chloe's dress, at least from the front, was especially beautiful, if not exactly right for Iman. I seem to recall the rear-view having an odd shape, though.  Daniel's dress was the simplest of all, and in navy. Kara's was rather similar to Daniel's, but in black.

In the end it was Daniel's gown that Iman preferred.  He won the challenge, and Iman wore his dress.
Is it just me, or does this dress fit the Project Runway model worlds better than the legendary Iman?  Hmmm, upon closer look the neckline has been entirely redrawn in Iman's version. Still lovely though.

Daniel V's Challenge-winning gown, image via
Iman wearing Daniel's dress via
And we said farewell to Kara Janx.  (Click here to see what she's been up to since.) 

Next up: Fashion Week!

Paul:  And after a respite, Season Three.  Respite for us.  We're going to throw some movies in our Netflix queue for a bit while we catch up on this blog, so there should be no detectable intermission on your end.  We are committed to this project, and we will make it work.

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