Episode: Toddlers And Tiaras
February 18, 2010
Previously on Project Runway: Your gentle blogger went on vacation. While he was out, the designers competed to design a dress for a magazine cover. Anthony climbed out of the bottom of the pack to win bragging rights. And some girl whose name I already forgot was sent packing.
Morning. Atlas Apartments. And aside from the fact that Seth Aaron Of The ‘80s manages to avoid giving the cameras another shirtless shot of him in the a.m., I can’t help but notice that … the man sleeps with a stuffed sheep. Really. Watch it again.
Elsewhere, Anthony The Church Lady declares that it feels “awesome” to finally win something.
Over in the girls’ apartment, Janeane The Droopy is reflecting on how she finally got her wish last time to be critiqued by the panel. And they really didn’t like what they saw. This will clearly have no impact on how this hour will end.
Jesse The Swashbucklin’est is interviewed. This, too, will in no way reflect on the final outcome of the judging.
And it’s off to the runway for the (seen only on the Models show) picking of the models and a quick round of Cryptic Clues from Heidi. This time, however, rather than send them off to have Tim deliver the challenge, she presents the news herself.
They will be using new models. Everyone groans.
And here they come now!
We see silhouettes of tiny people. And not tiny people like you see on that TLC show about tiny people. Tiny people like you see on every other show on TLC. I believe they are called children. Seeing as there are 11 of them, I assume they are all the fruit of the hostess’s loins.
Naturally, everyone “awww”s all over them.
Warning: I hated children when I was one. My attitude towards them has barely improved since then. I shall attempt to keep the snark to a minimum, seeing as folks get really touchy about this. But it shan’t be easy.
As if it wasn’t obvious, Heidi explains that the challenge will be to create a fashionable, yet age-appropriate look for their toddler models.
It seems that before they came out onto the runway, the kids were randomly assigned to their designers, which spares us the sight of the schoolyard pick and crushed little egos. There will be enough time for that when they get back to school and the cameras aren’t rolling.
The kids make everyone at home squeal (I assume) by (after several takes, I’m sure) saying their names and the name of the designer with whom they are paired.
I suffer through this much as I do an airport departure lounge. By silently waiting for it to end. (Looks at watch, sees we have 56 minutes to go. Groans.)
Still-congested Seth Aaron explains he has a daughter at home, so he has an advantage, knowing what little girls like. This, too, will have no bearing on who is in the top or bottom group at the end of this.
Jonathan The Suddenly On Camera Again gamely attempts to explain how he doesn’t care for kids (in a way that won’t make the audience hate him). Again, don’t take this appearance to mean anything.
The knee-high squad marches out and the designers head back to the workroom to discuss their mini dress forms and “adorable” models. Joy.
As they sketch, Anthony delivers more of his not-tiresome-at-all sass and Jesse tells us how he’s designing something based of the Madeline character of Parisian children’s book fame.
Then it’s time for Emilio Marble Mouth to declare how he’s so much better than everyone else and how he has the perfect strategy to win this. He feels that the rest of the designers are putting too much imagination into their outfits and he’s going “the opposite way,” putting as little imagination into the outfit as possible.
Yeah, that’s what we wanna see.
Then it’s off to Mood for fabric! And while the designers race around, let’s just you and me focus on Bolt, the shop’s pooch. Awwww.
Shopping done? Yes! Shots of one designer freaking out that they may not find the fabric they want? Yes! More shots of one designer swiping at another one’s fabric choices? Yes!
Thank you, Mood!
Back in the workroom, Jay Of The Hot Pants informs us that kids today are very fashion forward and by age eight are already demanding sophisticated, high-fashion designer labels and six-inch CFM pumps. Methinks Jay is either an avid watcher of Little Miss Perfect or has too many kid-laden friends on the board at Goldman Sachs.
Elsewhere, Jonathan officially moves off my “don’t care for him” list when he launches into a dead-on impression of Michael Kors judging on the runway. “She looks like a seven year-old waitress working for Benihana! … It’s as if Memoirs of a Geisha met Barney!”
OK, I officially love Jonathan now. I reserve the right to change my mind later.
Breaking with our exclusive focus on the designers who will comprise the top and bottom three, we take a look at Mila The Severe. She tells us that “when (she) first got here” she wasn’t too popular. (Cut to a scene from, oh, two days ago where she’s hating on folks and they hate on her right back.) Now, she assures us, she is universally liked and admired. Sort of like Jay Leno.
Janeane, meanwhile, is planning on recreating a two-dollar romper her mom bought for her sister at Zayre back when she was a kid. This, she imagines, is what will make her stand out on the runway.
With two hours left in the day, folks start wondering why Tim hasn’t popped in for his traditional catch-phrase-toss-around. Mila, smart cookie that she is, realizes that this means a twist is coming. Mila has a strong command of the obvious. This actually makes her stand out. Which is a little sad.
The next morning, we see the designers performing their morning rituals. For Jonathan, this means applying voluminous amounts of product to his coif. For Janeane, this involves being today’s designated weepy shill for a wireless company.
Back in the workroom, Tim arrives to deliver his “surprise.” It’s good news, he says. The mini dresses won’t be walking the runway this day. They’ll be walking the next day. Alongside a full-sized dress for the designers’ (slightly) more mature regular models.
Mila nods knowingly. Emilio wonders how he can make a dress for a seven-foot-tall woman which corresponds with his snoozefest pink “cupcake” kiddie Easter dress. And Janeane’s excited to make something that will be a larger piece of crap.
And it’s back to Mood! And the MoodPooch! Woof!
Back in the workroom, Amy The Petal Lady explains how she’s purchased 16 fabrics in 16 conflicting colors and she’s working out how she can throw them all together to make a grown-up look that is as jarring as her kids’ outfit.
Now, it’s time for … Isn’t Anthony Just Hysterical?!
He yaks. He annoys folks. They challenge him to shut the hell up for five minutes. They all place bets. Answering my prayers, Anthony gags himself. Sadly, it only lasts 15 minutes before he gives up and resumes gabbing.
Proving again, there is no god.
Also, no. No, he Anthony is not hysterical.
(Yes, I know everyone just loooooves him. … Pffffft.)
Tim arrives for his usual “talk to me”s.
Tim loves what Jonathan’s doing with the kid’s look. And he’s excited about what he says the adult dress will be … eventually.
Janeane’s though gives him a Halloween feel. The designer, though, sees the orange-red fabric paired with black as “pink and black and white.” The fact that she sees the burnt-orange color as “pink” concerns me and I think she may be in need of immediate medical attention.
Over at Land Of Amy, the Persian Princess has laid out her now-26-color palette as 101 petals on the floor. She explains that she wishes to affix them to some pants and Tim worries that she’s making Clothes For Clarabell.
Next, it’s Seth Aaron’s turn. His kid’s look is finished and looks fab and modern. And the adult look seems edgy and cool, too. The designer explains how he’s made a tiny handbag for his kid and that his actual offspring (who is 11, mind you) has over 200 handbags.
And they say people overindulge their kids these days.
Tim says he’s “profoundly wowed” and sends in the models, both prepubescent and undernourished. The little girls act all “cute” and “charming” … and I go back to biting my tongue. Hard.
I’m bleeding quite profusely now and may speak with a hard lisp from here on out.
Tho, the dethigners do their latht-minute work while the kidth torture me. (/lisp)
It all makes me feel quite stabby.
Hair and makeup infomercial. Emilio smacktalk session. And … off to the runway!
Once there, Seed Pod Heidi arrives, recaps the challenge and introduces the judges, “Hi guys,” and “Hello,” as well as guest judge Tory Burch.
The looks walk the runway.
- Anthony’s made two wholly unmemorable red-tinged looks. A kids one and a grown-up one. They make zero impression.
- Amy’s looks are startling. And not in a good way. They’re a mishmash of turquoise, orange, pink, black and brown and ohmahgaw. The adult model’s pants are covered in those petals we saw before. And somewhere a calliope plays.
- Ben (The Cheshire Cat Designer), who apparently went missing this episode again, made two dresses.
- Seth Aaron’s looks come out and immediately floor me. The kid’s outfit is a sassy little houndstooth hoodie with a skirt complete with grommets. And the adult outfit is a really edgy, complicated black and white houndstooth-suggestive modern jacket with a black detailed pant. Zexy!
- Jesse’s models come out and the kid looks very cute. It’s the French schoolgirl outfit he described with a wool jacket. (The lines on the dress, while intentionally askew, look like a mistake to me.) The grown-up model sports a sexy mini dress with a very sexy silhouette in the same grey, red and black color scheme. They’re both good, but they don’t say “mother and daughter” as much as they say, “Supermodel finds lost girl wandering the runway and is returning her to lost-and-found.”
- Next it’s Jonathan’s looks. And I really don’t know what to make of this. The kid’s dress is cute and yellow and oddly complicated. But a toddler in a bolero jacket just looks strange. The adult model is covered in petals of white organza and seems vaguely Lady GaGa-esque. But not in a good way.
- Maya (a/k/a The Lady Vanishes) seems to have also gone missing this challenge. Hence, her outfits are of no consequence.
- Mila’s looks are pure Carnaby Street. The little girl’s look is color-blocked (natch) in pink and green with a black and white detail. And the adult one is a white jacket with black trim and black capri-length pants. Personally, I loved them both.
- And then it’s time for Emilio The Mushmouth’s looks. They are pink. Very Pepto pink. The little one is fresh from her first communion and the adult looks like she’s 18-going-on-40 in this stunning maid-of-honor number. Clearly, I think, this has to be in the bottom three, since he really did succeed in using as little imagination as humanly possible.
- Then, it’s Janeane’s turn. The girl looks like she stepped out right of the J.C. Penney’s catalog, c. October 1984. And the grown-up is wearing an equally imaginative ensemble. She says they look like they belong together. … Shopping the blue-light special perhaps.
- Finally, Jay’s models. They are each in purple and black and look fresh, modern, appropriate and the outfits each have interesting ruffle details which are echoed in each other’s garments. Lovely.
Once that’s done, the tops and bottoms are called out.
The bottoms are Jonathan, Janeane and Amy. The tops are Jay, Seth Aaron and Jesse.
The questioning commences, which makes me wonder how the hell they got the little girls to stand still without endless rounds of “Mommy! Mommy! Look at me!” and assorted whines. Somehow, they got the footage they needed.
And the judges make the little girls feel like they did a great job, despite their criticism of some of the looks. Yea, judges.
Again, there’ll be time for the kids to get destroyed emotionally for their outfits once they get back to school.
Discussion. The good is praised. The bad is dissed. Michael says Jonathan’s adult model looks like a tornado of toilet paper. His kid model feels uncomfortable in her bolero jacket. And Amy’s kid model sticks up for her designer, saying she would “trust her fashion sense.”
Wow. OK, what kid says “I would trust her fashion sense?” Maybe they really do grow up faster these days.
They’re sent away for deliberation and then it’s time for the final judgement.
Jesse is safe.
And the winner of the challenge is … Seth Aaron. (Yea!)
Jay is safe.
Jonathan is safe. Leaving Amy and Janeane as the bottom two.
And, shocking exactly no one, Janeane is sent home.
She says we’ll hear from her. Maybe not in this country. And maybe not much. But we’ll hear from her.
I’m assuming it’ll be as the winner of Miss Self-Esteem 2011.
Next time on Project Runway: Methinks we’re looking at the long-awaited unconventional materials challenge. At last!