Project Runway Recap: The Top 8 Rock Out

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Oddly, only half rock out…the other half make Grandma clothes!

After poor Pepto Bryce was auf'ed last week on Project Runway, we're down to eight designers. Sparkly goth Heidi comes out to tell the remaining designers that "Image is everything" and to meet Tim Gunn at some music hall.

Once there, we get to hear some blah blah that fashion and music are inextricably linked: They are both profound forms of self-expression. As is, I'm guessing, hair care, since this is the Garnier challenge. They are partnering with Rolling Stone to put an unsigned band on the cover. And the winners are: The Sheep Dogs, a motley crew who look a bit like Spin Doctors meet Black Crowes.

Project Runway Laura
Image courtesy Lifetime TV

The challenge is to clothe these rockers and give them an image. The winning design will be featured in an advertorial in both Marie Claire and Rolling Stone magazines.

They are split into two teams of four, but they are told that cohesion isn't all that important.

The two teams, chosen from the button bag, are:

1 (Team We Can't Be Bothered to Give Ourselves a Name): Oliver, Viktor, Kimberly and Joshua

2 (Team Harmony): Anya, Bert, Laura and Anthony

Some folks are freaking out, given unlike last week this time it's actually men's wear. Kimberly has never done men's wear. Neither has Anya.

Meanwhile Josh, who has, helpfully points out that it's more involved in terms of fit and tailoring, and Olivier thinks this challenge is up his alley, because he is a men's wear designer.

Unfortunately, Olivier can take the noise associated with a rock band and seems no less overwhelmed or disturbed than he's been for at least two weeks now.

They ask the band what kind of image they want, and it doesn't leave a whole lot of room for high fashion. They like classic sounds, so they want clothes to match: Boots, jeans, denim, suede.

The drummer wants a dashiki (Anya likes that).

Josh loves the snakeskin cowboy boots on the bassist.

Laura wants to make a pair of red jeans for the lead guitarist.

Once the teams get together, they all agree on which player each of them will take, and the fact that they don't need to try to work together as a team seems to make them all feel very relaxed and happy indeed.

They have a $300 budget, 30 minutes at Mood, but Mood is basically dead to me right now, given they haven't shown Swatch in THREE WEEKS.

Olivier can't manage his time, even at Mood.

And GlamLaura spends $50 too much, while GlumBert spends about that much too little. They're team members, so he shares. All is sweetness and light.

Well, Olivier has gone from being troubled by BOOBSOMG to being frustrated by the size of his singer. Who he calls "plus size." PLUS SIZE, just 'cause he's a nice strapping young lad. Oh, Olivier.

We go to commercial break, and I see there's going to be Project Runway All-Stars -- YAY!!!

Then you *think* you're back form commercial break, but really you're in the Garnier commercial, as they pretend there's a different Garnier product for every rocker dude. But I have one question: Do these dudes want their curls "defined?"

The rockers come for a visit with Tim, with ramifications:

Bert has to scrap and start over for Ewan. It's too feminine, too purple.

And if Ewan wasn't already feeling a little anxious about that, he moves on to Olivier, who tells him he's big. Olivier is so annoying about size. And they just let him dig his own grave with more choice bon mots, like the fact he isn't passionate because he's designing something he doesn't care for. He's never designed for "plus size."

Not to mention the weird grandma chintzy fabric. Which he doesn't ,because he doesn't seem to realize it SUCKS. (I'm peeved with Olivier, don't know if you can tell.)

Along the way, we also discover that Viktor thinks he invented fringe. But it's kind of a side note.

We're on to the runway.

In honor of the "first ever rock concert on the runway," Heidi is rockin' all black. She's joined by the other judges: MK, ninagarcia, and Glambert himself!!! Runner-up (but real winner) Adam Lambert form American Idol. Ack, when reality TV talent show worlds collide!

As always, click on the designers' names to see their creations.

First up: Team Harmony

1. Anthony

Light pants with a really baggy butt and a sleeveless floral shirt with yoke and fringe in the back. The top is completely girly -- well, more grandma-y. And the pants look like scrubs. Not his best.

2. Anya

Oh my. Anya wasn't kidding when she expressed concern that she'd be in the bottom. She made a truly hideous brown tunic top with short sleeves, a band around the hem and big V inset -- in a puke brown and lighter brown color scheme. The jeans are puckering and ill-fitted. And she put trim on the back pockets, which reminded me very much of the outfits I used to covet from the Sears or JC Penney catalog when I was 12. Also not her best work.

3. Laura

Laura made a pair of extremely tight red jeans, topped by a weird tie-dyed tee shirt that looks like a surgeon's gown -- after he couldn't stop a gusher in the O.R. And a purple jacket that looked really girly (also with fringe…Viktor should really copyright his invention of using fringe) and a floral scarf. The top half was Grandma all the way. Weirdly, weirdly inappropriate.

4. Bert

Bert dyed away his feminine purple girly-clothes and came up with something halfway decent. There was a purple tie-dyed shirt with a big brown section. Unfortunately, it looked a little like it fell into the puddle of blood left by Laura's O.R. surgeon, and it soaked up into the right side shirt tail. I did really like the cool striped pants, though. And there was a harmless purple tee. And there were braids. The pants were the best part.

Team Untitled:

1. Josh

Josh created a pair of white pants with a big black exposed zipper down the front and suede front pocket insets. They were pretty cool from the front, but I could really do without the BIG HUGE brown "suede" pockets on the butt. Unlike everyone else on the show, I did not dig the weird stripe and fringe vest over the Aztec-print tank. Way too hodgepodge for me.

2. Kimberly

The drummer, in Kimberly's world, has a side-job at McDonald's -- he's rocking the brown and gold (with a little tie-dye for interest) and big buttons down the front. The brown corduroy pants aren't so bad, but the top is truly horrible.

3. Viktor

Viktor made distressed jeans, another weird old lady floral print shirt and a big fringy pleather jacket. And a doo-rag. The jacket was the best part, but overall I thought this looked bizarre. (As did most of the outfits, actually…why did this group of designers think rockers and grandmas were only one step removed?)

4. Olivier

Oh, dear. Ill-fitting white pants, paired with a button-down shirt made from Grandma's sofa upholstery, made only more ancient and dated looking by adding incongruous light gray front pockets and back yoke. It's bad.

On to the judging:

The judges start with Team Harmony. Their overall impression is "meh."

MK: I don't see the swagger.

ninagarcia: Everything is very expected. So literal. 

And then they dig in:

Laura: Heidi likes Laura's outfit. Pants fit really well. Also one of Glambert's faves. 70s but contemporary. MK: Looks like he cut himself shaving. A little Sweeney Todd tie-dye. ninagarcia: This looks like a ladies' jacket with a silk scarf from the mall. They are correct on all of the above.

Bert: Glambert likes the tunic. MK: Who would have thought Bert has a rocker vibe? It isn't a costume. Heidi likes the fabric but not the pigtails. nina and Glambert likes the pigtails. Gave him an identity, a persona.

Anya: nina and Heidi wrote Pocahontas. It's a costume. And poorly made…the pants splitting. MK: He looks like reggae Jesus. With a suede lobster bib on. Glambert: It's from an 8th-grade production of Hair.

Anthony: Heidi: It was OK. The pants need to be tighter. MK: Golden Girls goes rock and roll. nina: Looks like a woman's blouse. Glambert: Pieces don't work together.

They move on to Team Untitled, which had a loosely applied Western theme.

Olivier: Ewan doesn't like the light pants. Heidi: Really boring. Dad Jeans. Glambert: The shirt is short and boxy. nina; Too feminine. MK: nothing interesting, and it doesn't fit well, and you're the only one with men's experience. Glambert: Looks like upholstery. Sleeves aren't finished. It's all bad.

Kimberly: Sam likes the pants. The shirt got lost. MK: Peter Brady at an autumn harvest. God-awful color combination. nina: Shirt looks like it's from old man's pajamas. Glambert: Scooby Doo Heidi: Forest Elf. MK: Bowling shirt with big buttons. Again, all bad, and for a minute there they were trying to top themselves with the funny descriptions.

Viktor: MK: jacket is fabulous. Heidi: It's insane, it looks like a $2K jacket. Glambert: It had movement. But I don't like the shirt. MK: Mad Max meets Woodstock. Real jeans: Great fit. sexy. nina: A lot of impressive work.

Josh: Heidi: Likes the pants, and they fit. Loves the top and vest…doesn't like fringe and orange applique. There are a few things too many. Glambert: The pants are cool, zipper is sexy. Pockets in back are dark and ruins booty. nina: Too design-y, but in general she likes it.

So with everyone off the runway, they get a little more worked up.

They no like:

Olivier: MK: He is a men'sdesigner, and he did terribly.

Anya: She's usually so inventive. What happened?

Kimberly: She usually makes amazing pants, but has never done men before.

They like:

Josh: Heidi: His was the hottest.

Viktor: Fabulous fit. Jacket fantastic. Heidi: But I don't think he looked hot.

Bert: MK: It was winking at the past yet modern. Powerful and sexy. Glambert didn't like the pants. (Really, those were the best part!) nina: He gave him a look, an identity.

And we're ready with a decision:

Bert is in.

Viktor is the winner!

Laura is in. Josh is in. Anthony is in. Anya is in (but not great today).

It's down to Olivier vs. Kimberly.

And Olivier gets the auf! All I can say is: Get some help, dude. You are not well-equipped to deal with the real world…and not just the real fashion world.

Olivier doesn't think he deserved to go. And he clearly doesn't like hugs.

So, what did you think?

Elisa Camahort Page
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