Thursday, August 20, 2015




Gina Pusateri
Contributing Writer, BuddyTV
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On the last episode of Project Runway, the designers had their creativity put to the test with the unconventional material challenge. Now it's time to see how they work with others on their first team challenge. Let's see if they can put their heads together to make something great or if they let the drama will get the best of them.

Happy to Get Away

The designers meet Tim on a luxury cruise ship where he gives them their next challenge. The designers will have to work in teams of two to create a day-to-night look inspired by an exotic location. They'll have to capture the spirit of the destination and use the fabric provided for them in suitcases for this one day challenge. They'll have time to sketch on the ship, where Celebrity Cruises provides them with sushi on a stick and other fancy snacks. Yum!

Swapnil dreads the button bag, which he says has been around for season after season, ruining everyone's career. But things work out alright for him because he's paired with Laurie. They choose India as their exotic location, because, duh. Tim says that there will be extra pressure on him to create something special, but Swapnil says he doesn't back away from a challenge.

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He and Laurie agree to make an outfit that's like a modernized sari. Swapnil is working on a crop top and Laurie is working on a tapered pant.

Amanda and Gabrielle are working together and their inspiration is the South of France. Gabby wants to make something clean, crisp and modern. She says their main challenge will be keeping their stress levels under control. That and using a red, white and blue color pallette without making it look too 'Merica.

Candice and Ashley are on Team Venice. They're working beautifully together since they both appreciate each other's style so much. That and they're personalities seem to mesh too. They're making a fitted shirt with a draped cowl in the back and box-pleat pants. They're also thinking of making a capelette with a gorgeous colorful print.

Team Hong Kong is made up of Lindsey and Jake. Lindsey gets frustrated after Jake shuts down all of her ideas without offering any ideas of his own. She also thinks the way he's constantly addressing her as "sweetheart" or "darling" is condescending. Lindsey wants to make a vest but Jake is wary. They have a hard time deciding and getting along because they both have authoritative personalities.

Edmond and Hanmiao are the disaster of the episode. Their inspiration destination is the Caribbean but Hanmiao immediately shuts down Edmond's idea of making a swimsuit. She doesn't want to make anything feminine and fitted like what Edmond usually makes. And bless his heart, Edmond is trying to be patient and work with Hanmiao. But she doesn't want to compromise any of her designs while constantly telling him to shut up.

When Tim approves of Edmond's idea for a swimsuit, she pretty much has to suck it up and make one. But she still gets upset about the color of the skirt and the offensive print of the swimsuit (even when they're just using the fabrics provided for them). Edmond has immunity this week and he finally tells Hanmiao to do whatever she wants, just be ready to defend it on the runway.

Before the runway, Edmond scraps Hanmiao's swimsuit and creates a whole other piece. Hanmiao feels so disrespected by Edmond that she sews her model into the swimsuit in the bathroom, despite Edmond's new piece. Edmond doesn't think their look is presentable in the least.

Joseph and Merline are paired together and their destination is St. Petersburg. Joseph does his best to reign in Merline's over-the-top attitude, but in doing so, he pretty much silences her voice and opinion. He makes a gaudy purple dress and doesn't even reconsider after Tim calls it "matronly." Merline feels stifled working with Joseph and she doesn't like what they're making. Joseph is such a snob to Merline and snarks about her behind her back. All the while working on an ugly dress that he thinks is amazing.

Runway to Paradise

Joining Zac, Nina and Heidi on the judging panel this week is actress Tracee Ellis Ross. Laurie gets emotional when she sees Tracee. Laurie says she's so inspired by Tracee and talks about how she'd tune into Girlfriends just to see what she was wearing. It's a nice and genuine moment from both Laurie and Tracee, who seems quite flattered by Laurie's reaction.

On the Top

Candice and Ashley: Nina says the look took her breath away. Heidi says every piece is special. Tracee loves the mix of the patterns and thinks it's very beautiful and modern. The judges are also impressed by how well their collaboration worked.

Lindsey and Jake: Not surprisingly, the two of them air their dirty laundry on the runway. Jake admits that they did not work well together, but if it is a top look, she should get full credit. He says she's too authoritative and she says he's dismissive. Nina says the colors look good together and she especially loves the vest. Heidi thinks the look is made really well, despite their issues as a team.

Swapnil and Laurie: Nina says the choice of fabric was wonderful and overall it looks effortless and chic. Heidi loves it too, but had an issue with the fit of the pants. Tracee says she likes the pants, which is clearly important to Laurie.

On the Bottom

Amanda and Gabrielle: Tracee and Heidi thinks that there are too many design elements going on. Nina thinks they lost direction and doesn't fit well.

Merline and Joseph: The judges hate it. They agree with Tim who called it matronly. Heidi says the cape is okay, but it seems like an afterthought. Zac calls her an over-sexed grandma. Heidi thinks the fit is off. Joseph is ready to throw Merline under the bus, saying she slowed him down, while Merline is hesitant to blame Joseph.

Hanmiao and Edmond: Zac says Edmond is lucky he has immunity. It's unflattering and the construction is off. Heidi says they wasted the print by making a hideous garment. Nina says it's hideous and they went too literal by making a swimsuit. Tracee calls it "crazy town." Zac scolds Edmond for making an additional bathing suit instead of properly finishing the skirt.

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The Results

The winning team is Candice and Ashley. And since they worked so well together, they're both winners of the challenge and they both have immunity for the next challenge. Yay lady power!

Since Edmond has immunity, he is safe from going home tonight. Hanmiao and Merline are in the bottom two and Hanmiao is out. She's disappointed but she knows she failed at working with her teammate.

So long Hanmiao! It's a shame we don't get to see more from her, but someone had to be punished for that monstrosity they sent down the runway, and since Edmond had immunity, it could only be her.

Project Runways airs on Thursdays at 8pm on Lifetime.

(Image courtesy of Lifetime)



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