innovating the runway


‘Lucky 7 Sampson’ :: Schoolhouse Rock

It’s Thursday morning – and the PR weekly windup is at hand!

This week’s challenge was sponsored by HP and was the one many of the designers (and viewers) have been waiting for: the original textile challenge. I expected great things. I was not disappointed. Until the end and the judges’ decision was announced, that is. More on that later.

With the lucky 7 designers poised for the innovation challenge, Tim introduced HP VP Rob Le Bras Brown. Together they announced the rules and the designers’ ‘innovation partners’, who were very impressive indeed.  Here are the alliances and inspirations:

  • Helen, last week’s winner, went first and chose the modern artist
  • Alexander chose the pastry chef from Catch
  • Alexandria chose a socially-conscience creative director
  • Bradon chose the BMX dude
  • Dom chose the founder of
  • Justin chose Miss USA 2012
  • Kate chose a 17-yo software developer

After meeting with their innovator inspirations, the designers sketched and went to work. And I fast-forwarded to the runway.

Since we’re getting close the end, here are all of  looks:















While you can probably guess which are the top 3 and which are the bottom 3, you would probably be wrong. Because Alexandria was ‘safe’ this week. I’ll let that sink in for just a sec.

The judges – Heidi, Zac, Nina, Tim, and designer Peter Som – decided that she was safe. I had to say that again just to convince myself. And that the top 3 were Bradon, Dom, and Helen. Pretty obvious, I think. The judges only ‘liked, but not loved’ Helen’s design. Which was apparently high praise this week. Then, despite the judges calling Bradon’s design ‘sick’ and ‘sexy’, Dom was declared the winner with a design (and total look) that both Nina and Zac gagged for, calling it ‘runway ready’. And as she was told that this challenge was ‘made for her’, she was elated.

Now, with Alexandria safe (still hard to believe, isn’t it), the bottom 3 faced the chop. I would have put money on Justin being out. Good money, which is the same as cash. He wasn’t. But Alexander’s ‘chocolatey-pope’ dress earned him an ‘out’. And, in another shocker, it was double-elimination time and Kate was ‘out’ as well. I actually had a hard time writing that. Yes, that crazy tutu creation was startling – and completely ugly. But still. Given her past achievements and capabilities, Kate deserved to be safe. I’ll say no more about it and move on.

Tonight’s episode begins at 9pm Eastern on Lifetime. Tune in to watch Alexandria phone-in another design. And meet me back here next Thursday morning for the Project Runway weekly windup.


What do you think?