Saturday, April 13, 2013

Project Runway Season Eleven, Episode twelve: European Challenge!

For over two thousand years, Europe has survived many great disasters. Now for the real test.

The final designers have won the grand prize on the Pig in a Poke game show and will travel to four European destinations.

First, Stanley visits London. He has trouble driving on the wrong side of the road and gets stuck in a roundabout:

Stanley: “Hey, Richard! It's Big Ben and Parliament!”

Richard: “You missed the turn!”

Stanley: “I can’t seem to get over. Oh, look, Big Ben and Parliament. Again.”

Richard: “Watch out!”

Stanley: “Look, Richard ...”

Richard: “I know. Big Ben and Parliament. I have an idea: why don’t you just get inspiration from Big Ben and Parliament, since that’s apparently the only thing we are going to see in London?”

Stanley: “That’s an excellent idea. I’ve always wanted to be a vampire, so I will draw inspiration from this building that was built during the Georgian period.”

Richard: “Well, it was actually built during the reign of Queen Victoria, but other than that, your plan makes perfect sense.”

Stanley makes a decent and totally boring black gown. The lining detail is nice, but there is nothing else special about it. Obviously Nina loves it because it’s so freaking editorial and it could go on the pages of her dumb magazine and also she’s a complete idiot.

Next, Patricia goes to Paris:

She is having trouble communicating with the locals:

Finally, she gets the fabric she wants and she makes a very interesting textile with many layers of fabric sandwiched between sheer fabric. She then creates an unusual silhouette for the top. I agree the pants were not so great, but the top was an experimental look that I like to see in a high fashion garment, which this challenge was supposed to be about. Nina, of course, doesn’t get it:

Nina: “The average woman would not want to buy that in a store. Therefore, it is not fashion.”

Nina sucks. This was not a ready-to-wear challenge or a challenge about what Nina wants to put in the pages of her boring magazine. And now Nina has decided that fashion isn’t art? Well, as the French would say:

Pardon my French
Next, Daniel drives to Germany:

Daniel: “Ah, the motherland!”

Rusty: “I thought grandma was from Chicago.”

Daniel: “Shut up, Rusty.”

Daniel is inspired by the architecture of Berlin. Can I say how tired I am of designers on this show telling us how inspiring architecture is? Ooh, I went to a city and the city had buildings in it! The buildings were so architectural! It was so inspiring! We get it! Cities have architecture in them! If they had no buildings they wouldn’t be cities! I actually miss the days when designers were inspired by police caution tape and dirty gutter water.

Having said that, I think Daniel did actually capture kind of a Berlin vibe. At first I found his look nice but unexciting. Then I noticed how great the dress was. It was beautifully draped and interesting, but also easy and modern. Paired with a white vinyl jacket that gave the look a bit of a retro 1980s feel, this outfit had an edgy mix of styles that could be associated with Berlin. I think Amanda was a good influence on him, but both the dress and the jacket looked like his designs.

Next Layana takes the train to Italy, where she gets mixed up in a robbery. She accidentally rents a car with someone tied up in the trunk. The video Clark made of her that he promised to erase was apparently still on the camera when it was stolen, and now her picture is up on a billboard. Then she decides to go on a shopping spree.

Layana shopping in Italy
Layana: “Yep, that’s pretty much what happened. Oh, except I was in Barcelona.”

Oh, right. Barcelona. And let me guess: were you inspired by the architecture?”

Layana: “How did you know?”

In fairness, the Gaudi architecture and the details of the Moorish influence in Barcelona are hard to ignore. And she tried to bring the ideas of geometric patterns into her look. Unfortunately, her look was kind of ugly and old fashioned. It’s too bad they apparently don’t sell leather in Spain, because I would have liked to have seen what she could have done if she'd had her first choice of fabrics. Seriously, what was with the weird fabric stores they sent the designers to?

Meanwhile, back in America, Michelle is being “punished” by getting to buy the best fabrics available, with more buying power for her dollar, and getting plenty of rest and extra time to work. This gives her a huge advantage and she is pissed off about it:

Michelle: “Don’t touch me!”

Heidi: “This is really a do or die moment for Michelle.”

You keep saying that, but it doesn’t actually mean anything! She is in the exact same position as the other designers!

Heidi: “If I defend Patricia’s look will you stop yelling at me?”

It’s a deal. Anyway, back to Michelle, who created a really stunning look. It was a cashmere tent dress with a quilted leather breast plate. Yes, the ombre effect on the bottom of the skirt ended up just making it look dirty, but it was still a really great design. But is it enough to keep her in the competition? Well, duh.

The designers tell the judges why they should go to Fashion Week and who they would take with them. Fortunately, none of them tell us that they have a unique point of view, because everyone hates a designer with a unique point of view. The designers would all take Michelle and Stanley with them to Fashion Week:

Michelle and Stanley: “We would also take Michelle and Stanley with us to Fashion Week.”

Well, I don’t think you can do that, but it doesn’t really matter. Patricia is the only one not mentioned by the other designers, but she gets to go anyway because Heidi promised me. Layana is out. Sorry, Layana.

Rusty: “Next week it’s a do or die moment for the designers!”

Shut up, Rusty.
[Eric Three Thousand recognizes the irony in this post, which mocks the lack of originality in the designers' inspirations, but is based on the most obvious movie reference possible. He's already admitted to being completely out of ideas.]


Anonymous said...

Thanks!!! Thanks for your energy and for thinking of new ideas every week, even if you feel you're out of them. It's been a really long haul with Project Runway, and you've provided many hours of shock and awe, in a very good way, over your creative blogs.

eric3000 said...

Thank you, Anonymous! I'm really glad people are still reading, even as each week becomes more of a struggle. Almost done!

Anonymous said...

Loved this. I just started reading your blog this episode and I thought it hilarious and on point at the same time. Not lacking originality at all!

eric3000 said...

Oh, thanks! I felt unoriginal because this is not, I'm afraid, my first post featuring the Griswolds. But my other post, several years ago, was based on the first Vacation movie. So I guess I'll just consider this the sequal. Thanks, again, for reading and I appreciate the comments!