Music and Fashion Collide on Project Runway

by Ruth Anne Boulet

So we’ve come to the point in the Project Runway season when we know enough of each contestant’s personality to make things interesting. It’s also when some of the more blatant backstabbing and testiness comes out. Leanne figures that Suede’s model Tia gives him an advantage. Oh, Leanne, she hasn’t helped Suede so far? That’s just pouring salt on a wound at this point.

So Tim tells the designers that their next challenge is to design for each other. The look they create has to be inspired by a certain musical genre. They have to explore the relationship between music and fashion.

Korto is designing something punk for Suede
Suede is designing something rock and roll for Jerell
Jerell is designing something pop for Kenley
Kenley is designing something Hip Hop for Leanne
Leanne is designing something Country for Korto

This could be interesting. Did I mention that the designers are also going to be the models, so that whole model switch didn’t happen?

Kenley immediately goes for this typical Kenley floral print, saying that it looks like graffiti. Tim’s not buying it. At all. Korto and Jerell are looking at Kenley’s fabric & know that no fabric she has says Hip Hop. They won’t be telling her that, though.

Kenley is also concerned about Jerell’s fishnet pop outfit. She thinks Jerell is being overoptimistic about her body. Jerell is convinced he’s going to bring out the sexpot in her. She’s showing a lot of skin, and she doesn’t look bad.

Learning moment: We learn that Suede is not punk. Suede studied cello for 14 years. He also plays piano. Suede is not punk. Then why does Suede have a blue mohawk?

Tim comes in to review the designer’s work. Korto is concerned about being too cliche. Jerell is debating adding to the fishnet. Suede gets pushed to go further. Kenley gets defensive because Tim asks her about what hip hop is. He mentions baggy pants. She immediately thinks that’s 80s hip hop and will make Leanne look stupid. It’s a bit tense & Tim calls her on it. In one of her ‘confessionals’ Kenley says “What does Tim know about hip hop anyway?” The same could be asked of you, Kenley. The same could be asked of you. And you’re not America’s Gay Boyfriend.

Korto almost giggles when she thinks of Kenley on the runway tomorrow. Korto also decides to bleach some of Suede’s outfit. Leanne is convinced she’s trying to kill all of them. Kenley again insists that her outfit is hip hop. It IS!

This time the designers have to get themselves down to hair & makeup. Kenley is still yakking about hip hop & how hip hop her outfit is. Suede is feeling like he should’ve been in the drag queen challenge because of the number of colors in his hair. The designers basically get into a daisy chain of one designer dressing another, dressing another.

Tim thinks this challenge will be the most unique in Project Runway history. Really, Tim, more unique than the women’s wrestling challenge? The drag queen challenge? The postal worker challenge? Let’s face it, Project Runway is good at unique challenges. Except when they recycle old ones.

Oh, Kenley’s toast. LL Cool J is the guest host. He’s shilling a new album and fashion line. Jerell thinks Kenley looks like Kenley Spears. Kenley bitches that Leanne isn’t selling the hip hop look & she’s looking like a poser. Suede is doing a very Suede punk. Jerell’s got an armadillo in his trousers. Heidi reminds them that only 3 will go on to Bryant Park. Oh, Heidi, we know all 6 designers got to do a line.

Korto gets good marks for her punk look for Suede. Suede defends his outfit for Jerell. Heidi thinks Jerell looks too much like Jerell. Nina thinks Kenley looks like a brunette Britney. Much discussion is given to Kenley and if she’s got enough support in the fishnet. Apparently fishnet makes Kenley’s outfit revealing, but not trashy. Ok.

Heidi thinks Kenley’s pants for Leanne are a disaster. A few comments are thrown out about the style of hip hop and Kenley gets way defensive. Again. Can she go home now, please? Nina wanted a little more glamour in the outfit Leanne made for Korto. Others wanted more country. She’ll be in the middle. Michael Kors thinks she just looks like a woman going out to eat ribs.

So we’re back on the runway to Auf someone. The winner of the challenge is Korto for Suede’s punk outfit. Jerell looks a little miffed, but he gets sent back next. Leanne is also in, leaving the expected Suede and Kenley to face the music. Please let Kenley be out. Please let her be out. Oh, man, she’s in. Drag Suede. For attitude alone, he should’ve been in. At least he gets to show at Bryant Park. It doesn’t ‘count’ but whatever.

Next week we get just about every designer having a meltdown. Yipee! Schadenfreude!