This week on Project Runway: Threads, host Vanessa Williams and the judges are joined by special guest judge pop sensation and fashion icon, Zendaya, and three new teen designers vying for a grand prize package including $10,000 for any Joann fabric and craft store, a scholarship for a summer program offered by FIDM, a Brother home set of sewing and embroidering machines and having one of their designs showcased in Seventeen magazine.
Vanessa and Christian get the teens started by having them show off their looks they designed in the “Show Us Your Style” challenge. Each contestant has a look that showcases their style while trying to grab the judges’ attention. The winner of the challenge will have a special advantage in the week’s challenge.
First up is 13-year-old Brianna, who owes her beachy and bohemian style to living in sunny Ventura, Calif. She began sewing at age 7 when she got her first sewing kit. Brianna dreams of owning her own boutique one day, and while she has limited cash available for purchasing fabric, Brianna uses her mother’s clothes to come up with new designs. Her assistant for the competition will be her mother, Lori.
Christian likes that Brianna took the risk of using knits. However, both Vanessa and Christian feel the design is lacking the “wow factor” and advise Brianna to work some into her next look while staying true to herself. I completely agree with the judges because it was so laid back that at first I thought it was a pajama outfit.
Next up is a dare-devil of a designer names Matt who is 16-years-old and from Manhattan Beach, California. Matt is known as a hipster with an edge and always the life of the party. He also started sewing when he was seven and is confident that he’ll be a major threat in the fashion industry some day. Matt’s assistant is his grandmother Dorothy, who doesn’t exactly approve of his sexy designs. While she thinks Madonna might want to wear them. she doesn’t feel every girl should.
Christian likes how confident the model looks in the outfit but kind of agrees with Grandma Dorothy on this one. He says that the design shows a bit too much skin, especially near the skirt line.
I like the risks and edginess Matt is going for but he needs to remember that he’s only 16.
Lastly is 13-year-old Claire from Braintree, Massachusetts. Claire describes herself as a perfectionist who enjoys the praise she gets when people find out she designs her own clothes. Her designs are girly, modern and classic for a night out on the town. She wanted her fifth grade graduation dress to be perfect, so she designed it herself. Her assistant is her mother, Kristen, who allows her to take the lead.
Christian is amazed at the pleating techniques Claire was able to accomplish. Vanessa offers the advice of using bolder colors later in the competition to make a look edgier. I agree because this baby blue satin material makes me think of a dress for a baby boy’s shower.
It’s a surprise to me but, Claire is named the winner of this challenge. I thought for sure they were going to pick Matt but I guess his look was just too daring. Then Vanessa tells the teens that the next competition is going to require them to create a look for their favorite pop star in the “My Favorite Pop Star” challenge. Each contestant is told to grab an album that is behind them that will reveal for whom they will be designing. Brianna gets her favorite Florence and the Machine. No shocker here — Matt gets his goddess, Lady Gaga. It’s the perfect match. Claire gets Katy Perry and while Katy has that bubblegum girly side she also has a flirtier and sexier side, and I’m not sure if Claire can pull this one off.
Since Claire was the winner of the “Show Us Your Style” challenge, she gets a 15-minute head start. Claire is happy to get first dibs on the fabrics, but with her choice of blue sequins, I’m not sure anyone would have fought her too hard over that one. She’s thinking about making a crop top with a long, high-waisted skirt that would work in a music video.
Matt tries to tone down his look like the judges asked, but it’s hard since he’s making a Lady Gaga look. Matt decides on an elegant dress with a high slit to keep it sexy.
Brianna is making a maxi skirt and a fitted denim top which she hopes will work, since she’s never really used anything fitted before.
Vanessa pops back in to give the teens their “Surprise Door Twist” challenge. They now have to create a second look however, using unconventional items. Yeah, let’s see how this one is going to work out for them: The designers won’t be able to go pick out their own materials — they will have to send their assistants off with a list of what they want as they head out to a Joann’s craft store to retrieve them. Looks like everyone wants feathers, glitter, flowers and leaves. The only one wanting burlap is Claire. since it’s essential in making the skirt she has in mind.
Oops. Claire’s mom forgot the burlap and now Claire has to think of something else for her second look. Way to go, mom.
The teens have learned that Vanessa dropping in means no good, but surprisingly, the “Be the Boss” challenge is helpful this time. Each contestant gets another assistant who is an FIDM student that will help finish putting together their looks.
Come runway time, everyone’s designs are pretty amazing! I’m shocked at how each contestant stepped up to the plate and listened to the judge’s critiques.
Brianna is the first to get judged and Christian loves both of her looks, but he notices what Brianna was hoping no one would: Her first look resembles her “Show Us Your Style” look — a lot. However, Christian can see how much more fabulous this look is because of the fabrics she chose. Both Christian and Vanessa are amazed at how Brianna was able to transform the plain white dress into a stage-ready. black peacock look. Zendaya mentions how she can see herself in both looks which I’m sure made Brianna jump for joy inside. Ingrid does wish that Brianna’s first look was more different from her first.
Matt’s Lady Gaga looks are up next and Christian can’t help but notice how Matt took the judges’ advice. He loves how elegant the first look is — and since he’s dressed Lady Gaga before, he knows she would wear both of the looks. Way to go, Matt! Nailed it! Once again, Zendaya says she could see herself wearing Matt’s first look. All the judges agree that the second look seems to appear too “crafty” since the flowers are placed in an awkward position, which makes the dress look too top heavy instead of polished.
Claire explains how her first look was inspired by Katy’s song “Dark Horse” and the second by the song “Birthday.” Claire’s mother pipes up to let them know that she forgot the burlap which made Claire have to rethink her design for the second dress. Christian doesn’t mind the colorful ribbons on the waist of the second dress, but I’m not feeling those at all. To me they look like streamers on a piñata. Zendaya understands where Claire was going with her second look after the explanation, but I also agree that she fell short on delivering her idea in the actual look.Vanessa sees how the looks scream Katy Perry, but wishes one of the looks would have been more wearable for everyone.
The judges consult with each other and end up picking Brianna as the winner for this week’s Threads and I’m glad. Someone who is able to take something old and make it new again is definitely a designer, and I was amazed at the looks she created. Good for you, Brianna! You more than deserved to win this competition. Stay true to yourself and humble and you’ll shoot straight to the top.
What were your thoughts on this episode of Project Runway: Threads? Do you think Brianna deserved to win? I think the judges really liked her because she listened to what they had to say and stepped up to show that she wanted to win. Was there a certain look that you liked the most? What do you think would be the most wearable look out of all the designs? I think Brianna’s first look was probably the most wearable since it was so laid back compared to the others. I also liked Matt’s looks even though they were designed for Lady Gaga and I normally wouldn’t wear anything designed for her. Clearly, I’d only wear the first look out in public. Who would you want to design a look for? Leave your thoughts in the comments.
Watch Project Runway: Threads Thursdays at 10:30pm ET/PT on Lifetime.
Photos: Bobby Quillard Copyright 2014