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What Whine Would You Care for with This Challenge?

By kim_messina Fri., Aug. 17, 2012 ,2:17 pm EDT

It is the morning after Buffi's departure and everyone is reminiscing over the previous days challenge. Melissa is moved into the other apartment. I'd sleep with one eye open from now on, girlfriend! Raul apparently has a soft spot for Christopher. He "loves" Christopher — he hasn't felt this way about a guy in a loooong time. Lucky Christopher! On to the next challenge ... quick!

The designers are met by Heidi looking sleek in a sheer LBD. I love her hair this week! She is carrying the infamous little black bag. It always reminds me of the Chivas Regal packaging. So I'm a recovering alcoholic, okay!

Heidi brings Nina on to the stage. OMG, "Nitpcking Nina" exclaims Christopher! Alicia states that "Nina is just a little opinionated." Yeah… she is one of fashions most powerful editors. She had better be!

The challenge in a way is similar to last week's challenge, but focused on a strong powerful sophisticated woman in the work place. Empashsis on editorial! Oh, and did I mention that this is a team challenge!? The eleven designers are to be split into two teams. One team with five designers and the second with six. Let's start serving the WHINE!!! Alicia, "Uh, I'm really disappointed. I really don't like working in teams." Ven wants to kill himself. Please don't. We can't loose any more designers in a premature manner! Raul hates teams challenges to! Aw honey, you should be glad your tired ass is still on this show!

Nina also announces that the whining team, oops, winning team team will have their designs published in an editorial in Marie Claire @Work magazine! That seems to please, Dmitry, Melissa and Christopher!

Sonjia gets to pick the first designer to join her on Team 6. Alicia, odd choice if you ask me. Maybe she is tired of sleeping with that eye open? Gunnar would rather eat DIRT than work with Elena — the first thing he has said all season I agree with.

Nathan gets to chose next. He picks Ven. Logical and strategic choice. On and on we go 'til Gunnar, Alicia, Fabio and the charming Raul are left on the bench! Raul's saddened that Christopher picked Fabio over him. WTF! Honey, you can't design and you can't sew — go figure!

It is down to Gunnar and Raul. Gunnar really doesn't want to be on either team. More WHINE please!

Enter the workroom. Love Christopher's entrance, very Norma Desmond! As I not too fondly remember, the workroom is usually about 99 degrees, what with no air-conditioning and camera lights. What's with the studded denim jacket, black shawl wrapped around your neck and the shades? I can here MK saying, "I loved your design but I HATED your styling!"

Mr. Gunn informs Team 6 and Team 5 that they will have 30 minutes to consult and sketch then on to Mood, and that this is a one-day challenge. Elena's eyes pop out onto the floor.

Sonjia gets her co-designers focused on assigning specific items to each designer, keeping in mind that there needs to be a cohesive team look through out their collection. Won't take long for this camaraderie hat to got to hell in a handbag! Raul wants enough of something to cover his ass. PLEASE!

Team 5 is in the workroom and I can't believe my eyes! They are flipping through Marie Claire magazines? On Season 9 and all the other seasons of "Project Runway," the designers are cut off from anything that could be a fashion inspiration. We were not even allowed to look out the windows at Parsons in case we saw a passing advertisement on a bus! They get to peruse through current fashion magazines, for what … to bone up on editorial styling? That's part of the challenge for heavens sake! What gives?

Color is the concept for Team 5's collection! It all winds up basically black and white. Gunnar wants a touch of nautical? How about a anchor on a rope to hang yourself with ... hmm? He doesn't want to be micro-managed. He can get that rope around his neck without anyones help, thank you!

Team 6 is mired in "RAUL WORLD"! He must pursue his vision, such an artiste!

Off to Mood. Team 6 is still in conflict over color and fabric choices. Raul wants to use the colors that HE WANTS! So he picks black! My fear at Mood was always getting so wrapped up with running around looking for the right fabric that I'd forget about the basics, thread, zippers, snaps, buttons, trims, etc... Nathan is on the ball and makes sure his team has all they will need.

Back at Parsons, Team 6 realizes a bag was left behind at Mood. Hopefully they can work around that loss. I have a feeling they will have bigger obstacles ahead. Raul is trying to explain why he won't follow the teams suggestions. It's not who he is as a designer. He needs to follow his strength! Okay what is it?

Elena is prowling around her mannequin, snarling and hissing. Christopher feels she is like an animal that has just escaped from the woods. Yep, I agree!

Team 5 is mellow and already draping and cutting. All the designers have their work assigned and are "making it work," so far. Yep … had to happen. Gunnar doesn't feel comfortable with the direction his team wishes him to go. It's not his esthetic. He exclaims he is not a tailor. How on earth does making a soft dress have anything to do with tailoring? Gunnar, you're confusing me!

Back at Team 6, Raul is in love with his oh-so-basic, poorly executed, black top! I have to laugh when Elena exclaims that he doesn't have a team work ethic. Spot it, you got it! More on that later, time for some more Ukrainian WHINE!

Mr. Gunn enters for one of his awe inspiring critiques sessions. Team 6 is holding it in for the interview, barely. Melissa and Dmitry are clear about their looks. Mr. Gunn enquires about Raul's top with the pleated bib. Wasn't it the fascination with "bibs' that got what's her name aufed in episode two? Only this creation is much worse. Gunnar and I are on the same wave length (Scary!) concerning Raul's look! Tim likes the top having volume? Maybe he would like a barrel? That leads delusional Raul to think he is on there right track. Mr. Gunn then convinces Elena that her vampirish sleeved top is worth saving! They can thank him later!

Now over to Team 5 where we find Ven working on, can you guess, another origami design. Actually, it's quite chic and fresh looking in black and white. Nathan is doing something … it just hasn't happened yet. Mr. Gunn loves that god awful print they chose, but he's not feeling the black and white? Gunnar is oddly quiet. Their color choices remind him of a "Effing Drag Queen cocktail hour." He should know.

Time is running out and a lot has to happen before the end of the day! Elena hisses contempt for Dmitry's use of navy?Good for him to ignore her — she is wacked! Models arrive. Raul's look would definitely benefit from a barrel … to cover it up! There is no love lost between Ven and Gunnar, who Ven states has no taste! Dmitry thinks Ven is a one way monkey/one trick pony with the same designs over and over. Love is in the air!

We find Raul fitting something on Elena. Apparently he can't even construct a vest! Who the hell chose him for this show. We need to know!

On to the photo shoot with EVERY possible accesorie from the Lord & Taylor wall. The designer's arrive at Go Studios for the Marie Claire photo shoot. This is another great opportunity to work together as the mature group of designers that they are, right? Wrong! Elena apparently sees herself as a the next Annie Leibovitz, directing photographer Tom Hines on how to shoot this session! Please, someone kick her. On she goes, telling the designers what to do, barking orders and generally making me never want too visit the Ukraine!

Team 5 maintains their cohesive calm. They have actually thought ahead and have drawn several options for Tom Hines to consider. Communication pays off. Bravo!

Back to the Annie Leibovitz wannabe barking orders, rushing the hair and makeup artist, (It is generally not a great idea to piss them off Ms Leibovitz), yelling at her team mate Melissa and joking about how bad the other designers garments look! Someone please kick her!

On to the runway, where Heidi looks amazing is a pair of sleek black leather pants and black silk blouse. MK, Nina are joined by guest judge editor-in-chief of Marie Claire, the awesome Joanna Coles!

First out is Nathan's white pants and one shoulder blouse, for the office? Next is Christopher's three piece, jacket, shirt and underpinning. Okay, but a bit generic. Gunnar's look, well, we will discuss that later! I love Fabio's simple black and white sheath! Not sure what happened to the shorts, but this dress is perfect! Okay, maybe just a bit tight over the hips. Ven's lady is definitely going to a chic lunch for sure. The office, I don't think so?

Team 6 opens with Melissa's blue funnel necked dress and asymmetrical back zipper detail. I like it, but the neckline is similar to last season's winner, Anya's gown. The judges felt it looked a bit like a condom. Let's see if they see safe sex in this design! Elena and Alicia's combo is next. It is nice and understated, if just a bit bland. Again with those hideous blue suede pumps! Third look out is missing the barrel. Raul's black pleated, bibbed front home economics top with Alicia's tailored pant. The next look is Alicia's black pleated ballon sleeved top that Mr. Gunn encouraged her to pursue, with Alicia's sleek tailored pant in a menswear tonal grey stripe. Next is Dmitry's little NAVY and black color blocked dress, perfectly executed. I love his humility in recognizing that he could improve upon his look! Last is Sonjia's draped striped organza skirt and Raul's leather vest.

On to the judging! Heidi feels that both teams showed well. I have to say I am surprised that a certain team did as well as they did ... Team 6!

First to be judged is Team 5. Overall the critique is good. Christopher knows how to work cheap fabric into a good look and Fabio's dress is a home run as far as MK is concerned. There photo shoot is equally as successful. Nathan's look is not so successful — leave the origami to Ven! Back to Gunnar. The soufflé that flopped and puppies under a blanket, not the look he was going for. Gunnar is named as the designer the rest would auf!

Team 6 is also given high praise for the collection. Melissa's dress get's a nod from Nina for it's editorial appeal with nary a mention of condoms! Trouser's also are a hit with Nina — women like trousers for work! Raul doesn't fare so well. No one is loving his ruffles. Surprise, surprise, surprise! Joanna feels it is a DULL idea. Yep, it is. If it had been executed somewhat professionally, it MAY have stood a chance! Heidi and Joanna have a bit of a toss up over if Dmitry's dress passes the work place code with the bare skin in the back! Joanna says NO! Elena's pleated top win's Heidi's least favorite award, but Joanna sees lots of women in finance and law wearing that. Where? In Transylvania?

Now who is the weakest link on the team? Raul finally wins a competition! Melissa wins best design and Team 6 is going to appear in Marie Clare @Work!

The bottom consists of the Annie Leibovitz wannabe, Elena, along with Raul and Gunnar. All good choices. Mercifully Raul is aued!

Back to a bitchy comment or two in the designer lounge between Raul and Elena. He's outta here, and I wouldn't be surprised if she is not far behind him in the next challenge or two!