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Dead Relatives

By CaitlinBergmann Thu., Oct. 20, 2011 ,8:42 pm EDT

It’s the home visit episode. My second favorite episode of the year, topped only by the unconventional challenge. I love to see not only the direction the designers are taking, but I love seeing where they live and I especially love seeing how they react to Tim Gunn on their turf. Babies, boyfriends, trampolines and turtle poop, it is always a blast. You can learn so much about a person when you visit them at home.

On Kimberly’s home visit, we learn that her collection is about transforming the urban Brooklyn girl. She didn’t say what she is transforming this girl into, but I can only guess the transformation is from urban Brooklyn to suburban Maryland, because her collection is full of way suburban bright colors and large gold earrings from the eighties. Kimberly says she lives in Brooklyn, but it looks like Maryland to me.

Next we go to Anya’s, where we learn that her collection, or lack thereof, is inspired by the islands and not a single viewer from New York to Uzbekistan is surprised. She has photos of the ocean, lagoons, the sky, and palm fronds. And that’s about it — some fabric, but no clothes. We also learn that losing her brother has ignited her love of fashion.

At Viktor’s home visit we learn that he was inspired by the death anniversary of his brother at Guadalajara, Mexico. Photographs from the trip became the fabrics for his collection. The fabrics are so awesome that I don’t really care where the inspiration came from. The garments themselves look awesome, too. Viktor doesn’t really need Tim’s critique.

Joshua, on the other hand, needs Tim’s critique like a suburban Maryland girl needs big gold earrings. He is working with a horrid color palette, and some of the most frightening fabrics I have ever seen hanging on one garment rack. One by one, Tim convinces him to drop them, and props to Josh, he responds.

We knew about Kimberly losing her mother, and god knows we know of Josh’s loss, so basically what we have learned from all of these home visits is that you can’t become a contestant on "Project Runway" and possibly expect to make it to the final four unless you have a dead relative.

The designers return to New York and move into their swank hotel penthouse. In a "Long Island Medium" moment, Joshua mistakes a breeze on the terrace for his mother. The designers pack up their garment bags and their assorted spirits and go to the Piperlime workroom to unveil their collections. Tim comes in to announce that they will be showing three pieces to the judges from which they will decide who will move forward, and he begins his final critiques wit the designers.

Viktor is fine; he doesn’t need Tim’s help. Kimberly is bouncing off the walls and can’t be helped. Anya’s critique doesn’t go well. She is broken because she designed what she designs and won’t surprise the judges. Joshua wins most improved. Seriously, those black and gray neoprene pieces are amazing — so cool and modern. That jacket is amazing. Joshua, please, dump the purple, hot pink, lime green, and that awful vintage fabric that Tim told you to lose that I see hanging on your garment rack, and do an entire collection of these black and gray pieces. Please.

It’s on to the runway, where Joshua is moved on to Fashion Week. I’m telling you, it was the black and gray jacket, once the judges see the other stuff their eyeballs may start to bleed. That jacket was so good, it made the judges forgive the schizophrenic ass-baring gown/catsuit. Viktor is in a bit of trouble because he followed Tim’s advice and put wow-pieces under wow-pieces but the judges want simple pieces under wow-pieces. These are luxury problems and he, too, is moved forward to Fashion Week.

Kimberly and Anya are left on the runway. The judges weren’t happy with either of their collections, but what the hell, let's all go forward. The queen is not amused.

So whether you are drinking the Viktor Kool-Aid or the Anya rum punch (I stole that from a commenter!) or what ever they drink in Queens and Brooklyn/Maryland, everyone’s happy. It’s on to Fashion Week.