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How Amanda Got Her Groove Back

By laurareineke Fri., Feb. 22, 2013 ,12:55 pm EST

On this week's episode Heidi comes out with the button bag. Everyone dreads the button bag. The designers got to choose their own partner to work with, and since Samantha was the winner of last week's challenge she got to choose first. She was very overwhelmed and decided to go with Daniel -- he would have been my first pick, too! -- and of course, after last week poor Amanda was the last one standing and had to be Benjamin’s partner. Richard, with no hesitation, knew that he wanted Stanley to be his partner because of their great chemistry, but Layana on the other hand was skeptical about Patricia picking her. In the commentary she let us know that she doesn't really get along with Patricia. I wonder why? I really like Patricia. Matthew and Michelle seemed to be an interesting combination.

The designers found out that they would be designing performance and red-carpet looks for one of the biggest names in country music today, Miranda Lambert! Everyone was excited. She's not your traditional country gal. (I'm so jealous she gets to come hone to Blake Shelton every night.) The designers headed off to Mood, and while everyone else automatically went for the navy leather material, Michelle wasn't going to be anyone's copy cat and decided to go a different route. Benjamin and Amanda already were having a rough start when they realized that they had $130 left over to spend with no time left. Oops. With mistakes like that it isn’t looking good for the underdog Amanda. With all the drama from last week she needs to be on her A-game. I'm nervous to see how they will pull this one off.

Happy to learn that Amanda is from Nashville, Benjamin let her take the lead and listened to some of her ideas. She didn’t want to go with traditional country look, with denim jackets and leather. She didn’t want to go all Wild Wild West on us. (How cool is it that Amanda's brother is in Maroon 5?)

Matthew wanted to prove himself with this challenge by giving a lot of layers and uniqueness, but it's going to be hard to top his design in the unconventional challenge. He found himself not knowing what to do with his design. Richard started making a leather cover-up to hide Miranda's main parts, layered over a net fabric. In Richard's words it is "Rock Goddess." I am a little nervous about Richard's design but I am sure that it will all come together.

Tim Gun seemed to be unsure of the deep-V-neck soutache top and a middle-split skirt from Daniel. Two different arrows pointing in toward the center brings focus to the wrong lady part. Layana was working on a ruched fitted dress with a keyhole in the back, and her partner Patricia was doing bullet hoisters for straps with twisted leather. It was very intricate concept but again, nothing Patricia does is right; Layana says it's just a princess-cut dress. Everyone's always hating on Patricia.

Kate turned her corset dress idea to a lower corset with a mermaid bottom but Amanda seemed to be worried for her with a bright red dress on a red carpet and that type of silhouette on Miranda’s curvy body. Miranda loves her curves, as should every woman, but Tu's concept of making those curves even bigger? Bad idea. It left Tim shocked and speechless. He had to take off his glasses and think about this Gaga-ish creation for Miranda.

Kate hoped Michelle’s leather bodice and denim mermaid skirt would go wrong. Looks like someone's scared of a little competition. I loved Daniel's approach and technique. Hey, if Ariel from "The Little Mermaid" can comb her hair with a fork, why can't he use one for his skirt? Stanley's dress was nice.

I was surprised at the judges. They had a lot of positive things to say about the looks for this challenge. Miranda Lambert herself was on the judges panel this week. Patricia, Layana, Tu, and Kate were safe. While Daniel, Samantha, Matthew and Michelle found themselves at the bottom. The underdog Amanda climbed her way to the top along with Ben, Stanley, and Richard. As risky as Richard's outfit was at first he found himself this weeks winner. Unfortunately for Matthew his time was up. Luckily, Richard gets to see the lovely Miranda perform in his design on her tour. Who wouldn't love that?

Next week: Joan Rivers? Woah. Hope this batch of designers has tough skin!