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Episode 4 Recap: Nina Garcia Challenge

By CaitlinBergmann Fri., Aug. 19, 2011 ,5:05 am EDT

I am soooo jealous!!! I would have been all over this challenge! The fourth challenge of this season was another first: design a look for Nina Garcia! How fab is that, to get an opportunity NOT ONLY to dress a fashion director/editor but also have that very piece featured in Marie Claire magazine!

Anya mustard jumpsuit Nina challengeSIDEBAR: How chic did Nina look as she entered the runway!? Love the blazer. Love the trousers. Love the hair. And the pièce de résistance, hands in pockets — THE BEST way to accessorize a look!

The designers' consultations with Nina seemed to move fairly smoothly! Nina was extremely gracious but never compromised her style identity: classic, clean and modern. There were a lot of "I like" and "I love" and very few "Yuck" and "Yikes!" (although she did tell Bryce "I hate cowl" [I agree] and Cecilia "It looks a little 'Dynasty'!") What I found quite interesting was that Ms. Garcia was really accommodating in suggesting/requesting a few of the designers to design within their strengths. This was the case with Danielle and her blouses, and Kimberly and her pants. I find that to be a "thumbs-up" of approval; it means she's noticing.

The looks that sold me during the designers' consultations with Nina:

Josh: Lots of structural detail. Looked as if it could be pretty sexy too.

Julie: I love a coatdress. Very transitional, always appropriate.

Kimberly: The design of the dress was really modern and very Nina.

… aaand that's it. Lol. Sorry, nobody else's sketch excited me. #KanyeShrug

The trip to Mood wasn't too eventful. Lots of black and taupe and gray and other neutrals. Danielle and Anya were adventurous and stepped outside the expected for Nina. I love Danielle's kelly green, not so much with Anya's mustard yellow. Anthony Ryan and Becky were adventurous as well, not only choosing a print but THE SAME PRINT. This is the fodder that "Project Runway" is MADE OF! The print is absolutely gorgeous! I was interested in seeing who was going to do it justice.

Ms. Garcia's visit to the workroom seemed a little premature, as most of the designers were still draping (designing/creating garment on the dress form) their pieces! I wasn't able to get a feel for any garments. I saw a lot of V-neck and cutout style lines (taped lines on a dress form that denote the future design of the garment), but nothing made me shiver. "Carry on, designers."

SIDEBAR: Brilliant idea for Anya to dye her fabric! Mustard belongs on a Nathan's hot dog, never a runway. Lol. But it's unfortunate that that color was transformed into brown, which is equally horrible. The only things fantastic in brown are chocolate, leather goods and skin tones (like mine ;-).

As the designers were prepping for the runway, Laura decided to assist Anya, and Cecilia helped Julie. Viktor had issues with this. Personally, it wouldn't have bothered me. The designers DID design the garments, AND the garments were basically completed. Sometimes you can't sweat the small stuff.

OK, on to the runway show. BUT let me first sound off on how much I LOVE this challenge's guest judge, KERRY WASHINGTON! One of our true style icons!!! She is always prefect and amazingly coiffed! She is extremely well-spoken and such a class act. LOVE HER! OK, I'm done. LOL!

I was finally ready to see the garments!

My likes:

Josh: Great colors and cut. Wish the dress was pencil-length and belted.

Kimberly gold top navy pants Nina challengeJulie: Love the design! The fabric and color selection weren't the best for daytime. Felt a little holiday.

My loves:

Viktor: So smart! And I am all about separates!

Kimberly: LOVE, LOVE, LOVE THIS! Sexy & smart!!!

My not-so-much:

Bryce: Not well done … AT ALL.

Danielle: LAWD.

SIDEBAR: I really did not see what the judges saw in Anya's piece. I DO think it was constructed well. But the design … it didn't move me. AND was I the only one who noticed all the short hemlines? I know it's for the runway, but Nina WILL be the one wearing the garment. Just a thought.

The champ of the challenge was Kimberly! I think her look was and is the best to date!!! It was extremely well done. The funny thing about it is Becky, Julie and other designers predicted her to be in the bottom. Well … they were wrong. Lol. Kimberly won the bragging rights.

Danielle, in the end, was sent home. Her look just didn't have enough design in it. The object of "Project Runway" is to excite, wow, and inspire! I guess her pop of color wasn't enough "POP" to move her forward in the competition.


"This is just SOFT and SOFT."
"It's just looking a little sad."
"Do you/we have a Plan B?"
— Nina Garcia (#DontBoreNina)

"I leave you feeling confident, then I see you on the runway and I'm like, 'OH MY GOD!' (flailing hands)" — Tim Gunn (Hahaha!)

"I felt a mum could wear this in a kitchen making pureed acorn squash for her children." (HAHAHAAHAH!!!)
"If Nina wore this dress, I would have her committed."
— Joanna Coles (M. Kors has met his match, lol)

"Unless you're going to a Joan Crawford, St. Patty's Day party, I mean … WHO IS WEARING THIS BLOUSE!?" — Michael Kors

Kerry Washington: "Is it a dress, is it a coat, is it a DRESS COAT?"

Joanna Coles: "… It's like a DROAT!" (LMAO!!! I'm so using DROAT!)