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Category: "episode recaps"

29
FRI

Did the Judges Get It Right? Only Time Will Tell

Posted By CaitlinBergmann 5:00am GMT

We’ve spent 13 challenges and many thoughtful uses of the Piperlime Accessories Wall to get here, so let’s just dive right into the thick of it, shall we?

Andy, I think, was so limited by the late arrival of his fabrics that he didn’t leave enough time to execute the looks he was truly capable of, and it did him a serious disservice. Many were on the fence about his head accessories (I think they were a distraction), but at least he gave it a go.

Gretchen, although using similar patterns too many times for my liking throughout her collection, took the advice she received after showcasing three looks in Episode 13 and acted on it. She sassed her models up a bit for her show, and they did all have a definitive look. I think some of her stronger pieces here had a Diane von Furstenberg–esque, ready-to-wear ease to it that any woman could appreciate.

Yes, it is always a matter of taste, but Mondo’s collection had a spirit and a joy about it that was true to his design philosophy and his spirit these past 14 weeks.

Regardless of the outcome of this season, Mondo was a winner. The man could have robbed your grandmother and prank-called your home as an I.R.S. auditor, and he still would have been a winner.

Who had the strongest Fashion Week collection?


The fact that the judges had such a battle of words over this final decision was apparent, more so than in any other season. Guest judge Jessica Simpson, who has an extensive fashion empire of her own, had some feedback that was a welcome point of view to the discussion and also helped create a two-versus-two divide between Team Jessica/Heidi and Team Michael/Nina.

Did the judges get it right? I think the ultimate answer to that very tough question is in the distant future. Will Mondo — or Andy, for that matter — have the last laugh? Only time will tell, but they’re certainly moving forward.

15
FRI

“I’m So Confused!”

Posted By CaitlinBergmann 5:00am GMT

Watch Project Runway Episode 12I find the “inspiration” challenges to be rather surprising. I tend to watch these episodes with my “Seriously?” face on when designers have an entire city at their disposal (concrete jungle that dreams are maaaaaaade of!) and pick their inspirational item based on what, curiously enough, is also the item that's nearest to them and doesn’t involve much, well, due diligence. Daniel Vosovic in Season 2 comes to mind; he picked the orchid centerpiece on Michael Kors’ NYC office table — the same place where the challenge was presented to him. The dude didn’t even need to call the elevator. It was “I Spy With My Little Eye …” -inspiration. I later shut up, when he made an amazing piece that still is memorable six seasons later.

I must remind myself that because it is subjective, if the designer is genuinely inspired by something like dirty gutter water (Andrae Gonzalo), who’s to say it’s not “inspiring” if the end product is beautiful and wearable?

The final five have Mayor Bloomberg’s personal permission to be the Lewis & Clark of 2010 and explore the vast reaches of the five boroughs. Yet two end up in the same place, and one of them has clearly only explored the wonders of New York City based on that one time they crashed on their old college roommate’s couch … and ended up on the Lower East Side … inspired by a nondescript apartment faade.

But, OK. I will wait until I see the designs to cast my final judgment.

Michael is once again creating a Plan B dress so that he has a backup plan at the ready in case the Statue of Liberty moment he’s having isn’t pleasing to Tim. Mondo is napping. And it’s clear that this is a competition, because no one is waking him up.

View more of April Johnston's designsIt becomes abundantly clear that Andy apparently visited a questionable-at-best area of Central Park — where the pigeon lady in “Home Alone 2” and unlicensed massage therapists reside — to come up with his location inspiration. Gretchen is making something the aforementioned pigeon lady would have worn in the aforementioned movie. April is making something in black. (Wow!) And Christopher Collins is not there. (Womp.)

Fast forward to the runway, and more-reserved-than-I-remember-him-being Season 4 winner Christian Siriano is in the guest-judge seat. Mondo has a better Brooklyn Bridge garment than April, who is taking heat for, you guessed it, making something in black. And this is where we pause.

Yes, April made something in black. April has made a lot of things in black this season — dating back even to what she showed at her audition. And a lot of things with asymmetry and a lot of things in a sheer fabric. However, never once until this penultimate point in time was she ever discouraged from doing it on the runway. Should she have realized her body of work was becoming one-note? Sure. But would it have helped to know that she was jumping into a black hole and pulling it in after her? Absolutely.

Instead, now we have Gretchen, Mondo, Michael and Andy vying for the three final Fashion Week spots, and maybe that outcome could have been different. (Hoshkepge!)

Who should have been sent packing this week?


In the end, I thought Michael’s dress moved beautifully, and his model shut it down once again (the side view of the look on Rate the Runway is a total Britney moment, if I say so myself), but I was once again left scratching my head saying, “Seriously?” Make a Chrysler Building dress, and then we’ll talk.

01
FRI

“Project Runway’s” Best Moment

Posted By CaitlinBergmann 5:00am GMT

Watch Episode 10 onlineI’ve watched “Project Runway” since the beginning. I can reference random hilarious Michael Kors quotes. I can sing the “Daniel Franco, Where Did You Go?” song on cue. I still laugh so hard I cry over Andrae and Tim’s “rendezvous” at Red Lobster. I challenge people to “mothereffing walk-offs.” I can tell you that by winning this challenge, Mondo becomes the first person in the show’s history to win three solo challenges in a row, but when it comes to finding the right way to express what this episode represented in the eight-season history of “Project Runway”, I struggled to find the words.

I scribbled down notes. I watched the episode again. I sorted through the photos. I looked at the HP/Intel fabrics. I had nothing.

After thinking long and hard about it, what remains is this:

Say what you will about reality television, but what makes it such a compelling genre is that the characters are not characters — they’re real people, living their lives on camera. Why is “American Idol” great? Why is “The Amazing Race”? Because we, the audience, have someone to rally for as they get a step closer to their own goals.

A great actor can only aspire to create a scene to the best of their abilities, but no writer or director could ever capture the story Mondo told this week on “Project Runway” the way he told it — or the way he almost never did. I sat through most of the episode wondering if we, the viewers, would be the only ones to hear his confession and how sad it would be if no one knew the motivation behind his work until this, well, aired. But when he finally found the right moment to reveal it, it didn’t just make his garment more meaningful, it changed his life.

Whatever happens in the next few weeks as we lead up to Fashion Week can’t overshadow what happened this week. Gretchen and Tim could have a mud-wrestling cage match, but I’ll still remember this episode.

For HIV and AIDS resources and support, visit the AIDS Healthcare Foundation at www.aidshealth.org.

24
FRI

“Tight Race for Hideous”

Posted By CaitlinBergmann 6:00am GMT

I feel it would be amiss to harshly criticize this week’s work, given the eleventh-hour curveball. Creating two looks in that amount of time and thinking you’re going to see something 100 percent designer-approved is a hefty order. Someone was bound to send some, as Laura Bennett would say, “serious ugly” down the runway. Instead, I present you with some episode highlights:

• Apparently Gretchen Jones invented Bordeaux back in 1771 when she was dating Alexander Hamilton. She holds a patent on the Pantone color and will challenge anyone who uses it to a duel, in remembrance of Alex. This is the little-known backstory as to why Michael Costello is currently being sued for daring to use the same shade. Burgundy? OK. Sangria? All right. Bordeaux? NEVER.

• I really wanted Andy to say “More money, mo’ problems” when he learned of the bonus $20,000 prize for winning this challenge. Alas, that dream has died.

• Most of the designers were planning on paying off debts with the bonus prize. April wants a small pony and Mondo wants, quote, “drinking money.” Put that together and you have one awesome party.

Swatch (the Mood dog) needs his own show.

• No space is sacred for one’s mental breakdown. Not even the ladies room, where Ivy will revive your fighting spirit with some tough love: “Stop complaining!”

Andy’s model is fierce! That girl has worked her hair in every outfit like her life depended on it. She needs to book a Beyonc tour ASAP.

Michael Kors’ obsession with the Broadway musical “Wicked” has now spilled out onto the runway. Sadly, his description (complete with sound effects) of Valerie’s high-fashion look was dead-on.

• Just this:

Watch the Project Runway judges' video blogs

• And this:

Watch the Extended Judging

• Did you know Michael Costello has never been in the Bottom 3 before? OK, cool. Just in case that wasn’t clear.

Naeem Khan is one of the first guest judges in a long time who has actually told the designers what they did wrong, what they did right and how they could have corrected it. Please come back!

• Did anyone else catch the moment where Gretchen was saying something to the effect of, “Ivy will get a lot of … [Ivy walks into room] LOVE! Love! From this!” Awkward.

• Mondo now has $20,014.00 in his bank account, minus miniature pony gift ($2,000.00) and a debaucherous night at the bar drinking vodka and Squirt ($217.78) = $17,796.22. Congrats.

Who should have been sent packing?


17
FRI

Give That Andy Kid a Hug, A.S.A.P.

Posted By CaitlinBergmann 6:00am GMT

Having visited the “The First Ladies at the Smithsonian” exhibit this weekend and well aware of the pending “Runway” challenge, I was getting a closer look at Jackie Kennedy’s inaugural gown when I realized it was by far the most popular, but also one of the simplest.

Out of all the gowns on display there — from Martha Washington’s in the 1780s to Michelle Obama’s in 2009 — Jackie’s was the standout. And with good reason. It was the real first garment she wore in her new role as the first lady and the start of her impact on the fashion world. The Washington Post said of her dress in 1961 that Jackie’s “ … career as a major fashion influence was beginning impressively,” and it continues here in 2010 on “Project Runway.”

When it came time for our Season 8 designers to describe Jackie’s signature style, it varied from “chic” to “classic” to “clean” to “risk-taker,” yet it seemed that none of those adjectives really was the right way to interpret an American sportswear look inspired by Jackie. In a word, her style was probably just “impeccable.” Whoever got the closest to that ideal was going to win this challenge.

Christopher Collins' past workOver in the clean/chic group, we have a promising entry from Ivy, whose look was helped by her dead-on styling choices, and Christopher — minus the insanity of that crazy stole, but at least he didn’t like it, either. This was the moment Ivy needed in this competition if she wanted to move forward. Christopher, however, I take issue with, because I have seen this exact look from him before. I literally spent the entire episode not being able to move past it. It’s almost a dead ringer for the asymmetrical jersey dress from his Fall 2010 collection (pictured at left), but with a different color, shoulder treatment, sleeves and hem.

He’s certainly not the first designer to do this — they should absolutely play to their strengths — but that look wasn’t Jackie’s. It was Christopher’s.

Christopher Collins' past workIn the risk-taking group, we had Andy, leading the pack with the largest pair of cargo pants I have seen hit a runway since the days of “Please Hammer, Don’t Hurt ’Em”; Michael D., who didn’t want to listen to Tim Gunn’s advice; Valerie, who could not stop making coats and coat-like things; and Mondo, whose own personal style was a mere white tank away from starring in a production of “Cabaret” as the Emcee.

Yes, Andy’s garment had a gigbillion issues I won’t even get into, because the judges already covered all of that, and then some. It was probably the single most hurtful, trainwreck-to-watch runway judging in the show’s history — at least since Season 7’s Jonathan Peters’ “disco straitjacket.” Frankly, I salute the guy for not crying, ’cause he had every right to. Especially when you’re being told to come down for a better look at all its flaws when you’re already well aware they exist.

Were the judges overly harsh on Andy?


Mondo, conversely, took a risk by combining a series of patterns and prints that could have been disastrous together, but he somehow found a way to channel Jackie’s overall vibe: a woman every woman aspires to dress like. Hooray for purple-lined jackets!

10
FRI

Sad? Zero. Disappointed? Maybe a Quart.

Posted By CaitlinBergmann 6:00am GMT

Casanova’s response to how he felt about his time on “Runway” is also applicable to how I felt about this episode. “Sad? Zero. Disappointed? Maybe a quart.” Oh, Ivy.

Listen, y’all. I always somehow end up defending the personalities of the more controversial contestants I have actually met in person, and Ivy Higa qualifies as one of them. Her fall collection is to die for. The woman offered me beef jerky during her home visit. She’s just (seemingly) having a tough time displaying that same “wow factor” potential and overall “sharing” vibe on the show. In the end, it’s a matter of playing the game. Case in point: Michael C. and Mondo.

Mondo’s personality went from that of awkward high school “Rent”-listening outsider in Episode 1 to slushy-throwing bully when he learned Michael C. was his teammate in Episode 7. The man did not mince words: Your construction level is not worthy of my clothes, and, to boot, you have immunity, so don’t screw this up, or I will cut you. (Paraphrasing, of course.)

After a little patience and some TLC, Mondo’s vision came to life, and he and Michael C. were hugging it out in a giant fashion love-fest by the end of the episode … even though it landed him in the bottom. Lighten up, it’s just fashion!

[favorite-moment-of-episode alert]
Mondo and Michael C hug it out in Episode 7

Conversely, Michael D.’s experience with his teammate Ivy was the polar opposite, given the same constraints — one person had stronger construction skills than the other. No matter how much Ivy hated the final garment he had created for her, she should have stood on that runway during his judging feedback for the top looks and been all sunshine and cherries and jazz hands. Examples: “I loved helping Michael create this and teaching him new sewing lingo!” “He has an amazing personal style! That’s why I gave my model a bandana!” “I love all people named Michael!”


Who is the bigger "Runway" diva?



Perhaps by the time she was brought back onstage to defend her own garment, the judges would have been more forgiving of their botched partnership that helped put her in the bottom. Instead, she spent the time complaining about how her garment looked nothing like how she had originally planned:

Ivy Higa's portfolio[favorite-“I have seen your sketches, honey”-moment-of-the-episode alert]

Ivy has dug herself into a giant hole that is going to take the world’s largest greeting card — and perhaps a challenge win — to forget. The judges do recognize her technical talent, but I couldn’t help but recall the Season 2 reunion where Santino Rice and Chloe Dao hashed it out over the pain of being called a “pattern maker” versus a designer. Let’s hope Michael Kors’ “seamstress only” comment doesn’t spell the emotional end for Ivy before she can redeem herself.

P.S. Regarding next week’s preview: BETTY DRAPER!!!




03
FRI

Mondo Wins (But Loses), Plus Tim Buries the Gretchen Hatchet

Posted By CaitlinBergmann 6:00am GMT

Watch Project Runway Episode 6I love this challenge. In fact, I had this same challenge in my head years ago and am glad it finally escaped from my inner monologue onto the runway.

Having been “that girl” who has had the honor of wearing an unfortunate-looking bridesmaid dress and was forced to contemplate what the heck one could do with a water-stained Eton blue taffeta dress with faux-flower embellishment post-wedding, I finally conceded to the next-best reuse of this garment: Halloween costume … for someone else … in another state. However, if I’d had Mondo Guerra on speed dial, I could have reduced, reused and recycled in style!

What I was most anxious to see in this episode was the aftermath of last week’s Tim vs. Gretchen showdown. Would they play totally passive-aggressive, thereby whittling down Tim’s workroom sessions with her to cryptic notes left on her workstation?

“Do less of that. This worries me. — Tim P.S. We are still in a fight.”

Or would they hug it out just to get through this next challenge? Looks like neither. After all, previous to the spotlight “Make it work!” brought to him, Tim Gunn was an instructor — and this reminded me of that. This could have been any episode. It wasn’t awkward, he wasn’t short with her, he didn’t deny her any useful feedback. He was all business. And for those of you who commented on the blog last week that Tim may have been out of line for his comments backstage to Gretchen, I hope you can see the man’s integrity here.

Get more Mondo!My initial thoughts on the garments in the workroom:
Ivy: Have you still not learned that pants are bad news bears? No less white satin pants on a woman who is not your model? [watches remainder of episode with hands covering eyes]
Christopher: You are so lucky your bridesmaid bailed, ’cause you got a model. Upgrade!
Michael C.: Your bridesmaid has fabulous arms and you are covering them up? With lace! That was last week!
Michael D.: It did kinda look like a giant bra on the front. Not gonna lie. But you tried.
Valerie: There is room for at least seven more embellishments.
Casanova: The man can sew a pair of pants. He should just make pants all the time. Pants as pants, pants as tops, pants as socks …
Gretchen: Thank goodness you had that little dress rehearsal before the runway where you tweaked your garment, cause the “side boob” was not a good look. Upgrade!
Mondo: Mondo is a genius. Who thinks to reverse the fabric? This guy!
Andy: I don’t really remember your garment, but your model worked it out.
Peach: You’re in a heap of trouble, but please stay because I love you. And your sweaters.
April: Upswing: Your bridesmaid was not as bad as Christian Siriano’s prom girl in Season 4.

Michael C. is still being slammed for his so-called lack of technical skills [rolls eyes] and later accused by Ivy, at the public viewing of their transformed bridesmaid dresses, of seeding the audience so that she received fewer votes. Speaking of votes, even though Mondo won the popular vote, Michael C. gets the last laugh — and a week of immunity — with the judges’ (electoral?) vote.

Was Mondo losing to Michael C. fair?



Adieu, sweet Peach. We shall miss you and your Peachisms.


27
FRI

15 Reasons Why Gretchen Should Go Into Politics or Avoid Being Seen in Public Today

Posted By CaitlinBergmann 6:00am GMT

I’m going to keep this post short and sweet, mostly because Gretchen has taken away every desire I ever had to be long-winded, with her nonsensicalness in this episode.

Let’s (briefly) recap the Episode 5 shenanigans:

• Team “We’ve All Won Stuff and the Other Team Hasn’t” really consists of one person who won twice and two people who’ve won once.
• Thank god neither team picked ’50s Retro Leopard and Cheetah.
• Gretchen (a.k.a. “one person who won twice”) pontificates on how wonderful working together is, but is actually assuming the role of the leader and telling everyone what to do.
• Casanova thinks he’s fat and is tired of being told his clothes are not up to par by Tim Gum, Tim Gunn’s cousin who works for Wrigley.
• If Michael C. decided to go rogue and make ’50s Retro Leopard and Cheetah, it would have been fine, ’cause the guy has IMMUNITY. Meaning he is IMMUNE from going home, even if people think he can’t sew.

Do you think Team Military & Lace had it in the bag?

Now, on to the catwalk …

Team Military & Lace had it in the bag simply because each designer maintained their individuality in a unified, lacy front. Team Luxe was neither a team nor luxe. It was the Gretchen Show and it was filled with ho-hum textiles, many of which, if not all, were completely void of any individuality. Yes, they all sewed at a feverish, mass-assembly pace when they weren’t schooling or scolding Michael C., but at what cost to the overall effect?

Maybe I watch too many History Channel specials, but Gretchen Jones needs to run for office. She’ll be the most fashion-forward person on the Hill.

Gretchen has the misfortune of not only pulling a so-called “John Kerry” as self-appointed team spokesperson, flip-flopping from saying how much she loved the collection to saying how much she wanted to burn in it effigy 15 minutes later, but also becoming the William Henry Harrison of the runway. Harrison’s claim to fame is having served the shortest term as U.S. president (one month!), thanks to a two-hour-long inaugural address (the longest in American history) he gave in the freezing rain (that later killed him, but that’s neither here nor there). He spoke and spoke and spoke, much like Gretchen — covered in rain, much like Gretchen’s tears, for hours.

A.J. French seams away

I literally started watching the Team Luxe judging where Gretchen was commander-in-chief going down with the beloved sinking collection, left the room, ran a marathon, flossed, pondered the meaning of life and returned to find Gretchen still yapping. Except now she hated the Elderly 2010 she had created, and was pacing the catwalk pointing out all of the garments she had constructed.

Thankfully, this all helped paint for the judges a blinking neon sign of a picture of Gretchen’s serious backpedaling, but also exposed how A.J. had a hand in creating only one (but he French-seamed it!) shirt.


Do you think Gretchen should have gone home?



Tim Gunn’s farewell to A.J./kick in the pants to Gretchen backstage was epic. It summed up the opinion of every American, near and far, far and wide … If only he’d also told her to shut up.


20
FRI

The Hat Trick: Never Use Taffeta

Posted By CaitlinBergmann 6:00am GMT

This was one of the more perplexing episodes of “Project Runway” I’ve seen in a long time. Hats off to judging that made little to no sense!

Let’s start from the beginning. Hat designer Philip Treacy is serving as this week’s guest judge, bringing a fun new element of style to the table and helping satisfy the “someone with a pretty Irish accent on the show” quota for Season 8.

Maybe the designers are trying to prove an allegiance to their models, or maybe they just don’t want to fit someone new this week, but if you have the option to pick the Philip Treacy hat that is going to either make or break you and you willingly stick with one you admittedly don’t like just because the model you had for the past three challenges is wearing it, you are a moron. “Mothereffing walk-offs” were caused over less! This is a competition!

We also learn Ivy is alive and well after her fainting spell and is hydrating herself, while Gretchen is suddenly back in the in-crowd in the workroom. Casanova is bringing the ’80s back with his Donna Karan-esque black dress, but at least his design is within a taste level no one can chastise this week. THIS week.

Elsewhere, Michael C. is celebrating Father’s Day by having a fabric crisis. We have puckering, people! Thankfully, Tim Gunn is there to talk him down from the ledge and have him embrace a whole new silhouette, with mere hours to sew. Other Michael is working hard at redeeming himself from — and Laura Bennett will back me up on this — last week’s equivalent of a “Whoa! I got my lip gloss through Customs!” slide of the season, by creating something truly worthy of Philip’s architectural hat.

Kristin's Afternoon Delight

Now segue to Kristin having an “afternoon delight” moment with her orchid hat, which is both amusing and disturbing. I am pretty sure this is the first time in the show’s history that anyone has uttered the word “vagina,” which will henceforth be called “the good china,” per Peach Carr’s genius unrelated one-liner.

April, as much as I love her personality, has undoubtedly created diaper shorts, which somehow became dubbed the “triple panty” by the time it hit the runway. But she was dead-on with the resort motif. Christopher, conversely, has created an amazing look around his hat, but is struggling with the styling and is looking toward the options on the Piperlime Accessories Wall for help.

I have this mental-picture backstory, if you will, of the camera and sound crew coming across Gretchen, covered head to toe in makeup and hair products, in the L’Oral Paris Makeup Room and Garnier Hair Studio the morning of the show. They make eye contact with her, only to slowly back out of the room with the mutual understanding that “we never saw you here.” Seriously, though! Where did this Plain Jane–to-Jezebel look, with the hair all down and sassy, come from? The mystery of Gretchen continues, but her winning streak does not.

As the “safe” folk are paraded backstage (I’m loving these Designers Dish moments, by the way), I am left with what I was assuming to be the top and bottom six. However, if this were Vegas, or at least Atlantic City, I would have lost — badly!

More reasons to love Chris...

I’m sorry, I loved Valerie’s design, but it was so reminiscent to me of her Episode 2 look that I just couldn’t get past it. I figured for sure that she must be getting some feedback from the judges on the danger of being one-note. I also was betting that Christopher “I love you more every episode for reasons unbeknownst to me” Collins was getting the “Hey, we know who you are this week!” judging speech. I know he wasn’t in love with the possible pirate styling he inadvertently stumbled into, but in a way I was thankful it went there. I wanted it to differ from the “ladies who lunch and have a fabulous wardrobe” moments he had been creating since week one. Like the rest of the universe, taffeta or not, I thought he was in the top.

We know Michael D. was certainly on top for his great use of textures and symmetry, but I was on the fence about Michael C.’s concept. Yeah, you made it in negative two hours, but I feel like I’ve seen this dress in front of a trillion step-and-repeats (and apparently, on my last trip to Puerto Rico). It was just OK for me. Kristin’s, though, really fell short of the mark, and it was clear that even with April’s misstep, she was going home.

Ivy takes a lot of heat for her comments, but truer words have never been spoken than the ones that came from her when we were subjected to Michael C.’s self-congratulatory monologue. Thank you! We get it, guy. You won! Philip thought it was deeeee-vine. We’ve moved on. I hope for the designers’ sake they have, too, if they want to survive next week’s team challenge!

What Did You Think of This Week’s Judging?


P.S. Did anyone else immediately think that their iTunes playlist suddenly went rogue as Heidi strutted onto the runway to her hubby’s Grammy-winning song? ’Cause clearly, I did. And, yes, I own that song.
13
FRI

Good Girl Gone Bad

Posted By CaitlinBergmann 6:00am GMT

Saluting Andy South!

I don't even know where to begin with this episode. This looms large in the legend of "Runway" unconventional challenges, like Austin Scarlett's corn-husk dress in Season 1 and Jillian Lewis' Twizzler outfit in Season 4. Who would have thought that ribbons could be that, well, badass? Andy, I salute you. Even his balloon-glove accessory was so surprisingly surprising, it brought back the wow-factor innovation of Season 7's Jay Nicolas Sario's garbage-bag pleather pants.

Now let's just talk about what everyone wants to talk about (besides Wooly Balls and Plush Puppies — that's later): Gretchen's "good girl gone bad" attitude.

Sister, I realize you've won two challenges back to back, but that does not give you the Tim Gunn Junior Design Critique Badge for your Girl Scout sash, too. "Takes the class out of what you're doing"? Wow.

Giving fellow designers your two cents has traditionally backfired in many an episode, and I'm sure fellow blogger Nick Verreos can preach about his own showdown with Lupe in Season 2 — and he's an instructor!

If you've already made frenemies by Episode 3, you're forgetting about those TEAM challenges. But, OK. Fine. I'll give it to her. The girl can put together a solid look.

Tim Gunn has a giggle fit.

Now on to Tim's giggle fit over wooly balls. Whoever branded those things with THAT name is a comedic genius whose talents are simply suffocating at suburban arts-and-crafts stores. The mere presence of them out on tables would make it a party! Kristin should have just stapled unopened bags all over her garment. Winner.

In eight seasons I have never seen Tim Gunn laugh that hard, ever. Even during "Tim and Andrae at Red Lobster" moments. I may need to watch it all over again to see if he actually gave Kristin workroom feedback or just cried all over her fabric in hysterics. Either way, an epic moment in "Runway" history.

As for plush puppies, I can't even handle it. From the macabre gutting and skinning of their little Made in China synthetic hides that could give that "Nip/Tuck" episode a run for its money (you know which one I'm talking about!), to his "Poor Unfortunate Souls" Ursula final creation, what is this man's deal?! I am waiting for him to bust out of left field some genius garment that will leave us all even more perplexed, 'cause this guy is all over the place.

Poor Sarah. Her voice is so calm and soothing, I will miss listening to her video blogs. She's like audio Xanax or something. She will also miss the moment she subscribed to Gretchen's "stick to one color" advice. Womp.

Other thoughts:
- How was Michael Drummond safe? Just, HOW?

- Who knew napkins were so ... multipurpose?

- A.J.'s garment was a like a Highlights magazine dress — filled with fun hidden stuff you had to find. I wouldn't be surprised if there was a plush puppy stashed away in there for good measure. Betsey Johnson would have LOVED it!