Saying Hello to “Under the Gunn” & Goodbye to “PRAS”

I’ve never been satisfied with only 1 season of Project Runway a year. Well then came PRAS, which I still have my qualms about, but it at least gave me somewhat of what I wanted. Of course now, maybe we won’t need a PRAS EVERY YEAR! WHY? Because now we have “Under the Gunn.”

tim-gunn-anya-ayoung-chee-nick-verreos-mondo-guerra-under-the-gunnSo as PRAS closed the curtains for season 3, Lifetime’s new show UTG unveiled it’s 1st showing! From writing/blogging at this point, I have not watched the 1st episode yet, but I wanted to do a fun intro post to kick things off — discuss the outline of the show, maybe see who my early faves are, etc. But first, since there was a reunion special for PRAS, I have to say a few parting words right!

So the reunion started off with a recap of the finale presentations. Ultimately I still agree with Seth winning, despite all the more detailed backstories given. But Korto is not without other good news since she announced she was pregnant so CONGRATS to her!! We also saw a bit more on the Elena story I always thought they were pushing this season — her dark horse title, never winning a competition her season, etc. I think the producers really wanted to push her as the winner, but couldn’t after the final collections were made. Her collection just wasn’t that great.

PJAS3We also had to relive the Chris/Viktor argument. I still think Viktor overreacted. He gave a few bits of advice to Chris, yet somehow that made his garment suck?!? Ahhhh, no, I don’t think so! But not all drama, we got to see some extras from some of the designers’ wins — Debbie Harry will be wearing Elena’s punk jacket on tour; Jeffrey did costume work for Lifetime movie Flowers in the Attic; Viktor made Alyssa his cocktail print winning look, which she said she would love to wear.

There were some un-fun parts as we saw about Daniel’s horrific-looking car accident; I’m glad he’s okay! Oh and wait, another surprise announcement, what is in the PR water because Zanna also announced pregnancy news. So DOUBLE CONGRATS to her since she’s expecting twins!! Irina was very quiet during the show so it was nice to see some attention finally shift there. We of course had to relive the “bridal” catastrophe. Although I still contend that dress was not bridal and it could totally have been worn on the red carpet! And as she said, I don’t see why she was not given the chance to move forward when other designers this season got 3rd and 4th chances.

But to end on a positive note, it was back to Seth and he said he just finished his QVC line. Also, he will be partnering with Mary Kay to work on a collection so that is great news! I look forward to seeing some of these designer’s names in the future because I think a few will have some continued successes!

But now onto the highly anticipated new reality design competition, UTG! Tim Gunn has been such an integral part of PR and I am very excited to see him in a new role. He is now passing his mentor-ship role to 3 former PR alums — Mondo Guerra, Anya Ayoung-Chee, and Nick Verreos. This is all with the goal of proving they have the vision and business savvy to mentor and manage a fashion empire with 15 new up-and-coming designers under their watch.

TimGunn                    UnderTheGunn_NickVerreos                 UnderTheGunn_MondoGuerra

UnderTheGunn_AnyaAyongCheePersonally, of these 3, I love Nick the most so I am definitely rooting for him. Although Mondo did a great job with his design time on PR, so I am excited to see how he does as well. Now with Anya, this is a whole different story for me. I will say, not a fan, but I am interested to see how she copes with this type of show. She could barely sew on PR, but somehow pulled thru & won, so let’s see if she can self-teach her way thru the business of fashion too!

Each mentor will have a team of designers they must manage, coach and, when necessary, knock down with tough love in order to lead them to runway success. This new crop of designers will face the critiques of designer Rachel Roy, celebrity stylist Jen Rade, creator of some of the most iconic red carpet looks in Hollywood, and TV fashion correspondent and Marie Claire Senior Fashion Editor Zanna Roberts Rassi.

UnderTheGunn_RachelRoy                    UnderTheGunn_JenRade                 UnderTheGunn_ZannaRobertsRassiThe show’s sponsors are: Lexus, Marie Claire Magazine, Benefit Cosmetics, Blowpro, francesca’s, Brother Sewing and Embroidery and ROWENTA. I have to say, I love francesca’s. I have shopped their for years, always considering the boutique vintage shop as almost a hidden treasure. But I’m so ecstatic they are making their way to the forefront on as big a platform as this show! Their jewelry and accessories are some of the most fave pieces I own with my personal collection so I think they will do a great job with complimenting the looks this season!

In the first two episodes, the process is, Tim will present a race-around-the-clock challenge to the fashion hopefuls. The three mentors will measure the skill level of the contestants and duke it out to determine which four designers will land on their teams. Then, Tim will present new challenges that will test the mentors’ ability to bring out the best in their designers as they guide them through the competition. But remember, only 1 designer and 1 mentor will win and I am EAGER to see how this all plays out! And this is what they win:

  • a cash prize of $100,000
  • a sewing and embroidery studio
  • an all-expense paid trip to Paris
  • Blowpro styling products
  • the opportunity to design the uniform for Benefit Cosmetics’ field team members and unveil the ensemble during a national press conference in New York City
  • a fashion spread in Marie Claire magazine
  • a one-year position as guest editor for Marie Claire
  • a 2014 Lexus vehicle
  • and the opportunity to design a collection sold exclusively at Francesca’s.

Pretty decent prize pack!! So you can look at all the designers on your own and do so right here, but these are the few I was impressed by the most when looking at their past work, bios, etc.

OSCAR GARCIA-LOPEZ:                                                      UnderTheGunn_OscarLopez

I mean, all I can say from reading his online bio & looking at his portfolio of work is WOW!! His story seems like such a real-life struggle and thru hard work and determination, he is finally living his dream. For his work, I mean the eveningwear is stunning. I could seeing it rivaling some of the many gowns I’m seeing on the red carpet season now! Very eager to see his work develop and hope he does well on the show!




AMY SIM                                                   UnderTheGunn_Amy

So first off, wow, this lady is over 50! I am shocked because she certainly doesn’t design for the over 40 crowd, nor does she look her age! I see from her past work she is very versatile with her range — menswear, dresses, pants, jackets, blazers, etc. I love how fun, flirty, & feminine her looks are and look forward to seeing her on UTG!



NATALIA FEDNER:                                                                              UnderTheGunn_Natalia_Fedner

In just reading Natalia’s online bio she seems like a ball of energy and of charm. So much of her portfolio were sketches and I wish I could have seen those actual pieces, but regardless, she still had a few actual looks that were eye-catching. I am all about gorgeous back details and I saw one from her that was STUNNING!




BRADY LANGE                                                 UnderTheGunn_BradyLange

I can say I didn’t love every look in the portfolio, but there were a few that caught my eye and definitely make me think there is something about this guy! From reading his online bio, it sounds as if he might be a handful, but hey, that’s reality TV!












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