We did prints, we did the holidays, now it’s time for the Project Runway designers to take on the 80s! Cyndi Lauper was the iconic 80s person this week, serving as inspiration and this week’s guest judge. This was going to be a team challenge, so 2 teams going head to head. Each team would create a cohesive mini collection representing 80s fashion, but with a modern take. Each designer would be responsible for their own looks, but did need to work as a cohesive unit. To create each team, the infamous button bag returned.
Team 1, later dubbed Team Chaos, consisted of Geoffrey, Dayoung, Nancy, Brittany, and Delvin. Team 2, aka Team Stripes, was Melanie, Marquise, Sergio, Chelsey, and Shavi. Since Victoria won last week, she was able to choose her team. She chose Team Chaos, which was comprised of the stronger designers, but also, everyone having strong personalities!
This would be a 2 day challenge, with a $300 per member team budget, so basically $1500 for Team Stripes, $1800 for Team Chaos with the extra designer. During sketch time, Team Stripes was working well, really formulating with a solid plan, was very organized. Team Chaos was the exact opposite, clearly demonstrating those stronger personalities. And while shopping at Mood, Team Chaos continued with well….Chaos! They were trying to focus on a print for their color story, and couldn’t decide. Delvin was feeling unheard. And the print they did settle on, Christian was unimpressed.
Everyone was back to work for the rest of day 1. Team Chaos was still all over the place, not sure who was using what fabrics, what their exact designs would be, etc. But team Stripes was steamrolling ahead. It was then time for Siriano Sessions. In finally seeing what Team Stripes had going on, I was with Delvin on this one, this looked like straight up Beetlejuice costumes. It was a lot of black and white. And I wasn’t sure this black and white stripe trend was actually 80s? Christian was right to bring up the difference between cohesion and just repetition in looks. As it got to Team Chaos’ turn, you could tell there was some tensions in the group. Delvin and Brittany were rudely laying into Nancy. They did have good ideas finally, the focus on leather, the details, the embellishment work. The question was could they pull it altogether?
Christian announced then he wouldn’t be around for model fittings the next day. But he left the designers with a little twist — that they had to create all of their accessories, except for shoes. So the jewelry, handbags, belts, etc, it all had to be handmade. He happily went around collecting the accessory pieces some of the designers had already selected. They would be going to and trim and notions store the next day, Trim & Feathers, with a $200 additional budget. Day 1 ended and the designers continued planning at home. Team Chaos was still filled with tensions and there was a lot of focus being unfairly put on Nancy.
Day 2 began with the trip to Trim & Feathers. As the designers got back to the workroom, Nancy & Melanie were still unsure of exactly what their looks were going to be. During model fittings, we saw Victoria would be doing a repeat silhouette, but really she has done a lot of that already and the judges don’t seem to mind. The designers were still in strategy mode once back at home, but no surprise, Team Chaos was making some hair and makeup plans, and I guess forgot to include Nancy in that discussion.
The morning of the runway, Christian gathered Team Chaos around, to really make sure they saw what all was going on with each designer, make sure there was a cohesive story. Dayoung actually needed some help here. Her look was the worst of the bunch and Christian even pointed that out. But Brittany, with her annoying focus on Nancy all episode, she was overly concerned with her. I am glad Nancy stood her ground and didn’t let other designers change her look. I am also glad Nancy stood up for herself later in the episode and said her peace about how she was treated during this challenge. Go Nancy!
So onto the runway — the whole episode was geared towards the notion that Team Stripes had it altogether, thus they would win. While Team Chaos, being literal chaos, would be in the bottom. But as you saw even the bits and pieces from each team, it was vastly clear that Team Chaos had the stronger looks. Yes, Team Stripes had more cohesion, but the looks were not well made and were not that exciting. Seeing the looks come down the runway, this was all the more clear. Team Chaos just had so many strong looks, it would have been crazy if they were the bottom team. The cohesion was not spot on, but it was better than what I originally thought it was going to be.
The top 3 could have been anyone except for Dayoung. I thought everyone else really did a fantastic job. Delvin’s look was great, but was probably the least cohesive of the group. So the top 3 was Geoffrey, Brittany and Victoria. Very happy Geoffrey won, very well deserved. This look was the epitome of modern 80s fashion.
So Team Stripes was the bottom group, although there were some decent looks here. Chelsey and Sha’Vi were rightfully saved. I don’t get the decision of Melanie going home though! Sergio clearly can’t take criticism, and while he has good technical skills, he has a dated tastes and no willingness to ever change.
Marquise had one win and has done nothing memorable or great since. The judges claim Melanie wasn’t memorable, but I guess the judges were overlooking Marquise having just been in the bottom, and now again with some pretty horrible looking shorts.
His jacket was good, but Melanie’s look was not the worst here! And I would think keeping someone around who is open minded and willing to learn and self improve would make more sense here!