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You know how children get cranky and throw temper tantrums when they haven't had enough sleep? Welcome to Week Eleven of Project Runway! Heidi Klum kicks things off by informing the now exhausted designers that they must each create a head to toe look for her New Balance collection of activewear. The winner will have their design produced and sold with the rest of her line at Amazon. We're not particularly surprised by the task, since this season we've already had challenges promoting Michael Kors' line, HP's equipment, L'Oreal Paris' make up, Garnier's Hair products and Nina Garcia's magazine. Next week the designers will probably be creating jackets—for Tim Gunn's book.
Many of the designers go into a panic over the assignment. Christopher and April have never designed activewear before, and Mondo fears that he's nothing without bright colors and prints. Things get worse when Heidi pays a visit to the workroom. April manages to politely suck up Heidi's constructive criticism. Mondo and Gretchen, however, both have melt downs while dealing with the host. Mondo rolls his eyes at Heidi and challenges her to try on his garment after she insists it won't fit. He then gets surly with her about having to start again. Then, when Heidi tells Gretchen that the materials she's chosen for her design won't work within the line, Gretchen argues that material is not important, and throws her fabric across the room in frustration. We blame the designers' childish behavior on exhaustion, because they wouldn't normally be stupid enough to insult the show's executive produc—oh. Nevermind. And, as if this wasn't already the designers' least favorite challenge, they get two more curveballs thrown at them: Heidi announces that they must each create two more looks for her, and Tim informs them that they'll be getting some 'help' to get all that extra work done. Uh oh...
...Yes, just when you thought it was safe to enter the workroom, six aufed designers reappear. We're delighted to see Casanova and Peaches and fine with the return of Valerie, AJ and Michael D. The mere thought of seeing Ivy, however, fills us with dread, and we've got nothing on Michael C, who reacts like a nerd getting a wedgie from the class bully. Ivy, who has never met a chip she didn't put on her shoulder, is still bitterly obsessed with the designer. She gives Christine O'Donnell some competition in the witch category, by nastily accusing him of cheating on the Jackie Kennedy challenge—insisting his model wore double sided tape to keep her dress in place. We admire Michael C for his restraint in dealing with Ivy, because even the Gandhi-like Tim Gunn seems like he wants to pop her one. Gunn eventually puts a stop to the accusations, firmly saying that there is no evidence of cheating and that they all must move on.
This week, we're excited to see Michael Kors and Nina Garcia joined by guest judge, Norma Kamali. Kamali is ideal for this challenge, because the innovative designer was the first to create stylish fashions using sweatshirt material. Kamali gives the designers interesting and helpful feedback, but frankly, we would have preferred to hear her talk about what it was like dating former club impresario, Ian Schrager, during his Studio 54 years.
Our top three designer for the week are April, with loose, edgy, and somewhat dressy activewear, Mondo, who creates innovative designs based on squares, triangles and circles; and Andy who does Season Seven's Mila Hermanovski proud with color blocking at its finest. And our winner is...Andy! Heidi tells the designer that she likes his three designs so much that she is going to include them all in her collection! We wonder if he'll receive any of the profits from her sales.
Our bottom three designers are Gretchen, who creates activewear which inexplicably includes a tight, ruched skirt over biker shorts; Michael C, whose pumpkin colors and poor styling lead the judges to question his taste level; and Christopher, whose cheap looking clothing would be appropriate for a slumber party at a retirement home. Heidi bids "auf Wiedersehen" to Christopher, as much of the audience asks, "Wait, who's Christopher?"
And in our As Tears Go By count, Michael C cries when he survives the runway and Mondo tears up when he learns that Christopher is leaving. These two crying jags make for a grand total of forty nine for the season.
And now for this week's Top Ten Moments of Project Runway Greatness...
10). Christopher, Andy and Gretchen use chiffon in their designs, because what says, "I'm dropping off my kids and running errands," better than ball gown fabric?
9). After Ivy says that she believes in Karma, we immediately see a shot of something from the sewing machine flying into her eye. Obviously the editors believe in Karma too.
8). Gretchen, relieved that the distracting Ivy and Valerie are gone, says, "I need to focus on me sometimes too." Yes, if there was one thing this show was lacking, it was Gretchen not being concerned enough about Gretchen.
7). Heidi attempts a Tim Gunn, impression, saying, "Make it work," but fails to insult Anna Wintour and Isaac Mizrahi.
6). Norma Kamali says that Christopher's designs were weak because, "You weren't in love here." Forget love, having seen Heidi's line, we don't even think we could fake it.
5). Ivy says, "You talk shit about people and you sabotage people and that's why you're here." Surprisingly this is directed at Michael C and not her mirror.
4). When Heidi tells Gretchen that she's safe, she adds, "Let me give you some advice. Constructive criticism is not your enemy." Gretchen ponders this and then concludes, "Heidi hates me!"
3). After telling off Michael C, Ivy brags, "I took one for the team." And if by team she means "Bitter psychotic bullies everywhere," then yes she did!
2). Gretchen tells the L'Oreal Paris make up people that she wants nude lips on her models. Unfortunately, they don't suggest she try nude cheeks on herself.
1). Heidi asks Michael C, "Who was it again who said you could not sew? Oh wait, I forgot, she's not here anymore." Ivy, don't mess with the original mean girl!