(Last week's) Project Runway recap
Seeing as how Banana Republic is a huge sponsor of Project Runway, I was expecting the eponymous retailer to show up sooner or later, especially since it did last season. Lo and behold, this week's challenge was to design a day-to-evening outfit for Banana, and the winner of the challenge would have their actual design mass-produced and sold in select stores (and online). Twist #1 was that the designers had to work in pairs; Daniel/Andrae, Marla/Dirty Diana, and Kara/Zuleema all paired off rather quickly while Gay Uncle Nick veered toward Chloe until Emmett zipped in there, so poor Nick was stuck again with Santino, a.k.a. the egomaniac. Things were not looking so good for Kara and Zuleema, whose frumpy garment rendered Tim Gunn speechless (Zuleema ended up saving the day while making poor Kara cry); meanwhile, Gay Uncle Nick congratulated himself for checking Santino's excessive use of trim but fretted over the fact that Santino was still running the show. Alas, before the runway show, the designers were taken to an actual Banana store, where they were each assigned a window, which they had to decorate in order to show how their garment goes from day to night. The very mass-markety aspect of this was that the public--i.e. Banana Republic customers--got to vote on the winner of the challenge. I thought Emmett and Chloe had the best window (as well as the best outfit) , but as we found out after the runway show, Daniel and Andrae's dress-and-jacket combo was the winner--and, to be fair, it was the most Banana Republicy of the bunch. (I checked on the website and it's not available yet, but I will let you know as soon as it is.) Now, as for who was out, it came down to Marla and Dirty Diana's frumpy suit (why didn't the judges point out how wrinkled it was?) and Gay Uncle Nick and Santino's bizarre, so not Banana Republic kimono suit. And while the latter was pretty bad (c'mon, Nick, you can do better!), the former was so incredibly blah, even Banana Republic shoppers hated it (oops, did I just say that?). Yet another twist was that both losing designers had to leave, so it was auf wiedersehen to both Marla and Dirty Diana. While we all knew Marla's days were numbered, I'm kind of sad about Dirty Diana--her voice may drive Santino nuts (good!), but I was entertained by her quirky-cool designs.

Next week, the designers create an ice-skating costume (hmm, Winter Olympics tie-in with Bravo's parent network, NBC?).

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