In the video recap above, Gold Derby editors Daniel Montgomery and Susan Wloszczyna were ready to hiss at the idea of a “Project Runway” challenge inspired by the big-screen adaptation of the Broadway musical “Cats” that will pounce onto theater screens December 20. Judging from the trailers starring the likes of Judi Dench, Ian McKellen, Idris Alba and Taylor Swift as feline creatures both naked and clothed as the kitties scamper about the streets of London while wailing Andrew Lloyd Webber tunes, this week’s episode could have gone down a dangerous alley of bad ideas.
But it turned out this week’s fashion mission was more about trendy animal prints with an hip urban edge rather than a parade of fur-bearing apparel. As Daniel notes, “In the end, Veronica Sheaffer was the designer who went home for her look and it’s always the kiss of death when anyone makes a design that can be described as an “exotic diaper,” which is how judge Brandon Maxwell put it in his crtitique.
Susan’s reaction to what Veronica concocted? “I’m all for wearing underwear but under my clothes. She could have done something more, like capri pants. … the fabric was fine, I guess it was animal, I don’t even know. I did like the winning outfit,” she says, which was made by Marquise Foster and is meant to be worn by either sex. But Susan liked the second place look better that was made by, as Daniel has dubbed him, “Delvin ‘Labcoat’ McCray,” who created a bird-inspired coat dress with a green feather pattern that stood out from the crowd.
But Daniel has issues with Delvin, as talented as he is. “I keep getting annoyed every week. He seems so cocky and he’s got the coat and he’s like, ‘I’m done before everyone else is and I’m not going to help out.’ It’s like, oh, stop being that guy.” But his looks definitely stand out on the runway. Susan suggests, that unlike others who fret themselves into a tizzy (ie. Geoffrey Mac who was on the bottom after being on the top last week and Dayoung Kim, who fell ill after worrying herself to death last week), Delvin at least can focus, make a fab outfit and get the job done.
They go on to talk about how Delvin, unlike the other designers, refused to pitch in and help Dayoung make her outfit after losing a day of work after staying overnight in the hospital after suffering from exhaustion. Susan makes note that Nancy Vlope-Beringer, who at age 64 is the oldest “Project Runway” contestant ever, did act kind of motherly with Dayoung by rushing into her penthouse bedroom and checking on her well-being. Just as long she doesn’t act that way in the workroom with her younger competition.
Meanwhile, Daniel prefers Nancy’s maternal instincts over Sergio Gudarrama‘s air of superiority over the other designers. When mentor Christian Siriano called him out for a more mature rather than youthful look, Sergio’s resonse was, “Young people can’t afford expensive things so why design for them?” He might have just as well said, “Let them wear cake!”
As for next week, be prepared for the bane of many a “Project Runway” designer — the dreaded unconventional materials challenge.
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