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Project Runway 5 – Episode 5
Posted on August 16th, 2008

Welcome to the Jungle

The Challenge

This week, our crew of designers was given the challenge to design a day to night ensemble for Brooke Sheild’s bohemian career-woman character in the NBC TV series Lipstick Jungle. In the first partner challenge of this season, the winner would have his or her look worn by the actress on the show. The six team leaders were chosen by Brooke based on her design preferences and then each team leader chose a partner from the remaining six designers to work with.

The Design Room

The collaboration between each pair of designers ranged from “seamless partnership” to “match made in hell”. Team leader Terri and Suede got off to a bumpy start when she pushed him to make a blouse using a method beyond his comfort level. Though it was interesting that Terri’s determined dissatisfaction with Suede’s construction of the garment vanished as soon as Tim praised the blouse. Leader Korto and partner Joe bumped heads when Tim critiqued their oversized orange jacket as a “sweet potato on steroids” and Joe agreed. After Korto huffed and puffed for a bit, the two seemed to sort out their problems peacefully.

Kenley and Keith seemed to struggle consistently in their partnership, as Kenley’s opinionated personality and quirky design style kept trying to impose itself on Keith’s design. I was pleasantly surprised at how well Stella worked with her team leader Jerell, but then again, his design included leather so she was well within her comfort zone. Daniel and his partner Kelli weren’t quite so lucky since Kelli’s design didn’t seem to meet Daniel’s self proclaimed high taste level. The two had an awkward time working together and it definitely reflected in their garment.

The Runway

Luckily, Joe and Korto were able to salvage their puffy orange jacket so there were really only two outfits that weren’t great this week. Blayne and Leanne’s funky design, while interesting by itself, was too sporty for a career-woman to and didn’t translate well for the challenge. Kelli and Daniel’s leopard printed corset disaster came off cheap-looking and unflattering for anyone.

Project Runway 5 - Episode 5
(click on images to enlarge)

I would buy Terri and Suede’s draped printed off the shoulder top in a heartbeat and I loved the color palette and mixture of fabrics and patterns in Jerell and Stella’s eclectic and bohemian outfit.

Project Runway 5 - Episode 5

The Elimination

Keith and Kenley’s convertible cocktail dress won the judges over this week. The draped floral printed top was balanced by solid high waist skirt which had the subtle texture of hundreds of layered of delicate chiffon petals and solid matching belt. I’m glad Keith was able to hang onto the vision for his design despite Kenley’s superiority complex. The final look was sophisticated, fulfilled the challenge, and was fashion forward- a job well done.

I have to say that I disagree with the decision to auf Kelli. While her design was certainly the worst on the runway, I haven’t seen enough of her designs to determine what kind of designer she would be. From what she’s shown so far, her designs have an interesting point of view and I would have liked to see more from her. Daniel on the other hand keeps claiming to have a high taste level however, his work hasn’t yet reflected this. Maybe he would have been a better choice this time around, but with these partner challenges, the leader usually takes the wrap for designs gone wrong.

Project Runway 5 - Episode 5

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