August 26, 2013 8:00am PT by Mondo Guerra
Mondo Guerra Critiques 'Project Runway' Designs, Interviews Tim Gunn's 'Saved' Designer (Video)
The designers answered the call of the wild this week, embarking on a glamping trip to capture inspirations from nature for a high-fashion look.
For the resource Natural Spring Water challenge, the designers had one day and a suggested budget of $300 to create their vision. Some designers took to the task like a duck to water while others got lost in the woods.
And in one of the show's most emotional moments, Tim Gunn used his one save for the season to give an eliminated designer a second chance.
Grab some marshmallows cause this episode of Project Runway will have you craving s'more.
This week, I'm excited to offer something new and different. I'll still be dishing on the top and bottom designs and offering my two cents on the judges' decisions, but there's an extra special element to this week's recap.
I caught up with Justin LeBlanc on Skype to talk about his experience on the show and share how it felt to be rescued by Tim Gunn. Check it out!
The Best and the Worst
Girls star Allison Williams brought her keen insights to the judges' panel this week.
Jeremy, Alexandria and Alexander snagged the top spots while Ken, Justin and Karen sank to the bottom.
Jeremy Brandrick, $295
Jeremy's bias-cut love letter gown made the judges swoon. It had beautiful movement with soft, feminine details. My biggest criticism, however, is that I don't see the connection to "glamping" or nature at all. Still, it's a very creative, very romantic dress.
Alexandria von Bromssen, $190
While Tim Gunn and Zac Posen generally pooh-pooh "poopy pants," Alexandria's take on the drop-crotch won them over. I love that she delivered a different interpretation of the challenge, transforming utilitarian camping wear like denim and long-johns into high-end separates.
Alexander Pope, $345
I'm just as impressed as the judges that Alexander was able to achieve this fit in one day--it's sublime! His "trees at midnight" inspiration really translated into this gown. There's dark drama here that I really like but I agree with Zac that the seam across the thigh is a harsh interruption.
Ken Laurence, $195
Nina Garcia couldn't be bothered to say the word "boring" so she spelled it out for Ken. The bust sculpture is unflattering and there isn't anything remarkable or high-end about this look at all. And the styling. Dreadful.
Justin Leblanc, $295
Justin lost control of this design. The risk he took with the super glue lace put him in a sticky situation. The various design elements here are competing for attention instead of working together. Heidi Klum called it "awful." What happened..?
Karen Batts, $200
Karen's pee-pee teepee underwhelmed the judges and me too. I get that she was trying to play with the idea of hard and soft but this dress needed more oomph Not a high-end look, in my opinion. Disappointing because I loved Karen's look last week.
The Judges' Decisions
Alexandria's editorial glamping look earned her the win (much to Ken's annoyance).
Justin was bid auf wiedersehen but was saved by the Gunn when Tim rescued him from elimination.
Mondo's Last Word
I believe Alexandria's win was well-earned. The best fashion provokes a strong response and her design definitely did just that. Love 'em or hate 'em, her drop crotch pants and chambray top stood out from the crowd. Plus, I got a little joy from seeing Alexandria surpass Ken after his antics last week.
I've been vocal about my support for Justin from the beginning when I met him at the Atlanta castings. He is a true artist with a visionary eye who deserves to stay in the competition. I hope he picks himself up from this stumble, brushes himself off and focuses squarely on that NYFW finish line.
Follow the links below to connect with Justin and learn more about his work:
· Twitter: @JLeBlancDesign
· Justin LeBlanc Design: http://www.jleblancdesign.com
Did you agree with the judges' decisions? Who were your picks for top and bottom? Let's compare notes in the comments!
Project Runway All Stars champ Mondo Guerra is back to dish on the designs and drama of Project Runwayseason 12. His exclusive collection of eyewear with national optical boutique SEE hits stores this fall. He has also partnered with Merck for "I Design," a national HIV/AIDS education campaign that underscores the importance of patients tailoring treatment goals with their doctors. To learn more about Mondo, visit mondoguerra.com.