“Project Runway” Season 13 kicked off with an elimination and a returning veteran within the first 20 minutes. In the 2014 season, contestants are vying for $100,000 from Red Robin, an opportunity to create a Red Robin uniform, home entertainment system, Mary Kay makeup for their models at fashion shows, sewing and crafting studio from Brother, a new car from Lexus, and a fashion spread in Marie Claire magazine.
After the potential contestants meet the judges, they will find out if they are officially in the competition. Only one designer will not make it into the cast, so the pressure is on. Each designer brings their pieces into the judges for a final evaluation. Some receive feedback that questions their taste and design skills while Heidi asks to buy pieces from others. Ultimately, only Emmanuel is eliminated.
The official cast goes into the workroom at Parson’s and find their workstations. One station has three names on it. Potential veterans Ken Laurence (Season 12), Alexander Pope (Season 12) and Amanda Valentine (Season 11) were vying for the position and fans ultimately decided to bring back Amanda. The designer assured audiences that she was ready to win the competition this time.
“Project Runway” seems to have taken the challenges down a notch this season. Last year, contestants had to collect fabric from parachutes to create a look. This year, contestants had their fabric on their work station. The designers had large black trunks on their tables which contained five fabrics that each measured 5 yards. Some didn’t match while others were just plain ugly, but the designers have 24 hours to “make it work.”
Some designers struggle with the challenge. Angela is constantly worrying and attempting to prove to the judges that she can add drama to her designs. Sandyha dyes her fabric, and she only has sleeves when her model comes in for a fitting. Even at the last minute, she needs help from another designer. Mitchell offers to help her fray the bottom of her skirt.
“I’m a nice guy sometimes,” Mitchell says. He also can be snarky. The designer stood in a corner with Korina talking about which designers they didn’t think stood a chance. Their opinions didn’t necessarily match up with the judges' criticism.
Char designed a yellow crop top and patterned full skirt. Zac Posen called it “elegant and edgy.” Nina Simone said, “You took an ordinary fabric and turned it into an extraordinary top.”
Sandhya’s dress is hand dyed and has the sleeves almost peeling off. The judges understand that it’s not to wear. It’s for a fashion show. The designer explains that she made it for the Indian spring festival of Holi. Nina said, “I have full confidence that you have the creativity to make it in the show. Conratulations.”
Amanda’s pants and shirt receive mixed criticism. Guest judge Julie Bowen (from “Modern Family”) says that she could do without the patterned pants. They’re so well made that it’s distracting. The other three seem to appreciate her design, though it isn’t their favorite.
Mitchell creates a one piece that looks like a top and shorts. Fun isn’t enough according to the judges. The piece doesn’t make a big statement, and some of the judges think it’s too juvenile. The weird flaps on the sleeves make it look unfinished. “I don’t think this would get you into design school,” Zac says after the designers leave the stage.
Jefferson’s outfit involve a tiny patterned crop top and high waisted shorts. The judges hate the look.Weird shorts. Nina compares it to a diaper and bib. Julie says that the fact that he can dress himself is giving her faith that he can be better.
Angela’s asymmetrical top and low rise pants don’t go over well either. Her pants have slits on the hip that don’t please anyone. “Instead of calling them slits, I’m going to call them sluts.” Nina says. Julie calls the look “very Geisha hooker.” While Tim says, “Heidi, you don’t think those pants should come with a gift certificate for a Brazilian [wax]?” Angela took the judges’ advice to add drama a little too far.
Winner: Sandhya. Heidi loved seeing a design that she had never seen before. Korina, who made her hatred of Sandhya’s dress clear, was perplexed by her win. “I’m totally confused. I have no clue what the judges are looking for,” the contestant said.
Eliminated: Jefferson. The look was completely unflattering and didn't show enough promise to warrant giving him a second chance.
"Project Runway" airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. EDT on Lifetime. Which were your favorite designs? Tell us in the comments section below!