September 15, 2006

in fashion, one day you're out, and the next day you're in

this week's episode of project runway was no fun, so let's get done with it quickly. the producers thought it would be a nice "twist" to bring vincent and angela back into the competition (to justify it, heidi said that since they had both won a challenge at some point, they deserved another shot). i cringed at watching how distressed the remaining designers were by this turn of events. kayne even evoked the picture of unkillable cockroaches. low point # 1 in this episode.

the challenge was to design a cocktail* dress in black and white, using up all the fabric that was purchased at moods. the results were quite predictable. no, let me restate this: nobody could have predicted that angela's cocktail party would take place at the annual vampire** convention in transylvania. at least that's what the ruffled collar of the black vinyl shrug that she designed seemed to indicate. easily low point #2.

laura won deservedly with an off-white babydoll dress trimmed with black lace. michael came in second. his design was a white matte jersey dress with an intricate black cummerbund***-type belt. both dresses were praised as chic by the judges (can we see more of guest judge zac posen in future episodes, please?). vincent declared in the plural that "we worked with cottons", to which nina garcia replied in the singular "i don't like it", and that's all that needs to be said about the horrendous out-of-proportion creation. jeff's polka-dot design with leggings was declared cheap, not chic, but he managed to survive. kayne, however, who had been "banking on jesus", was out. his dress was very promising (black and minimal) in the front and very disappointing (low-cut and laced-up) in the back, somehow reminiscent of a picture taken through a basketball hoop. zac posen called it a "jekyll and hyde"**** design, and nobody stepped forward to save kayne.

low point #3 came when michael kors criticized uli's design, unnecessarily making fun of her german accent, using fricatives instead of interdentals (a fancy way of saying that he pronounced "weather" as "vezzer"). this, mr. kors, was cheap, not chic. by the way, may i ask how many languages you speak?

so, all in all an unsatisfactory, cranky episode. but hey, it's fashion week, so let's look forward to friday and to two weeks of delirious speculation.

* in case you are wondering (as i was): the origin of "cocktail" meaning "drink, consisting of spirit mixed with a small quantity of bitters" is unclear. it has been around since the early 19th century. another, more literal use, of the word also dates from this period: a "cock-tailed horse" was a horse whose tail had been shortened . this was usually done to stage-coach horses and horses used for hunting, both of them not necessarily thorough-breds (OED). that meaning was extended to "Any horse of racing stamp and qualities, but decidedly not thorough-bred, from a known stain in his parentage" and from there to "a person assuming the position of a gentleman, but deficient in thorough gentlemanly breeding". the verb "to cocktail" ("To drink cocktails; to attend a cocktail party") is documented as early as 1856.

** the word "vampire" is of slavonic origin, occuring in the same form in russian and polish (OED). transylvania is a region in east europe, presumably the home of dracula, king of the vampires, as invented by bram stroker in his novel of the same name (1897).

***"cummerbund" goes back to the persian word kamar-band, which means loin-band (OED). it was first used in the 17th century.

****he referred to the name of the hero of a story by r. l. stevenson (1886). in this story, the hero appears benevolent under the name of dr. jekyll and evil under the name of mr. hyde.


yawningdog said...

Dogs and high fashion...I didn't think I would find that combo.

So far we have you, me and the Gentleman's Canine Society...any other dog blogs out there from BPR?

riddiculus said...

hi! thanks for making me aware of your blog! project runway and dogs -- that's just a natural combination, wouldn't you say so? just think of the dog challenge, truly a highlight of the season.