You know what I wish I had? A hotline that could connect me to Tim Gunn, for self-confidence emergencies.
I need it too, like, every Wednesday afternoon, when I realize I haven’t accomplished enough of what I had hoped that week to feel good about myself. That’s when I am most susceptible to feeling defeated.
Or, as my semi-drunk husband said last night while watching Episode 2 of Project Runway Season 13, I could use a positivity shooter called the “Tim Gunn” (Patent pending).
Or maybe just a video loop of Tim Gunn sincerely saying kind, supportive things, like he did with Sandhya last night when she sought him out after being bullied by her teammates in the unconventional materials challenge. (I believe this was the first time Project Runway contestants had to use unconventional materials while also in a team — a double whammy of difficulty to be sure).
"I believe in your work 1000 per cent," he said to Sandhya. "You could win this entire season." It was what she needed in that moment, and I said to my husband: "If Tim Gunn talked to me like that, I would feel like I could do anything."
So I really thought she would shake off the icky experience of being bossed by Hernan and create something super cool. But boy, is it ever hard to stand up to a man who reckons he's the boss. That brings us to our first lesson:
Lesson No. 1: Never let a man who calls you “baby” tell you what to do
Half-way into the challenge Hernan (who has shown at NYC Fashion Week twice already SO WHY DOES HE NEED PROJECT RUNWAY?) decided their theme was "The gold era of Hollywood — we have film. We have gold. We have everything!"
My husband, who was working his way through a growler of IPA I brought home to turn a bad week around, voiced some doubt: “I don’t know if that’s a concept — that’s just a list of things.”
Anyway, Sandhya had immunity this week so she just fell in line behind Hernan, who told her and Carrie they had to use his film treatment. I guess his reasoning was if they used the same materials, they would have cohesion.
They may not have had cohesion, but the judges were unanimous in hating that their team's three dresses looked so similar. I thought the brownish red sheen of the film strips looked like cockroach casings (shiver). Sandhya's indeed was the worst of all — not surprising considering how she must have felt in those few hours she had to create this look.
Nina said they looked like three girls out of a music video and Heidi asked: “At no point did anyone think, ‘dude they all look the same!'?" (I love it when Heidi talks American!).
While the judges inspected the garments more closely, Tim dished on the team's power dynamic: “He was so intractable, that they just decided if you can’t beat him join him,” to which Heidi replied, “We can always get rid of both of them!” (At this point, my husband and I started chanting, "DO IT! DO IT! DO IT!")
Meanwhile, backstage after their rough ride on the runway, Sandhya's teammates trashed her work yet again. Tapping into her super special Tim Gunn powers, Sandhya turned the other cheek — which I think will go a long way toward earning her the Tim Gunn Save (TM). I'm calling this one.
So the lesson here? Be gracious. And nobody puts baby in the corner.
Lesson 2: More is more
The winning team used a whole lot of materials: bold lettering held together with zip ties, several kinds of tape, film, cording, straws...I'm missing at least six things. And though each look incorporated materials used in another, all of them were totally unique:
Also, it just shows that if you throw enough stuff up on the wall, some of it will stick.
Speaking of throwing stuff up on the wall:
Angela dodged a bullet with her crumpled up snowflake dress thanks to this cool Cruella Deville-inspired number made entirely from straws:
My personal favorite was Samantha's garment made from DVDs and film strips:
What do you think? What was your favorite look? Did you learn anything this week from Project Runway?