Working it on the Runway

November 30, 2007

On November 14th, fashionistas everywhere celebrated the return of the acclaimed reality show, Project Runway.

The debut brought back favorites from last year including host Heidi Klum, Chair of the Department of Fashion at Parsons, Tim Gunn, designer Michael Kors, and Elle magazine fashion director Nina Garcia.

The opening episode also introduced a host of new designers hoping to “make it work” all the way to the finals at New York Fashion Week in Bryant Park.

The new group of contestants ranges from lingerie designer, Ricky, to costume designer, Chris.

Another character sure to entertain is Elisa, who shocked castmates, viewers, and judges when she spat on fabric as a way to mark it. Elisa’s first dress included a trail of raggedly cut fabrics so long that her model tripped on it. This dress was so over-the-top that it almost got her eliminated. The eccentric designer redeemed herself with a handsewn dress that she called polymorphic. However, her peculiar habits and alternative design style may not make her a lasting contestant.

Winning the first challenge with a chic grey dress, Rami is a contestant that is bound to make an impression. With a few courses from Brooks College and years of self-education, Rami has developed a buzz in Los Angeles. He has dressed Jessica Alba, Fergie, Tyra Banks, Amy Smart, Erykah Badu, Lucy Liu, Tracee Ellis Ross, Lindsay Lohan, Paris Hilton, Penelope Cruz and Shiva Rose. His work has graced the pages of In Style, Vogue, Lucky and Elle.

The Bitten challenge was a momentous occasion for Project Runway. Several contestants were brought to tears at the sight of fashion icon Sarah Jessica Parker, who is the face of and contributor to the Bitten line.

Despite being young, contestant Jillian has credentials that make her a serious contender. At Parsons, Jillian received the Council of Fashion Designers of America scholarship, and was featured as “Parsons Design Star” on MTV. She also worked as a concept designer for Ralph Lauren’s Rugby line, a staple on Boston’s Newbury Street.

Amidst all this male talent, it was Victorya’s dress and accompanying racerback vest that won the Bitten challenge. From Seoul, South Korea, Victorya graduated from University of Chicago and decided to fulfill a dream of living in the fashion capital of the world, Paris, and working as a journalist. Inspired to kick-start a career in fashion, Victorya returned to the States and did just that. With her clean lines and very impressive designs in both the first episodes, Victorya is serious competition.

In the first episode, Klum and Gunn both expressed that they believe this was the most talented pool of contestants Project Runway has seen, and after the first two episodes, it appears they might be right.

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