Friday, October 29, 2010

Latest jerk crowned in 'Runway' family

I was thinking back to previous seasons of "Project Runway." I remember being disappointed when Uli lost to Jeffrey Sebelia in season 3. Or in season 6, when the mean Irina won over the super nice Carol Hannah. In those cases, however, I didn't question the winner's talent. They might have been jerks (a friend pointed out that 5 out of the 7 winners in past seasons have been mean or snobby to other contestants), but they had talent to back it up.

Last night I was disappointed for two reasons: One, Gretchen is a jerk (making it 6 jerks out of 8 winning designers). And two, her clothes are awful. When I see her Native American-inspired fabrics and jewelry, I get a flash to the wallpaper in my living room when I was a kid. My mom went through a Native American phase, and all the fabrics, wall art and accessories reflected the theme.

Where's the taste level? Why would they have gone for the showman/woman in every other season -- forgoing wearability for art -- and suddenly switch to matronly clothes attractive to shoppers at the Dress Barn? Is it a retro thing? Is '70s bargain fashion making a comeback? Is this a new fad I don't know about? Commune Chic?

Mondo at least had the arty element. I can't picture anyone wearing that much print, at least not in southern Minnesota, but he put on a visually interesting show. It had a lot of drama, it was constructed well, and his patterns -- despite being quite loud -- worked well together. Of the three, he was the clear winner.

Andy was the throwaway. There's always one designer you know has no chance. That was Andy. Grey and green jumpers just kept bouncing down the runway. Ho-hum.

I am disappointed, but I was thinking that there wasn't a designer in the bunch I was really passionate about. Nobody stood out to me. So, I guess if they're going to pick Gretchen, this is a good season to do it in -- when there's no one else who's so very much better that it illicits complete outrage. I'm not outraged. I'm just grossed out by her icky clothes, and I'm hoping I don't start seeing brown Navajo-inspired blouses everywhere.

"Runway," I'm quite sad I waited 13 weeks for THIS. You stink.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Skinny Marie Claire writer bullies 'fatties'

In my last post I suggested I should be crowned Queen of the Insenitive for my comments on a blubbering Michael C. on "Runway." Well, folks, Maura Kelly of Marie Claire has stolen my crown.

In an epically rude, mean-spirited and shallow blog post, she posed the question, "Think people feel uncomfortable when they see overweight people making out on television?"

If asking wasn't bad enough. She went on to answer her question.

“I think I'd be grossed out if I had to watch two characters with rolls and rolls of fat kissing each other ... because I'd be grossed out if I had to watch them doing anything,” she writes. “To be brutally honest, even in real life, I find it aesthetically displeasing to watch a very, very fat person simply walk across a room.”

Backlash to Marie Claire was brutal. And warranted.

Read all about it here.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Blubbering does not a respected designer make

OK ... prepare to crown me Queen of the Insensitive ... that meltdown by Michael C. was just beyond. As much as I did not understand -- AT ALL -- the judges kind comments about Gretchen's hippie rags, there's a point when there's a camera in your face and you've just got to man up. America is watching, and snotting and blubbering all over your fellow designers is not going to make celebrities watching say, "I want to wear HIS clothes!" It's going to make them say, "Jeez, what a child."

Having said that, when did "pretty" go out the window? Michael C.'s clothes are pretty. They're so pretty. And I could practically hear a collective sigh in my neighborhood of all the women who saw his 11th garment and thought, "I would love to look that beautiful." Yet, to the judges, it's not enough. Heaven forbid he uses the same color pallet to design his collection. That somehow makes him simpleminded, despite the fact that his models all looked stunning.

Then there's Gretchen, who's models looked like they live in a commune. I believe it was Nina who said all they needed was a pair of Birkenstocks. Yet, she gets through. She ALWAYS goes through. Her colors are muted and earthy. Her silhouettes are matronly and sackish. Somebody please explain to me how that is cutting-edge fashion. SOMEBODY!

Mondo ... don't really need to discuss. We all knew he'd go through. He's worthy. I'm looking forward to his show.

Andy was another I thought might get kicked off tonight. His silver bikini made absolutely no sense to me. Past seasons have show they should have sent down the following: an evening, a day cocktail, separates with pants. Mondo did this. Michael C. did this (his mistake, apparently, was making them all brown). But neither Gretchen nor Andy did this. I thought Andy would be the one to get auf'd for this, although I secretly hoped it would be Gretchen. Apparently, the judges want to see more metallic jumpers from Andy.

Sigh. Sigh, I say! If only these judges would call me before they make such crazy decisions. It would save us all a little frustration.

; )

Finales next week!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Mankato Mag wants your holiday recipes

Hi all! We want to publish reader-submitted holiday recipes in the December issue of Mankato Magazine. E-mail me the recipes for dishes or desserts that your family loves during the winter holidays. Also, write a brief explanation of why the recipe is important to your family. Send e-mails to or mail to: Amanda Dyslin, 418 S. Second St., Mankato, MN 56001.


Friday, October 8, 2010

Gretchen is a big whiner

I just can't help myself. I'm about to delight in someone else's misfortune. ...Gretchen, na-na-na-na-naaaa-naaaaaaaaa!

She's just such an awful person, and I was smiling quite widely as Heidi was sticking it to her. The best part was when she threw her fabric across the room. Dummy.

Let's back up. Last night's challenge was to design three looks that would fit into Heidi's personal line of active wear. Three of the designers rose to the challenge, and for once, they were the designers in the top three: Mondo, April and Andy.

April's were my favorite, but only aesthetically speaking. They were beautiful black and gray clothes, but too fancy for the challenge. You can't wear shear when you're out getting groceries. And I don't know a single woman who would be able to wear those cheek-high shorts.

Andy won, which was cool. His pieces were very much sportswear, and he made this cool design, all swirly like, with the fabric. (see photo) Mondo was good, as always. He managed to make good clothes without a bold pattern. Who knew?

The bottom three also should have been on the bottom. Not Michael C.'s night. He made pumpkin orange pants that looked like folds of skin hanging off the girl's hips.
And Christopher, who went home, looked like he picked random pieces of clothing out of a bargain bin at Wal-Mart. Horrendous. He definitely deserved to go home.

But Gretchen's performance was the highlight of Thursday night, simply because she was such a big baby, and somehow quite arrogant at the same time. She had the audacity to say she designed pieces that were "missing" in Heidi's collection. If she meant the garbage designs that were thrown out because they were awful, then yes, Gretchen, well done.

Her three pieces looked like 1980s jumpsuits. I don't remember if it was Nina who said that, but whoever did, they were right on. Maybe she can sell her pieces to Olivia Newton John.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Yay for Mondo the Brave

Let's just forget about the fashion for a moment. Thursday night's "Runway" was a good one simply for the "awwww" factor and the emotional kick to the gut.

I was so proud of Mondo for deciding, that after 10 years of secrecy, he wasn't going to hide who he was anymore and come out as HIV positive. In this day and age, "the cocktail" has resulted in many HIV positive people living long, healthy lives. HIV is no longer a death sentence as it once was thought of. Still, he comes from a conservative Catholic family and has a mother who told him to never tell anyone else that he's gay. When you feel you're an outcast in society, I can only imagine how much more important your family must become to you and how much more their acceptance becomes important. I completely understand why he felt he needed to keep the secret from them.

That's why I felt it was so brave and such a wonderful step forward for him to come out. Good for you, Mondo! And good for you, also, for winning your third challenge in a row. I'm not sure if it's a "Runway" first, but it was certainly well deserved.

Back to business: I'll make my summary quick today. Everyone except for Mondo sucked. I hated everyone's design Thursday night. I blame the mothers. The show was so sweet and invited everyone's mother (and Christopher's partner and Michael C.'s son) to come surprise them in the workroom. They got the rest of the first work day off to hang with their fams. I think they all got distracted by emotion to turn out good clothes. Everyone except for Mondo, whose outfit was pretty awesome.