Seat belts, carburetors and couture? Season five has finally picked up its momentum, and this week's episode of Project Runway did not disappoint. To start off, the designers were told they were going on a field trip. After speculation of whom or what they would be designing for (Mariah Carey? A celebrity rooftop party?), they found themselves not at Mood Fabrics, but atop a parking garage. The challenge was to design an outfit using...car parts!
To start off the challenge, the designers had four minutes to rush over to a set of Saturn hybrids that were filled with car parts and accessories and grab as much material as they could. With no time to prepare beforehand, the designers had to grab what they could and hope for the best later. After returning to Parsons, out came the hammers and gloves, but this time, the hammering and breaking was not done solely by Stella. Cuts and scrapes from the car parts ensued, causing Suede to go into his routine third-person diatribe. Keith became increasingly irritable and ended up snapping at his model for *gasp* sitting down to get her hair done at the TRESemme salon, which caused a rip in the skirt. Kenley's stress level went from high to maniacal when she learned that her model had to suddenly drop out of the competition, which topped off when she was already severely behind and had to re-work her design to fit the new model. Terri began to make fun of Korto's "scarecrow" but it turned out the joke was on her when Korto's design ended up amongst the top, and Terri got just a qualifying score to move on to the next challenge. A surprise replacement for Nina Garcia's judging spot was Season 3 finalist Laura Bennett, and the celebrity guest judge for the week was stylist to the stars Rachel Zoe - who, ironically, has a show premiering shortly on Bravo. With that line-up, the panel was no doubt relentless on the designers when it came to runway time. Blayne made a valiant effort to produce a garment with a different aesthetic. Unfortunately, the silhouette was misshaped and the final product fell flat. With fabrics like rubber and leather, one would think this would be "Stella the Leatha's" time to shine. Instead she took a chance at making something "pretty" with a skirt made of seatbelts and a top with a combination of fabrics that ended up missing the mark completely. Jerrell really flexed his innovative muscles with a futuristic corset-like top and leather mini, but the big wow factor of the night was Leanne with her awesome cocktail dress with a twist of avant-garde that you wouldn't even know was made from car floorboards. Kenley, Joe, Suede and Terri were safe for this round, and after a close run for number one between Korto, Leanne and Jerrell, Leanne prevailed as the top designer for the challenge. Blayne made it safe but it seems his days are numbered. Stella didn't take a top spot as anticipated at the beginning of the challenge, but ended up in the bottom two and held on by a thread. And Keith, after questioning himself and his design technique, ultimately failed and he was sent home.
Season five is moving along steadily, and we are finally getting a closer glimpse of who has the potential to make it to the final challenge. The safety gloves from handling car parts are off, and the race gets tighter as we see who will end up being in, and who will be out.