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Project Runway recap: Tie The Knot

Modern Family’s Jesse Tyler Ferguson brings his foundation’s neckwear collection to Project Runway, with a challenge all about bow ties

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Project Runway

Project Runway

TV Show
Heidi Klum, Tim Gunn, Nina Garcia, Zac Posen
Current Status:
In Season

Screaming matches, a disappearance, endless tears, a proposal — is this Project Runway or a Lifetime movie? Take out the mannequins and Heidi Klum and you can almost mistake our beloved fashion reality program for a hokey TV drama. Episode 4 cuts right to the chase, opening on an epic verbal battle between Helen, Ken, and Sandro.

“You have no respect, that’s the problem.”

“Really, I don’t have respect?”

“You have to put yourself in my shoes.”

“Why do I have to put myself in your shoes?!”

“Because I was barely safe! Don’t you get that? You never—”

“Never yell at me!”

“Calm the f—- down!”

“You calm the f—- down!” *Middle finger*

Sandro has officially passed the point of no return. Storming down the back stairway of Parsons, shoving past mannequins and production crew members along the way, our irrationally tempered Russian exits the building.

36 hours earlier…

Back at the Refinery Hotel, the male and female designers chit chat about Timothy’s departure. Bradon, Alexander, and Sandro agree that the young Milwaukee designer had hit a breaking point, but Justin is sad to see him go. Tired of being safe, but likely pleased to be returning to an individual challenge, Sandro declares, “This challenge I would like to ask to ask what people want from me.” Hoping for some direction from the judges, he might cool off that temper a bit and heal the hostility towards Zac Posen.

It’s a difficult morning for Jeremy, who received a phone call the previous evening that his husband’s maternal grandmother passed away. He is unable to attend the funeral due to his Runway obligation. Despite his personal matters, Jeremy and his roommates shuffle out of the hotel to brave challenge number four.

The workroom is decorated with dozens and dozens of patterned bow ties as the gang enters to meet Tim, who is sporting one with his always-sharp suit.

“I vomited bow ties upon you,” says…JESSE TYLER FERGUSON! The Modern Family star is as chipper and quirky as we Mitchell Pritchett fans would have hoped. And it’s a very special cause that this week’s guest judge brings to the runway: In the midst of planning their own wedding during the time the episode was filmed, Ferguson and his husband Justin Mikita are partnering their Tie The Knot neckwear with Project Runway through a bow tie-based challenge. The organization features seasonal collections of bow ties for purchase, and all proceeds go to various groups that fight for marriage equality.

Breathe, designers! This is not a menswear challenge. Instead, the bow tie is a “point of departure for whatever it is that you create,” clarifies Tim. Designers can create a look of their choice that incorporates at least one bow tie in an unconventional way. Bradon is thrilled to participate in a challenge supporting the cause, sharing that he would love to marry his partner of 18 years Josh, and have it nationally recognized.

With a suggested budget of $200 and one day to complete their looks, designers begin to sketch and prep for their Mood trip. Miranda plans to use the bow tie on a blouse, in a way that doesn’t sound very unconventional at all. Dom explains a look that is a bit more creative, with plans for a drapey oversize jacket and a dress with an origami-inspired neckline.

When the designers hit Mood more plans begin to take shape. Kate is looking for a silk that is neither pretty nor shiny, while Jeremy opens up about the passing of his grandmother. She will be the inspiration for this challenge, and he hopes that his garment honors her style aesthetic. It’s Sue that plays a worrisome move: With a $404 receipt at the register, she might be the first contestant to spice up this GoBank promotional gimmick compelling money budgeting element in a future episode.

Back in the workroom, Alexander tells everyone how Bradon managed to predict the challenge the night before. Although Bradon’s guess was more along the lines of wedding dresses for gay couples, Sandro is impressed that he nailed the gay marriage peg. “He’s a bruja!” Sandro jokes.

NEXT: It’s too much, it’s too much, it’s too much