Barbara Nitke/Lifetime
Dalene Rovenstine
November 09, 2017 AT 11:02 PM EST

If Project Runway were March Madness, the episode before the finale would be the play-in round. It’s nice to give those teams hope, but we all know the outcome: The teams who have been at the top will stay at the top. The teams who are already on the bottom will be out. And that’s mostly what happened in tonight’s episode.

The remaining five designers are asked to make 10-look collections with $10,000. They’ll all head home, where Tim will do home visits, and then they’ll return to New York to show at NYFW…or at least three of them will. Because that’s as many spots as Heidi will guarantee. To the home visits we go!

Tim stops in Salt Lake City to visit Ayana. He meets her mom, who is also named Ayana, and friend, Jax. She tells Tim the bad news: Her apartment was flooded so she’s further behind on her collection than she’d like. But Tim likes what he sees and tells her to work hard and work smart to get caught up.

Then Tim goes to see Kenya in Atlanta. Her collection is a “summertime dream,” and dream is an apt word because Tim says her color palette is a snoozefest. But who cares about the collection when you’ve got a family like Kenya’s? Tim meets her grandma Molly, her mom Renaye, and a few other family members — and they are a riot. I want them to get their own spin-off reality show. (Lifetime, make this happen.)

Next up is Kentaro in L.A. He chats with his family via FaceTime, but when Tim arrives, it’s straight down to business. Tim is confused by the message of the collection — he says it’s a hodgepodge of ideas — and even more confused by the message of the piano piece Kentaro composed for the collection: “I found a dead cat on the street, so after I buried the cat, I put my ear into the ground and this is the kind of sound I heard.”

I dare you to find me a better, weirder quote from the history of this show. Kentaro is just a gem. I’m so thankful for the light he’s brought to this season and honestly, season 16 as a whole has been a delight. But I digress…

Tim then goes to San Juan to meet up with Margarita, who is for some reason already crying. She shows Tim the print she created, which she worries is too kitschy, but Tim is assures her he’s crazy about it. He’s not so crazy about the crochet and golden rings she’s incorporating, though. He tells her to take her girl off the beach and put her on the NYC streets — which is a catchy phrase, but to certain designers could be very bad advice.

Anyway, then Tim goes back to California (there’s no way his actual travel schedule was this all over the place) to see Brandon. He meets Brandon’s girlfriend, Dina, who is adorable just like he is. She says he’s using too much skin, which worries Tim, but when Tim sees the collection, he says his worries are out the door. He’s crazy about it all and thinks Brandon is on a great course. (Recap continues on the next page with the results for who’s going to NYFW)

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