Project Runway
Credit: Chloe Dao: Barbara Nitke

Wasn’t it shocking to see Heidi de-pregnated? Couldn’t they have put a basketball under her dress for continuity? As expected, Tim visited each of the three finalists in his new! Saturn! Sky Roadster!, the sexy shots of which verged on American Idol-like shilling. (Buy! Me! Now!) Crass commercialism aside, let’s get to the real goods:

SANTINO I have to admit: My affection for the guy is growing. His newsboy-cap look certainly works, but oh, how i miss his pirate-like threads of yore. A peek at his 1940s-inspired collection was promising, and his Olympics-style backstory footage — complete with family photos — gave Tim Gunn the opportunity to show us his best Barbara Walters impression. As a result, Santino seemed (dare I say) sympathetic, with a refreshing earnestness and willingness to contextualize his admitted arrogance. Was he on the verge of tears while talking to Tim on the beach?

CHLOE Santino’s sympathy play was affecting, but can it really compare to a childhood spent in a refugee camp in Laos? I mean, I don’t advocate exploiting such stories, but how have we never heard this before? Nevertheless, let’s be honest: Chloe (pictured) looks like she’s in trouble. No sketches, few ideas — her lack of progress is troubling. And that poofy satin jacket? It’s actually the inspiration for this week’s Ouchie of the Week, courtesy of Santino: “Chloe’s collection looked like a couch was coming at you,” he snarked.

DANIEL Our little Daniel has gotten a tad arrogant, no? He brandished a bit of swagger in explaining the Japanese/military aesthetic of his collection to Tim, referring to his designs as “solid gold.” That handbag with the huge, circular wooden handles kind of looked like a prop from Sesame Street to me. (Today’s show is brought to you by the number 8!) It’s the swagger of a guy who seems certain he’ll win. “[The bag] looks a little crafty, a little woodshop,” said Tim, whose reticence about Daniel’s collection got him all riled up. “Why isn’t he piddling in his panties in overexcitement?” Daniel asked.

THE TWIST Oh, boy! I loved the surprise — that each of the three has to make a final piece for their respective lines, with the help of their former rivals. I can’t wait for the return of Dirty Diana and Lobster Boy Andrae next week! Um, did Santino say he’s putting “pasties and a friggin’ Maxipad” on this last model? Yikes!

addCredit(“Chloe Dao: Barbara Nitke”)

Episode Recaps

Project Runway

Karlie Kloss and Christian Siriano guide undiscovered designers through the harrowing rites of fashion.

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