Racked is no longer publishing. Thank you to everyone who read our work over the years. The archives will remain available here; for new stories, head over to Vox.com, where our staff is covering consumer culture for The Goods by Vox. You can also see what we’re up to by signing up here.
The Challenge: This one was as we predicted. Contestants had to sketch a day-to-night look for guest judge Brooke Shields' character Wendy Healy to wear on Lipstick Jungle, in which she plays a high-powered studio exec, mother of two who's married to a musician—i.e. fabulous bohemian lifestyle fantasy. Shields then picked six of the designers looks (Keith, Kato, Jerell, Kelli, Terri and Blayne) who then had to pair up with the designers whose looks weren't chosen and work together to create the look. Design teams were as follows: Keith/Kenley; Kato/Joe; Jerell/Stella; Kelli/Daniel; Terri/Suede; Blayne/Leanne. Each duo got $150 to buy fabric and materials. There was no immunity for this challenge, but the winning design will be worn by Shields on the upcoming season of Lipstick Jungle.
The Winner: Keith wisely chose Kenley, who is clearly talented. Despite or because of her strong personality, they worked well together, resulting in a delicately tiered floral and chocolate-hued frock. From Nina: "It's almost cocktail and I don't know if it's day enough, but it's absolutely beautiful." From Brooke: "I don't doubt that Wendy could wear this." From Michael: "...between the two of you, I think you got something really great."
In second place was Jerell, who worked with Stella, on his silk dress in a neutral palette with an obi-like belt, and then a skinny zebra-print belt over that. We didn't know if Stella would be able to have some distance from her own leather-and-stud style, but she showed some range here. Heidi "loved it"; Brooke was a little concerned there was a lot going on with the belts, but "loved the mixture and texture"; Michael said the silhouette was "flirty, feminine and sexy without being cheap."
The Loser: Kelli, who won the first challenge, and worked with Daniel on this challenge, is out. Her corseted, leopard print dress and jacket was a total disaster. Brooke came right out of the box hating it: "The shape is unfortunate. It looks so much cheaper than I thought it would look." And from Kors: "I mean, hello, slutty, slutty, slutty!" Eeesh. Daniel looked like he was going to throw up. It didn't get better from Nina: "I am concerned with the question of taste because you can't get taste if you don't have it." Nothing shocking here. It was clear early on in the episode that the ensemble was going to take its spot next to the rest of the cast-offs.
Nearly booted was Blayne, who worked with Leanne, and created a juniors-looking shorts and top, with a button-down over it. Brooke said it was "too casual and not sophisticated enough" for her character; Heidi said it looked "like a woman that didn't have a mirror"; Michael deemed it "uninteresting"; while Nina reprimanded Leanne for allowing the look to come down the runway as it was.
· Reality of Fashion: Project Runway, Season 5, Episode 4 [Racked]
· Reality of Fashion: Project Runway, Season 5, Episode 3 [Racked]
· Reality of Fashion: Project Runway, Season 5, Episode 2 [Racked]
· Reality of Fashion: Project Runway, Season 5, Episode 1 [Racked]