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Reality of Fashion: Project Runway, Season 5, Episode 4

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The Challenge: The episode opens with the same tired shot of Elle's July Mary Kate Olsen cover. We get it: it's "July" and Nina Garcia works for Elle (though now in a "roving" capacity). But anyway: The kids head out on a field trip with Tim Gunn that Jerell hopes, "has nothing to do with wrestlers." Nope, no lucha libre, but something just as scary is in store for this bunch of athletically-challenged fashion designers: at The Armory, olympian Apollo Ohno (this week's guest judge) explains that the designers will create hypothetical outfits for American female athletes marching in the 2008 Olympic Games' Opening Ceremony (tomorrow, if you're dead to the world). Incidentally, Ralph Lauren actually designed this year's garments. Wonder if he would have bypassed Michael Kors' discerning eye?

They head to Mood with $150 each. Meanwhile, the designers have varied reactions: Stella says, "I'm a true cave girl. I like leatha'." What else is new? Suede says, "Suede likes this" and creeps us all out, per usual. Leanne admits to having been a cheerleader and Joe confides (without shame) that he used to play football. Then he turned to sewing.

The Winner: Though runner-ups Joe and Terri get due props (secretly Joe's outfit was pretty cheese), Korto comes out on top with her predominantly white outfit. Anyone with a heart is happy because she's just shared that her family had to flee Liberia and that, "America is a place for second chances. That's what America means to me." And, even though she hardly cracks a smile on the runway, we all like to see the American dream come to fruition. For a moment at least.

The Loser: The judges laugh hysterically at Jerell's outfit, which renders Nina Garcia "speechless" and is dubbed "mashugana" by Michael Kors (who it turns out had a Bar Mitzvah). And, though Daniel is a close second with his blue cocktail dress (which the judges insist is purple, even though he's clearly wearing a purple t-shirt that's a different color, and which prompts Michael Kors to quip, "If drinking is her sport, it's a good dress"), it's Jennifer's "bland" outfit that gets her sent home. Though it truly has no relationship at all to the Olympics, the striped gold and white skirt is actually pretty cute and maybe a "gold medal" theme could have been argued, if the outfit was better conceived.

Still, we're all left to ponder the insanity, when she gives her goodbye VO and refers to her style once again as, "surreal." Somebody needs an art history lesson STAT. "I didn't think my style was stuck in the past," she complains. Well, since she basically created a vintage-style sweater, maybe her perspective is what's surreal.
· 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]