Project Runway Australia – Episode 8

“Yes! Enough about Helen! She’s gone home!” Leigh says at the start of the episode when the designers inevitably discuss the designer who was sent packing at the end of the last challenge.

He then tries to smother a wicked little grin which totally cracks me up.

I love how the other designers try to convince themselves that it’s okay that Helen went home because she was really missing her daughter, anyway.

Um, yeah.

I kind of doubt it — and I don’t get it when people go on reality shows and then succumb to homesickness…it makes no sense. It’s like, when people go on Survivor and moan about how much they miss their family after being stuck on an island for 30 days…I mean, Christ, it’s not like they’re doing life in prison, you know? They’ll see them again. Jesus!

When they meet up with Kristy in this episode, she hints at how they’re going to be looking at the “serious side” of the fashion business…which leads Leigh to speculate that it’s going to be “corporate”…maybe menswear, he ventures?

The designers meet up with Henry at the department store, Myer, where Henry introduces them to Judy Coomber, Myer’s merchandise director for fashion and beauty.

The challenge is about designing for the commerical look — in particular, Myer’s womenswear range, Basque.

The design has to have a broad appeal, Henry tells the designers. The challenge is to create something that will look sharp by day and sophisticated at night…not unlike the challenge that the American designers saw with the Lipstick Jungle challenge not too long ago.

The winner will receive the biggest prize yet — the design will be manufactured and sold in Myer stores as part of the Basque range.

They get 30 minutes to familiarize themselves with the Basque range and then 5 minutes with Judy to find out if they’re heading in the right direction.

Right off the bat, it seems like the girls have a better idea of what to design.

“The boys seem a little lost with this challenge,” Petrova observes correctly.

When Henry announces they only have 15 minutes and $100 to spend at Rathdowne Fabrics, the designers look at him like he’s completely crazy.


Leigh is especially frustrated when he realizes that he chose the wrong colour after having a moment where he completely blanks out because the trim he wanted wasn’t there.

He worries that he’ll be sent home — and decides that if this is the case, he’ll try to go out in style at the very least.

He tells the camera that he sometimes hates himself — being a Gemini and all, he has a sort of love/hate relationship.

He says his creativity is completely gone.

When Henry announces that test marketing is everything and that the designers are to take their models out onto the street and ask random passersby what they think — which is the last thing Leight wants to do. With only one sleeve sewn onto his outfit, he acknowledges that the garment looks “ridiculous.”

When Judy comes to visit the workroom, she brings up her reservations about the garment being brown….because most of the line is in black.

“As I’m leaving the workroom, I think, ‘Of course I haven’t answered the Basque brief correctly’ and I wonder if I should just go home and pack my bags,” he says.

Maybe I’m just biased because I love everything that he does, but I actually like the outfit — though, it does look more fitting for an older woman.

(Okay, I’m biased! I just keep thinking, “If Leigh gets kicked off, the show will be so boring! Who doesn’t love a guy who claims he’s always wanted to be a princess so he could play with the family jewels?”)


Juli automatically thinks of a suit when she thought of a working woman in an office.

Juli worries that her design is a little too streamlined and as she looks around the workroom, she wonders if she should have been a little more daring.

When Judy comes into the workroom to take a look at what Juli has designed, she warns Juli not to make it look too much like “mother of the bride”.

I have no idea where she’s getting it from. It looks pretty chic with me — I love the deep purple that Juli has chosen and I think the outfit looks really smart and exactly the sort of thing that I would consider wearing to work.

I always love what Juli’s wearing — which I think says a lot about her as a designer. I think someone who looks really well put-together probably also has really great taste, too. So far, most of what I’ve seen her design has been really beautiful.

One thing of concern, though: three spots on the lapel which she tries to hide by colouring over it with a black marker…but unfortunately, the marks are still there.

At the last minute, she decides to change the lapel.

Lui also initially seems off the mark with his ideas.

His outfit looks a little “too” black — and when Judy and Henry both advise him to include more colour, he mentions that he’s already bought the fabric and it’s all black…it’s a little too late to be thinking about colour.

Why does it always seem like Lui is out in left field with his designs…and that, usually, he manages to reign it in at the end?


Brent initially goes with shorts — to walk on the more daring side — but Judy reigns him in and reminds him that he’s designing for a corporate woman and that she would most definitely not be wearing shorts.

Confusedly, he wonders what the evening look should be like — because there’s so many things to do in the evening.

Good point.

On the street test, one lady tells Brent that she doesn’t care for the colour — to which Brent thinks, “Pfft. Well, look at what you’re wearing!” — and immediately dismisses her comment.


Petrova’s design…uh…I didn’t love it. The jacket she crafted just didn’t look flattering to me.

I wasn’t crazy about the fact that she was broguht back into the competition. I think that once a designer is out, they’re out. No second chances.

When the designers head into the runway show and the judges are introduced, I find myself looking at judge Sarah Gale’s outfit and I think (for the first time), “Ew. What the hell is she wearing?”

The print on her blouse is just hideous and it just looks like ugly fabric hanging off of her…so ugly and so tragic.

Another person who looks like she needs to change her outfit is guest judge Judy. It just looked…old. Like, she looks like one of those really strict, humourless headmistress types.

It’s really no surprise that the girls are the top designers while the boys are in the bottom three.

I really thought that Juli should have won — her outfit looked a hundred times more sleek and clean.

Judge Jayson Brundson says he was a little disappointed with the suit — which makes me think, “What are you on? Crack? That suit looks awesome!”

Meanwhile, Petrova’s dress and jacket don’t seem to go together — and man, haven’t we all made that mistake before? It’s like, when you throw on a coat because you’re cold — but it doesn’t really match your outfit.

The judges thought the dress looked better without the belt…but when she took off the belt, the dress just looked shapeless and horrible…so, that’s why I have no clue why she won.


Petrova’s winning design.

The boys are brought back onto the runway.

Leigh gets roasted for an outfit that looks too mature.

Jayson says that, if they throw a headscarf and pass the model a Corbi, she’d be the Queen of Balmoral.

He can be clever sometimes — but I don’t like him. I think it’s his face actually — he looks like a smug old snob who thinks he’s better than everybody else. He’s nothing like Michael Kors, who can also be catty, but who looks like he has a sense of humour. But then again…at least Jayson’s not like Julien MacDonald from Project Catwalk, who was mean, mean, mean.

Brent goes home because Judy doesn’t think that the tuxedo blouse works. Jayson even says that the top doesn’t look glamourous enough to wear out for dinner.

“To me, it was just outdated,” Sarah says.

“There was nothing strong about it at all,” Jayson says.

Kristy admits that she liked the top, though.

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~ by justj on August 27, 2008.

One Response to “Project Runway Australia – Episode 8”

  1. I still love the show, but it does seem flat without Mark and Helen…
    This challenge just baffled me – how can they say Lui’s outfit was dated when Petrova’s looked like it was from the 60s and she won!
    Felt sorry for the guys on this one, I really preferred Lui’s and Brent’s outfits to the girls’.
    This is my favourite TV show at the moment, though, definitely!!!

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