Project Runway Canada Season 2 – Fashion Is A Battlefield

When they announced that the second season of Project Runway Canada was going to be shot out of Ottawa, I was a little confused — what was wrong with shooting it out of Toronto, like they did last year? Fashion Week takes place in Toronto, after all — but maybe, being a Torontonian, I’m just being the stereotypical Toronto snob who thinks my city is the centre of the universe.

(Seriously, I never realized how much other Canadians seem to hate Torontonians for this belief until I met a guy from Saskatchewan in Spain who ranted bitterly about all the stupid things Torontonians think and do.)

Anyways, it doesn’t really make much of a difference to me where Project Runway Canada is shot — it all comes down to what shows up on the runway in the end.

Our new batch of designers arrive at the Canadian War Museum where they meet Iman and mentor Brian Bailey, where, amidst the tanks is a wall of camouflage fabric which they’re supposed to turn into a “groundbreaking outfit.” The winning design will be displayed at the Canadian War Museum.

It’s not just your standard military camouflage print that you find on the wall — there are also some pretty heinous, garishly coloured patterns as well…which doesn’t make sense to me because it almost doesn’t seem like the theme is “camouflage” anymore, you know? It seems more like a standard, “show us what you’ve got” first challenge where you’ve got your pick of fabric and you can do whatever the hell you want.

Back at the workroom, things start to go awry.

Jaclyn has an anxiety attack that sends her running outside.  Mentor Brian Bailey goes out to see how she’s doing — and you know what? It just reminded me of why I’ve always thought Brian was one of the best mentors out of all the Project Runway mentors.

He has a very zen way about him and I couldn’t help but respect him for the way he tried to calm Jaclyn down and help her through her anxiety attack. He’s exactly the sort of person you’d want around you in the event of a crisis — but at the same time, when you listen to him provide feedback to the designers, you can tell he’s fair, firm and honest.

Jaclyn, unfortunately, has to drop out of the competition — and my heart goes out to her when she talks about how disappointed she is that her health issues acted up on her

Christie, the neon-swathed flake, doesn’t win any points with me when she cheerfully announces that she’s a little bit “stoked” that Jaclyn has lef the competition and that she’s eagerly waiting to see who’s going to “break” next — because it’s not going to be her.


Danio, however, talks about how he gets what Jaclyn’s going through. A cancer survivor, he talks about how, after going through years of chemotherapy, he’s developed painful skin ulcers and his health isn’t at his best. Throughout the episode, you can see how he’s not doing all that great.

“I like to pretend I’m Superman and bulldoze my way through things, but I was in a great deal of pain,” he says.

Unfortunately, Danio winds up having to leave the competition as well. After a talk with Brian, he realizes that he’s not well enough to stay in the competition.

“Today has been like no other day in Project Runway Canada,” he says after two designers leave, adding that this doesn’t mean anybody is safe.

I have to admit that the designer I’m watching out for is Sonny Fong — the guy actually went to the same high school as me, which I think is really, really cool. He’s a self-taught designer and what I’ve seen from his website seems really amazing.

I loved hearing Brian’s critiques — he’s direct, but diplomatic. Unlike Ben de Lisi from Project Catwalk, he doesn’t seem to pick favourites and he doesn’t plunge in and tell designers what to do.  He offers suggestions and does it in such a way that nobody takes offense. What else can I say? He’s a true Canadian.

When the models arrive, I can’t help but feel a sense of disappointment — again, the models do not represent just how multicultural this country is. It’s a sea of white faces with one Black model.

Shawn Hewson and Rita Silvan are back as judges with Joe Zee, creative director of Elle Magazine, sitting in the guest judge spot.

When the show starts, I thought Camille’s outfit, I thought, “Whta the fuck?” It didn’t look like there was any camouflage print at all.

Christie’s dress is even worse — weird fabric choice and “gimmicky” look, aside, I totally agree with Joe Zee, who declares, “I think it looks cheap.”

Joe Zee was actually a really great judge — I couldn’t help laughing when he told Jason Myers that it looked like he’d grabbed Wilma Flintstone’s bedspread and threw it on.

“You always wants to keep in mind that you want your model to look as beautiful as she can, and your model just looks dirty,” he tells Camille.

I was really jazzed when the judges all agreed that Sunny’s jacket was immaculately tailored and that it was one of the strongest outfits to come out. Iman even declared she would wear the skirt he designed.

Surprisingly, though, it was Adejoke who won — despite the fact that several of the judges said they weren’t fans of the high collar she created for her outfit.

Camille gets sent home because her design was messy, disconnected and not at all groundbreaking.


~ by justj on January 29, 2009.

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