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Project Runway Season 7 Opening Night

Emilio won the immunity for next week and the kudos for his design.

Okay, I have to admit, two hours before the premiere episode my pulse rate increased. And I wasn’t disappointed. After a long wait and a disappointing sixth season, from my point of view it looks like Project Runway is better than ever. Heidi’s team has amassed what looks like an amazing roster of personalities and talents from all nationalities, ethnicities, backgrounds, and ages. I can’t wait to learn more about each of these new designers.

What’s more, for the first time, I know one of the designers. I’ve had many friends submit applications, and audition, but this is the first time one of them was accepted. Pamela Ptak has been a Threads author for many years. We’re all so excited to be watching her and cheering for her during this season.

One of the first signs that improvements are coming our way was last night’s challenge. Never before, has the season started by letting the designers express themselves—no vegetable stand fabrics, or dressing a colleague’s mother, just a good clean shot at designing a garment.

These premiere episode nights move fast because there are so many designers, but it wasn’t hard for me to choose my favorite garments. Seth Aaron designed one of the judges’ favorite outfits. Dresses like this little plaid number are very tricky. He did a nice job of pulling it together with interesting strong touches that keep the dress from becoming a costume or getting prissy. My favorite is Ping Wu’s design. I respond to her personality, but I love her clothes. Judge Nicole Ritchie said Ping’s ensemble was her favorite look. Both Michael and Nina also had only complements for her work. The only question was when Nina questioned the outfit’s hanger appeal. I was delighted to hear their positive reaction to Ping’s work.

I agree with the judges on Emilio’s dress. The dress is masterful. As I see it, he cut up fabric and with appliqué and piecing engineered the fabric for the entire dress. Brilliant work—with hanger appeal.

Good for Project Runway—great kick-off show! What did you think?

Until next time…


Amy Sarabi



Mila Hermanovski


Emilio Sosa


Ben Chmura



Seth Aaron Henderson



Jay Nicolas Sario


Anthony Williams



Ping Wu


Anna Lynett



Christiane King


Janeane Marie Ceccanti



Jesus Estrada



Pamela Ptak


Jesse LeNoir



Jonathan Peters



Maya Luz



Designers hard at work

exclusive behind the scenes photo courtsey of Brother International Corporation


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  1. itsmarkmitchell | | #1

    I think the season's off to a great start. I love Ping Wu, and her color palette breathtaking. Her drawings are stylish and lovely as well, so I hope she's around for a long time. It will be interesting to see what develops.

    I thought the choice of Emilio was heartening. So many times the judges have made baffling choices, perhaps having to choose entertainment over talent. His dress is stylish as well as smart. His use of that fabric is materful.

    And how great to have Michael Kors and Nina Garcia bolted to those seats for the season!

  2. User avater
    Deana | | #2

    I agree! I thought the judges were right on this time with choosing Emilio. His garment was stunning, wearable, and I thought his construction skills were amazing.

    I'm so excited to see the show off to such a good start!

  3. User avater
    genevieve | | #3

    thank once again Judith - I donm't have acces to the show, so your overview is very much enjoyed. I look forward to your reprts , and your personla comments. regards genevieve.

  4. User avater
    genevieve | | #4

    thanks Jusdith - I enjoy your comments and the photos - I don't get to see the show. Keep up the good wor. Many thanks genevieve.

  5. Skymom | | #5

    How much fun is it to be back watching PR in NYC? I liked it so much I'll be watching the rerun tonight. I have a date with my 9-year-old daughter who's a big fan of the show, too (but she can't stay up that late on a school night--it's good to be a grown-up).

    I can't wait to see more of the personalities of the designers, as there seem to be an interesting mix this season. The Lifetime website has loads of material on each designer already, so you can study ahead of time!

    I loved the winning dress, and really appreciated how the designer added so much interest to a basically not-crazy silhouette with the appliqued strips. There were others I liked almost as much (Ping Wu's was rich and dramatic, and I quite admired Pamela Ptak's pink origami-looking dress). The black top/light skirt look that Janeane made to replace her pleated LBD turned out rather chic and wearable--not necessarily a runway showstopper, but I could see myself wearing that easily. Then there were a few that I didn't much care for. I guess I'm old, though: Seth Aaron's checkered dress didn't do a thing for me--too Daisy Mae-goes-downtown for me (but it appeared to be nicely made, and the individual details were good overall).

  6. SueinNE | | #6

    Sario put pompoms on the hips!! he won't last long. Anthony is boring. Ping, Emilio, and Seth are going to be interesting.

  7. User avater
    KraftyKandi | | #7

    Truthfully...anyone who has the talent to pull off finishing a design in such a short time span gets my vote as awesome...but...

    I guess I just don't "get it" with some of the designers work...pom poms in unattractive places, large shapes on just one side...maybe I'm "out of it", but I'd never wear, let alone purchase, many of these ideas. But, I guess, the designers are pursuing "design", not retail-worthy clothing.

    I'm SO HAPPY that the show is back, tho!

  8. User avater
    Londa | | #8

    I watched it today - LOVE, LOVE, LOVE that they re-run it!
    I, too thought the winner was amazing - I had marked his and Ping Wu's as my 2 favorites.
    I truly feel that this season's talent takes us back to the level - if not even above - that of the initial season.
    Hanger appeal? Sew - if I had a store - a boutique, you bet your booties I'd put her garments on a mannequin and they'd sell - sell - sell!

  9. MarilynJohnson | | #9

    I'm so excited that the "real" Project Runway is back! And, like Judith, for the first time I know one of the designers and of course, it's Pamela Ptak.

    My sewing students follow the show and during lessons there's lots of discussion about that week's show and comparisons to other seasons. The show is a wonderful teaching tool and gets everyone inspired.

    I'm really looking forward to what comes down the runway with this latest group of designers, I think skill level and design perspectives have definitely reached a new high this season.

  10. msbyrdt | | #10

    Loved Emilio's dress. The judges seem more vibrant, not just going thru the motions,it must be the NY vibe...it suits them. This season is so much better(than last season), in just the first episode. Looks like this is gonna be a really fun season to watch. Yea!

  11. cjbauman464 | | #11

    I love Emilio's Dress. I think it could be motified with a different skirt for a older women. Very nice design.
    He is a winner. Very creative.
    Great set of contestants this season. I love this show.
    Henderson, NV

  12. Carolebarrel | | #12

    Please, at 65 I am still interested in clothing construction, fashion and style, but are there no fashions for anyone but gals in their 20's? After all, our bodies need attractive coverage more than they do and we as a group are the consumers who might be more able to afford the fashions or am I just way off base and are these garments just used as inspiration for the rest of the RTW market?

  13. JoAnn_Mary | | #13

    I echo Carolbarrel's desire to see some interesting designs for 60ish professional women with non-runway measurements. I find some interesting patterns for plus sizes and am experimenting with fabrics and mixtures to give me a modern, profesional yet interesting look. I'm an Associate Dean at a state university and a grandmother of 8. I have time and money to spend on looking my best. We are a pretty big market.........design a few things for us..........please.

  14. User avater
    karoljean | | #14

    I agree with those above who would like to see more for the "mature" fashionista. I am positively addicted to Project Runway, but would not feel comfortable in many of the garments created. I am not a plus size, but even those of us who wear size 6 (I know that is plus in the model world), and are over 50 want to look fashionable!

  15. dancing_goose | | #15

    I agree the season looks like it's going to be a good one for design and interesting ideas. I love Emilio's dress and Ping Wu's outfit. Her color choices were amazing. Looking forward to seeing what she comes up with next. I was not terribly impressed with the items in her "portfolio" at Lifetime.com with the exception of the shoes. I thought they were phenomenal. So glad to see that she is not just on the show for the drama appeal. I've wondered about some of the previous contestants on previous seasons, are they selected because they will be dramatic TV or the one you love to hate, but Ping Wu really seems to have some original and interesting ideas about garment design.

    For Genevieve, I do not have cable or a dish or any TV. I watch PR when lifetime.com posts the full episode on their website. Usually by Saturday evening I can see it. The download is sometimes rather jerky, (Hello Lifetime are you listening? Please copy the set up at hulu.com where you can pause and the whole episode downloads so you can watch without the annoying pauses) but there are hardly any commercials, plus you can access Tim Dunn's, Michael Kors' and Nina Garcia's blogs about the shows plus some of the designers are doing video blogs. Thank you Judith for giving us a place to discuss our FAVORITE show. No one else where I work sews. It gets lonely.

  16. NoraBora | | #16

    Most of those fashions are terribly ugly and graceless. Hermanovski and Henderson's are especially so. Yes, Sario, every woman wants big bows on her tummy, derriere, and hips! Let's accent what most of us wish to downplay.
    Peters and Sosa get my vote.

    Please, please consider clothes that actual professional women over 50 would wear to work, or even for cocktails. What a breath of fresh air that would be.

    The rest of this stuff is for college-age women.

  17. ohiostar | | #17

    I really loved the opening show and I hope that the rest of the season is as good. And it was great to see that poor sewing skills will not be acceptable. I just can't understand how designers end up not knowing their craft well enough to know how to sew. She couldn't handle a needle!

  18. User avater
    auschick | | #18

    Question... isn't the first episode always an "express yourself" episode where the contestants get to go crazy grabbing fabric from a random location and put something together?? I could have sworn the crazy challenges happen after the first one.

    I am looking forward to this season though. Last season's was so ridiculously disappointing. I also like that they showed the contestants working on their muslins this time - I've never seen them shoot that before.

  19. callyrose | | #19

    Finally Project Runway is back to standard. congrats! Love this season, love the participants and love to have Michael Kors and Nina back and wonderful.

  20. User avater
    Mrs4Him | | #20

    Nice opening to what looks to be a great season. Much more talent this time around so far and some interesting personalities--love Anthony-he's a hoot, but I'm from the South so maybe that's it!

    Of course, we see all the rush rush in the workroom to get these designs done. I would be freaking out! And did anyone notice that all of the designers clapped when Tim Gunn announced it was time to go to the runway? I have never seen that before!

    And I have to go against the grain here. I was disappointed with Ping's design. The colors were good, but felt the design just looked like fabric tied on the body in different ways. I'll probably get hammered for that! But, I really thought she should have been eliminated. It may seem modern and hip and different, but Nina was right on about the lack of hanger appeal. Isn't that what attracts most of us in the first place?

    I absolutely adored Emilio's dress. It was interesting to hear from Tim in the workroom say to Emilio that they had never had anyone not finish a design in the history of Project Runway. So, to go from that to winning the challenge was pretty amazing to me! His construction methods were great and put so much effort and detail into it. He certainly deserved the win.

    Excited about the episodes ahead and reading the comments here.

  21. User avater
    judithann | | #21

    I LOVE EMILIO SOSA....period, he is going to win. I am also so happy to see anthony back, I think this time around he is going to be stronger. I loved loved that black and white gown of his.

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