Project Runway: I’m In Love With Jerell

Looks We Loved (From Left to Right): Jerell’s Pop-ified Kenley; Korto’s Punked-Out Suede

For this week’s challenge, the contestants had to design for each other based on a musical genre. Kenley created a hip-hop outfit for Leanne, who designed a country music outfit for Korto. Korto made a punk-inspired look for Suede. And Suede created a rock outfit for Jerell, who turned Kenley into a pop diva with his design. The drama popped off from the beginning of the episode, but most of it centered around Miss Bratty Kenley, which is how I realized I have a major crush on Jerell.

Looks We Hated (From Left to Right: Leanne’s Grand Ole Opryed Korto; Suede’s Rocking Jerell; Kenley’s Hip-Hopping Leanne

Yes I know he’s gay, but that doesn’t make him any less attractive to a reality TV loving, clothes whore like myself. His talent as a designer has really shown in the last three episodes, proving he knows how to dress a woman and make her look good. His pop-inspired dress and vest for Kenley was great. Is it just me or does Kenley look exactly like Britney Spears as a brunette? The judges knew exactly what genre she was portraying when she stepped on the runway, and they thought he completed the task without making her look trashy. But Jerell not only has great taste as a designer, he also has a wonderful sense of humor. “Kenley Spears would be rockin’ this at Madison Square Garden, then probably kicking her panties off and falling asleep in the back of a limousine,” he said. His attitude and personal style are also quite attractive. He admitted he thought about sabotaging Suede, but decided against it. I love how he was able to be friendly with Suede, even though he doesn’t respect him as a designer. And not since I first laid eyes on Tyson Beckford’s chiseled pecs has a man’s chest captivated me. I love Jerell’s signature look of exposing just enough of his waxed chest. He’s not as muscular as Tyson, but I don’t like my men that way anymore. [Um, it also didn't hurt that we got tons of bulging crotch shots from him in those tight pants! -- Editor]

All right, I’m done creaming over Jerell and can tell you what happened the rest of the episode. Basically no one on the show likes Kenley anymore and I doubt she has any fans left because she is a major brat. She whined when she learned she had to design a hip-hop outfit and she whined her way through the design consultation period, her feedback session with Tim and the judging on the runway. Tim finally put her in her place, but she was too self-absorbed to realize she had been served. It’s never a good look when Tim has to peer over his specs at you or your garment. (Simcha will fill you in on Miss Brat.) Her outfit had no connection to hip-hop whatsoever. If anything, I’d say it was more R&B, like Alicia Keys or Mary J. Blige. It was nonetheless ugly and horribly made. She chose a print for her blouse that she said looked like graffiti, but really it was just another floral/swirly print. Her high-waisted mom jeans were extremely unflattering on Leanne. A poorly made crotch will get you every time. I was slightly offended when Kenley draped Leanne in gawdy jewelry to make it more hip-hop. I know jewelry is important to most hip-hop artist, but their stuff costs hundreds of thousands of dollars, unlike the cheap baubles Kenley chose from the Bluefly Accessory Wall. Most of the time accessories can save a half decent outfit, but this look was doomed from the beginning.

Like Jerell, Korto really stepped up to this challenge, even though she was apprehensive at first because she had never done menswear. Her punk inspired look for Suede was spot on for the genre. I agree with Michael that it was really interesting how she incorporated the chains into the outfit, instead of just letting Suede wear them as accessories. She also demonstrated how a little goes a long way with the treatment she gave to his jeans. By the way, wasn’t it totally ridiculous how blue fauxhawk Suede said that prefers classical music to punk? Korto won the challenge, but I would have been just as happy if Jerell won.

Both Leanne and Suede didn’t want to fall into the costume trap, but their designs ended up looking rather boring compared to the other outfits. Leanne’s country look was hardly worth the Grand Ole Opry. It looked more like the uniform at a theme restaurant in Nashville. The skirt did however accent her ample rump. Suede’s rock outfit was boring and expected. Michael said Jerell’s day-to-day clothes were more daring. And Suede was subsequently auf’d. After all the drama with Kenley, though, I would have loved to see her go and Suede stay. I don’t think he’s a better designer than she is, but he’s a much nicer person. I hope Kenley and her attitude get eliminated next week, so the true stars of this season–Leanne, Korto and Jerell–will shine at Bryant Park. [Bravo]

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