Project Runway: Episode 5.6 Chic or Freak?
I love drag queens and I love fashion, but I must admit this week's Project Runway 5 challenge is flummoxing me a bit.

Usually in this column, Chic means Best and Freak means Worst. But to succeed in this challenge, the designers needed to be a little bit Chic and a little bit Freak in order to create a design that would work for the over-the-top theatricality of a performing drag queen. So who came up with just the right combination of design savvy and winking sassy camp?



Joe Faris had a well-deserved win. While I have no plans to sport a nautical-inspired pink jumpsuit any time soon, for a costume, it was very well-made, and his client was clearly thrilled with it. (Varla Jean was so cute as a button, by the way, and hopefully she too will have her own Bravo show any minute now.)

Kenley Collins's dress was rather simple by itself, but the dramatic feathered collar added an element of appropriate drama while the overall feel fit with her client's style. It did look a little less-polished from the back, but would work very well onstage, I think.

Terri Stevens's “lovechild of Gene Simmons and Diana Ross” was ambitious, theatrical and perfectly appropriate for her client's style. She managed to infuse some Galliano/McQueen couture sensibility into the campiness. This was especially interesting to me because I've felt her other runway looks could tend towards the pedestrian or a little too retail/ready-to-wear to be exciting. If she could add a dash of this creativity to the standard challenges, I think she could elevate her consistently solid looks to something on a completely different level.

Korto Momolu continues to impress me with her thoughtful approach to things, and her really specific and complete personal vision. All of her work, with the exception of the second challenge, has shown such a strong aesthetic. Her work is always very clean, yet not boring or safe. Even with the dramatic elements in this drag costume, there is still a lovely harmoniousness to it that, to me, is becoming her hallmark. She is pulling ahead as one of my favorites, for sure.



Blayne Walsh's dress wouldn't have landed in this section were it not for those wings. And I wouldn't have minded the wings if a) they had stayed up and b) they had a reason for being there, somehow fit in with the queen's persona. I just didn't get it, and they were not interesting or visually pleasing enough to be there without a reason.

Jerell Scott's offering was a snoozer, and, as the judges pointed out, showed a questionable eye for proportion. What man in a dress needs MORE bulk at the shoulders? And yes, the length of the skirt was matronly.

Keith Bryce? Also a snoozer, while simultaneously visually aggravating. He needs more attention to the shape of his model.

Stella Zotis has utterly grown on me, and I sort of want her to find a way to make her sleek, leathuh, rocker aesthetic work. But I think there is a specific problem with this outfit and that is the plaid is too pale for the look and it makes it look cheap. I also think the front panel is awkwardly short and the lacing and grommets would have been sexier had they continued up the entire panel length.

And Daniel Feld…well, his dress wasn't hideous, but it seemed to be his time to leave. I just am not sure that anyone participating in any way in the world of reality television should ever make too much of a stink about their taste level.

Except me. My taste is impeccable.

- Leslie Seaton, BuddyTV Staff Columnist

(Images courtesy of BravoTV)