Toss your all-star seasons aside along with the lesser known judges. The original is back! It’s the season 11 premiere of Project Runway, but this time there’s a twist. Yes, I’m sure you’ve heard many spoilers, yet I’m reminding you once more. In case you have been stuck under a rock for the holidays, this edition of PR will be dedicated to teams!

The question arises, though, of eliminations. If only one person is to leave each episode and the designers will be assigned to groups, won’t there be odd numbers? Can we look forward to one group having the advantage with that extra person? Surely they’ve put more thought into this than what we’ll have to.

With a snap of the fingers and a roll of Heidi Klum’s pretty little head, she yells the word, “TEAMS!” It’s a very quirky opening with her and Tim Gunn, but hey we love them and they’re fabulous so they can do whatever they want.

The designers begin arriving at Parsons. There is Michelle who is “thirty-fou-dorable.” Smart. James, on the other hand, can hardly stand on his own two feet, let alone introduce himself to the others. Funeral director Cindy is, in fact, in the right place. Talk about switching roles. The 16 designers are soon distracted by Heidi and Tim’s entrance and they’re holding hands. 

“This season is Project Runway …” everyone holds their breath as Heidi holds on tothat last word, “teams.” And no one is excited.

Here is the breakdown:

Heidi splits the group up like the Red Sea, assigning them to two groups who are later named Team Keeping It Real (KIT) and Dream Team. 

Team Keeping It Real 









Dream Team 









First Challenge

Each group member is to create a design which represents them individually, yet incorporates the input of their teammates. Basically, they are forced to work as a unit right out of the gate. As for inspiration, they now reside in it. New York City. Team KIT will see the sights from afar on a boat, the Cloud Nine while Dream Team will gaze down upon the buildings from atop the Atlas apartments.

So the teams are taking pictures of their surroundings, getting to know one another and sipping champagne. Sounds like more of a highly desired Friday evening rather than a competition. A few annoyances stand out from the bunch. James, of the Dream Team, is quickly labled a spaz as he just cannot stop talking. Patricia, enjoying the views from Cloud Nine, surprises everyone on board when she taps into her Native American roots and commits to a very impressive, and very loud, yodel of sorts. Warn me next time, at least!

The workroom look a bit different this time around. 

The large room has been split down the middle, giving both teams their own spaces. It also gives great opportunity for nosy, lazy designers to snoop around. But who cares about how cool everything looks when Tim Gunn is near? Cindy is especially excited. Can you blame her? She used to work with the deceased! “I’m afraid I’m going to gush over Tim Gunn, profusely,” she laughs. Should we tell her? Or just let her find out on her own? Anyways, moving on.

After a quick trip to Mood for materials, it’s time to get to work, yet there’s a nightmare brewing on the Dream Team. Emily may not know much about the competition, but she knows that she’ll be around until the Top 3, at least. Always the kiss of death. Meanwhile, Patricia looks to be taking a slow and tedious approach to her first design. Layana may not agree with her methods, but it looks pretty cool, so far. Her inspiration comes from the buildings themselves, mimicking window panes with painting of fabric. Looking forward to this one.

Tim Checks In

Dream Team

There are some strong looks forming and unfortunately, Emily can only lend more of her mouth than actual fashions. All she has to show Tim are her sketches. I foresee Emily’s nightmare becoming the team’s nightmare as they all have to pitch in to help. How about you?

Team KIT

Kate can care less about what her teammates think of her design. Funny, though, that when Tim gives the exact same advice, Kate listens. With that said, though, their still working fairly well and producing some strong looks.

Hours before the runway, Emily only has what looks like parts of a jacket. Lucky for her, this is the season of teamwork. They may not really care to help, but Cindy initiates the reinforcements, helping Emily throw some sort of dress together. If she isn’t eliminated, I’ll be more than surprised.

Time for the Runway

Of all the super cool swag that Heidi announces that this season’s winner will walk away with, all I hear is the new 2013 Lexus. Sweet! 

Tonight’s judges are introduced. We have Nina Garcia, brand new addition Zac Posen and Christian Sariano returns as guest judge. 

Team KIT’s looks walk the runway first. Theirs is a very strong and solid show that flows and displays how teamwork can help you win. Yep, KIT wins this round. Of the bunch Patricia, Daniel and Richard are the top looks.

Patricia’s simply shaped dress is the perfect canvas for that painted pattern that dangles in shards, showing hints of underlying blue. It pops. Before the panel, she opens her mouth and talks and talks and talks some more. Finally, Heidi stops her. “You don’t even need to speak that much,” she says. 

Richard’s asymmetrical dress isn’t one of my favorites. It’s of a jersey, very pro cling material of black and grey. It reminds me of something one might doodle when bored in class. The judges are impressed, though.

Lastly, Daniel presents a simple, black tailored suit with ruffles about the waist and skinny pants. It’s even got pointy shoulders. Who doesn’t love pointy shoulders? The judges rave over it.

Now for the losing team. It’s unfortunate, too, because designers such as Benjamin who created a positively gorgeous, flowing dress loses because of others. Zac advises them to really step up and help their teammates. “If you have one hole in a boat, the whole boat sinks,” he says. 

James has designed a very boring blouse that sits on top of this color blocked pencil skirt. The skirt isn’t bad, but the top just has to go. He blames the lack of color in the blouse on advice given him by his teammates. He must not realize that if he makes it to next week, he still has to work with these people.

Cindy must still be seeing dead people because these mix matched patterns are anything but lively. Apparently, there is a right way to do this sort of design and she has definitely missed the memo. Red and white checkers with a sort of abstract print? No, thanks.

And then there’s Emily. Oh, Emily. The jacket looks like a piece of unwanted fabric that was balled up, tossed in the trash and then dug back out. Nina slows things down a bit to say, “I have never seen such an unfinished garment walk down the runway.” Ouch! 

So who wins and who goes home? 

Challenge Winner: Daniel

Eliminated: Emily

I knew it! Emily sealed her fate when she was so quick to announce how good she was and then failed to complete one garment. 

Coming up on this season of Project Runway: Teams, Team Keeping It Real and Dream Team will continue to work together until more twists are thrown their way. Guest judges will include Bette Midler, John Legend, Emmy Rossum, Miranda Lambert and Susan Sarandon. Make sure you tune back in every Thursday night on Lifetime!

Compete in Fantasy TV: Make your picks on who you think will be going home. Hurry, you have until Monday, January 31 at 12pm PST to decide.

Don’t miss the next episode of Project Runway. Add it to your watch-list using the free BuddyTV Guide mobile app.

Jilliane Johnson

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV