Vivid imagination and a (reusable) bag load of drama in episode four of Project Runway New Zealand

22 October 2018

This week’s challenge sees designers create a print for a reusable New World shopping bag before Andreas abruptly pops his head in to say… yeah nah, just kidding, it’s actually a red carpet look based on your bag design.

Talk about a bombshell. But let’s start at the beginning.

Setting the big city scene, there are more camera pans of international designer shop fronts than there are designers in the competition. Which is quite hilarious really, given that Kiwis living south of the Bombay Hills have probably never heard of them and less than 1% of Aucklanders have probably been in them. But here we are in the big smoke; land of opportunity (and consumerism).

Next, we find our designers at the dump wearing high-vis vests; talk about mixed messages. This time of the general waste variety, not just outdated technology. Waste is a big issue here, and so is making sure supermarket shoppers have fashionable bags to carry their groceries in. Duh.


Create a unique design for New World’s reusable shopping bag range. The winner of this challenge will have their design produced and available to purchase.

Back at the workroom, designers are scratching their heads trying to come up with patterns and sketches that are deep and meaningful about the planet and sustainability. Which, I too am super passionate about, but it’s not like these bags are going to grow legs and walk themselves down the runway, right? I mean it’s called Project ‘Runway’ New Zealand. We’re in the business of catwalks, not aisles.

Misty is getting crafty drawing on the realms of the land and sky; Benjamin gets playful with baby pinks and baby blues; while Massey, well he’s just mainly in deep thought grasping a vivid.

During the challenge

Thankfully, just when the episode starts to feel like a ‘My Kid Could Draw That’ segment on an episode of 7 Days, dreamboat mentor Andreas comes in and enlightens the designers with the actual task for this week.

Finally, a challenge I can get around; high-drama red carpet with a sustainable lens. Praised be.


Time to see Judy come into her own, Beau to walk the talk, Peni to make a comeback and Jess to show us what she’s made of.  ‘Okurrr’.

$250 and a quick trip to The Fabric Store later, and the designers are bursting at the seams to get their stylish, yet contemporary, yet attention-grabbing red carpet designs underway.

Newfound respect for Judy following this episode – and not just because she’s trying to construct her dress with minimal waste.  Up until this point, the producers have framed her to lack confidence, but on the contrary, I think she’s super in tune with who she is and what she offers and doesn’t want to oversell herself. Which in a competition setting, isn’t a bad way to play it. She’s a silent assassin. Even she joked about her own general sense of being quiet. Cute.

Runway Day

With just hours until runway, the designers appear more under the pump than they have in previous challenges. And, not only that, they’re not holding back from throwing shade at one another’s designs… And FFS Massey is drawing all over a blazer with vivids again.


Judging this week’s red carpet runway challenge is Fashion Quarterly magazine editor Sally-Ann Mullin, WORLD director and designer Benny Castles, supermodel and host Georgia Fowler and guest judge Karl Lagerfeld’s muse Ashleigh Good.

Comparable to NCEA Level 1 English, the fate of the designers’ garments rests in how good of a yarn they can spin on how they’ve interpreted an element from their bag pattern. To this end, the designers that are safe and through to the next round are:  Jess, Kerry, Beth, Camille and Caitlin.

Without wasting any time, G-Fowler announces Judy as this week’s winner. I mean that dress was elegant and superbly constructed but I’m low key gutted that I won’t be able to purchase Misty’s New World bag design.

Next up, Benjamin. Had he had the budget to afford the desired crepe de chine for his gown, he may have pipped Judy at the post. This guy is in it until the final. Mark my words.

In third place, Peni laser cuts his way up the ranks from last week’s casualty with a cultural meets Cardi B design getting the ‘Okurrr’ from the judges. That leaves….

Bottom three: Misty, Beau and Massey.

The biggest let down this week IMO sat with Beau and his “looks like a bride who woke up with the wrong guy” gown. PS: Wasn’t that the same model who wore that disaster from Lenon in week two? She’s obviously cursed. Poor thing.

This was Beau’s arena and he dropped the ball. Does that mean he should go? And Massey; his design wasn’t that bad, vivid and all. But it was not on brief and certainly wasn’t his element. Not to mention he won week two’s challenge…

Who walks?

Massey does. Massey walks.

And with that, Massey flicks his backwards cap round to the front and says “later peeps” to the other designers. Awww, Massey you sweetheart you.

“I’d love to have been here longer, but that’s the way the cookie crumbles,” says Massey.

“It’s been an absolute blast and I have loved every minute of it and I have no regrets.”

Scroll for the final runway looks below from week four:

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