Recap: ‘Project Accessory’ – ‘It’s in the Bag’

11.17.11 6 years ago 2 Comments

Lifetime Television

It’s time for “Project Accessory,” so grab a double espresso so that you don’t doze off (or, conversely, if you have problems with insomnia, skip the espresso and make sure you’re located somewhere comfortable). “Project Accessory” eliminated one likable contestant last week and, more importantly, a raving nut job. Nicolina was cray-cray, but she was fun and she could be counted on to say something outrageous every few minutes, and while this show and its much better parent “Project Runway” are built around skill instead of drama, “Project Accessory” needs a shot of adrenaline any way we can get it. 

Molly tells the designers she has a tiny surprise for them… waiting in their workroom. That wasn’t a useless moment at all. They walk into the workroom, and there’s Eva with a bunch of clear boxes. She’s joined by Andrea Linett, the creative director of eBay fashion, a woman who seems to be in need of foundation and a comb. Basically, the stuff in the clear boxes are the contents of some chic women’s purses. Said chic women have been featured in eBay style stories, to which I say, style stories on eBay?  

Diego is a handbag guy. He thinks he has this challenge in the bag, pun intended.

Eva then tells the group that each designer gets to pick a box, then meet the woman whose stuff it is. The selecting process will go in order of last week’s highest scoring designer to the lowest. Ouch. The draw is first Cynthia, then Rich, Diego, Nina, Adrian, Brian and Shea. James had the lowest score, so he gets the last box. Wow, he’s very happy to have had immunity. 

The chic women come in. Some are more chic than others, to put it mildly. Some I would not apply the word chic to at all, but possibly ungroomed or scary looking. Diego measures his client’s shoulder, which proves he’s the only real handbag maker in the room. Proportion, people!  

The designers talk to their clients, then go to Mood, they shop, they buy. Brian is not buying black leather, even though his client wants black leather. That’s probably the right decision, actually. 

Rich feels out of his element in making a handbag, which means pestering Diego. Diego wants to be polite, but he also wants to say shut up and leave me alone. I can’t get over how everyone is so loving and helpful to their competition on this show. At some point that has to stop, right? 

Eva pops in to let the designers know their clients are visiting to see what they’ve done. Shea is nervous, as she only has two hours left in the day. Her client Anya better not  want changes. So Anya asks for another pocket. Shea nods while her face freezes into an expression that could frighten small children.

Eva then reveals that the clients are going to give their designers an old handbag, and the designers must create an accessory made out of said old handbag. And do they get extra time? No, they do not. The designers begin freaking out. Rich is ready to kill Shea, who keeps messing with sewing machines and then abandoning them to mess up other machines. Plus, she keeps bitching about how stressed she is. He’s ready to shove a piece of leather in her mouth or sew her lips shut. Shea really needs to pull herself together. She’s annoying to me and I’m not even in the room with her. And if Rich wanted to sew her lips together, I  have no doubt he could.

The bags actually look pretty good — but we’re not seeing everything. Oh, Rich’s bag looks pretty bad. Oops, James didn’t do the second accessory. Yeah, you don’t have immunity this week, James. You will be going home unless someone else blew that as well. 

Runway time! Our judges are Ariel Foxman, super designer Rebecca Minkoff and designer Kara Ross (who is filling in for Kenneth Cole). 


I love this bag. I would buy this bag. And the card holder is cute, too. Where’s the white wicker? Who cares. Great job. 


Her bag is rough, but I do like it. The ring is cute. What’s it made of? I think, given that we can barely see things on the runway and only get flashes of close-up shots piled onto the screen, they need to give us just a little more time to see things. 


It’s mighty big. Though I kind of like the fabric, I think I’d like it more for an article of clothing. For a bag, it’s too much.


This bag is huge, and it hangs too low. But the real problem is the missing accessory. 


I’m not so sure about the proportions, but because his model is humongous, I’m not sure there’s much to be done about it short of making her carry a suitcase. But from what I can tell, the bag is interesting. It looks broken-in, which is not a bad thing. 


This bag is way too big. The big, black swirl is not great, either. It seems well made, but oh, oh no. It’s not a bag; it’s luggage. 


This looks like it was made by children. He’s in trouble and he knows it.


I like the bag a lot and the necklace, though it required no work at all, is still pretty clever.

Diego, Nina, Brian, Christina had the highest scores. The designers with the lowest scores (everyone else) are told to beat it. 

Rebecca thinks Brian’s bag looks like artisan craftwork. Ariel likes the fact there’s no hardware but doesn’t like the cuff. Molly loves Christina’s bag. Ariel thinks the client looks great. Kara loves Nina’s ring and would wear it. Ariel loves the gold panels on the side. Rebecca thinks Diego’s bag doesn’t look handmade. Molly thinks it’s in proportion to her body and thinks it looks luxurious. 

Next up: losers!

Rebecca thinks Adrian’s proportions are off. Kara thinks you’d have to build your clothing for the day around the bag. Really? Ariel thinks Shea’s bag looks like a carryon. Kara thinks the bag would make her look fat. James is next. Ariel was disappointed with the bag and thinks it will get too dirty. Rebecca thinks the length of the bag is too long. Molly loves the color choice but thinks the proportions are off. Rich tries to justify his sad little bag but admits it’s the worst thing he’s ever sewn in his life. Molly likes the bracelet. Rebecca can’t get past the execution. 

I think James is going home, as he’s really the only person who blew the challenge. 

They love Nina’s ring. Ariel says Brian’s bag doesn’t look cheap. Kara likes the knot accent on Cynthia’s bag. Molly thinks she has a beautiful aesthetic. Rebecca thinks Diego’s bag looks like something you could buy. Ariel thought it was versatile and chic. Molly was not a fan of Adrian’s stripes. She didn’t think it was versatile at all. Kara thinks James’ bag would be too large for a giant. Rebecca was disappointed by Shea because her bag looked manly. They have nothing good to say about Rich’s bag. But at least he finished!

Nina and Brian are safe. Diego is… the winner. I’m not surprised. Christina is safe.

Adrian is safe. Shea is safe. It’s down to Rich and James. Duh. James… is out. Rich is safe. 

Molly tells James to leave. She doesn’t hug the losers like Heidi does, which I think is a little unfortunate. It just makes getting eliminated seem even more depressing and lonely. 

James has no regrets. I’m sad to see the one guy who can make shoes get kicked off, but he really did blow it by not making that second accessory. Rich must be thanking his lucky stars. It seems like, even though she didn’t win this week, Cynthia is shaping up to be the front runner for this season (which could be the first and last, who knows). So far, the standard of quality on this show is not that high, but I really think you can’t rush making leather goods and jewelry the way you can rush dressmaking. But, again, that’s just one of many problems with “Project Accessory.”

Do you think James deserved to go? Do you think things are going to get worse between Rich and Shea? Would you buy any of the bags?

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