Two designers are eliminated after a challenge that makes them design for the girl-on-the-go in honor of the Let Girls Learn campaign.

After an indecisive deliberation to not send anyone home on Project Runway: Junior last week, the double elimination loomed over the 10 designers. The talent is clear, but "A Very Special Guest" is the point in the season where the good is separated from the great. Those who second guess or who are not innovative lag behind the pack and risk going home. 

Instead of having Hannah Davis explain the challenge to the designers, the show had a surprise video from first lady Michelle Obama. The first lady talks about her work with Let Girls Learn, a government initiative to help girls around the world stay in school. They are to design an outfit for the girl-on-the-go. The winner of the challenge will have the opportunity to design a backpack for Land’s End to help raise awareness for girls and education.

There is no button bag this episode. Instead, it's a spinning wheel of fate. The designers spin the wheel to give them a focus on which girl-on-the-go they should design for. The categories are school, travel, party, work and sporty. The matches are:

  • Maya, sporty
  • Zachary, party
  • Jesse, school
  • Victoria, school
  • Matt, travel
  • Zach, party
  • Samantha, work
  • Peytie, travel
  • Bridget, school
  • Jaxson, sporty

Tim Gunn points out that Maya is no longer 13 years old. It’s her birthday, and she says this is the best way she could spend it. The designers sketch and go to Mood with a $200 budget.

Unlike Peytie, who is excited and determined to win with her travel apparel, Jaxson has no clue how to start his sporty look and channels Sporty Spice — probably not the person to channel in the realm of sports. Jesse grabs a bunch of fabric as a backup, but he doesn't have an idea to begin with. Tim Gunn says goodbye to Mood dog Swatch with the 10 teens following him. 

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In the workroom, Zachary calls out Victoria for doing the same top every time. After the comment, she feels insecure, but she shuts down Zachary by telling him to mind his own business.

Jaxson is already in trouble, as he’s changed his design three times.

Tim comes in for critiques with a Peace Corps volunteer. She reinstates how Peace Corps volunteers to Let Girls Learn. Jesse says he relates to the work the Peace Corps has done around the world. He is from Cambodia and ever since he was adopted by his two dads, he has been to Cambodia to volunteer. This has given him motivation to try and win.

Tim goes to Peytie where she designs an outfit for a girl who travels in one day. Tim loves how crisp and clean the print fabric looks. Zachary sees his party outfit as an opportunity to make tailored trousers for the modern girl. The trouser is unusual for a party look, but Zachary’s innovation follows through. Tim tells him to nix the corset.

Maya is nervous about how Tim will take her asymmetrical top, but he says it’s “smashing.” Jaxson has next to nothing to show Tim. He asks why Jaxson wants to make a dress for sporty, but then Jaxson reveals he wants to make a romper instead. Tim ships the idea.

Jesse’s school look needs to get rid of the tweed skirt. It looks like a skirt a grandma would wear. Victoria is also having trouble with the school look. Unlike Zachary, Tim has the right to call her out for being an outfit repeater. He does, and he says it makes him sick. Victoria’s comment to Zachary does not stop him from saying that Victoria is a “not a designer, but a seamstress at this point.”

The next day Jaxson feels pretty good but has a lot to do. That might have something to do with him redoing his outfit five times. Matt says Jaxson’s look is inspired by “Neil Armstrong’s drag persona.”

The only time we see the looks from Samantha, Matt, Bridget and Zach is on the runway. Due to the editing, I assume their scores qualify them to the next round, and this turns out to be true.

Matt is super excited for not being in the bottom. The six left with the highest and lowest scores are Maya, Victoria, Jesse, Jaxson and Peytie.

On top of Tim Gunn being an excellent mentor, the new judges are solid and have given the designers great criticism on how they can learn how to think and craft as a professional — except for Hannah Davis. Going on episode four, I have given her a chance to be more than just a bikini model and Derek Jeter's girlfriend. Each time judging, she brings no constructive criticism to the runway with the looks. She either says she likes the outfit or she doesn’t. Davis also does this thing where she agrees with another judge so her opinion is grouped with their opinion. She doesn’t bring a lot to the runway.

Zachary explains he designed for the party animal, and Christian Siriano says he loves the romantic whoosh his look gave. Kelly Osbourne sees a sophisticated woman. Aya Kanai says the modern woman in this is having fun and the right amount of skin.

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Christian is confused with Jaxson’s look. In looking at it, nothing is sporty or comfortable. Aya says the romper is more costumey, and it’s not constructed well. Jaxson went out of his way at Mood to not go down the costume track but still ends up there. The girl is lost in it.

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Jesse’s school outfit is a literal school girl. He went for a beatifully constructed pleated skirt and turtle neck, but the idea is done and not innovative. Kelly says it reminds her of what she had to wear to private school. Aya says it’s clothing and not fashion. He did the same colors the week before.

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Peytie’s tunic with short shorts blew the judges away, and each week they note the growth of her confidence. Christian says the fabric looks like it was from another country. Hannah says she would wear it. She even double backed the fabric. The fabric is intimidating, but Aya says it’s exceptionally done.

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Victoria went with black and black. The detail is hidden, and Kelly is disappointed she didn’t work with color. Plus, this is something that would not be worn to school: the shorts are too short and is inappropriate, Aya says. Her mind is pent up in the goth world.

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Maya has the sporty girl and follows through with her asymmetrical top with a sports bra underneath. Christian loves the athletic wear look, but it can be transformed into another look with how you zip it. Aya says she can see people ordering this after it’s featured in a magazine. The way Maya constructs clothes continues to be impressive.

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The judges announce Peytie as the winner who will partner with Land’s End to create a backpack. Jesse and Victoria are out. I would have wanted to see Jaxson go rather than Jesse. Jesse may not be the most creative, but his tailoring is amazing, and Jaxson’s looks are always poorly constructed. I don’t want Tim to use his Tim Gunn save on Jesse, but it would have been better to see Jaxson go in his place.

Project Runway: Junior airs every Thursday ay 9 p.m., on Lifetime.

@mmfernandez_

mf736213@ohio.edu

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