Tuesday, September 20, 2011

They are a Feature

Rather hilariously, about two weekends ago I ended up explaining to a group of people what a double D cup really means.  (Double D is really an E, each letter further into the alphabet represents an additional inch in depth, or two inches in total circumference when compared to the band size.  Unless your at a specialty shop that uses funky rules where they do things like add five inches to your measurements.)
This turned out to be a lesson that needed further spreading, or so it seems, when the so-called "real women" challenge came up last week on "Project Runway".  This is an episode that can be hit or miss, since some the designers come from different backgrounds and some are clearly more used to working directly with the public and some, well, are not. 
Now a lot of people have talked about this, so I certainly don't want to belabor the point too much, but as it turns out Olivier, to put it kindly falls into the not category.  And while I accept that he has this very internal process, so doesn't much seem to like people asking him what he is doing especially when they are suggesting that maybe it isn't successful, I understand the need to vent.  But, I bring to you my number one rule for participating in competitive reality: watch the previous seasons.  That way when they send you to the party store, you accept that this is what happens.  (Bert.)  Or when they ask you where your client is going.  (Josh M.)  Or they make you work with kids.  (Viktor.)  And, Olivier, oh, Olivier, when they make you dress an actual person (which by they way has been happening for seasons, I think perhaps the first season did not do this, but they let the models be the client, so they talked back) who has breasts and hips and opinions, you don't have to love it.  But it is, in fact, not just part of "Project Runway" but part of being a clothing designer to see that people who have such things want clothes.  You may be planning a line for only skinny, straight folks, but let me tell you, they have opinions too.  Your model is being nice.  She doesn't have to buy your clothes, you are sewing it onto her for free. 
I suspect, now that this has aired, it has been an intriguing experience for Olivier, and hopefully he will learn and grow, not just learn to not say such things in front of cameras.  Because, as Linda Holmes pointed out, the "breasts are a feature, not a bug".