Project Runway: What The Clusterfuckery Is This, Tim Gunn?

Welcome back to Modelslips, in which our anonymous fashion week model Tatiana "slips" about what it's really like trying not to "slip" while starving herself down the runways of New York's inimitable Fashion Week. Today Tatiana has a big day at the tents...but earlier this week she learned some big bombshells at a not-so-impressive casting.



I know who wins the current season of Project Runway! Actually: I've got it narrowed down to three. Like hell I'm putting this before the jump! So...where did I come into this data? Well, on Monday I went to the biggest, most disorganized, piece-of-shit casting of my life. But first — do you like how we scooped Page Six about those models who got burned by the lighting at the Marc Bouwer casting? (P.S.: don't believe a word of this publicist bullshit about "Mr. Bouwer" himself seeing the worst of it; he wasn't the one in the fucking hospital.) All this and a Project Runway casting, after the jump.

Normally, at castings, I see a selection of the same thirty or forty runway models in town. There's the cool Somali girl, the Sudanese raised in San Diego, Pole 1 and Pole 2, NYU girl privilege case, Texas Girl, various Australians and baleful Russians, and the girl with huge cheekbones who looks intimidating. The redhead reading The Kite Runner. The Canadian with the teeth. Every go-round, we sort ourselves into an order, and pick up with whatever light patter we broke off when the casting agent called us up at our previous encounter. Not so the casting held for the three designer finalists of Project Runway, Season 4.

I saw girls I'd never laid eyes on before: of the hundreds who must have had their moment on the tape-mark on the slick studio floor, I saw runway girls, plus girls, commercial girls, girls not in agency show packages, girls of every race and nationality and look, girls unlike any I'd seen anywhere before. A clusterfuck of a cattle call, marshaled by a manic little guy in a film festival t-shirt who was patently thrilled that his coffee-fetching job had on this day put him in such proximity with such a large group of pretty women. We had to sign non-disclosure agreements. (But believe me, it's not fear of the wrath of Bravo holding me back from naming names right now. If anything, it's the haunting thought of provoking a look of opprobrium in Tim Gunn's eyes.)

When I arrived, the stompy Amazon hordes had already filled the studio to capacity, and then filled the lobby of the building itself. People were talking about fire codes, and it was clear the folks in charge were totally unprepared to actually run a casting — as if they didn't know putting out the fashion equivalent of a bat signal would make every booker in town call up every model on his list and send them all to the same address at the same time.

The manic guy was manning the doors, and the line stretched down the block. I overheard a model letting out the secret on her BlackBerry as she exited — couldn't even get around the corner before yelling the news onto someone's voicemail — but for some reason, I didn't believe she had the top three right. For one thing, she kept on getting a designer's name wrong, in between protestations of how "OMG so COOL" it was to be there because she was "SUCH a HUGE FAN."

But I took my number, waited, and got Polaroided; I walked on the slippery floor, and I introduced myself loud enough for the camera. And there they were, three pairs of critical eyes sitting behind the table. A woman and two men. No dummy-fourth designer in evidence.

Maybe this isn't even such a big deal. Everyone who cares to will find out the final three this Friday, when the actual trio of shows takes place. When I walked out of the casting, I had the same instinct that earlier girl did: shout it from the Bryant Park steps, information wants to be free, etc. etc. But when I asked a friend yesterday afternoon if she wanted to know, given there are still six designers in the competition, she got a horrified look on her face and said, "Don't tell me! Don't tell me! I couldn't stand it if Christian were in it. I can't take another Jeffrey-wins moment."

It's called a spoiler for a reason. So I'm keeping my lips sealed, for now. I'll tell you more Friday — and in the meantime, if you really want to know, you can email Moe.

In other news, I met a Pole yesterday who begged me to go out with her because she was rooming with a bunch of models who don't drink because of the calories. Had they not heard of the drunkorexia movement? We proceeded to get rejected from some event at Beatrice Inn and drown our sorrows in nachos and margs. Models: during Fashion Week, we're just like US!