On to Chicago, where Uncle Nick from Season 2 is helping Tim judge. We see Nick being sweet to the designers waiting in line. He tells them that they have to stand out. Since he "was voted off the fashion island," he has been a color commentator for NBC's coverage of the Torino Olympics figure skating (I bet he peed on himself when he got that offer), has continued teaching, and has kept designing for his line, Nikolaki. He tells us in front of clothed mannequins that he is not looking for fifteen minutes of fame, but for a lifetime of fame.
The first person we witness them judging is a woman who created this totally overgrown kimono. She's so excited by it. Nick remarks that it's "a lot of coat." Tim adds that, "yard for yard, it's one of the top ten coats [he has] ever seen." It's hideous. The next girl has a boring white gown with what looks like caterpillars all over it. Both Tim and Nick attack the "whickety-whack." I like the camaraderie with these two. The next guy...okay, deep breath. The guy kind of looks like Prince circa Purple Rain, which might sound like a good thing, but is not. His model was born a man and is over twenty feet tall and wearing an enormous copper gown. Tim asks if the look is so great that it's worth three, because apparently Bat Dance only brought the one enormous gown. The model looks really pissed off. Tim explains that they are looking for more mature designers. Nick adds that he might want to bring in something less dramatic next time. Bat Dance shoots him a look a silently exits with his portfolio and bodyguard...er, model. Nick says he was waiting for the guy to be all, "You weren't even one of the three finalists!" Then, in unison, Tim and Nick say, "Miss Thang!" Gotta love that shit.
Heidi asks Tim who they found in Chicago, and he introduces us to Kayne Gillaspie. We see a clip from his bio video in which he has created a dress with ostrich feathers...for his tiny dog. He was a vet's assistant for four years and has moved on to become "the youngest pageantwear designer in the pageant industry." It looks like he might also be the youngest owner of cheek implants on Project Runway, but that might just be the makeup he's wearing. He co-owns a prom/pageant boutique in Norman, Oklahoma. Back to his video, where he is leading a tour of his store in Norman. The walls are all pink, and a lot of the dresses are as well. He feigns finding a wire hanger and does his best Faye Dunaway. I think maybe Kayne's gayness alone cancels out the two straight guys we've already met. His model at the audition is wearing a pageant dress, and Kayne remarks that pageant girls "like the sparkle." Lilah Schechner, from Elle, is judging with Tim and Nick and says kind of sweetly, "You like it, too." Kayne admits that he does, and says that his favorite person is Dolly Parton. Tim says that he hates the clothes, but loves the Kayne of Many Colors. Back at the table, Michael says that the dresses look really constructed. Tim agrees -- "They're made like death." Nina notes, though, that the pageant industry is a serious business and that there is a place for everyone.