Was It a Good Idea For the Models to Buy Fabrics on Behalf of the Designers? For the first time in Project Runway history, the designers were not allowed to purchase their own fabrics. Gasp! Instead, the models they picked at the start of the episode did the shopping for them. And they weren't allowed to buy just any fabric; it had to be environmentally friendly. While some designers were impressed by their models' selections, others were stumped and unable to use most of what was in front of them.