They may have jostled each other to reach the swings at Kowhai Park once upon a time although they have no recollection of it now.
"It was great fun meeting up with Kerry - we're similar ages and found we have a lot in common," said Barnett.
"He's obviously a very talented and super nice guy."
While Ranginui stands to win a Holden Astra and a cash prize of $50,000 on his show, Barnett is competing just for the kudos.
"I'm really impressed that Kerry is on a reality show where there is a 'chunk of change' at stake yet he's still passing on his industry knowledge and helping others."
Ranginui was equally impressed with Barnett, describing him as a very "genuine bloke".
"He is a very passionate baker and we had heaps to talk about because I qualified as a pastry chef and spent years working in hospitality while studying fashion.
"I think we each admire the other's drive to succeed in our chosen fields."
There was also the shared memories of Whanganui childhoods and the chance to share "a few war stories" about their reality TV experiences.
In episode six of Project Runway NZ, Ranginui once again made it safely through to the next round after creating a high-end fashion look influenced by wallpaper designs.
"It was super stressful - we only had a budget of $150 and there was a lot of painting involved to create a high fashion look."
And Barnett passed muster in Episode four of The Great Kiwi Bake Off although he struggled a bit with the bread themed challenges and forgot to salt his hand-made butter.
"I was almost 'sconeski' with my signature bake but live to fight another day."
In their day jobs, Ranginui is a pattern maker for world-renowned designer Karen Walker and Barnett is a TV producer for Sky Sport as well as being a dad to 2-year-old daughter Isabelle.
Project Runway: Mondays 7.30pm on TVNZ 2. The Great Kiwi Bake Off: Tuesdays 7.30pm on TVNZ 2.