After all the fuss to get here, the Project Runway finale felt a little lackluster to me. Maybe it’s because the winner was obvious from the start – as soon as Kini Zamora was in trouble, Sean Kelly was the obvious front runner. Of course, maybe I just feel weird because I ended up wanting Amanda to win. I know, I know, I’m confused, too. But it’s the truth! After seeing all four final collections at Fashion Week, Tim Gunn may have been in tears (Tim Gunn is always in tears) but I was in shock. Char Glover’s collection might be the most ready to wear, but it was Amanda Valentine who showed the clearest point of view.
Um…go to New York Fashion Week, show a 10-piece collection and win Project Runway. You know, easy peasy.
The biggest drama coming out of last week’s Part I episode came from Kini – the judges really hated the preview of his collection and he was essentially forced to start from scratch. Fortunately for Kini, he’s the fastest tailor in the west (east?) and he gets busy reworking his pieces in no time at all. The jacket they hated? Gone! The old lady top? Cropped! Soon, he’s on his way to a younger, fresher collection.
Tim blesses everyone with $300 and a trip to Mood, which they are thrilled to receive, though Amanda chooses to stay back and not let the trip distract her vision. See, she’s focused! Meanwhile, Tim encourages Char to scrap her teal fluffy dress and the pink jumpsuit and Sean decides that he needs another non-fringe piece to even out his show. They all head to Mood. From there, it’s smooth sailing, except for Char who scrambles for time. At the last minute, she decides to include the teal floof number after all.
The final critique
Again, like last week, I’m just going to go through each finalist’s critique. Regular judges Heidi Klum, Zac Posen and Nina Garcia are joined by Emmy Rossum (Shameless) to give their opinions on each collection and overall, they were very pleased with the showing.
Char: The judges love Char’s eye for color and her fun, sexy vibe, although they think she’s trying a little too hard. I disagree with that, but I do think she lacks originality. I love Char’s sense of style, but I could find half of her pieces at Forever 21, you know? Nina hates the “tissue box” top (I do, too) and Heidi dislikes the upholstery fabric used on her final look. Emmy Rossum loves the black and white two-piece (I do, too) and everyone agrees that her hoodie dress was a great addition. Ultimately, though, the judges think she’s a little too confused in her vision. It seems like this collection is for two different women. Of course, this lands her in fourth place.
Kini: Everyone is monumentally impressed with what Kini is able to pull off in less than 24 hours. I mean honestly, he did a lot. It’s crazy bananas. That being said, the judges aren’t as wowed as they want to be – and neither am I. Considering how I thought of Kini as a front runner all season, I was surprised to see how…boring his collection turned out? I mean, look at his pieces and then look at Sean’s collection. Lots of similarities, no? The deep-V dress, the midriff-baring cropped jacket? Hmm. Strange. He’s usually more original than that. Maybe it was the time crunch? I don’t know. The judges think he’s immensely talented, but he has too many ideas. Zac Posen thinks he needs an editor. Kini places third.
Amanda: This is where I realized that I wanted Amanda to win. It was scary and weird and I still don’t know how to cope with these emotions, but I feel like I have to be honest, here. I wanted Amanda Valentine to win Project Runway. There, I said it. You know who didn’t want her to win? The judges. I just don’t get it – they have nothing negative to say. Nina thinks the collection is effortless. Zac thinks her woman is accessible and chic. Heidi wants to buy every dress on the runway and Zac thinks the jewelry is ready to be sold in stores and he wants to see it at Opening Ceremony (the fashion designers, not the Olympics). Nina even compares her collection to Stella McCartney’s work at Chloe. I mean…so then she doesn’t win? Okay, sure.
Sean: Fringe. Did you know about the fringe? Sean has fringe! It’s the fall of Caesar and it’s fringe-tastic. Zac declares that Sean is “the whole package,” and Nina thinks that his collection is the most editorial of the competition. I agree with that and I also admire his ability to tell a story, even if it feels a little trite to me. Yes, the fall of Caesar is trite. Sorry, not sorry. The judges are super impressed with his taste level and “wow” moments. I am still – still! – not into the fringe, but I admit that his collection looks expensive and sophisticated. Definitely the classiest of the bunch. However, I feel like Sean’s not quite there…his supposed high art is a little pedestrian? I know that’s harsh, but fringe is a very hot trend right now and he went to Rome and did a collection about the most famous story from Roman history. Not really groundbreaking stuff. But hey, I guess I’m in the minority. Sean wins!
What do you think – did the right designer win?