Project Runway: We’re in a New York State of Mind
We’ve finally reached the end of the road for the designers in the Parsons workrooms and had their last runway show. For the inspiration this time around, they were to use the city of New York as directed by Mayor Bloomberg himself.
The designers seemed a little punch drunk at this point, and not entirely focused on the task at hand. It appears as though this challenge is always when the designers drop the ball every season, and hardly anyone has any steam left to really produce the “wow factor” the judges are looking for. Perhaps they should have been given more than one night in the luxury sweet to recharge their batteries, or simply not given such a vague challenge.
In the end, Gretchen, Andy, Michael C., and Mondo were all sent away with dreams of Fashion Week still in their heads. April unfortunately was sent home as the latest loser.
So, what do you think? Was April’s design and repeat black color palette enough to send her packing? Who do you think will be in the final three spots? And what do you think about Michael C not even knowing what fabric type his dress was made from?
Andy's dress inspired by Central Park.
April's losing dress
Michael C's winning dress made from the mystery fabric.
I'm so glad Michael C. got his props last night. It should be fun to watch the adversaries Gretchen and Michael end up. I predict Mondo will win however.
I hope Gretchen goes home a loser. I am tired of hearing her opinion of everything. Her clothes are boring and ugly. She can dish the criticism but can't take it. She has been my lease favorite on the show. I hope Mondo wins.
I also dislike Gretchen completely. I wish April had not gone home; I would have rather have seen her collection (no matter how Frederick's of Hollywood it may be)than see Gretchen's dowdy/hippie/confusing/ugly/sad concoction of fabric she might throw together. I hate her attitude; she is stuck up, spoiled, and has a big ego for such little talent or taste. I do not like Michael C. I think Christian hit the nail on the head when he suggested Michael "accidently" made that so-called show stopper. I did not like the black amorphous blob he produced. It was too shapeless and unflattering. I liked Mondo's dress the best, and Andy's was good too, but also predictable. I guess I like clothes with more structure and taste than the judges of Project Runway.
Well Well, looks like Michael C is not so easily dismissed! Good for him! I was SO ANGRY last week that I was YELLING at my television set! Poison Ivy had to let the world know one last time what an immature, bitter and nasty little B with an itch she is (not that everyone didn't already know that ) I was SO proud of Michael C not being nice for once and giving her a little taste of her own medicine! I could NOT BELIEVE April actually congratulated that nasty little shrew for calling Michael C a cheater! I am glad she went home this week! While I agree that April sends the same outfit down the runway every week, "Fredericks of Hollywood short shorts and long night gown" outfit, is this honestly the FIRST time the judges NOTICED THAT? I mean, have they been asleep the rest of the season? What about Gretchen with that ugly eighties skirt and blah top? The only thing interesting was the jacket and that wasn't a big deal either! She said Michael C was an idiot or a savant idiot, wonder who she thinks is the idiot now that Michael C beat her? Speaking of Michael C, I don't know why it matters that he didn't know what his fabric was, maybe he lets the fabric "speak" to him and thats what is most important, isn't that true for any real artist? The only thing I worry about when I buy fabric is one, is it suitable for the garment and two, is it washable? I would have liked to have seen Michael C keep that vest thinggy he was weaving, I thought it was intriguing and added some much needed punch to the dress. I know it was draped nicely and all that but to me, it was plain. I think the last three standing will be Mondo, Andy and I thought Gretchen would be the third but now Im not so certain. Of course Mondo will win, did I detect a note of professional jealousy from Christian Seriano when he was critiquing Mondo's look? He was very polite and easy on the remarks with the rest of them but he reserved his praise when it came to Mondo. Let me say this here and now, if Gretchen wins, I will eat my sewing machine!
Looking forward to learning more about sewing. I love to quilt i have been doing it for about two years now but want to learn more on designing clothes along with quilting. I believe Mondo will win, but so happy for Micheal C. Gretchen goes on this next one.
I hope Mondo wins too. I think he has the most creativity and who knows what he can do given more time to produce a line. I think he will be the one to actually carry a theme.
While I am happy for Michael C on his continued success, I feel he is not capable of making anything that really fits to flatter. Most his things involve drap. The weaving pattern he did has been done before on the show so I was a bit surprised nothing was said about that from the judges.
I like Andy's dress, mostly because of the back detailing made it somewhat unexpected. It was looking so predictable and then the model turns and that detailing was a nice surprise.
I don't know hat Gretchen is doing anymore. Her things are really ugly! That skirt was one of the worst things she has made. It ranks right up there with the robe she made with al the strings attached to it (and the judges thought it was great). I don't think she will get to be in the final three.
I was a little disappointed for April, but her continued black theme throughout the show was a mistake on her part. I sort of liked the dress she made. I thought it was more interesting than Michael C's. She has talent, but she needs to find some color in her life. She is young enough to have been in the crowd of teens that was influenced by the black clothing; Hot Topic look. Slap on the mesh hose and a mesh glove, dark eyeshadow and bright red lips---Halloween!
I am afraid that Michael C. staying has more to do with keeping an underdog than an actual designer with immediate potential. I do like his personality and he could be a good designer. Just not a "New York fashion week" designer - yet. Maybe in a couple of years. He does deserve a chance but certainly can't win over Mondo or Andy or even Gretchen (once she gets to do her own things). About Gretchen, her personality was probably worsen by editing. Don't forget they are making a tv SHOW. The producers want drama because they think that is why we watch the show. And Ivy really seams to be bitchy but she might have been given info about Micheal C. (that he told people not not vote for her, the sticky tape, etc - by the producers?) in order to create some drama.
Mondo will win - And he TOTALLY deserves it!
Strongly dislike Gretchen and therefore can barely look at her designs. Am feeling the same way about Michael Kors at this point and won't look at his stuff in the store.
I still think that Gretchen was kept on only because she has so much mouth and creates so much drama. This season has, at least to me, not been too much competition. I don't know what the big deal is about the mystery fabric with Michael C; I buy fabric all the time without knowing the fibre content. I don't dry clean much anyway as far as work clothes so it's pretty much a given to me that I'm not washing it. I buy fabric with my fingers and eyes, feel and sight. From there and depending on what I think I might make I judge the weight and heft, width, pattern (I have so many adjustments to make for fitting (large bust, stomach, rear, stance) so things have to be longer in some areas, shorter in others that crosswise patterns (stripes, checks, etc.) are always something I have to consider if it will be worth the effort and will I be able to successfully match. But if all of those things satisfy me, I buy the fabric.
The show used to be about creativity, now it's more personality driven. I thought you used to at least be assured that at the end the ones remaining would put on a competitive runway show worth looking at. Now, well it's pretty much between Mondo and the others and since I'm mystified about why Gretchen is still around with her often near the bottom finishes, who knows what their judging criteria is.
It surprised me that April was sent home when Gretchen made the worst look--and has made a few losers already. I didn't love April's dress, or even much like it, but it at least had some actual design and drama. It seems unfair that now, after all the weeks of her sameness, the judges suddenly complain and kick her off. Andy's dress wasn't too different from some of his earlier work...and same with Mondo and Michael. Gretchen did try to step out of her comfort zone (at least that's her story, and she's sticking to it!), and got criticized for it.
I'm guessing Michael C's dress garnered all the praise because everything else was pretty humdrum. (Correction: Mondo and Andy made very viable garments--just not super wow-factors for me.) His black gown was the sort of thing that looks actually easy to wear, with just the right blend of drama (low back, high slit) and safeness (unfitted silhouette and basic black color), and might well be quite saleable. But was it original design? I don't see it. I still see Mondo as the most original designer of the bunch.
As for fashion week, I secretly think Gretchen could do a pretty good show, much as I disliked her on-screen persona. She didn't seem to take well to the challenges (as she pointed out this week!), and might do better when left to her own devices. She seems to have a one-track mind (Me, me, me, me, my taste, my ideas, my palette, my silhouetts, me, me, me), and that inflexibility, along with her exhaustion, was probably her downfall. That is, it would have been her downfall this week if the judges/producers hadn't pre-determined that Gretchen must stay in order to maintain the desired level of drama.
Being out of the workshop, I think everyone will see that Miss
Gretchen got lucky in the beginning and any talent that chanced
out of her is gone. Without being able to stir up drama, her
usefulness is gone. Mondo will rise to the top on this next
I agree that the show is edited for drama. I am not sure I would want cameras following me around all day. I really would like to see more of the construction and planning that is needed to create a garment.
As to who is going to win Fashion Week, I think it will be the one who creates the best "show." Two seasons ago, I was quite annoyed that Irina won because she had a dramatic show with those odd little hats and mainly gray clothing. I did not think her collection was better than Carol Hannah's. Seth Aaron won with a highly flashy and somewhat stylized show. So whoever puts together a "SHOW" will win.
In regard to the garments this week, I really liked Gretchen's. To me it was wearable. I like the lines in the skirt. The jacket had an interesting design. What she made was fashonable for women who go to work in the real world, not "Sex and the City" world. I think the judges have different standards. She did really try to step out of her comfort zone, which is something they ask of everyone. When Gretchen does, she is criticized for not staying true to herself.
I did like Mondo's dress from the front. However, what woman wants her bottom to look so pronounced with the white and black hounds tooth and curved black seat?
I have not liked most of "Frederick's of Hollywood" April, nor in your face, edgie Andy( I did like his resort wear and thought he should have beaten April). I am not sure about Michale C.'s work. He does seem to be hit or miss with his creations. I wonder what things he will create for his show.
Yes, Props to MichaelC for his beautiful goddess gown. I agree that the slit was a bit high, and it figures that Heidi says she'd wear it just like that. For most women, even if they keep their weight down close to where they were as young ladies, the back and the legs are the last things to go, so good for him not emphasizing cleavage. Mondo's dress was so him, very cute, but as someone wrote above, his day dress didn't have the wow factor. I also agree that Gretchen should have gone home - of all the remaining designers, her clothes have most consistently come off like mall-wear, or as one of the judges put it, looking like they were directly off the rack. While it might get her hired at Jones New York, I think that aside from putting on the best show, the majority of the winners have always been pretty fashion forward. Gretchen's clothes have NEVER been fashion forward. Personality issues aside, her work may be beautifully made, but it's very pedestrian. If they were going to criticize April for repeats (at least that's how the edited version appears - who knows what has been said to her that hasn't made it to the broadcast) - it should have applied to Andy as well. Although if I remember correctly, someone did say something about fewer warrior woman looks on the runway.
What's bugging me? If Michael Costello was the clear winner of this episode's challenge, and if Mondo has been consistent with his work (which he has), is it me or is it supposed to be a four way walk-off to get the third judged spot at Fashion Week? Are Gretchen and Andy competing against each other, or is it indeed all four? I'm bothered by this because again, I think Gretchen's work is too boring to deserve the third spot. My suspicion is that because the majority of the audience is female, the producers are concerned about having an all male finale. It was o.k. in the L.A. season to have all female designers competing against each other for Fashion Week, but someone somewhere feels that they've got to have at least one chick in the top three or they'll offend their audience. They could have taken a chance with April, but I think that Mondo is this year's design prodigy, and that he'll walk off with the big prize. April and Andy would have been competing with each other for most edgy, and looked to be two of a kind, so I fear that they're trying to get three distinctive points of view, and trying to find some way to make the undeserving, opinionated Gretchen stay. Personally, I think it will be Mondo #1, fingers crossed Michael #2, and Andy #3. I think Michael does beautiful resort wear - that's his Palm Springs clientele. I think that April and Andy could both end up as house designers for Hot Topic, with April having the edge there. I'm sort of over Andy's dragon lady Asian inspired tough chick looks, but his construction is beautiful.
The other thing that bugs me. I finally got around to doing some searches for NY Fashion Week, and PR sent 10 collections out on the runway! SEVEN friggin' decoys!!! Which makes me feel especially angry at the drama spewed out of my television screen this season. We have had to put up with all of the backstabbing immaturity and machinations of people who are 30 going on 13. All crying about "my dream," "my spot," "my talent." While they may not be eligible for the big cash prize, not to mention the prestige that goes with being named the winner, those nasty jerks still get rewarded for their appalling behavior by still being allowed to show at Fashion Week. I was thinking it would only be the top six. What a crock. Why are the producers making us sit through this junior high grade drama, when the real cheaters end up prospering this way? I'm feeling manipulated and just about over PR. If it weren't for Tim Gunn, I wouldn't bother watching at all.
I wish April would have stayed too. I liked one outfit that Gretchen produced, I think it was the first one, and none since then. She also needs to learn to take criticism. I think in the end it will be Mondo who wins. I like Michael C's attitude alot and either love his clothes or don't love them so much sometimes but I do think he deserves to beat Gretchen. The whole idea of Project Runway to me is that the clothes on the runway are wearable but not something you can just go buy at the mall.Go Mondo!!!
I truly think that Gretchen has been especially saved to be the very last person to be 'taken down' by the Challenges, just BECAUSE she has been the loudest, most vociferous, Big Mouth we've seen in ages!
April wouldn't have been as fitting a climax to the eliminations as Gretchen will be this Thursday!
As they are already sewing for sizes 0 and 2, why was it necessary for Gretchen's skirt to form so many wide & deep wrinkles across both the front and back of that skirt???? Why must everything be too too skin-tight?
Andy's & Mondo's were very body-skimming without binding. Gretchen will go, then Michael; it will be Andy & Mondo, the most creative designers and the two with the best technical sewing skills at Fashion Week.
As for the tape - there were shiny strips showing all along the edges of a red-haired model's bodice about 3 or 4 seasons ago, with very little flak.
It's been done before and will be done again... unfortunately... who's to say...???.... we weren't there?
I think Mondo and Andy are the most talented, versatile designers and sewists. Frankly, I was surprised that the judges raved about Michael C's dress as much as they did because it just didn't seem all that unique in styling to me. What's so different and unusual about his halter neckline? In fact, from the front, it struck me throughout the show that Gretchen was wearing the same, or a very similarly-designed halter blouse. Anyway, for me, Michael's dress had strong echoes of minimalist Halston styles from way back when.
The true talent of this years group is Mondo - hands down. Michael C is my second choice. I agree with SewLuck09- I like more structure and taste than what the other designers have shown this season. I'm pretty fed up with Heidi's attitude along with Gretchen's know-it-all-whiney-ass-attitude. We need new judges. This has to be very frustrating for the serious designers- remember Mondo being upset with Queen Heidi? Next season, lets hope for new judges - a new queen - and let the designers really SHOW what they can do. And I dont mean designing for QueenHeidi's "line" - what a nerve. This could be my last season watching PR too. Yuk !
The true talent of this years group is Mondo - hands down.(Tho I wasnt crazy about his dress this episode). Michael C is my second choice - loved his halter dress this episode. I agree with SewLuck09- I like more structure and taste than what the other designers have shown this season. I'm pretty fed up with Heidi's attitude along with Gretchen's know-it-all-whiney-ass-attitude. We need new judges. This has to be very frustrating for the serious designers- remember Mondo being upset with Queen Heidi? Next season, lets hope for new judges - a new queen - and let the designers really SHOW what they can do. And I dont mean designing for QueenHeidi's "line" - what a nerve. This could be my last season watching PR too. Yuk !
well, here's my two cents - I too realize that there needs to be drama on the show, BUT . . . . . talent shouldn't be sacrificed for it. Everyone should know that they are "on display" I got so tired of Michael C. being slammed - and as was said on the last show, does it really matter if he doesn't know what the fabric is, when he obviously knows what to do with it?! The attitude of some of the others was so immature - and it is to Mondo's credit that he was able to realize there was a lot more to Michael C. and change his mind.
On a completely different thread - there are probably many of us watching this show who are not in our 20's, skinny, really long legged, and couldn't fit into most of these fashions regardless of how fashionable we are. It would be really great if the industry would get real about it and have these designers create fashions for a more realistic figure - I remember one designer complaining about a model's bust size as too big - and she wasn't out of proportion. I would love to wear some of these designs created by these talented people, but, if produced, would probably not be in any size bigger than a 12.
I so agree with fabriclover007.....I have a Michael Kors jacket that I will donate to a thrift shop.....what a nasty S.O.B. I'm not sure why the producers allow him to be so rude and obnoxious when critiquing a garment he doesn't like. Mondo is my favorite and I'm sure he will be the winner. Michael C's dress has been done hundreds of times...I was not wowed by it. Andy is good, although I saw nothing relating to Central Park and Gretchen's Lower East Side garment looks like it was inspired by the Lower East Side of 50 years ago....certainly not the upscale LES of today.
Maybe Andre Leon Tally should replace Michael Kors....get another perspective and a nicer person to judge.
I was surprised they loved Michael C's so much...I thought they would have said it was nothing new for him. I hope (and think) Mondo will win, and it makes me so happy to see how much he's opened up since the beginning. :)
I have been waiting forever for the judges to send Ivy and Gretchen home, and I'm only halfway there. I sincerely hope both of these little girls see themselves in a new and more illuminating way after this season ends. Hopefully it will make them want to be better people, not designers. I'm so disappointed this season with the stupid drama - like they were making up for big having the models drama before.
Liked Michael's dress but think there was too much movement and a tad too low in the back. Though Andy does good work I didn't care for the matrix dress. Ive liked April a little more than most of the girls (too many divas this year) so I was sad to see her go and not Gretchen. April's model looked preggo in that dress. If the waistline wouldn't have been slanted it would have helped.
I really hope next year they will find some more designers who are gave a higher Emotional IQ and stay away from the same reality tv drama and focus more on the challenges. The judges have list their objectivity and haven't mentored them well this year either.
The designers need to get some fashion advice for themselves.
I repeat, all designs are ugly, and only those who believe in the reality of 'the emperor's clothes' can call these creations by any other adjective.
I'm watching the model walk down the runway in Michael C's gown and think -- "she's pretty full-figured for a runway model", then of course she isn't, it's the dress. Clothes don't have to be form fitting to be flattering and this isn't. It may be well made, but it is boring.
One of these years, the challenges are all going to have to include "No black" in the instructions.
I still don't know what the judges see in Michael Costello. I don't think he is the devil incarnate like Gretchen seems to, but he just doesn't come up with interesting clothes.
Gretchen is a bad joke: I think she's making some kind of upscale grunge or hippie redux, but someone should tell her not everyone in the world lives in Portland. I like having a contestant around to create some human drama but the producers should, by the end of the season, make sure that fashion week is strictly about the fashion. If they were doing their jobs, Gretchen would have been gone. At least April designs.
Mondo and Andy are both very interesting and I have no problem with them going to fashion week.
And to whoever was complaining about so many contestants getting to do decoy collections, that is purely a factor of the timing. If Fashion Week is going to be in the middle of the Project Runway season, everyone still in the game as the shows are being broadcast has to present a collection. Otherwise, we will all know who the final three or four are long before the season is over and Lifetime will lose a lot of viewers.
I was amazed at a few things here.
1. Michael admitted that he was pretty much making the Statue's dress, just in black, which I thought equaled cop-out and not actual designing.
2. If April was giving them the same thing over and over, why did they wait until the last challenge to call her on it? I mean, they never mentioned it before except as a good thing (i.e. "we can really see you in it")
3. If April is giving us the same thing, so is Andy, which the judges mentioned in the "are we only going to see more warrior women?"
4. Mondo's on a whole other level and I don't even really see it as a contest. I wish that he could just be given the prize and the others compete for a consolation prize.
5. Gretchen, like others have mentioned, is arrogant and stubborn and won't take any criticism, which has knocked out better designers in past seasons. Why not this season? I agree that perhaps the judges are looking more for drama between people than drama in clothes, which is very unfortunate. It appears Project Runway is selling out.
Soli -I just read your comments, and you are way too upset about this. It is a TV show - if it boils your blood maybe you should take the initiative and turn the TV off and find something more constructive to do. Nobody is "forcing" you to watch.
I absolutely LOVE Project Runway - it is my favorite show hands down, drama and all. This year we did not have the really good designers like we usually do, and I think the judges were going for drama more than the real deal, i.e. when April won the resortwear challenge???? But the show is interesting and I love the challenges and often do sketches and wish I had the time to try some of them myself. Sewing is my first love and anything and everything that has to do with it is enjoyable to me.
This last episode was a little disappointing, I always like when they wow us, and why is everything BLACK??? I really was looking forward to seeing some color. Maybe there will be another Uli next season, somebody has to put some color back in the show!
As for who should go to Fashion week, Mondo, Andy & Gretchen. I was a little taken aback with Michael not knowing what kind of fabric he used. Is there really anyone with any clue that doesn't know the difference between knit and woven????? I agree with Anza, that they kept Michael to somehow get under the other's skin. He really hasn't done one thing that I actually liked or would consider wearing. I don't believe he is a real designer and I am very anxious to see what kind of stuff he comes up with for the pre-fashion show strut-off. I will be very surprised if he makes it. At least Gretchen has a voice - you may not like, but at least it's there, you can tell it's hers, and she has done some really nice outfits - a couple that I would wear - BTW - I REALLY loved her jacket last week. Being a petite person, short & stylish are really hard to come by.
So may the best designer win!!! Let the games begin.....
Gretchen does have a voice. Unfortunately most of it is her mouth and not design talent. And I like sportswear which is supposed to be her forte'. I certainly can't afford nor buy couture clothing, but I've seen more "wow" in department store clothes. Things that I want to immediately purchase or at least replicate. None of her stuff has that appeal for me.
I can agree with others that this season has been sorely lacking in talent. So why do we keep watching? We keep hoping that somewhere buried in there someone is going to come up with a wow garment. I, at least used to see things that really made me want to be able to look at the garment to study it. This season though it has really been more personality driven than creative. How many times has Heidi said "so (fill in the blank name) how do you feel about that? It's usually after someone (usually Gretchen or when Ivy was still around) has insulted or trashed someone. What does that have to do with design and creativity? I thought we were watching a fashion/design show, not a "pile on the insults" show. Unfortunately it's not only the designers, as mentioned, the judges seem to be trying to outdo each other for laughs at the designers expense. I mentioned, I often watch just with the sound off because I want to see the clothes, not listen to nasty comments. Yes, there has always been creative tension between the designers but not at the level it's at this year.
Tim Gunn is the one shining light that they should go back to emulating. He offers constructive criticism, not just mean comments for laughs, guidance, not amusement at others expense.
I don't know if they felt they needed to inject this stuff in to boost ratings since they changed networks, but like many other shows, and perhaps their audience is shrinking, but if they dont' find some better talent or their way again they'll end up going by the wayside eventually.
There are a couple of aspects of the show this season that have stood out for me. The first is that the challenges seem harder and/or lamer than in the past. With shorter deadlines, and those added garments that pop up, it's more about surviving the strain than really doing excellent work. Under these circumstances, I don't know how anyone even completes a garment! It has never seemed quite to fraught in seasons past. While I can understand that the producers might want to increase the drama by upping the anxiety, I think they've reached a point of diminishing returns. I wouldn't care that much about the interpersonal drama (mostly it just bores me), but it's not accompanied by a corresponding increase in the quality of the designs.
The second is that there was a lot of time wasted in the early episodes on guest judges who didn't contribute much. Rachel Roy and Naeem Khan and Norma Kamali stood out for me as somewhat insightful; I expected more from Christian Siriano than we got...but of course a lot of this could easily be editing. It would be interesting to find out from the contestants which judges actually gave them useful criticism.
As phony as Gretchen sounded expressing her reverence for Tim Gunn last week, I could totally understand where she was coming from. He's the only voice of sanity!