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Project Runway Episode 12: “In a Place Far, Far Away”

Sonjia gets leafy inspiration for the 12th challenge on Project Runway's 10th season.

What’s your definition of avant-garde?

According to Fairchild’s Fashion Dictionary (one of the many references we have in the library here at Threads) it’s  “Forward thinking or advanced; when referring to art or costume, sometimes implies erotic or startling.” It’s derived from the French for “advance guard.”

The Project Runway designers struggled with the definition and the execution of avant-garde looks – plus trying to guess what the judges’ definition of avant-garde is – on the most recent episode. The basis of the challenge was a new L’Oreal make-up collection, Electric Fantasie. Within the line, key products are tied to four personas: the Enchanted Queen, the Seductive Temptress (that one’s a bit redundant, don’t you agree?), the Wise Mystic, and the Artsy Muse. 

This episode left us with the four finalist designers, who all presented collections during Fashion Week. 

The guest judge was actress Zoe Saldana, who’s rumored to be in the upcoming “Avatar 2.” 

On to the results and the designs!

The winner

Dmitry won! He’s been something of a dark horse, but his work has started to be more impressive as the season has progressed. Here’s his look for a Wise Mystic:

The loser

Sonjia was sent home, just short of reaching the Fashion Week finals level. Here is her Seductive Temptress look:

The rest of the Fashion Week contenders

Christopher, Fabio, and Melissa all got to have Bryant Park shows as well as Dmitry.

Christopher’s Enchanted Queen design:

Fabio’s Enchanted Queen design:

Melissa’s Artsy Muse design:

What did you think?

Did you think the designers answered the challenge for “avant-garde” looks?

There has been a lot of fan uproar about the judges’ decision to keep Melissa – and send Sonjia home. How did you feel about their choice?

What was your least-favorite design?

Which designer’s collection are you most excited about seeing at the Fashion Week episodes?

What’s your winner prediction? 


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  1. sews4fun | | #1

    I too was shocked when they sent Sonjia home but I did not feel Melissa should have gotten the axe (although I was not fond of her look), I just thought Fabio's was awful!
    Or, as my husband so eloquently put it:
    "You mean the Psycho in the dress won?"
    Heide even said, since they all liked what was shown, they had to go back on the previous designs and like her, I could not think of a single look that Fabio put down the runway, nothing he made was remarkable to me in any way and I thought for sure he would be cut last night.
    I feel that Dmitry deserved to go to fahion week and probably Christopher as well but the other two should have been Melissa and sonjia. I see they are going to cut another designer next week even though 4 won so, who knows? Maybe they will cut Fabio next week?
    I did think Melissa was in trouble this week and like Heidi, didn't understand why all the other judges were so happy with her look, I hated the skirt especially.
    Christopher's was a halloween costume, Fabio's was an abomination, sonjia's wasn't great with that odd colored spanx stuff on it but it wasn't even close to Fabio's. I thought Dmitry's was okay, not avant garde, but okay although I think the usher's at the movies used to wear those didn't they? Bottom line, the collar was NOT attractive. Still, he didn't have a lot of competition on this particular challenge.

  2. Cherlyn | | #2

    I really felt that Sonjia should have been kept over Melissa. Sonjia has been more creative and she knows how to pace herself. I think she would have ensured that a female would have shown at fashion week. I don't have faith in Melissa caring this off and I really feel she'll be eliminated.

    As for the men; Dimitry once again shows his talent as a designer. I agreed the collar took away from the design. I liked Christopher's dress and I had to agree that the feathers on the arms made it go the costume route. I didn't care for Fabio's flip jacket --- I think the entire look was odd.

    My least favorite was Melissa's. Ially cannot determine the winner at this point. I think Christopher and Diitry are the strongest leaders at this point.

  3. Ikebana152 | | #3

    I agree with sew4fun - not a lot of competition. Most of it was not avant garde.

    Sonja's concept was in the right direction, but the execution with that hideous mesh was sad. She probably would have created a wonderful fashion week collection but i do agree that her dress this week was a loser.

    Dimitri's execution was perfection, but the collar was just weird. Christophers victorian goth was well done but not avant garde. I don't know what to think about Fabio - outside the box but limited appeal. I think Melissa may surprise us when she is not faced with the time constraints of the daily competitions. I liked the skirt.

    I wouldn't guess who is going to win. If it's wearable for most women, the judges will hate it. I think there wil be well executed designs - but none of them will rise to the level of "next great American designer" potential.

  4. sewful | | #4

    I am SO disappointed that they sent Sonjia home. Frankly, she was one of the best. I didn't really like any of the work this week, but her dress was certainly not the worst. Dimitry's suit was just a suit version of the dresses he's been making all season. He just added that goth collar to it. I like him and think he is talented but that was nothing special. I'm really feeling like this show is rigged.

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