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Dept. of what is this I don't even

Fashion - One Day You're In, The Next You're Stupid
I used to love Project Runway, back when it was on Bravo. Yes, I wear jeans and untucked old shirts more often than I ever wear stylish clothes - hello, middle-aged spread - but fashion fascinates me. And Project Runway is the only competition-based reality show that seemed to put at least as much emphasis on real talent as it did on carefully maneuvered and edited drama. (No, Top Chef doesn't count. I can't judge food that's only pixels to me.)

In fact, I loved Project Runway enough that I tuned out the last couple of seasons more because of scheduling conflicts than any unhappiness with it, or its move to Lifetime. Hey, as long as Tim Gunn still presided, gentle, elegant and brilliant, over the workroom and the designers' hearts, souls, and taste levels, I was happy. I'd even learned to deal with Michael Kors' bitchiness, Nina Garcia's capricious standards and Heidi Klum's occasionally cold-eyed world view. So I was pleased this season, when I was able to catch at least a third of the episodes.

That included the last two before the two-part finale, and, of course, Thursday night's finale.

Aaaand, the winner is .... Gretchen? Seriously?

As far as I can see, we can blame a) judges on crack, b) judges on horse tranquilizers  or c) winners with mob ties.* Mondo should have won, with his sophistication, wit and design intelligence; Andy should have come in second, with his nuanced approach to drape, cut, and mastery of gorgeous textiles. Gretchen, whose lines were awkward, boring, ugly and ... brown?

What is this I don't even ....

Over on TWoP, one member of Gretchen's notably sparse fan club tried to support the judge's decision by tossing off an ill-conceived and (to my ear) unconsciously borderline homophobic comment that suggested Gretchen, like other woman designers, designed for real women, while designers like Alexander McQueen (or, presumably, Mondo) dressed their models "like drag queens."

My response? "
As a real woman, I'd rather be dressed as a drag queen than a bag lady. One has style and verve. The other has ... bags."

*All of which were suggested over on TWoP, although folks said Tim had actually been quoted as suggesting the judges had been on crack. While it's hard for me to see Gunn ever being undecorous enough to say something of that sort, this decision could well have driven him to do so.



( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 29th, 2010 07:28 am (UTC)
Um, listen - you might want to put this behind a cut? I haven't had a chance to watch the finale yet, and I'm sure I'm not the only one.
Oct. 29th, 2010 07:40 am (UTC)
Ack. I'm sorry ... here I was, thinking that I'd been good by waiting for the West Coast feed. I need to think beyond these shores, and the cut has now been employed. Thanks!
Oct. 29th, 2010 07:46 am (UTC)
No probs! I'm not too fussed about knowing who wins - this season has been really wracking to watch, so it takes a little of the stress out of it for me. But thanks for putting in the cut. (And for thinking of us in foreign lands!)
Oct. 29th, 2010 06:54 pm (UTC)
I agree. I loved it when Heidi told Michael Kors that out of the four of them two women would wear the dress(they were arguing about). Exactly. I wouldn't wear Gretchen's clothes on a bet for the most part. The most exciting part was the back cutting on them and it was the same for all of the pieces!

I miss Mondo already. I hope he goes on to do other great things. I found him on Facebook and sent him a message saying so.:)
Oct. 29th, 2010 08:47 pm (UTC)
I think the most exciting thing about the show was the incredibly spirited discussion between the judges (and I was impressed (!) with Jessica Simpson's comments. Digressing slightly, I was reminded about TV time warps and how some people still don't realize they exist. Some commenters said 'OMG, she's so fat!' because her hairdo and dress were unflattering. They hadn't realized that she has lost considerably weight since the finale was filmed, back months ago.)

Gretchen's back cutting was, for me, one of the most unflattering aspects of her styles. It was, to my eyes, far busier than any of the layered print work Mondo did. You're right that Mondo deserves to go far.
Oct. 29th, 2010 08:25 pm (UTC)
The next time someone asks you, "Hey, howdja get to be a homosexual anyway?" tell them, "Homosexuals are chosen first on talent, then interview... then the swimsuit and evening gown competition pretty much gets rid of the rest of them."
-- Karen Williams

(Yeah, it's not precisely on topic, but I found it recently and liked it.)
Oct. 29th, 2010 08:49 pm (UTC)
I love answers like that. It's even more on target than the response to "Where do you get your ideas/inspiration?"

Oct. 31st, 2010 03:27 pm (UTC)
long comment is long
I finally got to see it last night--that was ridiculous. If Mondo wasn't going to win (which someone spoiled me about, thanks facebook), which he should have, I wish it had been Andy. His show was pretty monochrome, and the headpieces were wacky, but it's not like it's OH SO MUCH MORE wacky than other things seen at Fashion Week.

But anyway--Gretchen's stuff was so ugly. As I said to a friend: " blah blah "Gretchen is where fashion is going right now" blah blah blah. Why do you tell them to embrace their own aesthetic if all you want is basically someone who can predict what's going to be at the Gap next year? That's crap, man." It was too casual, and it was nearly as monochrome as Andy's, and there was no variety, really.

I loved Mondo's clothes, I don't think they looked circus, and I would totally wear that short bubble dress. And it frustrates me a lot that both Heidi and Jessica were like "THIS IS AWESOME WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU" and yet he still lost.

I wouldn't be too surprised if Tim had actually said they were on crack. He has been extra truthful this season--yelling at Gretchen is one of the more awesome things that comes to mind. And his ideas and encouragement have been at odds with the judges once or twice.

And I'd also like to say that it is, in fact, very true that aggressive women are often called "bitches" when they are acting the same exact way as men who are considered good leaders. It sucks. However, that is not what was going on with Gretchen. Gretchen was mean, judgmental, and manipulative, and talked behind people's backs. "It's just my opinion"--that doesn't mean it's not cruel and that people don't get to judge you for the way you express it. Ivy is in the same boat, though when she came back she seriously crossed the line. Poor Michael C--I don't love his clothes, but he wasn't as bad as everyone said and he didn't deserve it.
Oct. 31st, 2010 07:39 pm (UTC)
Re: long comment is long
I know, right?

Take Mondo's evening dress. The long polka-dot gown that Nina and Kors both dumped on, repeatedly, was a show-stopper in my books, both times he showed it. My husband, who watches only sporadically, saw it, and we agreed that it was the best kind of fashion. Worn by a very slender person, it would imbue them with presence and an elegant sense of humor and drama (those lines were gorgeous, no doubt about it.) Worn by someone like us folks in the real world, even people who carry around loads and loads more pounds than our culture tells us they should could wear this as a deliberate, and laughingly powerful, spit in the eye of that culture.

I actually liked the last couple of weeks' worth of Michael C's work. I liked it a lot.

As for Gretchen? Two words.

Granny. Panties.
Nov. 1st, 2010 01:43 am (UTC)
Re: long comment is long
UGH the granny panties.

And you know, you're right--I have actually been liking Michael's stuff lately. Sometimes he just needs to learn to edit--like the couture dress, if he had killed that train, it would have been really cool. I felt so bad for him when he got eliminated.

That polka dot dress looked like it totally would have been slimming, too! That sort of shaped panel on the front is good for that. It was cute, and Michael and Nina are dumb.
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )

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