Eliminated in Episode 9
It has to be said: Gunnar went to a borderline offensive place with his “tribal” collection, proving that skinny white southern boys are probably not in the best position to define this particular aesthetic. So I’ll get it out of the way now that I found the makeup and styling to be practically a racial slur, though I’m sure the young and inexperienced Gunnar had no bad intentions. We’ll all get very bored if I write this under every photo, so just know that it applies to his collection as a whole. As for this look: I find the drooping layers in the skirt very unflattering, and I think the proportions are a nightmare.
It’s a pretty dress, and the woven bodice has some interest it. But in these drab colors and that overly complicated print, it’s hard to get on board, particularly since it’s far too long.
It looks like student work, and the uneven blue panels on that skirt are hideous. Incredibly unflattering and very poorly sewn, and the bodice isn’t much better.
If that skirt didn’t look like a burlap sack, I might like it.
Once again, the construction flaws are just too egregious to ignore. The skirt has no design, so the eye goes straight to that awkward, twisted blouse. If the fit were better, this might have a shot at looking like something.
Dear Gunnar: women don’t want to wear three-tiered skirts. In fact, we prefer to look as little like fancy cakes as possible. And if you can’t sew the fabric together in even patterns, why even bother trying?
The sheer jacket felt incredibly dated, but the dress is more well-made and stylish than any of his previous work. It’s still a low taste level and I still haven’t seen a color palette or print I enjoy from him, but at least I can bear to look at this.
The skirt has too many design elements at the bottom, but otherwise, it’s fairly chic, if underwhelming and still rendered in these awful fabrics taken straight from the set of The Brady Brunch.
Once again, I don’t think he should bother trying to make these sheer coats happen, but at least this gown looks like something I could imagine a woman wearing. I can’t say that about literally anything else we’ve seen in this collection. I have no idea who Gunnar’s customer is; maybe his problem is that neither does he.
This isn’t just student work – this is terrible student work. Sorry, Gunnar, but it looks like you were a decoy for a reason.
Eliminated in Episode 10
Ven’s collection had one or two lovely, red-carpet-ready looks. The problem was that he repeated them over and over and OVER again. To do that in a ten-look collection is to prove what Ven already proved on this show: he is the very definition of a one-trick pony. If you wanted him gone because you couldn’t imagine his collection as anything but ten of the same things he showed this season, well, he’s proven you right.
Is that a zipper at the top of the slip? If it’s supposed to look like that, I find that pretty trashy, and if not, that’s a pretty fatal flaw. I hate the way the fabric folds across her body like that. This dress has nothing to do with making a woman’s body look good – it’s a canvas for Ven to scribble a rose on. Not to mention, it’s just a cocktail version of his previous look.
Snooze. We’ve seen nicer versions of this dress every season for the last century.
I actually think the embellishment on those pants is lovely. I don’t think there’s a big market for this outside of fashion editors, but I could absolutely see Nina Garcia working this look.
Same as his first look, just in black. I can’t believe he has so few ideas. It’s almost offensive that he got to present this at New York Fashion Week, even if it didn’t make it to television.
I’ve seen this dress at every cocktail party I’ve been to for the last six years.
A) You made this on the show, you loser. B) There is not a woman on EARTH who wants pants that make her hips look like that. Those pockets are a disgrace to fashion.
Lovely, but YOU MADE THIS ON THE SHOW, YOU LOSER!
Maybe if he loses the slit and adds a train and dyes it red, we won’t notice it’s the same gown he’s sent down the runway four times already!
In a word: pathetic.
Eliminated in Episode 11
Elena’s collection made the biggest splash out of all the decoys. It felt like she truly expanded her vision while narrowing her focus and the result was an interesting, innovative collection with an incredibly strong point of view. I found the lipstick sometimes interesting, but often distracting, and although I love the striped leggings, I didn’t think they belonged with every single look. But this dress was a massive success, and it proved that Elena’s skill set isn’t limited to boxy, structured silhouettes. She can make things women want to wear.
This coat is more along the lines of what I expected from her, though the colors she rendered it in are surprising and beautiful. I do find her coats a little too shapeless, but it’s still a fantastic look.
It’s not amazing on a runway, but it’s a dress a lot of women would wear in a heartbeat.
I loved the hard-and-soft contrast in this beautiful blouse, and I think the eggshell pants were a terrific pairing.
This is the look when the lipstick and the striped stockings become a little too much for me, which is a shame, because I think this outfit is one of her best.
Another fantastic top. And it’s hard to find someone whose separates are as chic and wearable as their dresses.
The turtleneck is a bit much, but I am obsessed with the color of those pants. I want a hundred thousand accessories in that color.
Probably my least favorite look of the collection. Her previous soft blouse in these same colors was much, much nicer – it was better executed and more wearable. But it was a rare misstep in an otherwise truly impressive show.
A fantastic closing look. The skirt is phenomenal, but that jacket is a fucking statement piece, and it’ll be what I remember Elena for when I look back at this season. I am just in love with the way that collar falls and the perfectly executed color-blocking. I was never gung-ho about Elena this season, though I did note her skills weren’t really meant for the constraints of Project Runway, but she proved that given a little time and money, she can really make something memorable.
Eliminated in Episode 12
Sonjia’s collection had a few high notes, but was mostly not particularly memorable. I love Sonjia, but I’ll be very happy if I never see another lace skirt over granny panties/shorts/bodysuits again.
It’s not particularly creative, but it’s got a modern Betsey Johnson vibe I’m sort of enjoying. I can’t come down on whether or not I like that print, though.
Awful. Contrary to what Sonjia has done here, you cannot staple a dinner napkin to the front of a pair of leggings and call it a peplum skirt. This is so terribly executed, it’s a little painful to look at.
I don’t think that uneven neckline will look good on anyone, but save for that construction issue, I think it’s a cute enough dress. Still pretty standard, though.
The top is interesting and innovative, but although the pants are fairly well-made, I think they’re a whole lot of nothing.
A cute, predictable cocktail dress with some execution issues. Come on, Sonjia – I really thought you were more creative than this.
Cool jacket, great shorts. No idea why she paired them together, but at least the individual pieces are nice.
Probably my favorite look of her collection, because those leather shorts are killer and the matching lapel on the blazer is to die for. The blouse underneath is a total throwaway, but this cowgirl twist on a tuxedo jacket is a really interesting and stylish look.
Every piece is just sort of okay. It’s all underwhelming, and she hasn’t showed any good instincts in how she pairs her pieces together. Which is strange, because I kind of thought the best thing about Sonjia was her styling. Perhaps I’m conflating her personal style with the way she styles her models, because she always tends to look cooler and more modern than they do.
If this is your “showstopper,” you need to take a long, hard look at your collection and figure out where and when you went wrong. Because I’m sorry, dear Sonjia, but this is no showstopper.