Friday, October 23, 2009

I Can't Get Inspired By Santa Fe

Christopher Straub needs to be thanking his lucky stars right now. The thrice-nearly ousted designer was obviously feeling the wrath of Heidi Klum down his neck this week on Project Runway. "You are in the bottom three...yet again," the German hostess with the mostess chillingly said as she sent home Nicolas Putvinski, also known as My Least Favorite Designer. Ever. But did he deserve it? Read on...

Episode Ten: Around the World in Two Days
I was all ready to make a snarky comment about the title but in fact, the title doesn't suck this week. Apropos, short, and draws me into the episode. Lifetime finally figured out what they were doing. In fact, that was really the theme of the episode: Lifetime Gets It Together. For the first time this season, I felt that the show was really at the quality of previous seasons.

The designers have finally begun to come into their own and embrace their differences as designers. I really think all five (I'm excluding Designated Straight Male Logan) remaining designers have an interesting point-of-view and I'm glad to see what they'll put together for Fashion Week.

In addition, all three judges, Heidi, Michael Kors, and Nina Garcia, were back together for the first time since the premiere! The whackadoodle (where'd you come from, Suede?) judging this season has led to some bad eliminations and declarations of winners. This time, the judging was right on track.

The challenge was to design a look inspired by a particular locale. All of them seemed very appropriate...with one exception. How can anyone be inspired by Santa Fe? It's like asking a Texan to be inspired by Abilene.

Irina Shabayeva
Irina Shabbadabadoo was lucky to get a wintry location like Aspen. She designed a beautiful three-piece look with a little surprise with the open back on the shawl/sweater. I didn't like the open back, because when you're in a cold place like Aspen, the last thing you want is a bunch of skin hanging out there. Still, the look was absolutely gorgeous and luxurious, so she totally deserved her win. With three wins, she is far and away the frontrunner this season.

Christopher Straub
CHRISTOPHER! It's really frustrating, having supported someone and become invested in their success only to see them fail. Spectacularly. His last four (?!) designs have been completely unacceptable by Runway standards, and he hasn't handled the pressure very well, becoming the Andrae/Ricky of the season. Dude, you may be Minnesota Nice, but don't cry every time you're spared from elimination. And start designing better. Please. Also: who gets inspired by Santa Fe?

Gordana Gelhausen
FraĆ¼lein Gelhausen really stepped it up this challenge. I totally got New York City from her design, and her necklace detailing was beautiful. I think, had she been more confident about her design and not sold it out on the runway, she would have been the easy winner. If she increases her confidence, she has a strong chance to win this competition, as she might have the best constructional execution of the remaining six.

Althea Harper
The Blonde and the Beautiful was the one safe party of the seven this week. That means she is right in the middle of the pack in the judges' eyes. Not a good place to be. Safe means boring, and her St. Tropez outfit this week was bland and uninteresting. Althea has a lot of potential, but she needs to avoid being the Bland and the Boring.

Logan Neitzel
Speaking of boring, DSM is slowly becoming that contestant on Project Runway every season who stays around far longer than they need to. I'm not a fan of his, and to quote guest judge Milla Jojovitch, if this was Project I Didn't Mind It, he would win. I, like Nina Garcia, hate being bored, and he makes me bored every time he sends the same commercial, unoriginal junk down the runway.

Carol Hannah Whitfield
I like Carol Hannah's designs, though her dress last night was classic Uli Herzner from three seasons ago. Still, I hope Two-Name sticks around 'till the finale, only to see what she'd do with a lot of time and lots of money. Plus, she seems poised to catfight with Shabbadabadoo...

Nicolas Putvinski
Poor Nicolas the Terrible. ...Okay, I'm over him. He designed the same white mess every episode, anyway. He was tragic, not fierce. And for this show, you have to be fierce. Just ask Christian Siriano.

My Winner: Irina Shabayeva
My Auf: Nicolas Putvinski

For the remaining finalists, here are the scores:

Irina Shabayeva: 8 WIN
Althea Harper: 5 IN
Carol Hannah Whitfield: 5 HIGH
Gordana Gelhausen: 1 HIGH
Christopher Straub: 0 LOW
Logan Neitzel: -4 LOW
Nicolas Putvinski: -2 OUT

What'd you guys think? Did Nicolas the Terrible deserve to go home? Or is it Minnesota Nice or DSM who should have gone? Comment below!

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