Darlings, I have the best news for you—we are finally, finally going to get to the top four contestants and move on to the end of this season. Will Johnny get his comeuppance? Will Daniella stop acting like the Queen of the Bitches? Will Reco cry again? Let’s just see what these crazy kids are up to this week.
Paging Rami Kashou.
Off the designers go to greet their mini-challenge. Isaac first marvels at how small the group has gotten then introduces the toughest mini-challenge yet. There is a draped dress on a mannequin, held together by merely six pins. Without the six pins, it is simply two yards of silk charmeuse. The designers will have the same two yards of fabric, but get to use up to twelve pins, to create a draped garment. The judges for the challenge are Glenda Bailey, EIC of Harper’s Bazaar, and Isabel Toledo, designer of Michelle Obama’s inauguration day outfit.
The designers have twenty minutes to drape; Johnny is freaked out because he doesn’t drape, but James-Paul is into it, since he’s big into draping, even actual drapery he took down from his mother’s windows. After time is called, the judges review the work. Glenda asks Reco if he was channeling the 1980s, as he created a very Joan Collins gown. Isabel thinks the lines in the front are nice. They both like Anna’s off the shoulder shorter dress, noting the draping even follows the line of the fabric. Johnny’s twisted, wrapped yellow top is a mess, with stab marks in the fabric. The judges think Daniella really understood the fabric and made a good choice by making the top of the dress voluminous but then slender in the skirt. They like the back of James-Paul’s dress, draped nicely, but there wasn’t quite enough draping in lieu of bunching at the shoulder. Ultimately, they pick Daniella’s dress as modern and youthful. As per usual, she’ll get an advantage in the elimination challenge.
Ghosts of Episodes Past.
The elimination challenge involves designing an evening gown. This news from Isaac elicits gasps of joy from the designers and then looks of panic set in when it is revealed that they will have to use crystals in their design, as no one has used them before. More surprises await the designers at the fabric store. Kelly is there and she brings out Haven, Angel, Keith, Andrew, and Merlin. These former contestants will be there to “help” the remaining designers. As her advantage, Daniella gets to chose first who her helper will be. She, of course, picks Haven, and not Merlin who she deemed evil and back for revenge. Anna picks Keith, James-Paul bypasses his friend Angel and goes for Merlin, Reco picks Andrew just for the eye candy factor, which leaves Johnny with Angel. Johnny makes it very apparent that he is not happy with his new helper. He’d rather have the security guard over Angel.
The designers have a budget of $450 and set to work designing their gowns. Daniella has an idea for a grey dress, inspired by dark clouds moving across the sky quickly before a storm. Angel tries to help Johnny figure out how much fabric he needs, but she is exasperating him and he’s bored with the idea of doing an evening gown. Anna finds a bright pink floral print, though worries the crystals may be a bit much. James-Paul says he’s making a very simple bustier evening gown with crystals on the neckline. Merlin vows to do whatever he can to get James-Paul into the final four.
Johnny and Angel confab about what he wants to make. She suggests he make a floor-length gown to be more evening-wear-like. He says his favorite red carpet dress was Maggie Gyllenhaal’s leopard print dress by Lanvin. This must be very important because TFS captions what he says. He leaves the fabric store with green leopard print.
Back in the workroom, Reco is set on making a clean-line gown with bright pink and purple floaty fabrics. Anna’s using the same cup detail she used last week, but knows it is a risk. She is doing a one-shouldered dress with a bow lined with the crystals. Johnny is struggling with his chiffon, and as Anna says, he doesn’t know anything about sewing or construction in general. By this point, Johnny is convinced Angel is out to sabotage him.
The models arrive on Day 2 for their fitting. Haven now tells Daniella that the grey is bumming her out and looks nun-ish. This makes Daniella nervous. Then MizRo stops by to up the ante on the nerves. They chat with Johnny who totally does not hide the fact that he does not want to be working with Angel. They eye the crystal details only on the black belt, and note that he lined the dress with taffeta. He didn’t know he was supposed to use silk because he never made an evening gown before and Angel didn’t correct his error though she knew better. They check on Reco’s dress; he’s only using the stones as a burst of stones on the top left of the dress and made some crystal bracelets. Isaac wrinkles his nose in disgust at a couple of the bracelets, so Reco removes them. MizRo raise a few eyebrows at Anna’s print and use of the cup detail again. Isaac comments that James-Paul’s dress looks simple, and suggests that he get Merlin’s help on construction. Finally, they chat with Daniella and bring up the grey again. Haven says it is gloomy, but Daniella says it is beautiful, but she’s still having her doubts.
It’s About Time!
Kelly calls James-Paul on the morning of the fashion show and instructs the designers to “dress to the nines” for this elimination. They put on their fancy clothes and head back to the workroom to put the final touches on their gowns. The “helpers” are dismissed, and it is off to the show!
Johnny shows a mid-calf length green leopard print dress with a black bow-tie belt and a draped, flouncy, ruffle collar. James-Paul sends down a floor-length black velvet dress. The bodice is a simple fitted tank style with some crystal details at the neckline. There are more crystals in a star pattern at the waist, and the dress is very voluminous at the bottom, as it has a turned up hem to reveal a copper-colored fabric. Anna shows her near-floor length print dress; it has a side-split that opens to show some leg and has a giant bow on the top of the one shoulder. The cup detail is there in the back. Reco presents a strapless purple and pink dress. Well, it’s mostly purple, with a pink insert on one side. It is fitted from the top to just below the butt, with these tiny pleat details, then the fabric hangs loose and free to the floor. Finally, Daniella shows her grey column dress with crystal details at the one shoulder which extends on fabric to wrap around the model’s neck.
The designers then get to face the judges to find out who will be competing for the big prize. On the panel are Isaac, Kelly, Fern, and Glenda Bailey from the mini-challenge. The top two vote-getters of the show are Daniella and Anna, so they are definitely in the final four. Isaac loves their use of the crystals. Fern loves the open-leg detail on Anna’s dress, and Glenda is impressed with the use of print, as it is a bold choice. Isaac is proud she has moved from the murky colors of the earlier challenges. Daniella explains she went with her gut instinct on the dress; Fern likes that it showcases the shoulders and Glenda loves the color and simplicity of the design. Though it was a close decision, Daniella wins the challenge.
The remaining three guys come back on stage. Before the bottom two are revealed, they bring out the third place dress—Reco! He’s in the final four as well. So, it’s down to either James-Paul or Johnny going home. Poor James-Paul gets the criticism that the dress looked like a velvet Elvis painting, and Glenda says it is way too much costume drama. Fern thinks the dress got too heavy with the bottom three-dimensional skirt detail that James-Paul was so proud of. Johnny is then immediately called out for having made a knock-off. Isaac busts out a picture of Maggie Gyllenhaal at the Golden Globes in that Lanvin dress Johnny mentioned earlier. He says he should have known better and didn’t think he was knocking Lanvin off, but we all know he did. Fern calls it a weak attempt at trying to pull a fast one. Isaac is just disappointed with both of them.
While the judges deliberate, Reco calls out Johnny for knocking off the Lanvin dress and bragging about having previously knocked stuff off for challenges. Daniella somewhat defends Johnny, but Reco keeps going, saying it’s about time it caught up with Johnny. Johnny, however, tries to put the blame on Angel for not pointing out that he was knocking off Lanvin, though we all know he knew what he was doing.
Isaac starts the deliberation by saying they should not think about it as sending someone home but picking someone to show their final collection. Glenda sees two big fashion crimes: an ugly dress and a knock-off. Kelly feels Johnny knew what he was doing. But Isaac wonders if James-Paul’s ugly dress can be forgiven and if he can actually show something good in a final collection. Fern thinks it was too Renaissance Fair.
The choice is made. James-Paul’s “hopelessly romantic” dress aspirations were just hopeless, says Isaac; he goes on to say Johnny had the chance to create a knock-out dress and came back with knock-off. Oh, that Isaac is pithy, isn’t he? Kelly then sends Johnny packing and Isaac gives him the advice that the fashion industry is not about plagiarism. James-Paul gets to go on to the final round, and we can all be glad to be rid of Johnny. As he departs, Johnny says that his dress wasn’t a knock-off, just extremely similar. Potato/potahto.