Ladies and gents, we’ve finally made it to the end of PR6, to Bryant Park, and to a PR first—Tim Gunn losing his cool. More about that later—let’s pack our garment bags and get ready for the runway.
No one holds the patent on smudgy eye makeup.
With only two days to the finale, Carol Hannah is still sick as a dog. Of course Irina says feels bad for her, but there’s nothing she can do. In the workroom, Logan figures out what to do—say comforting words and be encouraging. Irina and Gordana work to finish the details on Irina’s garments, and the Meana side of Irina starts to peek through. Carol Hannah then has a bit of a break-down, but Christopher comforts her (and manages not to cry too much himself in the process). He stays behind to keep working while the three finalists head to the makeup and hair consultation.
They arrive at Parsons and meet with Collier Strong. Irina explains she has hats for her models to wear and she wants a smudgy eye makeup look. Althea also wants a smudged look, while Carol Hannah wants a clean look. Irina and Althea also come up with similar hairstyles, but not as close as the eye makeup.
Back in the workroom, the models arrive for fittings. It’s all seemingly going well. Tim checks in on designers and takes a look at Irina’s 13th look of a black cocktail dress. He thinks it’s beautiful but cautions to watch the proportion on the top of the dress and to be careful that the hats don’t make the outfits look too costumey. Irina explains her muddy, black eye makeup concept.
Tim takes a look at Althea’s 13th look—tan trousers and a wide-shoulder black leather jacket. He is only concerned that the shoulders look too 80s, and to me they do. She says she’s excited about the makeup—smudgy eye makeup. Tim notes that is what Irina said too. Tim is worried that all the models will look like they came out of the same factory. Irina shoots the evil eye at Althea, but really…smudgy eye makeup has been around for many seasons. There’s no novelty in it at all.
Tim then stops by Carol Hannah’s space and keeps his distance because he heard she had a relapse. Her 13th look, the teal/blue jersey gown, is coming along well. She wants the color to be more prominent in the collection. Tim encourages her to keep going. He departs, giving the designers until midnight that day and until 5 p.m. the next day.
The next morning—one day before the show—Carol Hannah is feeling better and they all head back to work. They work for a while and then their main models come in for a final fitting. Irina chooses to put her 13th look on her model to stand before the judges. Then there’s just general focused work on finishing the details on the garments.
With one hour remaining, Tim arrives for a last little gather ‘round. He’s excited for them and is ready to send them back to the hotel for the night in an hour. Gordana is bossed around by Irina, Carol Hannah realizes she forgot to take in a dress, and Christopher packs up shoes.
Tim Gunn blows a gasket, film at 11.
Before you know it, it’s 3:14 a.m. the day of the runway show. The designers get ready and are bundles of nerves such to the point that Irina has a problem even opening the hotel room door. Just like always, someone—this time Althea—says “It finally hits me that I’m showing at Bryant Park.” They check out the runway and get to work dressing the models, finishing the garments, and giving hair and makeup directions.
The guests begin to arrive, and with 20 minutes left, Tim starts to freak out. Only about 20% of the models are dressed, but they should all be dressed and lined up. No one is quite hurrying enough or understands the urgency. He is visibly pissed off, which is very un-Tim-like. Apparently herding designers and models is more difficult than herding cats.
While Tim stews in the back, Heidi comes out on the runway in a bright pink suit and starts the show by introducing the judges: Michael Kors, Nina Garcia, and Suzy Menkes, who is the fashion editor of the International Herald Tribune.
Due to the magic of editing, Althea introduces her collection saying she was inspired by scifi movies of the 50s and 60s. Her first look is slim black leather pants covered by a giant sweater, and then there’s just a lot more of the slim pants and jackets looks she’s put out over the entire season. There’s a lot of leather and black, with tan, grey, and a tiny splash of green tossed in.
Carol Hannah’s collection is up next; in her faux introduction she thanks her family and says she loves her collection. The first look down is a champagne short dress with back ribbon detailing. What follows are a series of dresses and a couple of pants outfits. There is some color—dark purple, grey, the teal jersey, and a bi more of the champagne color.
Finally, Irina says that her collection is about comforting and shielding one’s self as a woman in New York. Her first look is something of a bondage snow bunny look of tight pants and a leather/fur vest. Everything, save a couple of camel color hoodies/vests, two grey sweaters, and the grey Coney Island tee shirt material, is black. It’s all very severe and each model wears a black hat of some kind that all resembled helmets.
Who cares who wins…what is up with Suzy Menkes’ hair?!?!
The judges confab for a moment before bringing out the finalists. Heidi says she was impressed by what she saw. Nina saw a lot of time and effort in their collection. Suzy says something but I’m completely distracted by her bangs being either up in a roller or styled to form the water ski PR used to jump the shark. Michael saw a lot of variety: knitwear, sportswear, and gowns.
The designers are brought out, and after a dull little speech recounting the prizes by Heidi, the models come out as well. Irina says her idea was shielding women in the big city. Michael says the warrior woman has been played a lot. Suzy sees cohesion in the collection, and Heidi thinks the collection looks better than $9,000. Nina liked the tee shirts, because that really brought out Irina in the collection. Michael commends her on the amount of work she put into the collection. Nina questions why all black and kind of scolds her, as black does not photograph well for magazines.
Carol Hannah says she wanted to play with volume and using structured draping. Nina loved the first look and compliments her on working well with difficult fabrics. Heidi loves the 13th look the most. Suzy was impressed by the layered tulle dress. Heidi and Michael just don’t see a cohesive thread through her collection, though Michael is impressed by her structured draping abilities.
Althea wanted to do something for the future. Michael likes that she did sportswear and that someone could buy just one piece and incorporate it into their wardrobe. Nina liked the green dress, because at least there was some color in the otherwise monotone collection. Michael loved the 13th look pants, saying they were perfect and everyone should have them. Wait, Logan draped those pants…either he learned how to make pants suddenly or Althea really tweaked them. Suzy saw some great knitwear but didn’t see anything futuristic. Nina found the last three looks of the show to be completely disjointed from the rest of the collection. Heidi was surprised that the pants were Althea’s 13th look.
The designers are sent away while the judges deliberate once again. Carol Hannah had a phenomenal opening dress, and at least she played with some color—maybe not enough but more than anyone else. They are impressed as always with her tailoring. Althea’s collection showed her sense of coolness and being plugged into the street. But Michael and Suzy don’t really see a collection as much as a gathering of separates. Irina’s clothes are modern and well made; she really knew how to put on a fashion show. They weren’t keen on all the black, and the big gown was too much, but Nina still really loved the tee shirt.
With the decision made, the designers are called back in. Heidi addresses them all: Irina paid attention to detail, but they were disappointed in her lack of color; Althea showed her ability to translate what’s happening on the street into fashion, but it wasn’t futuristic; and Carol Hannah impressed yet again with her execution and meticulousness and they liked her use of color and strength and energy, though there was no connective thread through the collection.
Heidi then sends Carol Hannah out and names Irina as the winner. Althea hugs Irina and then is dismissed as well. Irina’s family comes out, as does Tim, and everyone cries, including Irina’s dad who was played to be so tough. I, however, did not cry. If PR7 sucks as much as this season did, I will then shed a tear or two. Get ready for it in January!