Season Nine is winding down now, with just one last challenge before the designers are set home to make their Fashion Week collections. The collections have been on the internet for weeks—all nine decoy/competitor collections—and with the removal of Bert last week, the spoiler-types among us got it wrong when we thought he could be the winner. So, who goes on to compete for real?
For the final challenge, each of the five remaining designers will have two days to complete a three-look collection that shows versatility and cohesion. They head out to Governor’s Island to see the historical buildings and sculptures and derive inspiration for their collection. For the most part, the designers are inspired by the shapes of the different large sculptures, although Josh takes inspiration from the “artillerary”. The designers get one last trip to Mood in, where Laura goes over-budget by about $200 because she has no mental calculator.
Back at Parsons, the designers start to organize their workstations and Tim arrives with the velvet bag of doom. Seeing as how the challenge entails quite a bit of work for two days, the designers get to pick, out of the last five designers to be given the boot, someone to help them. Kimberly picks Becky, Viktor picks Olivier, Laura picks Anthony, Anya picks Bert and Josh is stuck with Bryce. Or, more to the point, Bryce is stuck with Josh.
Josh starts with an idea of cutting the white portions out of a black and white fabric and replacing the white with a stained glass look, but Bryce points out that (a) Laura has a black cut-out fabric already and (b) he doesn’t need to put every idea he ever had into the garments. Bert helps Anya get some perspective on her look, while Olivier complains that he is just a slave, an unpaid worker, so he doesn’t care but he wants to help. Josh moans on and on to Bryce about Anya winning the last challenge—his $20,000 was stolen by a beauty queen.
The second day brings changes in design for Kimberly, confusion for Bert due to Anya’s inaccurate sketches, and dying of fabric for Laura. Josh is making clothes out of plastic fabric, which sounds dubious at best. Tim stops by for his visit, checking in with Laura and her cut-out circle fabric; he thinks it is too much for all three looks. Tim questions Kimberly’s fabric choices and Statue of Liberty dress. Tim finds Viktor’s looks to be sophisticated and in his style. Tim responds positively to Josh’s looks, and didn’t even notice that the black material was vinyl. Anya explains her two dresses and one pant outfit; Tim seems to be okay with it, but Josh believes that she should have at least one jacket in the collection.
The models arrive for their fitting and things aren’t so good for Kimberly; she keeps changing her mind and the pants she did have made are so small the model’s size 00 butt is hanging out. When the models leave, Josh gripes more to Bryce about Anya’s lack of range in her collection. Becky helps Kimberly get her work done, while Bert gives remedial sewing lessons to Anya. Laura is overwhelmed by her circle fabric and is worried she won’t get to Fashion Week, her dream since she was eight years old.
The morning of the last runway show brings much work left to do. Bert fixes Anya’s sewing errors, Kimberly constructs new garments. Viktor’s clothes are fitting well and he’s confident he’s going to Fashion Week. Josh is confident he’s going too and sees the third spot as up for grabs amongst the ladies. Kimberly has issues with the sleeves of her coat and Laura knows her garments aren’t fitting correctly. Anya needs to thank Bert for sewing her garments for her.
For this final challenge, the judges are Heidi, Michael, Nina and Zoe Saldana. The mini-collections shown are:
Josh’s cream shift dress with black netting at the top; black vest, sparkly A-line skirt, and a studded tank top; and a silver draped half-gown over a black mini-dress.
Kimberly’s orange coat; orange open-cut top with a silver skirt with a big poof on one hip; and a sparkly cocktail dress with the same poof, different hip.
Laura’s cream blazer with the black circle fabric and cream skirt; a flowing cocktail dress in a pale pink fabric; a gown of cream fabric with the black circle cut out fabric over it.
Anya’ black cocktail dress that comes down low in the front and near booty-bearing in the back; a rust tunic and pants; and a white gown with major sewing issues.
Viktor’s cigarette pants, jacket and a tunic tank; a black skirt and simple button down top; and a strapless little black dress.
The judges talk to Josh first about his looks from inspired by super hero movies. The gown looks cheap and looks too Statue of Liberty. The judges aren’t fans of the shininess of it all. Kimberly’s cocktail dress is pretty cute, but it looks a lot like what she’s done before. Michael isn’t sure about the silver and orange color combination, and Nina doesn’t think the three looks would be worn by the same person. Heidi sees Laura’s designs as complicated; she likes the gown but the other not so much. Nina agrees that the pink dress doesn’t really fit with the other two. Michael says she choked. Nina sees a concise collection in Anya’s three looks, while Michael sees sophistication. Finally, Heidi doesn’t see a whole lot of ideas but well made. Nina wants more volume, but Michael points out these are clothes that people will wear and buy and they just need a bit of runway punch.
The designers plead their case on why they should go to Fashion Week, as per normal. The judges mull over the mini-collections; they have high praise for Anya’s growth as a designer. Viktor will sell clothes and has shown more sophistication than his original rack of clothes. They think Josh could, with time and editing, could put together a collection worthy of Fashion Week. Laura’s collection disappointed in range but she has great sewing skills and shows passion. The judges look back on Kimberly’s past clothes, and even though the dress looks like Nina’s top, she has consistency and a good sense of style.
After deliberations, the judges send Anya, Viktor, and Josh to Fashion Week. Heidi said only three are going, but nevertheless it comes down to Laura and Kimberly for only one elimination. Laura was technically strong but lacks range and Kimberly didn’t have a good day in taking risks. Laura is out, but Kimberly gets to go on to Fashion Week too. Laura’s hopes of going to Fashion Week are dashed, but Tim congratulates them all for getting to the final five. Laura goes to clean her space while the final four have a group hug with Tim. So what will this mean for Fashion Week? Will only three of the final four be eligible for the win? Will they have a mini competition to see who those three are? Come back next week and see the insanity continue.