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Here we go, it’s all come down to this final episode. 13 weeks of challenges and eliminations.

Last week we saw the “getting to know the finalists” episode. Althea and Irina have more drama. Carol Hannah prays to the porcelain god that she’ll be well enough to finish her collection. And Tim Gunn pretends that he likes going to meet strangers out in the freezing cold New York Suburbs.

The end surprise twist is that they to create a 13th look, and they each get a sewing helper. Since the filming was about 8 months ago, the internet has already published all the final collections. This is the first season there were no dummy collections (to try and throw off speculating who made the finale). Apparently, the designers didn’t open their shows so the audience didn’t know who’s collection was who’s.


Let’s get down to brass tax. It wouldn’t be an episode this season without some more forced drama. This time, during the make-up consultations both Irina and Althea go for a dark eye. Here’s the thing. EVERYONE goes for the dark smoky eye. Seriously, it’s PR cliche by now.

Models continue to come in for fittings, and Tim comes around for more critiques. He warns Irina about proportion, Althea about as Michael Kors would say “power bitch Joan Crawford” shoulders, and Carol Hannah about timing.

Whatever look the designers put they’re main model in is what will be standing on the runway during judging. Irina takes a risk and puts Katlyn in her 13th look.

The day of the runway show, all the designers have to get up before the break of dawn to go down to Bryant Park to get ready.

Carol Hannah is feeling much better, and I’m glad for that, but what is she wearing. Yikes.

Just before the runway, while all the models are getting ready, Tim has a little bit of a fit because the designers are taking too long to get prepared. Never really seen Tim like this.

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Eventually it all gets done, and Heidi introduces the shows. We get to see sporadic judges Michael Kors, Nina Garcia, and Suzy Menkes, Fashion Editor of the International Herald Tribune… Or Robin Williams in a dress, whichever.

Althea shows first, and it seems like she did get to introduce her collection… so I don’t know if they faked that scene, or reshot it after the official show?

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She has a lot of voluminous knits. A lot of separates, and sports wear. Beige, white, black, grey, no colour really except for one green dress. She put her main model in a slick, off brown dress with a loooong train. Oh! And what’s this!? ANTM winner Jaslene is part of her show. Yay reality show cross-over! Her clothes were ok. I expected more pizazz. They all looked ready to wear as opposed to avant garde, but that’s Althea for you.

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Carol Hannah’s collection showed more diversity. She showed a lot of gowns and dresses, but also showed some pants, and separates. There was some of her trademark braiding / rope detail. A lot of draping and structure. A little more colour than Althea. There was one pipe cleaner dress that showed a bit of imagination at least, though it didn’t really fit with the rest of the collection I didn’t think. Her main model was put in a cream gown. I didn’t really like that dress, but I enjoyed most of her stuff.

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Irina put on more of a show than the other two in terms of style. Most of the models wore equestrian style hats with high heeled boots. A LOT of black, with some fur and brown to liven it up. Nina Garcia warned her about using all black as it doesn’t get much editorial. Some of the detail I will say did get washed out on screen.

Overall, compared to other seasons this year’s collections were kind of dull. The first time I watched it, I was routing for Carol Hannah, but on second look, the styling of Irina won me over. I don’t think Althea’s was very good. Not final collection good.

After the shows the designers are brought back in front of the judges for the final decision.

They told Irina that her “Warrior Woman” motif wasn’t a new thing, but they praised her t-shirts, the cohesion, and the overall work she did. Nina brought up the saturation of black again, as a bad point.

Carol Hannah was complimented on a couple of her individual outfits including her 13th outfit. They commented that she didn’t have too much cohesion. Michael loved her mixture of drapery and structure.

Michael loved Althea’s sportswear. Menkes questioned her futuristic vision mixed with her many knitted outfits. Nina claimed that her last three outfits were out of place. Michael praised her for the tanned pants of her thirteenth look.

The designers leave the catwalk for the judges to deliberate. They discuss amongst each other, mentioning the lack of colour from all three collections, and talk up all of them for all of their strong points.

When the designers are brought back on the runway, Heidi announces that Carol Hannah did a great job, but she’s out (… disagree, she should have come at least second, Althea was the clear loser of the final collections). Irina and Althea stand awkwardly on the catwalk waiting for the winner…. who is IRINA! Bamn.

Well, I sort of thought that the show was setting Irina up for failure, but you can’t fault her clothes. From the entire show’s body of work she deserved it.

I’m not that happy with this season as compared to other seasons. There were no real interesting characters, no matter how much editing the show’s producers tried. Next year the show is moving back to New York, maybe that will help PR get its groove back.

See you next year.

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