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Project Runway 9, Season Finale – Triumph from Trinidad

Last week, on Project Runway, the four finalists went to their respective homes to prepare for Fashion Week. When Tim visited them, he found that Kimberly and Viktor appeared to be making good progress, but that Anya and Josh both had serious problems. The four designers then returned to New York City to complete their preparations for Fashion Week. They also had to display a mini-collection to the judges, who were considering sending someone else home. After examining the mini-collections, the judges changed their minds and sent everybody on to Fashion Week, instead.

Back at the Hudson Hotel penthouse, Anya and Kimberly talk about the upcoming show. Anya admits she didn’t show her best work. Josh is upset that there are still three other designers left, as that reduces his chances of winning. Viktor tells us that all of his pieces are complete, he just needs to edit his collection to get the desired results.

The designers then head to their spacious workshop. It’s just two days before the big show. Anya tells us that she’d had an “identity crisis” with her collection, as in should she stick with her Caribbean roots or try for a more mainstream look? Or should she meet somewhere in the middle? She agrees with the judges that her mini-collection was a disaster and decides to rework and restyle her clothes to enhance her Caribbean vibe.

Tim arrives and tells the designers that he’d disagreed with a lot of what the judges said, but advises the designers to heed their instructions anyway. On a happier note, he has come to give everybody $500.00 for a shopping trip at Mood. The designers also have the traditional 30 minutes to sketch some designs. Kimberly wants to make a black version of her magenta bubble skirt. (Seriously? The judges hated it!) Josh wants to rework his jumper, as the front was fine, but the back was horrible. Anya has a few vague ideas, but nothing definite. Viktor would like to make another gown.

At Mood, Anya simply picks out whichever patterned fabrics strike her fancy. Josh picks out some neon green fabric and is happy to have his calmest shopping experience yet. Viktor chooses some sheer black fabric.

Back at the workroom, Tim gives everybody until midnight. Anya has chosen several prints and wants to make three new looks, as she’s already decided to ditch the black swimsuit and its cover-up. Kimberly makes a skirt. When the designers go for their hair consultation, they all describe the judges’ critiques. Anya, for instance, had been told that her styling had made the models look old, and so asks the stylist for more youthful ‘dos. Back in the workroom, Josh asserts that he can make shorts and a tank-top in under an hour. He’s also using the neon green fabric for the shorts. Viktor thinks Josh is getting too scattered.

Speaking of Josh, he has a breakdown and starts crying. He says he’s come so far that failure doesn’t feel like an option. He’s frustrated that he still has so much work to do and that there are only two days left before the show. Anya tries to comfort him, telling him that she’s feeling the pressure, too. Josh tells her that he doesn’t have any back-up: he’s unemployed. He notes that crying isn’t going to accomplish anything and that he needs to get back to work.

The next day, the designers get back to work. Viktor is making a tank-top. The designers and models then have make-up consultations with Collier Strong. Afterwards, Tim comes in to make his rounds and he starts with Kimberly. She plans to revise one of her skirts, but isn’t sure how. Tim tells her that she needs to figure it out, pronto. Anya admits to feeling nervous and to simply buying prints she liked, without any real game plan. Tim advises her to spice up her collection. Viktor shows off his new black gown, and tells Tim that he’s going to focus more on silhouettes. Finally, Tim stops by Josh, and thinks the green shorts look peculiar. He tells Josh that his mini-collection had looked it had belonged to a sophisticated woman, while the shorts and some other pieces look far less sophisticated.

Josh later tells us that he was “confused” by Tim’s critique. and simply plans to “go with his gut.” Four hours to go, and Kimberly tells us she still has a lot of work to do. Anya is making some new pieces; she has more than ten looks already, but isn’t happy with some of them. She wants ten looks she can confidently show at Fashion Week. She’s sticking with her Caribbean theme, since the judges see her that way. Viktor talks about how he’s learned to edit and not get too emotionally attached to his designs.

The models come in for their fittings. These seem to go well for Josh and Anya, both of whom feel much more confident after the fittings. Viktor is similarly confident and can’t wait to show off his work. On that note, the designers go home.

On the “day” of the show, the designers get up at 3 in the morning and get ready for the big day. Anya tells Kimberly that she began designing after her brother died. Viktor tells Josh that he’s nervous about addressing the crowd. Even so, he’s still happy and excited to be going to Fashion Week. Josh is proud of his collection and thinks he’s grown over the season.

It’s still dark out when the designers walk to Lincoln Center. They check out the runway and note the large number of seats. They then begin putting on the finishing touches to their looks. An hour before the show is about to start, disaster strikes. Kimberly has lost her kit, and she needs it to complete her looks. Anya gives her some of her own things so she can finish.

Josh voices his usual complaint about Anya sewing people into dresses. The camera pans over the audience showing some of the eliminated designers, including Olivier, and celebrities like Jennifer Love Hewitt. (Because of the timing of Fashion Week this year, there were six or seven decoy collections. Some, like Bert’s, were so good, people assumed they were the work of finalists.)

Heidi welcomes everybody to Fashion Week, and introduces the judges including the fashion designer, L’Wren Scott. Then the show begins. Kimberly is up first, and talks about how she was inspired by both her mother and her hometown, Brooklyn.

Her first look is one of the ones from the mini-collection: a pair of royal blue pants and a striped top. She took the judges’ advice and tossed the oversized handbag and replaced the blue shoes with strappy black sandals. Her second look is a short-sleeved turquoise long shirt over a snug green miniskirt. Both items are made of metallic fabrics, and the shirt’s right shoulder has been cut out. Her third look is black pants paired with a sleeveless royal blue shirt. Her fourth is a shoulderless blue mini-dress with a draped skirt.

The fifth look is a magenta dress with a small black jacket with half-sleeves. Her sixth look is a draped patterned garment that is cut very high up. Modesty is preserved by the addition of a magenta mini-skirt. The seventh look is a pair of cream pants with a matching short-sleeved shirt. The magenta bubble-skirt reappears as the eighth look and it has been paired with a cream jacket with a broad and plunging neckline. The ninth look is a pair of magenta pants and an asymmetrical top made of glittering black fabric. The final look is the glittering black gown from the mini-collection. Kimberly used all three looks from last week.

Josh is up next and he dedicates his collection to his late mother. His first look is a simple, draped, asymmetrical purple dress. His second look is a black vest over a sleeveless mini-dress made of some garish, multi-colored print. The third look consists of black pants, a black jacket, and a purple and gray tank top. The fourth look is a neon green skirt and a short-sleeved shirt made of the same gaudy print as the mini-dress from the second look. The fifth look consists of a black and white print tank top and neon green shorts that look as if they’re supposed to be somehow laced shut… but weren’t.

The sixth look is magenta pants, a dark print tank-top and a black jacket that looks as if it’s about to slide off the model’s shoulders. The seventh look is a sleeveless black dress with a plunging neckline. The eighth look is a two-toned black and gray skirt paired with a red and green shirt made of what looks like plastic. The ninth look is his black jumper from the mini-collection. His final look is a long sleeveless black dress with a plunging neckline. Its shoulders are decorated with dark red plastic pieces.

Viktor is visibly nervous, but gamely talks about his collection, which was inspired by his trips to Mexico. His first look is a knee-length black skirt paired with a purple and white print blouse with a V-neck. His second look is a black leather skirt with a long-sleeved sheer black shirt. The third look consists of black leather shorts and a sheer black tank top decorated with mirrors. His fourth look is a blue mini-dress with a print on the bodice and the upper portion of the skirt. His fifth look is a pair of striped black and white shorts overlaid with a long-sleeved sheer black tunic. His sixth look is a long, slinky black dress with long sleeves.

The seventh look is a black dress with a yoke and panels made of his beloved sheer black fabric. His eighth look is a long dress with a yoke similar to the seventh look, but made of blue and white fabric decorated with a print that looks like Rorschach inkblots. His ninth look consists of purple and white print pants, a black jacket, and a black shirt decorated with mirrors. His last look consists of the white jacket from last week’s mini-collection, skinny black pants, and a black shirt.

Anya is last and talks about her Caribbean roots and how they inspired her collection. The first look is a shoulderless dress with a plunging neckline. Its bodice appears to be dark blue or green, while the flowing skirt is white, yellow, blue, and green. The second look is the brown print dress from last week’s mini-collection. The third look is a black and white swimsuit with a gauzy black and white print cover-up. Her fourth look is a long, sleeveless, turquoise and brown jumpsuit. The fifth look is a beige mini-dress.

The sixth look is a black and white print dress with a plunging v-neck and a long slit. The seventh look is a beige dress with the front skirt cut away. The model is also wearing yellow briefs, to preserve her modesty. A wide black and yellow belt helps that endeavor. Her eighth look consists of green shorts paired with a navy shirt with yet another plunging neckline. The model is also wearing a wide rope belt. The ninth look is a brown print mini-dress with a floppy gold collar. The final look is a black and white print jumpsuit with a yoke collar.

After the show, there’s the usual backstage chatter with people like Betsey Johnson, Joanna Coles, and Season 2′s Nick. Then it’s time to face the judges. Heidi starts by telling the designers that she’s proud of all of them, as they all put on good shows.

The judges start with Kimberly, who tells them she wanted to take an urban look and glam it up. Michael tells her that he appreciates the fact she’d obviously listened to their critiques. He didn’t like the striped dress, though. L’Wren liked the second look and the pink dress. Heidi liked the ivory pants and matching top. She didn’t like the bubble skirt’s being paired with a puffy shirt, as the combination made the model look bigger than she was. Nina thought the collection looked contemporary, and she liked the rich-looking fabrics.

Josh talks about learning to edit himself, and how he wanted to show off his tailoring and draping skills. Heidi liked his collection, especially the green shorts and various prints. (What is she smoking?!) Michael thinks the craziness of the collection serves Josh well and he compliments Josh on his editing. L’Wren thinks Josh showed a “complete vision,” and Nina calls him the “most improved.” She also likes how he experimented with new materials, like the plastic. (What is Nina smoking? I’d imagine a bodice or shirt made of plastic would be very uncomfortable, especially in very cold or hot weather.) She also thinks many of his looks would photograph well.

Viktor talks about wanting to “marry” New York City and Mexico. Michael loved the printed pieces, but thought there were too many sheer garments. They felt like a joke to him. Viktor’s tailoring was polished. L’Wren liked most of the pieces, but not the sheer dress. She also thinks he put out a cohesive collection. Heidi disagrees, saying that Viktor had seemed to put out two collections, with one consisting of the sheer garments and the other consisting mainly of prints. She thought the sheer garments looked cheap. Nina also preferred the printed pieces to the sheer black garments. He did make looks that would photograph well.

Anya tells the judges she wanted to create looks with an easy, sexy vibe. Heidi liked the fabrics used, but points out that the collection lacked diversity. Eight had the same neckline, for instance. Michael loved the first dress, but agrees that she needs more variety in her looks L’Wren points out that not everybody can wear plunging necklines. Nina says the bathing suit was her favorite.

Heidi then asks the designers why they should win. Anya answers that she’s shown both tenacity and a distinct point of view. Josh points out how he’s learned to edit. Viktor says he has passion and wants to follow in Christian Siriano’s footsteps. Kimberly also has a strong point of view, and it’s one that’s not often represented in fashion.

The judges then dismiss everybody to have their chat. Kimberly had some great individual pieces, including a gorgeous black gown. Nina and Heidi don’t think she’s on the same level as the other designers. Viktor also had a strong collection– except for those sheer garments nobody apparently liked. Anya performs well under pressure and has a great eye for patterns, but her collection looked a little one-note, especially with all those v-necks. Josh has had trouble with over-designing in the past, but tonight he had the best styling. The purple striped shirt was a misstep, though.

Nina comments that Anya has a unique point of view, and Michael can imagine what her other pieces could look like, including items like shoes and jewelry. She could potentially have a huge business. (I can see that being the case. Not only would her stuff appeal to people living in places like Florida or the Caribbean, but it would also appeal to vacationers traveling to those places.) On the other hand, Josh put more thought into his pieces. It looks as if it’s going to be between Josh and Anya. Viktor apparently took himself out of contention with those sheer black garments.

The judges then call everybody back in. Heidi tells them there are no real losers today. Viktor’s tailoring was impeccable, and Anya had returned to her strengths over the past few days. Josh showed a dramatic evolution during his tenure, and Kimberly had a strong point of view.

But as good a job Kimberly did, she’s not the winner. She graciously thanks the judges for the experience and says she feels like a winner since she got to show on Fashion Week. With that, she goes backstage to her waiting family.

Viktor is also out. He calls being on Project Runway the experience of a lifetime. He adds that winning would have been the cherry on top, but he got the whole ice cream. He also goes backstage to see his family.

It’s then down to Josh and Anya– and she’s the winner. Josh goes backstage to his family– and Anya’s in shock. She can’t believe she won. Her family comes onstage to help her celebrate.

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