Nicolas, as usual, has a ton of work to do. Qristyl thinks her dress fits Valerie very well, but fears it might be too simple. Ebony isn’t thrilled with Shirin’s work, and Shirin tells us that it can be hard for a person who doesn’t know construction to see how a garment is going to look when it’s finished. Logan realizes his dress doesn’t look like anybody else’s, which is usually a bad sign.
The next morning, Johnny and Logan chat, and Logan decides to wear silver pants and sparkly shoes to distract Heidi. The designers head back to the workroom, and Logan is now nervous about his dress, which he describes as a cross of 1950’s and Marilyn Manson. He’s made Kojii happy, but the dress isn’t really his style. Qristyl knows she’s almost out of time, but thinks her black dress will please the judges.
Tim sends in the models, and tells the designers they have two hours to get the models dressed and ready. Nicolas thinks Epperson’s design looks like a rag and that Johnny’s looks stomped on. Shut up, Nicolas. Win something, and then you can talk trash. Christopher thinks the judges will love or hate Epperson’s design, which involves a “shredded” look. Christopher himself likes it.
On the runway, all of the judges are guest judges, as Michael Kors is still away, and Nina Garcia is now absent as well. The judges are Marc Bouwer, a fashion designer; Zoe Glassner, the editor of Marie Claire; and Jennifer Rade, a costume designer and stylist.
Qristyl’s model, Valerie, is up first. She’s wearing a little black dress with an asymmetrical, one-shoulder top. Nicolas’ model, Celine, is wearing a white, sleeveless dress with brown trim. Of course, Nicolas thinks she is the only model who looks chic. Irina’s model, Kalyn, is wearing a brown top and a red and gray patterned skirt.
Gordana’s model, Tara, is wearing a beige minidress with long sleeves and a basketweave detail down the front. Shirin’s model, Ebony, is wearing a sleeveless royal blue dress with ruffles at the top. Logan’s model, Kojii, is wearing a lacy black shirt and a turquoise skirt. Christopher’s model, Katie, is wearing a strapless green dress with two black sashes.
Epperson’s model, Matar, is wearing a very snug brown dress that has fabric strips in several shades of brown applied to it. Johnny’s model, Emarie, is wearing a short purple dress. Althea’s model, Tanisha, is wearing a gray tank top, a short glossy black skirt that looks like a set of bloomers, and a black jacket.
Louise’s model, Fatma, is wearing a short sleeveless black dress with a big ruffled collar. Ra’Mon’s model, Vanessa, is wearing a teal tube dress with a big flower piece on one shoulder. Carol Hannah’s model, Lisa, wraps up the show in a draped, asymmetrical purple top, a black belt, and a shiny black-on-black print dress.
Heidi then calls Louise, Irina, Christopher, Nicolas, Gordana, Shirin, and Ra’Mon. She congratulates them for making it to the next round. The other six designers have the highest and lowest scores between them.
The judges start with Carol Hannah, who says she wanted to capture Lisa’s personality. Marc loves the outfit, especially the juxtaposition of the softly draped top with the hard-edged skirt. Zoe thinks it’s sophisticated, but not stuffy, while Jennifer thinks it’s both edgy and soft. Carol Hannah is pleased that the judges noticed the hard/soft juxtaposition, since that’s a big theme in her work.
Kojii tells the judges that she likes feathers and lace and that she’s happy with Logan’s work. The judges beg to differ and say that it looks like a prom dress. Zoe goes so far as to say it looks like a cheap prom dress, which bodes ill for Logan. He admits the dress is different from what he usually does and that he almost scrapped the skirt. Jennifer says she wishes he had and advises him to listen to his instincts next time.
Matar wanted a punk/romantic dress with an animal inspiration, and Heidi asks if she feels like she has a kitty cat inside of her. Marc says he loves the dress and knows how hard it is to applique stretch fabrics on top of each other. Epperson is obviously a craftsman who put a twist on a traditional silhouette. Heidi likes the dress and thinks Matar looks sexy, but she has reservations about the bust area.
Emarie says she asked for something young and pretty. Jennifer says the purse – which probably came from the Macy’s rack in the workroom – is the most interesting thing about the outfit. The dress is cute, but doesn’t show anything special about Johnny’s style. Heidi says it looks like a bridesmaid’s dress. All Emarie needs is a bouquet of flowers. Zoe says it’s wearable, which is both good and bad. A dress is wearable in the bad sense if it looks too much like something you can get at the mall.
Valerie tells the judges she wanted a dark dress that looked effortless and unique. Heidi says the dress ages Valerie by about ten or fifteen years– which is like dog years for a model. Ouch. Qristyl is obviously in trouble here. Jennfier can’t understand why Qristyl chose black, as the safest choice never pays off. Good designers take chances. Valerie tries to defend Qristyl by saying she likes the dress, but Jennifer dismisses this by saying she’s not a designer. Ouch again. Barring a miracle, Qristyl is gone.
Althea tells the judges that Tanisha has a great sense of style and was therefore easy to work with. Heidi compliments Tanisha’s strut. Althea says that’s why she wants to keep Tanisha. Heidi loves the dress and Jennifer wants the jacket. Zoe agrees, even though she rarely wears suits.
The judges dismiss the designers and models so they can deliberate. Marc points out when you make something in black, it usually looks better than it would in color and that you can get away with murder. Qristyl, however, had managed to make a simple black dress look cheap. Heidi agrees and comments that Qristyl’s dress made Valerie look like a waitress at an industry event. Zoe thinks Logan could have done something cool with lace and feathers, and Jennifer thinks he “lost his way.” Marc finds Johnny’s dress to be too accessible and boring. Heidi agrees; designers are supposed to push the envelope.
The judges then move on to the designers they do like. They give Althea props for making a three-piece outfit. Heidi thinks Lisa looked classy in Carol Hannah’s outfit, and Zoe feels it was well-executed. The judges agree that Epperson showed he could be edgy and that his dress did the best job of showing off his model’s body.
The judges call the designers back in, and tell Epperson he’s in– which means he got his wish and is in the Top Three. Althea is the winner. Carol Hannah and Johnny are in, leaving Logan and Qristyl in the bottom two. To nobody’s surprise, Qristyl is sent home. Like Mitchell before her, she’d made too many trips to the bottom. With her gone, the field has been cleared of the weakest designers. Most of the others have been staying in the middle of the pack, and we shall see which of these rise and which of them fall.
Next week, Tim provides the fabric for the designers, and answers “are all in black and white.”
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