Last up is Team Harlem. Seth Aaron’s day look consists of a dark blue denim jacket and matching pants, plus a multicolored shirt and an oversized plaid hat. Emilio’s evening look is a sleeveless black gown with a zipper down the front.
Jay, Mila, Amy, and Jonathan have the lowest scores, but the judges wants to talk to the high-scoring teams first. Starting with Team Harlem, Emilio explains the emphasis on denim in the day look and Old Harlem in the evening piece. Heidi loves both pieces. The details are impeccable and the two pieces relate to each other. Francisco initially thought the evening piece would be sexier if it had been shorter, but has decided the longer length makes it look sophisticated. Emilio explains how the two had collaborated, combining Emilio’s colors with Seth Aaron’s edginess. Nina thought it was smart that they did so, as Seth Aaron has had a tendency to go overboard. Indeed, she thinks some of the elements on the day look should have been edited out for a more tasteful look. (The camera helpfully pans over to the day look’s jacket, which has short tails.) Molly loves the color and the hardware. Emilio and Seth Aaron had fun working together.
On to Team Chinatown. Anthony confesses to his reaction to the ducks in the restaurant, and tells the judges he was inspired by the dragons and paper lanterns he saw. Nina thinks theirs was a great collaboration and likes the subtle pagoda effect in the day look’s jacket and the touches of red in the skirt. Nina also likes the origami dragon on the evening dress, but she would have liked more color, too. Heidi can also see the dragon, but praises its subtlety. Molly likes the day look more, while Francisco thinks everything is well made. Anthony admits that he thought he’d drive Maya crazy, but adds he shouldn’t have been fooled by her pretty face.
Now for the teams the judges didn’t like as much. Team Upper East Side is first. Amy tells how they were inspired by various architectural features they saw in that neighborhood, like some wrought iron gates. She and Jonathan loved working together and liked each other’s design sensibilities. Nina and Molly agree that the day look is unpolished, and Molly adds she doesn’t see anything reminiscent of the Upper East Side in it. Heidi calls the day look an eyesore. She adds that the evening look is better, but still overly busy. Francisco sees workmanship in the evening look, but Nina thinks the dark panels at the bottom of the dress make it look heavy and cheap.
Last up are Team East Village. Jay tells how he and Mila had gravitated to graffiti. Nina loves Mila’s nighttime look, especially the red pants and the lines in the jacket. She finds the day look a disappointment, though, as it makes a tank top look like a leotard. Heidi says the model’s boobs appear to be “floating around.” Nina calls the pants a flop. Francisco, however, sees a “synergy” between the pants and the top. Molly just thinks the tank top “tanked.” Jay thinks he and Mila worked together professionally.
Afterwards, the judges have their chat. Amy and Jonathan didn’t see the big picture and overworked everything. Amy’s look was more Lower East Side than Upper East Side. Jay’s day look was horrible, with an ill-fitting shirt and overworked pants. Mila’s evening look salvaged the team.
Onto the designers they did like. Anthony and Maya made two sophisticated looks for Chinatown. Emilio and Seth Aaron successfully blended sophistication and attitude. Nina thinks Emilio can do more, though; she was somewhat disappointed in the evening look.
The judges call everybody back in. Emilio and Seth Aaron share the victory, as the judges saw how well they had worked together. Mila and Jonathan are both in, leaving Amy and Jay in the bottom two. Both of them had simply made bad outfits, but as this was Amy’s third trip to the bottom, while this was Jay’s first, she’s the one sent packing.
I’d say it’s obvious the judges do consider past performances here. Everybody can have an off day, as we just saw with Jay. What the judges want to see is a strong overall performance. Maya is the sort of designer the judges would like to reward. She hasn’t won a challenge, but she has been in the top five times and has never been in the bottom yet. She has been the most consistently good of this season’s crop. Until this episode’s stumble, Jay had shared that distinction. I’d say that he and Maya have the best chances of being in the finals, while the third spot is likely to go to Anthony or Seth Aaron.
Next week: The designers get to do something “every designer dreams about.”
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