Friday, February 19, 2010

PR: For the Small

"What do you like best about your outfit?" "It has a purse."
And that pretty much sums up last night's Project Runway. There were some weird showings, and some very practical garments. There was a twist and some quaking in boots, but on the whole I think some interesting things came down the runway, even if most of them were flawed in some way.

Amy: Ok, first I have to speak up in Amy's defense. I nearly fell out of my chair when that judge said, "I don't think blue and orange are really that complementary of colors, do you?" My dear woman, complementary is the definition of blue and orange. Geez, art history much? Open a book.
Anyway. Props to the little model for speaking up for Amy. I liked the skirt and the sweater. The leggings--no. I also didn't care for the pants on the lady model. I wondered if she would have been better off with a toned down version of the petaling in a skirt (like the look when she was originally laying the pieces out on a background fabric). That might have had a little more appeal. I'm glad Amy wasn't auf'd, but it was a close one.
Anthony: I thought the design for the little girl was adorable. The ruffle neckline really didn't need to be such a V shape, but the concept and fabrics were darling together. I didn't care for the lady dress (or top and skirt--I see a bit of belly peeking out on the photo). It was a little too cheap-looking, in construction and in design.
Ben: The little dress was kind of sweet but also kind of plain--it wouldn't jump off a hanger. I liked the skirt to the lady outfit, but the shirt, with that shoulder treatment he's so fond of--didn't care for it. It was so dark. They didn't look like they were going to the same place.
Emilio: I have to be honest, I've seen patterns for a very similar dress to the little one Emilio made. That could be a Butterick, and while there's nothing wrong with that, it's not really the purpose of the competition. The lady dress was kind of saccharine for my tastes--like a confection, but in a bridesmaid color, not really practical for life. I might have liked it better in a lighter, more sophisticated peachy color.
Janeane: I actually liked the lady top that Janeane made. I was not offended by the rest of the garments, but I do agree that there was a little too much simplicity (or Simplicity--that's a pattern joke) in them. She produced both a bubble skirt and leggings, neither of which I like generally. I did see the perspective of playclothes in them, and it's hard to find cute playclothes, but at the same time, I would have thought Janeane would realize playclothes wouldn't win a design competition. Michael Kors is obsessed with ladies' sportswear, but when it comes to kids' clothes, they were looking for something new and fashion forward, as dictated specifically in the challenge. Janeane didn't meet those parameters.
Jay N.: Burgundy and black for casualwear? It was so dark! Also, the little dress had a keyhole back, which is completely unnecessary. I didn't hate this outfit, but it didn't grab my eye at all, and while the lady top was attractive, that's really all there was to the lady outfit. The pants weren't that interesting, unlike Seth Aaron's. I wondered if for sophisticated gothic parents the child's look would be attractive and meet their style desires, but I just did not respond favorably to this look. In Jay's semi-favor, though, I might be biased by the styling. A scarf was completely unnecessary for this tank dress. It looked sloppy and obscured the already obscured-by-darkness dress.
Jesse: I think this look will be a little controversial. I loved the gray and red trim together, and the red coat for the little outfit. I hated the asymmetrical design. As someone pointed out in comments, kids' clothes are always getting swung around or bunched up, and the design element would therefore be pointless. The lady outfit...well, I can see what he was going for, and the shape is nice, but I don't think I could wear this outfit. I love love love that coat, though. Love. And that is why he was in the top 3, I think.
Jonathan: Oh, Jonathan. So up, so down. There had to be better ways to glam up a sweet little yellow dress and bolero other than putting scratchy organza on it. Right? I really liked the fabric treatment with the bolero and the color blocking with the yellow on the dress. The organza just seemed unnecessary. For the lady look--I could understand his vision better than Kors; it was as though he were going for something a little couture. I've seen worse, and I thought he was attacked mostly because of the context of the challenge. He overdid. In any case, the garments were not well paired.
Maya: I really liked Maya's looks. I responded positively to them on the runway because they were bright and practical. This is more like well designed playclothes than what Janeane put together, and it seemed like lady and little could play together, whereas Janeane's was more like, little plays while lady watches. I don't care for leggings, as I mentioned, and I wish I could have gotten a look at the little top, but I thought this pair looked nice. I don't know what exactly it is about them, but I really liked these.
Mila: Mila is Mila, right? I liked the lady coat, though it was a little too much of a 60s throwback for didn't have much in the way of updating. Really didn't care for the little dress. It looked garish rather than sweet, and the giant black pockets were offputting. Watermelon colors with spotted print? I just don't see it.
Seth Aaron: Glad SA won this round. I really enjoyed the lady jacket. I don't normally go for that sort of thing, but I thought the garment was tasteful and I'd totally wear that, zippers and all. That little girl was adorable enough on her own, but that little hoodie looked perfect for her. Some may argue that this looks like something you could buy, but to my eye the hoodie had just enough original design elements to it to make it stand out from purchasable items. It's like the type of thing a store would make a knock-off of, but the original would still be there. I just think Seth Aaron had a great balance of wearable design. He designed smart this week.

In a great take of "chacun a son gout" reading the PR blogs is a trip this week. No one agrees about anything, it seems. As in, Chris March loved Mila, Carol Hannah hated her look, and Tim was neutral. Good times!
Next week, the hardware store. I'm hoping for good things.


Tudor Rose said...

I have a feeling that if they ever did a Christmas challenge, the judges would say that red and green aren't complementary either.

Honestly, I didn't mind Amy's design either. The pattern on the pants was cute, and, I don't know, i feel like if she had someone made it a flat pattern (instead of the flapping petals, although I understand why she did that) and made it a skirt instead of the pants it would have worked better. But that's just my opinion.

I was totally bored by Emilio's designs. Both of them. When they showed the clip of Michael Kors describing somebody's dress as a "mall dress" I was convinced that's who he was talking about.

And I'm so glad Seth Aaron won, too. Both outfits were so fabulous. Honestly, though, the entire challenge makes me want to have kids so I can buy cute little girls clothes.

Anonymous said...

Tudor Rose read my mind on Amy's design -- a flat pieced pattern for a cute A-line skirt should've worked. I thought the orange and aquas were fresh and pretty. I was shocked when the judges thought that those colors weren't complementary. Better go back to art class, guys. Tory Burch was the first to mention it, I think, and she majored in art history in college. (If you Google "project runway" "complementary colors," you'll see that others are ripping on the judges for that gaffe.)

I was attracted to Jay N's color scheme, and I want that lady top myself. But the palette and overall look were too sophisticated for a girl. There's a difference between fashion-forwardness and adult sophistication. The girl made me think of a precocious, darkly wry child of divorced parents in a romantic comedy set in New York City.

Emilio's pieces made me think of Steel Magnolias: 1980s southern wedding wear.

Anyway, yay for Seth Aaron. He designed with love, good humor, and good tailoring, with his own daughter in mind, and he succeeded.

I was tickled by the challenge+challenge twist. Hanna Andersson offers lots of momwear that coordinates with kidwear, especially around the holidays, but it's often a bit prim and lacking in shape. It's a comical idea in general -- who really *does* that matching thing? Except the models in the old Sears Christmas catalogues? -- but it was fun to see some novel and fashionable takes on the theme.


Abs said...

It's nice that we seem to be in agreement this week. That always gives me a feeling of solidarity, like all is right with the world.
SECP--good call on the Steel Magnolias. I can't think of a better description
As per your suggestion, I read some of the commentary about the complementary colors on Google...some came creepily close to what I said, like we were all so mad about it that we have one brain.
This was a pretty fun challenge, and one that also emphasized the time factor--two days for two outfits. The best looks completely hid the fact that there was practically no time to produce them.