Well, the next season of Project Runway just started - so I'd better wrap up my thoughts on the last season ASAP. (And that's ignoring the fact that a whole season of "all stars" has also aired in the interim - oops!)
The last four designers were given $9000 and five weeks to make their finale collections. As is usual, four weeks in they each get paid a visit by Tim Gunn. We learn that Fabio, Dmitry, and Mellisa have each been loaned apartments to use a studio space. Chris, however, is simply in his parents' basement.
Chris is basing his collection around a sepia-toned print of an x-ray taken of his mother after an accident - showing screws and plates in her bones. Fabio's is a pastel drapey "cosmic tribaldom" collection, which Tim loves until he sees the clunky pants & shoes Fabio plans on putting under each outfit and then he is "mystified." Dmitry keeps repeating that his black and white and chartreuse garments are "organic architecture" and Mellisa's is very, uh, I can't actually read what I wrote for my initial impression. Damn you, terrible handwriting!!
In any case, in the penultimate episode, the contestants have to choose three outfits to show to the judges, and based on these mini-collections one of them will get eliminated before the finale. However, they don't actually end up eliminating anyone so it's a no-op. I guess it's just a chance for everybody to address (if they want) any criticism at this point. Mostly the judges have issues with the styling - Fabio's doesn't look sophisticated, Dmitry's is too old, and Mellisa put her girls in ugly wigs. Chris didn't have enough garments done in time so he had to just show the few things he had that would actually fit on the models he got, so the judges called him out for having no "wow" factor, and, well, "very little clothes."
Coming into the finale, everybody gets $300 more to spend at on fabric to finish off their collections. Mellisa has the most notable addition by picking up red leather, which she makes into a dress. Mellisa and Chris are both still frantically sewing when Tim comes to take everyone to the runway. Chris then rips off the bottom tier of one of his dresses that's trailing lower than he wanted.
Totally random cameo - Stephanie Meyer (as in, author of Twilight) at the runway show. Huh?
Chris, Mellisa, and Dmitry's collections are all black with a few other neutrals. Fabio stands out with all his hand-dyed pastels. Chris and Dmitry's read as more formal, whereas Mellisa and Fabio's are more towards daywear. I liked Dmitry's the best - it had interesting geometric details.
In the judging, Chris is out of the running pretty much immediately. They say he's "still finding his voice." That leaves it between Dmitry's more tailored dresses versus Mellisa & Fabio's slouchier, hipster-y clothes. Dmitry wins!