Wow - what an upset! Gretchen with a bland (could there be any more brown?) and unflattering (those diaper shorts, ugh!) collection won Project Runway season eight. A week ago, Nina Garcia and Michael Kors lambasted the designs only to become their ardent champion during the finale. How could they have so decidedly changed their mind in such a short period of time? Admittedly, they saw more of Gretchen's work at Lincoln Center, but the added pieces were only more lackluster.
Nina kept referring to the fact that she didn't want the winner's style to look "like a circus." She even mentioned last season's winner, Seth Aaron, with a sort of shudder. One wonders if the fashion world is being unkind to Ms. Garcia and her affiliation with the reality show. Are the high and mighty looking down their noses at her involvement in such a spectacle? Does she feel her reputation is on the line in regards to the winner?
Michael Kors also had his feathers ruffled when Jessica Simpson dared to utter the slanderous words of a designer "only" designing sportswear. Since Michael is the self-proclaimed king of American sportswear, did he go to battle for Gretchen because Jessica preferred Mondo? It's interesting to note that Jessica's clothing/accessories line probably provides some competition in the sportswear arena - something Michael might resent. Especially since Jessica is a starlet who attaches her name to a line and not an actual designer.
Poor Mondo got caught in the crossfire. His collection sparkled and dazzled on the runway. It was interesting. It caught your eye. It had a joyful feeling to it. It looked inspired. Even Andy - who was quickly relegated to third place - had some standouts - the one shoulder dresses were outstanding.
I'm glad that Heidi and Jessica passionately made a case for Mondo, even if it was to no avail. I agreed with Heidi's remark to Nina and Michael that they encouraged him all season long only to let him down at the end. That wasn't fair. What they loved in all of the previous challenges suddenly wasn't good enough?
Well I wish Gretchen all the success in the world, but if she made a line like her "Running Through Thunder" collection for Macy's or QVC, I don't think I'd buy it.