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Who’s In and Who’s Out: Project Runway 2, Episode 10by Kevin Otten -- 02/15/2005
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Where to begin with this week’s episode… Daniel made Chloe look cheap and tacky, Santino’s horrific jumpsuit gone wrong was literally falling off Kara, and Nick’s makeover for Daniel was tragic. All of the men did horribly, and for the second week in a row, Kara almost won. But longtime star Chloe finally pulled off her second win. And Santino remains in the game as Nick is eliminated. Were the right people selected as the winner and the loser?
And then there were five. What an interesting twist as the designers had to not only craft clothing for each other, but also serve as models! For the first time in Project Runway history, some of the designers had to make menswear.
Before discussing the winner and loser, an important issue deserves our attention: Daniel. Various websites, fans of the show, and even the judges commented how “lucky” Daniel was to have been immune, otherwise he would have been eliminated. All of these conclusions seem to suggest that there is the wrong causal relationship at work: Daniel designed a bad dress, but then *poof!* he was immune, making him very lucky! In reality, it is probably precisely because he was immune that he did not do a good job! Unlike the prior season, the winning designer of each challenge is NOT immune. With this one exception, in the Flower Power challenge, victory really did not matter that much, as long as the designers did a decent job. Daniel took some huge risks in his makeover for Chloe, and they did not pan out well. But so what?! He had the freedom to take those bad risks. You could almost see the “So what?!” exclamation in his expression as he was chastised by Heidi Klum. He was immune, period. For the first time ever he was criticized for his design. Who cares?! He couldn’t be eliminated, and he had no real incentive to win the current challenge. I suspect the main reason such a hullabaloo was made about his fiasco was to raise suspicion that his otherwise impeccable record might now be shaky, thus making nervous viewers tremble at the thought that he might not make it to the final three. But I digress… insert an eye roll here, and let’s move on.
The real issues at hand: Chloe’s victory, Nick’s loss, and the judges’ refusal to eliminate Santino. As usual, reviewing the fashion tips the Project Runway designers should have learned will clarify why the winner won and the loser lost. As has often been the case in prior weeks, the outcome is so close it is important to draw a comparison between the winner/loser and the people next in line for both the win and the loss. But first, let’s take a look at the designers individually…
Who’s IN: Chloe
In virtually every challenge, Chloe has risen to the top, even though she has only won once. Consistently, she follows the rules and does a very good job. Granted, most all of the time someone has done just a little bit better. But this was not one of those cases.
The first rule Chloe followed was to be original and creative. Her makeover for Nick was sophisticated and charming – the judges agreed it looked fresh and new for him, but still within the realm of something he would actually wear. The pink vest was a surprise which Nick and the judges liked, giving her outfit an extra touch of pizzazz. Her use of pinstripes was not only creative, but also ambitious and impressive – aligning the fabric to ensure that the lines matched properly was an impressive feat. However, virtually all of the designers this week seemed to be very creative in their makeovers of one another, so this is not necessarily the most important reason Chloe won.
Being flexible and versatile, as specified by the second guideline, was in fact an area where Chloe really shined in this challenge. She, Kara, and Nick all had the difficult feat of designing men’s clothing, something Chloe admitted she had never done before. Ever! She felt very uncertain and nervous about her ability to succeed in the challenge, but she was able to apply her skills and talents in a completely foreign terrain. She also adapted her usual style of light blues, turquoise, etc and geometric shapes, into a softer style, using a color we’ve never seen come from a Chloe design before: pink! Nick was pleased with what she accomplished, as were the judges. She pushed out of her comfort zone in many ways, and passed this rule with flying colors.
Following the rules and being professional is a non-issue; Chloe is always well within the parameters of this third guideline, taking each challenge very seriously. She acts with maturity and with tact both off and on the runway.
The fourth tip advises the designers to be resourceful. Chloe did a good job consulting with Nick, and also getting his feedback throughout the design challenge. When he stated that he thought he looked like a flight attendant, she took that into account and added more spunk to the outfit. She also made very good use of her time – she made more clothes than any other designer.
Selling herself is not an area where we have previously seen Chloe do exceptionally well; the fifth tip is not really her strongest point. Usually the judges like her designs, but she says little which augments their impressions of her work. With this challenge she sold the one thing which made her design stand out among the others which did well – not only did she do a good job, but it was the first time she had ever designed menswear. She made sure to mention this a couple of times on the runway; her lack of experience worked in her favor in that she did an exceptional job even though it was her first time. And this piece of information does matter – doing well at something one has never done before is more impressive than merely doing well.1 2 3 Next-->
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