PR: Ripping the Collections – Viktor

Posted on November 01, 2011

We’ve made no secret of the fact that we thought Viktor should have won this season because his collection was easily the strongest of the four finalists. In the tent, at the time, we weren’t quite as sure. We immediately saw it for the strong collection it was, but we thought there were too many weak points and he was too self-consciously checking current trends off a list. Looking over it now, those criticisms remain in our minds, but we’re as committed as ever to the idea that he was head and shoulders above the other finalists.

 



A great opening look. No complaints here except to point this out as an example of trend checklisting. You’ve got the structured shoulders, the back of the dress radically different from the front, and the graphic, intricate print.



We love that skirt, but that top is clearly an afterthought. An “I’ll put something sheer here” move. Sure, the unflattering cups in the bust tie the look together, but we think that skirt would have popped with a very simple blouse in stark white or a vivid solid color.



His use of sheers was mostly a mistake, but this top is fantastic and makes the outfit. Leather hotpants aren’t exciting anymore, but a mirrored sheer top takes them somewhere modern.



Fantastic print; adorable dress. He’s not reinventing the wheel here, as far as silhouette or shapes go, but it’s chic and current and highly wearable.



Another huge mistake of a sheer blouse, but those striped shorts are really cute.



Coming right out of left field. The lace, the body-conscious silhouette, even the bondage-style leather accents – all of it is wrong for this collection. It’s not a bad design. It just doesn’t belong here.



Even bigger mistake. We suppose this ties the two dresses together, but tonally, they’re all wrong and this one isn’t very interesting to look at, although the straps are nice.



Love this gown. Love the interesting use of straps (again) and grommets. Hard-edged and pretty, which is what he was going for throughout this collection.



That mirrored top is once again fabulous, although we didn’t need to see it a second time in the collection. We like the tuxedo jacket, especially with the striped lining, but we don’t like the way the tails are hitting her butt. The pants are stylish and eye-catching, but we don’t love that print in a pant.Basically, this is Viktor’s collection writ small: a lot of great ideas, some weak ones, and some really bad pairing. All three of these items would have been better paired with other items.



Oh, Viktor. You should have never listened to those judges. They told you to pair that killer jacket with a simple tank top and black pants and you know what happened? The whole look went generic. We liked the jacket so much better with the wrinkled little dress you originally had. Even if you had to get rid of the dress, the jacket would have looked so much better paired with those striped shorts up there and the tuxedo jacket would have worked better here.

He got tripped up by that pre-judging session. The judges clearly liked his pieces best, but they needed to throw some sort of criticism at him so they basically nit-picked him. He choked by whipping up a bunch of pointless sheer pieces and then re-arranging the pairings just a bit too much. He definitely has a weakness in the styling area, but his designs are top-notch. Unfortunately, Project Runway is now far more about style (and personal stories) than it is about design.

[Photo Credit: David M. Russell for myLifetime.com]

    • http://heartprintandstyle.blogspot.com Vivi N

      Yes, Vicktor should’ve won based on the Final Four collection. But as a whole, I still put Bert and Laura way above everybody else. 

      • Sobaika Mirza

        I think that goes without saying. Bert was clearly the most knowledgeable in the room and Laura (while never quite managing to illustrate it through the challenges) had a really luxe point of view. I hope the judges were eating their words when they saw their collections.

        This season was so depressing.

        • http://heartprintandstyle.blogspot.com Vivi N

          Very, very depressing. *le sigh*

          Makes me miss the glory days of Season 3 even more. (I really do need to buy the DVD set.)

        • Anonymous

          I really, really, REALLY want to know what was going on with Laura.  There’s definitely a story there.  The judges were right not to put her through based on her body of work during the season (though I’d love to see a Laurology) but then that beautiful collection appeared out of left field.  What was the deal with that?

          • Sobaika Mirza

            Couldn’t hack the pressure, styled according to the challenge as opposed to her own style, challenges that were ridiculous to begin with. Perhaps she was aware of her spectacular “bleh-ness” as a contestant and used it as ammo for her collection.

            At least it explains her insistence throughout the competition that her taste level was so high.

            • Anonymous

              She also allowed herself to get sucked in to all the drama and she lost her focus.  Can’t concentrate when you are singing with the “hate” choir.

            • Anonymous

              She also allowed herself to get sucked in to all the drama and she lost her focus.  Can’t concentrate when you are singing with the “hate” choir.

          • Anonymous

            I think she was just very inspired by the experience of being on PR and was able to produce a beautiful collection without worrying about the judges. If she were a finalist, I don’t know if she would have created the same collection according to interviews with her. 

      • http://profiles.google.com/misslauraschultz Laura Schultz

        I can’t find the link to Laura’s full “Ripping the Runway” collection. Anyone?

        • http://heartprintandstyle.blogspot.com Vivi N

          Here you go - http://www.tomandlorenzo.com/2011/10/pr-ripping-the-collections-laura.html

      • Now I am The Bee

        I just now looked at Laura’s collection.  It was awesome.  Truly beautiful, wearable but fashionable and really well thought out and put together.  Too bad the pressure of the workroom (or whatever) caused her to make mediocre fashion during the season.  Her collection is gorgeous! 

      • Anonymous

        I thought Bert’s collection was beautiful, though not really my style, but I actually hated Laura’s collection.

        I know it was the general favourite and, in many respects, I can appreciate it: it was well-made, professional, coherent, cohesive, well-executed for what it was, but what it was, to me, was just plain ugly – exceedingly and not even interestingly so.

        But, à chacun son goût.

        • Anonymous

          lol I thought it was ugly too, I especially don’t get the praise for construction given the poor fit on those pants. but as you said: each to his own taste. Love Viktor’s and Bert’s.

      • Anonymous

        It would have been interesting to see a Bert-Laura-Viktor final three.  Not only based on the collections they showed, but because I wonder how differently their final collections might have turned out if they knew they were competing against each other.  I don’t know that their finale collections would be substantially different (apart from the way Viktor spent his $500 “gift”) or even the greatest in PR history, but it feels like it could have been a more direct, gloves-off fight.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_OD35QQZNBPZJXWTCBY7N4EE7VY Sarah

      Coulda, woulda, shoulda.

    • Anonymous

      Yes yes yes. What’s the point in giving the contestants all that time to work on their collections and see what they’re really about,  if they end up giving them thoughtless advice at the last moment with the additional money and time to panic and make it another time-based challenge. Viktor, you got SCREWED though I can understand why you panicked and felt you needed to change it up.

      • Anonymous

        It’s really a shame that Viktor allowed the judges’ comments on his mini-collection to the looks that he created and sent out for his final collection.  I love that white leather jacket, and it was so much more of an “oomph” look with that mullet hem dress in the mini-collection-and normally I abhor mullet hems.
        Viktor had just enough hiccups in his final collections for the judges to give the win to whatsherface

        • http://profiles.google.com/singingraisin ali meowmeow

          But of course last year they criticized Mondo for not taking their advice when Gretchen did. I think he would have been damned either way; there’s really absolutely nothing he could have done differently to come out on top here. I just wish he had known that, and just used the opportunity to send out the most “Viktor” collection possible.

          • Anonymous

            The judges have been so consistently inconsistent the past few seasons that it’s hard to know if they even know what they’re saying.

            I agree that Viktor just wasn’t going to win this thing, and that I would like to have seen his original final collection before he listened to Moe, Larry and Curly’s misguided criticisms.

          • Anonymous

            I agree – I really wish Viktor had just said “eff it” and sent out the collection as he originally envisioned it.  But I can see how, in the thick of competition, it would be unbearable to admit you don’t have a shot in hell no matter what you do.

            • Anonymous

              Especially when we, observing from a distance (and possibly observing an edit skewing things against him), still had a hard time accepting that, in the end, they *would really DO that.* From inside the machine, there’s no way you could accept in your heart that there was truly no hope.

            • http://beautyforrealgirls.blogspot.com/ accidental housewife

              Yep. I think you’re right. I mean, how do you tell yourself that it doesn’t matter what you do, because you’re not going to win? Viktor worked damn hard on his collection, and he worked hard on every challenge. Giving up, I would think, was not an option for him, or for Josh and Kimberly I feel bad for all three of them.

            • Anonymous

              The point about the edit is a great one – none of these people would have necessarily known how much Anya was being focused on from the get-go.  It seemed to dawn on them as the competition went on (and must be painfully clear now).

            • Anonymous

              Good point.  And when you are thisclose to maybe, just maybe, winning you lose your focus on who you are and allow yourself to bend to what they want you to be.

            • Anonymous

              Good point.  And when you are thisclose to maybe, just maybe, winning you lose your focus on who you are and allow yourself to bend to what they want you to be.

          • Anonymous

            Like-like-like-like-like!

    • http://twitter.com/susanpcollier Susan Collier

      Sigh. Coulda, woulda, shoulda. TPTB gave him $500 to hang himself with.

      • http://profiles.google.com/singingraisin ali meowmeow

        $500 and some pretty bad criticism. I think the latter hurt him more. 

    • Anonymous

      It pained me to have to agree with the judges about the sheer pieces, but it’s true–they are clunkers.  Viktor really had too much time on his hands–maybe if he had been scrambling to finish like the others, he wouldn’t have had time for such disastrous second thoughts!

      • Anonymous

        Well, maybe if the PR producers weren’t doing everything to give Anya extra chances, Viktor would have won–he got really screwed over by the manipulations.

        • BerlinerNYC

          Yeah, it was so evil of them to give him $500 and enough time to sabotage himself. We didn’t learn anything about his questionable taste level from that…

          • Anonymous

            No, the evil was to give him a meaningless critique that made him feel that his original collection wasn’t good enough.  He didn’t get honest feedback because the producers were rigging the odds in favor of Anya.

            Viktor tended to overwork things–but there were so many shenanigans this season that he didn’t get the feedback he needed.  He was mostly the unphotogenic contestant whose work was too proficient to ignore.  

            In a season with stronger competition, Viktor would have become a better designer.  

            • Anonymous

              This!!

              I would have really liked to see Viktor compete in an earlier season.  I don’t know if he would have made it to the finals, but I think he could have put out some cool stuff if he were forced to rise to higher (and more consistent!!) standards.

            • http://profiles.google.com/shannonlstewart Shannon Stewart

              I don’t even think it would have been an issue of being forced to higher standards; I think it would have been more “allowed to do HIS vision”.  Because his site shows much more interesting work.

            • Anonymous

              Yes – I think you’ve said much better what I was trying to say!  I guess when I referred to “standards,” I was wondering if the Anya/Josh grade curve impacted Viktor’s decision-making.  Take that away, and put him in competition with some of the talent from seasons’ past, and he might have been driven to reach deeper and more creatively into his bag of tricks.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_IVAJNOUIUXRFJA627JMU2YLWSY ana

      Love that first dress. LOVE LOVE LOVE. I wish it was in my closet!

      How he came in third is something I’ll never understand (in good conscience, that is!)

      • LocMama

        I understand why he came in third.  Even with the critiques of his sheers he was still head & shoulders above the work of the winner.  Had it been a head to head & he lost there might have been the same uproar as last year’s Gretchen v. Mondo nonsense.  Now you can sigh in relief that Drama Vortex didn’t take the win with his acid green lace-up biker shorts.

        • Anonymous

          He wasn’t necessarily third.  I think the order of the auf’ing in the final three is more for whatever narrative the producers are going for than how each of the losers compared to the other.  Viktor and Josh tied for second, as far as I’m concerned.

          • Anonymous

            That’s still pretty messed up if they gave him a “fake” third place when he was really second.  If they were trying to avoid Mondo comparisons, it sucks that the judges would punish Viktor for *their* blunder last year. 

        • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_IVAJNOUIUXRFJA627JMU2YLWSY ana

          And this is why I said “in good conscience” :p but truth be told, I’d rather have acid green shorts Josh winning over Anya because albeith tacky as hell and definitely outside of my own taste, he has some skills and at least put some visible effort in his collection.

    • http://profiles.google.com/misslauraschultz Laura Schultz

      Still mad…..

      I love his prints, especially the long blue dress and the first dress. I like the use of mirrors, and the sheer on those don’t bother me. I love the first long sheer dress with the pattern on it. The rest looks weird.  I LOVE the white jacket with the pants and the sheer top, I actually think it was an improvement, although I didn’t mind how he originally styled it. 

      HE WAS ROBBED! HE DESIGNED HIS OWN PRINTS AND DIDN’T PICK THEM OUT FROM MOOD. Rrr. 

      • http://twitter.com/thecolonelmc The Colonel

        Am I the only one who thinks those prints are a bald-faced knockoff of McQueen’s last collection?  The mirror-image, the natural-made-kaleidoscope effect — just strikes me as a straight rip.

        • Anonymous

          No, I think they were a “rip” of the Rorschach ink blot prints they were so successful with in an earlier challenge, except done in natural prints.

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/Catherine-Rhodes/602850414 Catherine Rhodes

          As Picasso said, “good artists borrow, great artists steal.”

    • Anonymous

      “Tlo said: He got tripped up by that pre-judging session. The judges clearly liked his pieces best, but they needed to throw some sort of criticism at him so they basically nit-picked him. He choked by whipping up a bunch of pointless sheer pieces and then re-arranging the pairings just a bit too much.”

      Exactamundo. He did a Debi Thomas: The judges (and maybe other contestants) got in his head, causing him to lose the mental game.

      And I don’t care what Nina says, I love, love, LOVE that leather jacket, and it looks NOTHING like the Burberry jacket she claimed it was reminiscent of. She was just grabbing at straws to justify giving the win to Anya.

      –GothamTomato

      http://www.blurb.com/my/book/detail/2561006

      • Anonymous

        Debi Thomas and I once stood at the same bus stop in Chicago waiting for our bus. 

        • Anonymous

          I went to college with her; she was 2 yrs ahead of me & in the same major as a friend.  I met her when she presented her final project as a product design major– she was extremely well spoken and gave a great presentation; didn’t choke at all. 

          I only wish the same was true for Viktor. His first dress is one of the few PR pieces that I absolutely covet & would love to have in my closet (and would probably look great even on my non-zero size body). The sheers (other than the mirrored blouse) really stood out as klunkers for me.  It just kills me that the last minute producer intervention of $500 saved Anya’s a@@ but killed Viktor’s chances (or at least gave the judges at least a somewhat plausible reason for knocking on his final collection).  Not that I don’t think that Viktor’s collection with the sheers is still 1000x better than Anya’s (and Josh’s)….

          If Viktor hadn’t added the sheers, I would have still given his collection the win over Laura’s and Bert’s. With the sheers, I’d give Laura the slight edge, with Viktor and Bert neck and neck.

          Hoping that at least this weeks’ PR episode will show the decoy collections in motion on the runway; I’m curious as to how Laura’s and Bert’s clothes moved on the runway.

          • Anonymous

            Product design major–I was about 98% positive that she was pre-med, no?

            • Anonymous

              She ended up becoming a doctor, so you’re probably right that she was pre-med.  She still could have majored in something like product design while taking pre-med classes too. (I went to school with a lot of crazy-smart, overly ambitious people so wouldn’t surprise me.) But it was definitely her; she even mentioned her experience as a kid training for ice skating during her presentation (the product she came up with was for young athletes). I thought she was a product design major, but I could be just be assuming that because the presentations were for an advanced level product design class.

      • Now I am The Bee

        ITA!  I wonder how many remember Debi Thomas…

      • Anonymous

        Excellent reference!  I vividly remember Debi Thomas psyching herself out of the silver medal she deserved because everyone was trying to make the ladies event as big as the Battle of the Brians.

        • Anonymous

          It was actually the gold medal she psyched herself out of.

          –GothamTomato

        • Anonymous

          I remember watching the women’s finals at the Calgary Olympics, and Debi just didn’t bring it that night-too bad, because she was such a fine skater.

          • http://twitter.com/susanpcollier Susan Collier

            I just looked her up on Wikipedia. She was in college while skating in the Olympics. She went back to med school and is now an orthopedic surgeon. Smart lady.

            • Anonymous

              Debi Thomas is indeed a smart gal-she knew that there was life after competitive skating.

        • Anonymous

          Ooh, I remember that.  I remember her standing there, looking pissed off and about to cry…she was probably just disappointed and angry.  Did she refuse to shake Katarina Witt’s hand, or am I mis-remembering?  I vaguely remember some “poor sport” commentary around her. 

      • Anonymous

        Debi T – excellent example!

      • Anonymous

        Ooh, I remember that.  I remember her standing there, looking pissed off and about to cry…she was probably just disappointed and angry.  Did she refuse to shake Katarina Witt’s hand, or am I mis-remembering?  I vaguely remember some “poor sport” commentary around her. 

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=4300013 Jack Marquardt

      for all we know the judges probably told him to do these batshit crazy things just to ensure that he would present something they could award a win to Anya over.

      • Anna Maria Diamanti

        Seriously. When Kors told him to just whip up a pair of black pants and a top I was sure hat was so they could fuck him over when he failed to “wow” them enough! All their critiques of his mini collection boiled down to it just being too much fabulousness! all at once. What else could they do to make him “dial it down” enough for Anya’s benefit?

        As for his collection, the black sheer pieces really weigh it down for me. As much as I like the first look, the mirror shirt and the top and back of the palm tree gown, the impact of the rest is just blunted. So unfortunate because like Kimberly, Viktor really could have benefited from some real mentoring and legitimate critiquing by the judges during the whole course of the show. You know, as opposed to the mess of mixed signals they had to send in their kama-sutra-like contortions just to keep Anya and Josh in the top week after week.

        • Anonymous

          This.  On one of the After the Runways, my ears perked up when Viktor said something like he wished Tim Gunn had more criticism during the home visit.  This is clearly a guy who wants to get better at what he does.

    • Anonymous

      Am I the only one who (1) didn’t much care for the black-and-blue island-silhouette print in the first place and (2) absolutely HATED the sideways and upside-down deployment of it? Ugh…just awful. The pink-and-white print works as an abstraction because it’s not obvious what he was photographing, but I just can’t look at the blue-print looks without my inner voice screaming “SIDEWAYS PALM TREES!”

      Completely agree with TLo that the mini-collection prejudging probably screwed Viktor out of the win. He seemed to have a rack full of interesting pieces, but based on the judges criticisms, he redesigned half the collection rather than make a few minor tweaks to please them. He seems to be the rare Project Runway contestant who edits TOO much. 

      But the conspiracy theorist in me thinks that was most likely the plan all along, so that he could be eliminated as a serious competitor to The Chosen One.

      • http://twitter.com/SetMeOnFYYYYAH Miss World

        you are not alone. i am not a fan of the blue prints either. something about them looks cheap to me.

    • Anonymous

      I covet that leather zippered skirt.

      • Anonymous

        I think it is fantastic. Not for me and my lifestyle, but I would love to see it out and about. When designers try to get creative with leather they fail more often than not, but this skirt is wonderful.  

        • http://profiles.google.com/shannonlstewart Shannon Stewart

          It could have been rendered in different materials as well, for downmarket sales.

      • http://profiles.google.com/shannonlstewart Shannon Stewart

        I loved that skirt!  In fact, I liked both ways he showed it — I thought it was kind of cool over the printed dress, and elevated the dress beyond just pretty.

      • Anonymous

        I like that he chose to expose his zippers in a slightly more interesting way than most of his competitors have been doing all season.  If I’m not mistaken, that skirt has the only exposed zippers in his collection.

        (I should add that Kimberly made some cool use of her zippers too.)

    • Anonymous

      I thought the judges were overly harsh about the use of sheers, but looking at the collection again, I think Viktor would have done much better with more use of his printed fabrics. They are really so beautiful and unique. That first look is flawless. I still think this is the best collection by virtue of the fact that everything here is actually beautiful (and if you look like Heidi, wearable).

      • Sobaika Mirza

        What I hate about the sheer looks is that they’re so familiar – please see previous Lanvin and Gucci runways. I’m not saying they have a monopoly on the style, but couldn’t Victor have gone with something not so… derivative?

        • margaret meyers

          And the last minute sheer separates just didn’t look as fashionable and finished.  I loved the combination of the straps, halters, braces, loops and grommets with the different densities of black chiffon.  I thought the sheer gowns were really attractive.

          • Anonymous

            I also loved the S&M components!

    • Anonymous

      I think Viktor should post the looks he discarded for the sheers in the show.

      • Anonymous

        Me too! TLo, if you ever get the chance to ask him . . .

        • margaret meyers

          And I would love to see what Anya had on her dress rack that first day in NYC.   Thank heavens for that $500 and another trip to Mood.  I suppose giving them a seamstress would have made it too obvious.

      • http://twitter.com/curlysooo S.F.

        I was thinking the same! I keep picturing that rack when he told Tim he was editing out a bunch of the print pieces. 

    • Anonymous

      Now that I see the pictures, I kind of hate the sheers, and the mistakes are much more obvious than they were when I saw these on TV. But I still think he should have won. All four designers did better than I expected. But Viktor’s overall look, the feel, the vibe  – there was just something about it that was a step above the rest. Seeing the pictures, I can kind of understand now why he lost, but even with the inconsistencies, his was the only one that came close to feeling like Fashion with a capital F.

      • Anonymous

        How funny. When I was watching the judging, I kept thinking “Sheers? Geez, there were only a couple . . . and they were good designs and would work well  in prints . . . what is the big deal?” But seeing it here, I’m thinking “where the hell did all those sheers come from?”

        This is why I would make a horrid witness . . . don’t get murdered in front of me, I’m useless.

    • Anonymous

      I’m just excited for Tim Gunn’s “Behind the Seams” on Thursday.  Though I doubt he will have the freedom of voice he has had previously.  I sorely miss his blog every week when he got to give his honest 2 cents, irrespective of ball cancer, dead relatives, sex tapes, and the like.

      Oh – I was supposed to be talking about Viktor’s collection.  I voted for him for fan favorite round about week 5.  Yeah, his collection was clearly the best to anyone with eyes.  Despite the criticisms you guys so aptly made.

    • Anonymous

      Poor Viktor. You know there is absolutely no point in second guessing what he should have done. Because if he had used  more of the Vera Cruz print they would have criticized that too. Anyho. I love the way he used the print , not literal, he obscured it by cutting it the way he did. I thought the pearl jacket would have been good with a long sheer white skirt and maybe used the tuxedo jacket  with one of the long sheer black gowns to tone down the nakie.
      *I guess we know that it would not have made any difference  for Laura Kathleen to be in the finale either.

    • Jennifer Coleman

      I got the feeling that, even more than Kim, Viktor second guessed himself out of contention. Maybe after seeing the other 3 finalists’ overtly sexier collections, he felt he had to tart his up a bit with the sheer looks, which was a big, rookie mistake. I didn’t mind the all black winding through the collection, but the sheer, alleged ‘edgy & sexy’ is neither his style or strong suit. He ended up diluting his ladylike silhouettes and sophisticated use of patterns & textures. Such a shame!
      I did like the patterned pants with the mirrored top and jacket more in movement. Didn’t even notice the striped lining, but in the photos above, the cut of the jacket is a little odd. Maybe if it was less full & stiff and the lapels less quirky, it would be the showstopper it was intended as. I do like the pieces all together; no one this season had the eye to combine and balance different elements as well as Viktor by a long shot.

      • Anonymous

        He had so much confidence going into the pre-judging. He KNEW he had the best collection. Then they nitpicked him to death and complemented everyone else and he began to panic. You could see it in his eyes.

        • Jennifer Coleman

          You know – I’m starting to think Viktor was just not as confident in his work as we might’ve thought. I think most of the finalists had feelings of superiority to other contestants, but that’s different than self confidence. There are some things that Viktor has said in interviews and his folding in the finale that makes me think he might have not been able to withstand the last minute bad advice. And anyone in the fashion business, ie the judges, would have picked up on that, probably from the beginning, which would make him a great also-ran in the saga/setup to make Anya the winner:
          -Josh: obviously the season villian, guaranteed to draw attention away from any subtle Anya strategic maneuvers.
          -Kim: would’ve not made it to the finals if Anya didn’t jack up her mini-collection, but never a winning contender
          -Viktor: the obvious talent of the group, but was the classic presumed winner that choked. Most likely the viktim of purposely bad advice and head-gaming by the powers that be.

          All that being said, the worst looks in his collection were better than the best looks in Anya’s.

        • Jennifer Coleman

          You know – I’m starting to think Viktor was just not as confident in his work as we might’ve thought. I think most of the finalists had feelings of superiority to other contestants, but that’s different than self confidence. There are some things that Viktor has said in interviews and his folding in the finale that makes me think he might have not been able to withstand the last minute bad advice. And anyone in the fashion business, ie the judges, would have picked up on that, probably from the beginning, which would make him a great also-ran in the saga/setup to make Anya the winner:
          -Josh: obviously the season villian, guaranteed to draw attention away from any subtle Anya strategic maneuvers.
          -Kim: would’ve not made it to the finals if Anya didn’t jack up her mini-collection, but never a winning contender
          -Viktor: the obvious talent of the group, but was the classic presumed winner that choked. Most likely the viktim of purposely bad advice and head-gaming by the powers that be.

          All that being said, the worst looks in his collection were better than the best looks in Anya’s.

          • Anonymous

            I agree.  With his Governor’s Island mini-collection, there was an exchange where one of the judges knocked him for being too conservative.  Viktor replied something like “But I thought that’s what you wanted?”  I think he took the judges very seriously, whether due to a lack of confidence or because he was trying to be pragmatic about the competition, and didn’t seem to realize that wasn’t mutual.  And especially by the end – I can see where the cumulative effect of losing out because of nitpicky crap challenge after challenge would really chip away at even a relatively self-confident designer.

          • http://profiles.google.com/shannonlstewart Shannon Stewart

            I don’t know that it was a question of confidence.  I think Victor was looking at it from the perspective of “what will the judges like?” rather than “what is great?”  Because ultimately, if you go on PR really looking for the cash to build your brand, it doesn’t matter how beautiful your collection is, it matters how the judges respond.  As opposed to going on the show to build your reputation — which seems to be more where Bert was at.

            • Anonymous

              That’s true.  Viktor struck me as fairly businesslike and pragmatic.  I guess it’s hard for me to resist speculating on what was going through his mind to go off in such a disastrous direction from his original (and apparently quite good) instincts.

    • Anonymous

      I agree with Vivi N. Out of the final four, Viktor should have won. But out of all the final collections, I would have given the win to Laura. 

      You are so right that he got tripped up by the judges and by that extra challenge tacked on at the end. I think he should have stood his ground with his collection and used the extra $500 to make one more gown or something and left it at that. The sheers (except for that mirrored top) were a mistake. I didn’t care for that bubble jacket, but agree it looked more interesting with the dress. Really wish he’d stuck with all his own patterned fabric; much stronger pieces and more interesting. Oh, well. 

    • http://twitter.com/allisonkperry Allison Perry

      Viktor was screwed either way. If he didn’t listen to the judges & continued to pair some of those looks together (like the jacket and the dress he scrapped), they would have sneered at him for not listening. So he did listen, and it took some of the excitement of his collection down a notch. Jeez. 

      • Anonymous

        Exactly…b/c that’s the “excuse” they used last year not to give it to Mondo.  Mondo didn’t listen, stuck to his vision and b/c of that,  they rewarded Gretchen of Granolaville with the win b/c she “listened” to the judges.   Viktor  was not going to win no matter what.  The decision was made so long ago.  I only hope he, Kimberly, Bert & even Laura get something out of this experience that lands them a position doing what they love and obviously have talent for.

    • Anonymous

      You say that the judges liked his pieces best so they nit-picked him – however, they chose JOSH as the first to go to FW.  I don’t think they ever considered Viktor a contender and I didn’t realize how blatant their attitude was until today.  They too easily dismissed him each week.  I think it’s wishful thinking on our part that Viktor was the one to beat but I don’t think it was ever a choice the judges would’ve made.  Jesus, Josh came in second for Christ’s sake!

      • http://twitter.com/SetMeOnFYYYYAH Miss World

        it’s really a shame just how overlooked Viktor was this season. he became a front runner early in the competition in my mind but was consistently ignored by the judges. the avant-garde challenge is the best example of this. Josh’s reverse Fallene tree dress was praised by the judges when Viktor’s superior work was passed over for the win and even runway recognition. 

      • http://profiles.google.com/gillianholroyd gillian holroyd

         “Josh came in second for Christ’s sake!”
        I still maintain that it was just to ameliorate Anya’s win, as in “at least it wasn’t Josh who won”. As upset as fans are now, there would have been an even greater outcry if it had come down to Viktor and Anya.

        As long as viewers think the results were rigged, why not go whole hog.

        • mrspeel2

          “I still maintain that it was just to ameliorate Anya’s win, as in “at
          least it wasn’t Josh who won”. As upset as fans are now, there would
          have been an even greater outcry if it had come down to Viktor and Anya.”

          EXCELLENT POINT!! My stomach was in knots because 1.) Viktor didn’t win & 2.) Viktor was THIRD!! Thanks for saying what I couldn’t/wouldn’t see.

    • Anonymous

       it was really painful to see that wonderful jacket separated from the dress…. the whole thing was really tricky for poor Viktor who doubted himself after so many weeks of preparing a great collection….. so sad when you think about it: the contestant who had everything ready and prepared to show on Fashion Week lost to the pretty girl who had nothing even 2 days before…. :-(
      I hope Viktor recovers from this and can show his dream collection (without any external interference) soon….

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_KQSWLY2RUE3HAOERJI7HHORJJQ Debby Barbero

        Poor Viktor all season!  He consistently turned out remarkable clothing to be in 2nd or even 3rd to a v-necked sheet!  Any wonder he was guessing himself left, right and center?  He must have felt like the world upended.

    • Anonymous

      Too many sleeves.

      /sarcasm

      • Anonymous

        Too many eh…notes.

        • http://twitter.com/susanpcollier Susan Collier

          Needs more schmattas.

      • Anonymous

        Too tailored.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_IVAJNOUIUXRFJA627JMU2YLWSY ana

        Too many skills.

    • Anonymous

      Your last paragraph says it all, T Lo. I totally agree. I’ve vented and ranted so much about this season and the finale in particular, I won’t say much here…

      …except that Viktor was the clear winner, by any judging criterion anyone wants to use: he consistently put out quality, interesting looks during the season; he had a well thought out collection; he designed his own prints; every garment was immaculately constructed; he created a variety of looks; he produced looks that are fashion forward but still wearable by most women; he produced flattering clothing… Um am I forgetting anything?

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_KQSWLY2RUE3HAOERJI7HHORJJQ Debby Barbero

        Ummm…he wasn’t Mondo and the “judges”/producers were afraid to give it to “Mondo-lite” after the Wretched win? 

    • Anonymous

      Even Victor’s misses show a hundred times more thought about design and construction than the winner’s collection. I am in the camp that thinks that based on the final collection, Laura should have taken the whole thing. But hands down, even with the too many sheers, Victor should have had this in the bag.

      And goodness knows, I don’t want to indulge in conspiracy theories,  but so help me, I think he was being deliberately undermined in the pre-judging session to try and even up the field for the predetermined winner. If they had left him alone, there was no way he could lose.

      • Anonymous

        And this is the thing–Laura clearly had the best collection. Wouldn’t she–pretty, glamorous, female–have fit the “Lifetime Mold” of what a Project Runway winner should be? If that is indeed how and why Anya won, they could have had just as marketable a ‘brand’ with Laura as the winner.

        • Anonymous

          Yeah, but did she have a dead relative? 

          Let’s face it. Generic Blonde Privileged American Chick is not nearly as interesting from a marketing point of view as the Exotic Island Naughty Girl Who Likes Prints. They are going to get a lot of mileage out of the Anya persona they have helped create and are so busily promoting. She’s a godsend after Gretchen.

          • Anonymous

            Also, as rich-bitch as Laura made herself out to be, I don’t think she had a publicity machine behind her, either. 

      • Anonymous

        I agree.  The sheers were a mistake, but he did churn out four different and mostly well-made looks in 48 hours (as opposed to Anya’s one-seam wonders).  I know it’s not Project Work Ethic and I’m not going to defend Viktor’s last-minute looks as belonging in the collection, but that gets my respect. 

        And yes, I don’t think the judges ever took him seriously.

    • Anonymous

      Right.  That white leather jacket looked killer with that mullet dress!  
      I loved that first dress and the mirrored tops and even the pants (though I wish he had been a bit more careful about the placement of the print – he kinda gave her some labia with that design.  I can’t unsee it, though I still like the pants/print)

    • Anonymous

      He did things that he shouldn’t have done, but to borrow a phrase from Kors…let’s be honest. Viktor was never in contention. Nobody but Anya ever was so it wouldn’t have mattered what he did. I still think of the final four his was the strongest followed by Kimberly. And damn it all, I like the bondage dress. I thought it was kind of cool.

      • Anonymous

        You hit it on the head. This entire season was set for the pretty, charming beauty queen to take the prize. 

    • Anonymous

      I did think that the prints were interesting, but in Things I Can’t Unsee Now That I Thought Of Them:  the print pants look like the model was wearing white pants and was unprepared for her period, the shorter blue print dress has a bush right over the model’s…um…bush, and there is something vaginal in the abdomen area of the blue print gown.  I noticed the pants in part 1 of the finale and the other things during his runway show.  For things that had such potential, it’s really too bad that all I can now see are the lady parts. The first print top remains beautiful

      • http://www.memoriesofthefuture.wordpress.com Jesse

        You beat me re: the bushes by a few comments… and doing another run-through of the photos after I posted I see there’s even a hairy patch on the backside in the general vicinity of the… ya.  Don’t know how he didn’t see that, or that someone else didn’t point it out (but then, I spent the entire last episode starring at my screen vainly searching for these beautiful, “effortless” garments in all of the collections that Tim kept getting teary-eyed over).

        And completely agree about the first print top.  Beautiful.

    • Now I am The Bee

      I like all of these pieces.  The sheer ones as well.  You are so coreect about the while lether jacket.  The simple tank and pants just water it down to a street look.  showing it on a silky gown would have been fab, don’t you think? 
      Even with all the flaws–this should certainly have taken the prize instead of what’s-her-face.  *sigh*

    • http://profiles.google.com/misslauraschultz Laura Schultz

      You know, I was trying to avoid cynicism and I’m not one to believe in conspiracy theories so I was actually optimistic, especially with the Tim edit, that Viktor might win and that Anya was just having a good run (and I could see the appeal in her style if not her skills…). But the $500/2 day gift and the final win just sealed it for me that the fix was in. So sad. 

      • Anonymous

        I totally agree. I understood that the judges and producers loved Anya and were over praising her/keeping her in the running, but I also thought she responded well to the challenges and came on pretty strong at the end of the regular competition, even deviating from her long, flowy aesthetic. Then, she showed a load of crap in the first round of finale judging and should never have made it past the final 4. THEN they give the designers an extra $500? That blew my mind. This has to be the first season (that I can remember anyway) where there wasn’t some surprise last-minute challenge. No, instead, they just get more money and trip to Mood so Anya can win.

    • Anonymous

      I would LOVE to see what he would have done without Anya’s $500 gift.

      I think your final paragraph sums it up “He got tripped up by that pre-judging session. The judges clearly liked his pieces best, but they needed to throw some sort of criticism at him so they basically nit-picked him. He choked by whipping up a bunch of pointless sheer pieces and then re-arranging the pairings just a bit too much.” I wasn’t really as upset at the sheer pieces as everyone else because I keept thinking “that would look good in a print, that would look good in a solid.” And since I have started reading THIS site, I am now aware that designers often seem to recreate designs in different fabrics for stars, so I start doing that in my head. And I think Victor’s designs in different fabrics wold have all been for the same woman.

      Wouldn’t you like to see what he had in mind BEFORE the pre-judging session . . . THAT would be interesting.

      • Anonymous

        Yes, he did far better thinking it through on his own, away from the show.  The extra money and some expectation that all designers seemed to understand (perhaps it was stated to them and we didn’t see it) to exclude most items from their mini collections or mix them up in unrecognizable ways did not help him at all.  

        • Anonymous

          It was pretty stark how, left to their own devices with $9000, Viktor flourished while Anya floundered.  Put them back in the workroom with extra money and we get a reversal (albeit a reversal heavily influenced by judges/editors/producers).  I would have loved to see what his original idea for the collection looked like. 

          • Anonymous

            Exactly. Clinique also seemed to benefit somewhat from the extra money and feedback. I would have liked to see all of them show what the came with!

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=527150091 Pat Biswanger

      That last look may be somewhat generic, but it sure is sharp.

    • Anonymous

      I want to say something, but I have nothing…Viktor was never going to win this.

    • Anonymous

      Sigh.  I think I’ll rent season one again, for the third time.  It’s been a few years since I’ve seen it, and I miss Tim, drama and fashion.  I sure didn’t get any of that this season.

      When I first saw the final colloctions, I thought Laura won.  I didn’t even think Anya was in the finals.  That is how bad this season was for me. 

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jessica-TallGirl-Freeman/1043623567 Jessica TallGirl Freeman

        Amen!  I miss the real fun from the earlier seasons.  Even in the workroom they were jovial and easy going under the pressure. Let’s not forget Santino and Andre.  How I miss them.

    • Mary McClelland

      I really liked the first sheer dress even if it didn’t necessarily go with the collection. And yes, the pairings were often a mess. I was extemely disappointed by the sheer blouses (other than the mirrored one) and that he removed the fantastic dress. Poor Viktor the judges suck and his collection suffered the consequences! 

    • http://www.memoriesofthefuture.wordpress.com Jesse

      Aside from the opening look which I thought was very beautiful and chic, I honestly thought from then on out it was pretty much a nonstop parade of ugly.  The sheer, the granny panties, those sad, sad… things on the busts of the sheer tops, the black lace, THE SHEER for gods sake… 

      As for the prints that everybody seems to have rave reactions to, the palm tress on that blue comes off way too closely to patches of hair for my taste, and they always seem to hit the breast and pubic areas… oy.  And while the mirrored shirt is striking under the jacket, by itself it looks less chic and more crafty/gimmicky.  

      It was the best made collection though, obviously.  But overall I this was suffering from a serious lack of taste and good instincts and frankly I thought third place was generous, and more indicative of a season of good work more than the merits of this final collection.

    • https://profiles.google.com/104791269167429064986 Judy S

      I was bothered by a couple of things on the show: the way the boobcovers on the sheer blouses flapped when the models walked, and the front seams on the two original-print dresses, which show too obviously (and on the long dress form a little white diamond over the crotch). All these things look accidental and like something he could have and should have fixed. Still, it’s a really nice collection and head and shoulders above the others. It’s the only collection that really looks like you are seeing the $$$ on the runway, too.

      I wonder if the designers get to keep all the leftover fabric, or if it’s donated to Parsons, or the Trinidad Goodwill, or what. If I were going to watch again, I would love to see a challenge: choose your fabric from a pile of last season’s leftovers.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_DYLRZVDTSNOUWGO7W7UWYPMLEI Anonymous

      I can’t believe nobody has commented on the ridiculous anatomical positioning of the darn prints – talk about nipple prints and menstruating vaginas.  I don’t think Vik-tore is clever enough to treat the whole fiasco as a joke. 

      • Anonymous

        Maybe few people say that because they don’t see it that way? I don’t. I’ve seen people mention these things a few times, but I don’t view the prints that way, it doesn’t make me think of menses accidents or anything else — I just see a beautiful print, manipulated in interesting ways. There’s just different interpretations, like anything in fashion.

    • Anonymous

      I blame the cracktastic judges for killing his self confidence during the mini collection challenge. If he had stuck with his instincts, I think he would have had a better final collection. Still, he got my vote for win (not that it matters).

    • Anonymous

      On my tv screen, Viktor was the winner a week ago and he remains so.  Without the shadow of a doubt.  And on the point of view front, something the judges like to chew on while they contemplate who knows what, he was the only one to display anything even close to it.  Shameful.

      I wasn’t nuts about the short looks with the sheers and actually quite liked the long chiffon hot pants looks. On the right woman in the right place — killer. They fit beautifully which is more than one can say about most of the rest of the other three outpourings.

      And so true about the white jacket with the dress. Tim told him they’d given him the wrong advice and Tim was right.  That jacket with that dress looked great. 

      In my mini-world of judging the ability sew, tailor, design, and generally execute within maddening time constraints counts. 

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Catherine-Rhodes/602850414 Catherine Rhodes

      What killed him were the two long, sheer black gowns. Imagine removing those and throwing in two more of his inventive tailored looks or hand-made prints… and perfection.

      This is the only collection that has pieces I would actually buy and wear. In fact, five of them. (Anya’s collection has zero. Flowy, sleeveless caftans with voluminous fabric and plunging necklines wouldn’t inspire confidence in my staff.)

    • Anonymous

      I mostly like Viktor’s collection.  The sheer stuff is lost on me because that’s not my thing, but I love the prints.  I think if he would have transitioned the looks from the prints to the sheers it would have read better as a collection.

    • Anonymous

      I want to see Viktor’s ORIGINAL collection. The one without all the ugly and derivative black sheers.  Viktor choked and second guessed himself in the worst possible way and the judges were right in their criticism.  It’s such a shame that he ditched that beautiful gown and didn’t take the opportunity to mix his prints with the sheers as Nina suggested (though maybe he’d run out of the custom fabric?)

      As it stands there’s not a single look here which isn’t without its problems.  He designed a few great individual pieces and created beautiful fabrics and sewed sleeves etc., but this collection wouldn’t have won in previous years either. 

      The fact is  that all four finalist collections were BAD and the judges couldn’t admit this.

      • Anonymous

        It’s true.  He was the winner out of the final four in my book (followed by Kimberly), but if you compare this work to so many of the past final collections, it really falls short. Jay McCarroll, Kara Saun, Kara Janx’s decoy, Uli, Laura Bennett, Christian, Jillian, Rami, Chris March’s decoy, Leanne, Korto, Seth Aaron, Mila, Jay Nicholas’ decoy, and Mondo’s collections were all dramatically better than Viktor’s.  I’m sure there were plenty more past collections that were noticeably better, but those were the only ones I could think of without looking up the photos.

        Season 9 had the least talented group yet, which is frankly pretty damn pathetic considering last season’s output was rather lacking for the most part.  Even excluding the machinations and manipulations of the judges, Bunim/Murray, and everything else that has gone wrong with this show, the designers just aren’t as good as they used to be (admittedly, while I’d argue that the screwy judging is likely to make the designers put out less impressive work, that can’t be the sole reason for the discrepancy in output quality).  

        The Lifetime seasons have felt like watching an old, beloved friend make horrible life decisions.  Season 6 was when she moved away to start a new life, only to get swindled by pyramid scheme.  In season 7, she moved back home, but decided to become a Scientologist.  Every time you saw her, she just couldn’t shut up about how much “Dianetics” would change your life, and that you should totally come with her to get audited.  Luckily, she eventually realized that Xenu was not her path to happiness, and cut her ties with the community.  You started believing in her again, only to be shot down by season 8.  At that point in time, she agonized over which mate to choose: a generous, caring, intelligent and witty person vs. some douchebag with creepy facial tattoos thanks to spending a few years in prison for robbing a liquor store while dressed up as a muppet.  In the end, we all know who won her heart — but at least she was able to borrow the Fozzie costume for Halloween!  Now, unfortunately, in season 9, she’s lost her mind entirely.  She wears muumuus all the time.  She’s lined her entire house with tinfoil so that the “gummint’s mind rays” won’t dissolve her brain.  She’s thinking about voting for Rick Perry.  It’s a sad, sad sight to see.  

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=19801927 Dennis Coyle

      I think the problems you noted are ample reason to disqualify him from the win.  His sheers are Anya’s prints, but Anya’s prints are still eye catching and visually interesting.  Even if it is just a matter of the fabric.
      I hate that I am defending Anya’s win.  Ugh.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_QDTYKBJF23YJKXYRP2LWWOMJFQ TN

        I think the point was that he should win because he was the best of the worst.  Anya certainly had interesting and much better prints, but Anya didn’t design.  She cut holes into fabrics and that was it.  But it wouldn’t even matter if he had shown a McQueen level collection, Anya was destined to win, the girl has more lives than cats.

        • Anonymous

          I wish Anya were a cat.  Her dresses would be a lot more impressive that way.

          Of COURSE she can’t put in a zipper: she doesn’t have thumbs!  

          Why would she tailor any of her pieces?  There’s no possible way a cat can put on any article of clothing but a muumuu without human assistance!

          How dare you expect her hems to be neat?  She cut them with her own claws!

          Who cares if she only made swimsuits and dresses — why the hell would a cat need a jacket, anyway?  Kitties have fur coats!

      • MilaXX

        Even with the missteps I think if you grade based on the level of work his is the stronger collection. Sure those errors may have cost him the win in more evenly matched season, but this year I still think he had a better collection.

    • Judy Martin

      We look for reasons to validate the decision of the judges.  Tim Gunn suggested crack-smoking last season, said as much on Facebook and was gagged fairly promptly.  In both seasons, the producers had an agenda and followed it through to completion.  If Viktor had been the second coming of Givenchy, Anya would still have won.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jessica-TallGirl-Freeman/1043623567 Jessica TallGirl Freeman

      Sorry but I just can’t stand all the sheer.  Some of the looks are stunning, but the sheer is just not doing it for me. 

    • MilaXX

      I have to says when I saw who the finalist was my thought was that he should win,. I agree adding those sheer pieces was a misstep but this was still the most put together collection up there. I also thought he should have kept that whit jacket with the wrinkly mullet gown and closed with that piece.

    • Eclectic Mayhem

      I’d still take just five of Viktor’s looks over Anya’s entire collection.

      That first look… just fabulous.  It makes me think of Blade Runner and the first time we see Sean Young’s character walking towards Harrison Ford with the tapping sound of her heels.  Just fabulous.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_EYYAY25W7VS5BYCOCTK62SSUBI tw125

      I don’t have much to add (as usual) but I will him props for the lack of exposed boobage on the sheer tops.

    • http://profiles.google.com/shannonlstewart Shannon Stewart

      I get where he was going with the sheer pieces, but he went too far with them.  I think the mirrored top he showed to the judges initially was enough.

    • Anonymous

      During the episode Viktor made a comment that was sad, and a little revealing, as he started to chop up his original collection.  Paraphrased: “I want to show the judges that I’m not emotionally attached to these clothes.  I can edit.”  It’s very easy to see where being justifiably confident of a win so many times in the competition, only to lose because he couldn’t clear the grade curve set for Anya and Josh, would undermine his confidence in his instincts.
       
      I wouldn’t be surprised if he was dreading being asked by the judges “Are you telling me you DIDN’T spend the $500 we gave you?!”  Because of course, they probably would have pulled that on him if he’d left well enough alone.

      I have to make a confession: I like the second sheer dress.  It’s a WTF moment in the collection to be sure, but I liked the way it flowed when I watched this on television.  I hate the sheer blouses though.  They look sloppy, especially given Viktor’s usual workmanship.  I love the printed pants/mirror top/tuxedo jacket combination and I LOVE the model he selected for that outfit.  To me that was the best showstopper out of all four finalists’ collections, and it remains cool even after that initial feeling wears off.  I understand the criticisms about where the print hits the crotch/front of the pelvis, but weirdly, it still works for me.

    • Kate Pearce

      yup, I think he designed himself out of contention when given extra time and allowed the judges to rattle his confidence. I’d still love to have that first dress though. :)

    • http://profiles.google.com/trashilove { edi } ilovetrash

      viktor came in third cos, for reasons i do not understand, anya had long been chosen to win. they needed joshua to come in second, as they spent all season building him into a character probably much more awful & much less pathetic than he actually is, so people would be even more thrilled w/ an anya-over-josh victory.

      the other two were toss ups, i think, or nearly & all that mattered there was which one brought in the better collection. so viktor is three, kimberly is four– even though there’s a lot more interest & competence between these two people & their work than there is in the favored two. maybe someday we will find out why anya had to win. i dont think we have any idea yet.

    • Anonymous

      I sill don’t understand how and why Viktor made the jump to the sheer garments.  It’s mind-boggling.

      • Anonymous

        It looks like he got that one sheer to go underneath the white jacket (per the judges’ instructions to show the jacket with a black top and pants).  I can see where he then felt like he had to put the same sheer fabric elsewhere in the collection, so it wasn’t an orphan print.  But why he chose to make SO many of the sheer garments?  Yeah, that’s boggling to me too.

    • Anna Maria Diamanti

      I’m going to start working the phrase “something vaginal” into my life whenever possible.

    • Anonymous

      My impression was that his original collection was a combination of hard and soft pieces.  He had that (hard) white jacket initially paired with a sheer dress and the leather zip skirt paired with the print dress.  The judges told him that he had too much on each model.  I think his collection probably got derailed when he pulled all of the pieces apart.  The sheer pieces weren’t meant to stand alone and they didn’t.  The collection therefore looked disjointed.  Again, just my guess.

      • Anonymous

        Good guess, IMHO.  I much preferred the jacket with the sheer, flowing dress (reminded me of Leann’s gorgeous purple gown with tiny beige trench coat jacket in the Diane von Furstenberg challenge), and when you look at the pieces he left alone–the first dress, the blue-and-black gown and the outfit that followed it–you really get a sense of his aesthetic and skills. The pulled-apart ones just didn’t work. 

    • Anonymous

      Thanks for being honest about his shortcomings. Even if your commenters are more interested in judging the various ways the producers packaged the contestants’ personalities, you two do a great job of keeping the real focus on the merits of the designs themselves. This is why I keep returning to your site! And this is why I hope you keep recapping Project Runway in future seasons.

    • Anonymous

      i am still sad he didnt win. 

      • Anonymous

        Unfortunately Project Runway has become such a tortured mess that I can’t get worked up enough to care. I wish I could, because Viktor clearly deserved the win over everyone else in the final four.

    • http://twitter.com/artfulhome1 Christy Bishop

      I don’t especially care for the sheers, although they don’t offend me the way they seem to others. Mainly, I think Viktor’s collection is thoughtful, beautiful and refined. And he absolutely deserved the win.

      That he tried to accommodate current trends tells me that he has been paying attention to the judges….last season, as well as this. Anyone remembering Gretchen winning on the basis of being ‘on-trend’? And Mondo losing because he dared to show his clothes, the way he designed them? (Remember the polka dotted gown?)

      I think that Viktor approached this competition very seriously, and–due largely to the whims and biases of the crack smoking panel–that seriousness and purpose turned around and bit him.

      • Anonymous

        This.  I’ve been trying to pinpoint how Viktor was partially brought down by his own temperament and work ethic, and your last sentence captures it perfectly.

      • Anonymous

        I agree wholeheartedly. But I am hopeful that what might have lost him the competition will help him in his career. Who wouldn’t want a designer with a temperament like Victor’s on their team?

    • Anonymous

      Looking back at Viktor’s collection, one of the things that really, really bothered me about Anya’s win was that she didn’t figure out how to truly use the prints harmoniously throughout the garment.  None of her prints matched at the seams and the right & left fronts were almost never symmetrical. 

      Viktor used the print perfectly on the top of his first dress to create the mirror image– not just on the bodice but also the sleeves. Ditto for his other garments.

      By comparison, Anya’s short brown striped dress (that the judges raved about in her mini-collection), has the stripes sort-of but-not-quite matching on the left and right fronts of the dress.  When I saw it on the runway, the asymmetry is the first thing my eye jumped to & made it hard for me to take in or appreciate Anya’s dress as a whole.  Same thing with her black and white bathing suit; first thing I noticed was the seam on the front because the prints don’t line up.  It looks like she tried with the teal jumpsuit but couldn’t quite get it to work. Mismatched prints at seams is a huge pet peeve of mine and something that seems to separate cheap, mass produced clothing from the more expensive. It’s not something I would necessarily expect to be executed perfectly during a challenge with major time constraints but it seems somewhat unforgivable in a final collection.

      I realize that Viktor is much more technically skilled than Anya but it goes beyond that — he showed that he has the ability to design the garment in a way that allows the prints to remain harmonious throughout the garment (e.g., having the print appear continuous despite seams/darts), and the ability to manipulate the prints to make them a design feature (the mirrored image effect). I just don’t think that Anya has designs skills to do either.

      • Anonymous

        Yep.  It’s not that I thought Viktor’s was the best PR collection ever, but of the actual finale collections, it was in a completely different category in terms of sophistication and finish.  It reminded me of Season Six–I couldn’t stand Irina, but her collection was so much more sophisticated than her two competitors that there was no question of the win.

        It really was the same thing here.  Viktor, like Rami, overworked his final collection, but he’s really designing in a way the other three weren’t.  He was the only one whose collection didn’t scream student–despite the overworking.

        Viktor, Laura and Bert would have been the decent match-up out of this season.

        It really was appalling that Anya won.  BM has a low opinion of its audience.

        • Anonymous

          I’d expand your comment about Bunim/Murray to that the company has a low opinion of humanity.

      • Anonymous

        Good grief yes. Her collection was so amateur in its execution it’s an outrage. If one cares about such things. 

        • Anonymous

          It’s the details such as the inability to work competently with the prints (i.e., get them to match along seams, carry the print through darts, pleats) that make Anya’s win such a letdown for me.  Designers were once criticized and eliminated for such missteps. 

          • http://profiles.google.com/shannonlstewart Shannon Stewart

            If your print doesn’t match up at the seams or pleats, that’s fine… AS LONG AS IT’S A DESIGN CHOICE!  Anya’s prints didn’t match up because she didn’t bother to match them, and that’s it. 

            It’s like deconstructed looks or asymmetry — it has to be enough to be clearly deliberate.

    • http://robot-heart.tumblr.com heartbot

      I just can’t believe how bad this season was, when this is considered among the best. I mean, it’s not a bad collection, but god, is it ever boring.

    • Stephen Trask

      Poor Victor.  For all the right reasons, he did it to himself.  I’m sure in his mind, feeling confident in his collection, he thought of the $500 and 2 days as an excuse to have some fun and be creative just for the sake of it.  Silly boy.  What he needed to do was buy $500 worth of appropriately colored and texture fabrics (really nice stuff) and then spend the two days play mix and match dress up until he had ten perfect looks, only constructing something new when a look was in some way lacking or not coming together.  He had been so diligent in using his limited time to devise the original collection.  Personally, I kind of like some of the sheers, particularly the shorts and the mirror top, but it was if he’d already moved on to developing the next collection before letting the first one see the light of day in it’s entirety.  I get the sense from reading Nina Garcia’s tweets that she feels this way as well.  And I think I am echoing T Lo and one of my won earlier posts.  

      I really wish him well.  He seems like such a great guy, an actual real person who couldn’t turn off his creative mind when he needed to for strategic reasons and couldn’t project select personality traits into a TV personality.  Victor Luna is a real boy.  

      • Anonymous

        Boy, you really said it all!  I could not believe that Viktor let the judges’ (silly, trumped-up) comments send him so far off in the wrong direction.  I remember how often, during the season, he was completely finished with some impeccably tailored look while the rest of the contestants were screaming, crying, trying to come up with an idea, losing their money, losing their minds, yelling at each other, etc.  While so many people had time management problems in terms of not using their time well, Viktor seemed to use his time too well.  I wish you could have been a small voice in his ear as that check was handed to him.

        As much as I loathed this season and pretty much every damn thing about it, I liked Viktor and I wish him well too.

        That $500 proved to be his undoing as much as it was Miss Trinidad’s…um…doing. 

        • http://profiles.google.com/shannonlstewart Shannon Stewart

          I would guess that his time management skills were a virtue of a) having been sewing and pattern-making for so long, and b) having worked for a living.  When you are doing pieces on commission you don’t get to be late — and you can’t pitch a design that you won’t be able to do in the time available, because you can’t simplify once the client has seen and chosen your original design.

      • Anonymous

        Boy, you really said it all!  I could not believe that Viktor let the judges’ (silly, trumped-up) comments send him so far off in the wrong direction.  I remember how often, during the season, he was completely finished with some impeccably tailored look while the rest of the contestants were screaming, crying, trying to come up with an idea, losing their money, losing their minds, yelling at each other, etc.  While so many people had time management problems in terms of not using their time well, Viktor seemed to use his time too well.  I wish you could have been a small voice in his ear as that check was handed to him.

        As much as I loathed this season and pretty much every damn thing about it, I liked Viktor and I wish him well too.

        That $500 proved to be his undoing as much as it was Miss Trinidad’s…um…doing. 

      • Anonymous

        I think what kills me about watching Viktor this season is how a lot of things that should have been virtues worked against him.  Do you work hard and take the quality of your garments seriously?  Then we’re just going to yawn and take it for granted when you send a lot of nice separates down the runway.  Adapt well to the judges’ feedback?  Then we’ll just give you pickier and pickier feedback.  Have versatility?  Then we’re just going to say you have no point of view.  Able to run your (non-Bert) teams/partnerships in a competent and professional manner?  Then you’re going to get zero screentime. Couldn’t win for trying.

    • Stefanos Mantyla

      I disagree about the last look. I did not find it generic. If anything, I thought it stood out as a showstopper because it was not a gown like all the other ones were.

      There definitely were weak points throughout, but yes, clearly the best, as I always said. It looks most like a collection by one of the higher-ups. Anya, on the other hand, made a line, which is what the judges said about Emilio, no?

      • Anonymous

        Yes, Larry, Moe and Curly did tell Emilio that he made a line, not a “collection”. Silly Emilio!  At least in that season we could enjoy Seth Aaron’s exuberant designs.

        • http://karensbooksandchocolate.blogspot.com/ Karenlibrarian

          I agree, same criticism about Emilio, but Seth Aaron’s stuff was still superior in the end, so he still deserved the win.

    • Anonymous

      I was saddened that Viktor, who didn’t allow the judges to throw him all season, became prey to them in the end.  His mini collection was the best of the four and even with the sheer missteps (and it’s the gowns that are the real problems, the blouses I can ignore), his collection is heads and shoulders above Anya’s pinned and draped mess.  I love all the created prints.

    • KAO TV

      umm.that was a really BAD collection…and you guys are praising this?

    • KAO TV

      umm.that was a really BAD collection…and you guys are praising this?

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_KEYJDIENR5MRK2NXJYKNOLWDFE Alexandria

      I actually really like the sheer pieces. Maybe it’s because I’m a teenage girl and sheer is what Forever 21′s been hurling at me, but I think they’re nice and I know lots of girls who would wear them. Though he probably wasn’t aiming at the just-out-of-high-school demographic.

    • Anonymous

      I agree with everything you’ve said, but I don’t think it would have made a bit of difference. Anya had the win in the bag from about Episode 4 and nothing Victor did was going to change that.
      Pity.
      Then again — he made enough mistakes with this collection that I don’t feel nearly as bad for him as I did for Mondo last season.

    • http://twitter.com/nicolahearts nicole seligman

      i love the majority of the pieces here and i do agree about the sheers being a missed opportunity, but damn i think that printed gown is ugly and was ridiculously overpraised. i cannot picture any starlette wearing that and, if she did, she would be on a TLO out post.

    • vmcdanie

      “Unfortunately, Project Runway is now far more about style (and personal stories) than it is about design.”

      Annnd, you are so very, tragically right. Curses.

      While there are a few looks I don’t like (the two sheer dresses in the middle) and a few details I can aggressively nitpick (not liking the boxy shoulders on the first dress, the print front/no print back on the pants just looks weird), this is still easily what to me should have been the winning collection.

      • http://karensbooksandchocolate.blogspot.com/ Karenlibrarian

        That’s why Laura didn’t make it to the final — no sad back story.  She was the only one of the final five that wasn’t mourning a dead relative (and please don’t think I’m belittling the the grief of the top four contestants.  It’s just that her back story clearly wasn’t as tragic so the producers couldn’t milk it as much). 

        • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_EDI2DLE7DE3YPW2ONIHBWOVHMA ecallaw

          I think Laura didn’t make it to the finale because she never made anything good, until her decoy collection.

    • Anonymous

      I’m not sure I agree that Viktor’s was “easily the strongest” of the four final collections.  I thought the judges were correct in their criticism of his essentially having two separate collections – even though they were largely responsible for that occurring.  However, I would probably have given him the win because he had more individually strong pieces than any of the other three finalists.  I now would probably have placed him first though when I first saw the photos of his collection during Fashion Week I did not think he would – or should – win.  Personally I liked Bert’s collection the best, then Laura’s.  Of the finalists I would now probably rank them Viktor, Kimberly (though initially I didn’t care than much for her collection either), Anya, and Josh.  I still cringe whenever I see certain parts of Joshua’s collection – particularly those hideous green shorts.

    • Toto Maya

      Viktor’s collection really disappointed me, I expected a lot more from his awesome mini-collection. The sheer pieces bored me to tears, it looked like he just gave up on those.

    • BerlinerNYC

      Those sheers were awful. I love Heidi’s comments about how they’re clothes for some “bitch.” It was his contest to lose… and he lost it. Everyone else used the extra time and money to improve, and he just made his collection worse. Call that producer manipulation if you want, but no one made him make those bad decisions.

      • Anonymous

        “I love Heidi’s comments about how they’re clothes for some “bitch.”  As much as Frau Seal likes sexy clothing, I can see her, with no problems about looking like a “bitch”, wearing one of those long, sheer gowns.  We’ve seen her wear far worse.

    • http://asskickingadviser.com/ Ass Kicking Adviser

      I would just kill for at least 5 of his pieces. Can’t say that about Anya.

    • Anonymous

      It wasn’t a great collection.  PR has certainly seen better. However it was better then his competitors and he should have won. 

    • Anonymous

      It looks like Nina REALLY hated his leather jacket because it was derivative of Burberry. She seems to have wanted him to use the 500 dollars to change that jacket since everything else was fine. https://twitter.com/#!/ninagarcia/status/129741947328933888/photo/1

      And if it helps, she had him as her runner up. I always wonder about the breakdown of who voted for who. I feel that maybe L’wren and Heidi had Viktor has 3rd and somehow convinced Michael to come on board. 

    • Anonymous

      i know the fix was in for anya but honestly some of the stuff viktor showed is plain trashy especially that leather skit with the zippers you guys praised that is straight up tranny/stripperware and the rest of it is stuff theory has or is selling in their collection now. think he was probably the best designer throughout the episodes of the final four, but top notch designs I do not see, even original designs I do not see. 

      • Anonymous

        I thought most people around here had finally gotten it through their their heads that if even Christian Siriano ended up apologizing for using that word, maybe doing so isn’t such a great idea.  It’s incredibly offensive, and the particular way you used it makes it even worse.

        • Anonymous

          First off, the day I am influenced in morality and/or ethical behavior by a reality tv star, please remind me to get a life and education. Secondly, what are you even revering to? I would think the phrase “tranny-stripperware” would be what’s upsetting you, as I can’t see how any other words I used would, and to that I laugh. I grew up in Chealsea NY in the eighties and  nineties and since have always stayed aware of the different socially, gender, or economically motivated groups/communities within New York City and I can say definitively that such a character as the “tranny stripper/pro” exist and that a certain visual asthetic, often involving a good deal of leather/pleather, cheap zipper detailing, and awkward or excesive displays of skin, is obvious. This is not a judgement but a repeated observation. In know way did I group or imply to group anyone of any different gender orietations into the term except for exactly that who It describes. You should probably not assume you understand everyone’s perspective on intense issues based on a few sentance fashion-blog-response post, and judge yourself instead for looking to reality tv stars to understand right and wrong.

    • Anonymous

      Very polished.  Kudos Viktor!

    • http://www.facebook.com/WendyLKaufman Wendy Kaufman

      Those shorts were striped? I thought the stripes were an artifact of the sheet top. Spot on again guys. 

    • Anonymous

      I’m finally able to comment today (my computer is in the shop). While I do think those black dresses were a mistake (I wished he had kept the mullet dress from the pre-judging rather than make a new one because he thought he had to), I thought the black provided a nice break from the prints. But he was screwed either way, wasn’t he? I argued earlier that had he kept his original collection, they would’ve hammered him for “too many prints” “our minds can’t rest” or some other ridiculous comment. He does have a great eye and the prints he was able to make are visually striking, especially in that first dress and in the long dress copied by…I mean also done by Anya.

      • http://profiles.google.com/shannonlstewart Shannon Stewart

        I don’t understand why he thought he had to make a new dress.  I get not showing it with the jacket since they had critiqued the pairing, but they didn’t slam the dress itself.

        And God, do I wish they would stop doing this collection “preview”! I hate that! I’ve always hated it! And if I were one of the designers, I’d be tempted to refuse to show them — I can either show you my best looks and lessen their impact during the finale or I can show you lesser looks and have you prejudge my collection as disappointing. Either way, it’s damaging to the final collection judging.

    • Mariah J

      His first dress is the only really great thing out of all 4 collections. :(

    • Summer Capet

      I really, really dislike how pale and faded the black in the print he made himself looks. Maybe it looks better in person?

    • http://janeaustensworld.wordpress.com/ Vic

      The finale was Viktor’s to lose. He choked and entered designs that were hastily thought through. He should have kept the two outfits with his original prints and paired that jacket with a more interesting outfit.As soon as I saw how he was spending his extra $500 I knew Viktor was in trouble

    • Anonymous

      i truly adored viktor’s prints, even the pants that you guys didn’t like.  my favorite is the little strapless dress in the blue and black
      print.  i keep seeing it on demi moore.  it’s strange that i didn’t identify viktor as mexican until the very end of the show.  somehow i had him pegged as eastern european, possibly jewish.  i guess when he said he came from a long line of tailors and his parents were immigrants, i just gave him a different backstory.  funny because i love mexican culture, lived there for a while when i was young, and probably would have been rooting for him as a homeboy.  i guess if i had noticed his last name was munoz, that would have been a clue. silly me.

      you’re right.  he choked when they gave him the extra time and money.  so sad.

    • Anonymous

      I do — I became a figure skating fan around 1984, and Debi was either the first or second female skater that I really rooted for.  Unfortunately, I think her Olympic figure skating program (and maybe taking pre-med classes while still skating) proved to be too much for her, so she choked.

      As

    • Anonymous

      Unfortunately, Viktor choked by becoming *too* flexible and versatile!  If he had just chosen prints at Mood to mix with the chiffon, he most likely would have beaten Anya.  He sacrificed his own point of view to be flexible and versatile.

      But I have to warn all conspiracy theorists out there — even if the producers (or more likely, the judges) pulled that last-minute twist in order to help Anya (and even I’m willing to concede that it’s a possibility), that *doesn’t* mean the twist (or the nit-picking) was intended to trip Viktor up as badly as it did — even if that’s exactly what happened.

    • Anonymous

      I love Viktor’s prints.  I would be thrilled to own the first dress and the gown with the grommet at the neckline.  Too bad these designs belong to the PR production company, from where they will never see the light of day again. 

    • Anonymous

      Only two looks I really loved here, the printed gown, 8th look, and the final look. The sheer pieces are uniformly awful, especially the second one, looks like a lingerie office blouse, and really dilute his collection. The sheer gown could have been something but the ginormous granny panty completely kills it. To think he traded that stunning grey gown for those sheer pieces is tragic. He should have presented the gown alone. The printed dress, 4th look, looked better with the leather over-skirt, to me it did anyway. And I didn’t like the boxy shoulder-pads in solid black, and they weren’t any better in a print. His collection was OK, but not the winning collection, those sheer pieces really drag it down, I would up liking about only half these looks, and absolutely hating the rest. He was a contender but boy did he disappoint. For me 3rd best behind Anya and Kim.

    • http://orangtunes.blogspot.com BIG MAC

      Honestly I only like the first dress and the white jacket. Even comparing those two they look like they should be in different collections. I still think out of all the finalist that Victor should have won just based on his previous work. But I do wish the winner was Bert. 

    • http://stef-lee.tumblr.com/ stef lee

      Viktor was TOTALLY done in by the judges! He should have listened to his instincts and stayed with his original pieces. As soon as he edited and changed things around to suit the judges, it lost his point of view and looked so much worse on the runway. Such a tragedy.

    • http://twitter.com/Alloyjane Alloy Jane

      The prints are great, but he really shot himself in the foot with those sheer pieces.  Yikes.

    • Anonymous

      You know what’s depressing?  Going back and watching earlier seasons of Project Runway where the contestants had buckets of talent, there was more footage of designing and sewing than bitching and Heidi kept her trap shut and acted more as a moderator.  I miss the old days :(

    • Anonymous

      Not sure if it’s been mentioned, but his little blue and black print dresses are like little Armani Code bottles. 
      http://perfumelover.files.wordpress.com/2010/06/giogio-armani-armani-code-pour-femme-edp.jpg

    • Anonymous

      It’s almost as if he was sabotaged in the pre judging.  Although, it was his choice whether or not to take the advice or not.

    • Anonymous

      This season began with a nude photo of Heidi to promote the series. That should have be a clue that style and taste was no longer part of the show. Instead a one note beauty queen with a sex tape won. Victor like Mondo last season was robbed. I stopped watching the show last season just get the cliff notes here which is so much more interesting!

    • Anonymous

      I am so glad I got to see Laura’s collection! I liked almost nothing she did during the season but her runway looks outshone everything done by the final 4. Viktor’s was too disconnected, Joshua’s was HIDEOUS, & Kimberly’s was boring. But for Anya to win just blows my mind. She did one good piece the entire season….that little black dress. Many have compared her looks to Uli’s from a previous season. Uli’s was a little one note during the season, but she really stepped it up for the runway. It was a beautiful collection. I don’t know what has happened to project runway but I hope they are smart enough to fix it! This is a GREAT website. I’m glad someone posted it!