Jeffrey: Angry Little Peanut.
We don’t like him all that much.
Not in the “love to hate him” manner that is the stock in trade of all reality shows, but more in the manner of “you’re boring and one-note and full of yourself” that is the stock in trade of, well…reality. Say what you will about Santino or Wendy Pepper, but they were endlessly entertaining in the ways that their insecurities and paranoia played themselves out, both in their work and in their interactions with the other designers. Jeffrey, on the other hand, is that guy you went to high school with who got beat up a lot because he was still under 5 feet by Junior year, so he went all “hardcore,” which meant of course, that he went around constantly describing himself as “hardcore” even though he never really explained what it meant and we were all left to assume that it had a lot do with wearing chains and spikes and a lot of black and angrily writing on your jeans with a Bic pen.
Dude, don’t you get tired of bragging to the cameraman that you’re the obvious winner – and then you don’t win? Every week! You’d think by week 4, you’d be a little more “I think my stuff’s good, but I don’t know about these judges…” instead of “OH YEAH! IN! THE! BAG!!!”
We’ll say this: most of his garments are interesting and do indeed demonstrate his self-proclaimed “mad skillZ.” We just think that, aesthetically speaking, his designs are limited in scope and worse than that, somewhat … we want to say “puerile” but that’s not it; not quite.
It’s just that “angry teenager” is a really limiting aesthetic, bordering on silly when it’s coming from a 36-year-old man.
Anyway, the dress:
It IS beautiful, and we do love it, but we’re not as convinced as so many others (Jeffrey foremost) that he should have won for it. Yes, you could move in the dress – and every time you did, you left behind a permanent crinkle. Look at the gathering in the waist in the top pic. Looks pretty messy to us. There’s nothing wrong with making a conceptual piece, most of the designers did just that, but both Jeffrey and the judges talked this dress up like it was off-the-rack wearable and it was anything but.
Then there’s the belt. We like the idea of a trompe l’oeil belt, just not this trompe l’oeil belt. It’s too crude and messy-looking. It’s, if we can be excused for using a very over-used word, “costumey.” In fact, we think it could have been a stunning dress had he not painted it at all.
To be fair, we do sympathize with him that his work gets little consideration from the judges week in and week out. It’s not to our tastes – or apparently theirs – but it’s usually well executed and makes the attempt to be interesting. We’re not his biggest fans, but we would like to see him win one. We even wouldn’t mind seeing him in the final 4.
Now sit up straight and stop pouting, cranky hobbit.