Project Runway: Ripping the Collections – Valerie
We understand why so many Project Runway contestants default to black for their creations. First, because it hides a multitude of sins, and second, because then no one can fault you for your color choices. We were automatically inclined to love this collection simply because it just may be one of the most colorful finale collections in the show’s history. Jay and Kara Janx are the only ones that come to mind who, like Valerie, didn’t just use color; they used a LOT of it. Every look is a different color. Crayon fashion. And we mean that in the best, most fun, sense. This was, like Valerie, a bubbly, energetic, fun collection of what looked to us like Katy Perry-inspired looks. Taste the rainbow.
Let’s start the show.
Unfortunately, she opened with this look and we wish she hadn’t. Those are some mighty puckery seams on that leather…we’ll call it a vest. She should have hidden this somewhere in the middle. We understand why she didn’t. As you scroll down you’ll see that she ordered the collection like a rainbow. Pink to red to orange to yellow, and so on. We think the idea of this look is interesting, but in the end this looks a little clumsy. Do the tiered asymettrical skirt OR the leather bra, but not both at the same time.
Very Judy Jetson meets Cleopatra. And come on, doesn’t that sound like Val? Fun. Maybe a little too much going on in one look again, but again, doesn’t that sound like Val? Love the collar, the back, and the use of the leather. Love the skirt in theory but maybe it should be under a less exuberant top.
It’s a shame. Those shorts look cute but from the back, but decidedly diaper-y from the front. That’s the only criticism we have. We love the rest of the look, especially the belt and the way she put that top together.
Well, we like everything from the boobs up. Unfortunately, the pants start right under the boobs and that’s where she loses us. The color, the fit, and the proportions on those pants all fail to work for us.
Very cute in an updated mod kind of way. Valerie tends to explore shapes and proportions on the body in an unconventional way. That piece running up the middle, like a very skinny pair of overalls, is unusual and we wouldn’t have thought it could look good, but we kind of love it here. There are some pucker-y seams and less than perfect presentation issues, though. That collar looks like it needs a good pressing.
Everything here works for us with the exception of the shiny, shiny fabric. It’s interesting to note that even though this fabric would show every construction flaw to the back seats, this look is pretty much flawlessly executed. Love the color and the proportions, though. Cute and sassy.
The first truly inelegant look. Once again, she’s got too many things going on. We could have dealt with the unflattering silhouette, but not when it’s paired with the Slinky sleeves and the vest and the weird hem. Any one of these elements can work in a look, but not when they’re all in the same look.
Having exhausted the color spectrum, she’s moved on to black and white. She’s also toned down the design elements, which was clever. This look still belongs in the collection. It’s very Valerie, but it’s a simpler, kind of Valerie. Love the jacket and the sheer cutouts on the dress.
Chic and easy. She’s better when she edits.
We go back and forth on the vest. It’s a whole lotta look, but at least she was smart and didn’t do it in a color. The construction is interesting, but we’re not entirely sure it’s flattering. Interesting, but perhaps a little overdesigned. At least she kept the dress simple.
We love the fabric and we love that she ended the show on such a (for her) simple note. Once again that collar/strap (which we also love) looks like it good use a pressing. Also, we’d have liked this more with an inch or two taken off the hem.
We cannot, however, get behind that thing on her head.
Despite the flaws in the collection, we loved a lot of it. It’s not always easy to make a definitive statement with a collection. A lot of decoys – and even finalists – have failed on that front. This was a tightly cohesive collection that firmly declared who the designer is and who her client is. On that level, we’d say it’s a success. We still think she needs to edit herself a bit and sometimes she needs to step away from the dress form and objectively assess whether what she’s doing is flattering, but for the most part, she’s great at doing these kinds of youthful, colorful, sassy clothes for party girls.
[Photo Credit: gettyimages.com/wireimage.com]