In Knots

What do you mean the designers are real people?

I'm still in knots.

My stomach I mean ... from this week's episode, and it feels great! Wait -- these designers laugh? Wha ... they actually goof around and have fun!?! STOP IT -- THEY CRY!?! Oh, well we knew that one already, but still, we finally got to see the designers interacting with one another, and more importantly, having fun. Granted, it always helps when you pull out embarrassing old photos from past proms: Kit as a conformed brunette, Kevin all jersey'd up, and Christian sporting the most fabulous fierce sparkle unicorn princess vest I've ever seen!

Except for maybe this one:

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 ... maybe next episode.

Well, in case you can't tell, I'm happy to finally see these peeps have a little fun. Yes I know it's a lot of pressure and they're probably aware being that it's the fourth season, that fingers across the world are furiously typing/recapping/critiquing and criticizing every inch of every stitch that they send down the runway, but they must never forget to HAVE FUN!

OK -- enough of this nonsense, let's get into the designs shall we. raterunway_07_220x415.jpg

Victorious Victorya
I applaud the bold color choice, as well as the length, as I feel young girls nowadays are opting for shorter, more modern looking party dresses than the traditional floor length gowns of old. Though it looks like it could use a little magic steam for wrinkles (those young girls LOVE to pose with their hands on their hips don't they) I think it has great movement and a whimsy about it that is perfect for the occasion! I also thought she did a nice job giving a 17 year old what she wanted, while still keeping it modern, because it's a slippery slope when adding rainbow colored crystals to a neckline, but the balance is just right. Oh, and the shoes are perfection. raterunway_02_220x415.jpg

Chris
A risky choice of color as it can make most skin tones appear yellow and sickly, but not with this cutie -- it complements her beautifully! Though the silhouette is more of a stereotypical evening gown, it still feels appropriate for the occasion with enough cover-up and movement to allow for some wild dancing. The texture on the bust also visually balances the sleekness of the rest of the dress, giving her a little more fullness where necessary. However, exactly like the first purple gown he sent down the runway, I don't understand making it ankle length? I feel she really could look long and lean by simply adding three more inches to the hem. raterunway_09_220x415.jpg

Kevin
All of the elements were there to make a "cute, flirty dress," but unfortunately when combined together it simply didn't work. I think the main problem in the design was trying to make a halter top for this specific girl who already has ample cleavage and doesn't need to accent it even more -- it makes them look like funbags. I would've opened up the neckline and brought it to her shoulders, which would've visually balanced her out a bit more instead making her look so va va voom cocktail waitress in Vegas circa 1989. Oh, and the lack of hemming of the hem didn't bother me so much (in a photo at least) but the unevenness practically sent me over the edge. Having a hem that wobbles up and down and up and down just makes the garment look poorly constructed.However, I wish good luck to you Kevin on your next endeavor. You do some great casual wear pieces and I hope to hear from you soon! raterunway_03_220x415.jpg

Jillian
I think there are some very nice elements to this dress: the torso design and the color story, but I just hate the hem. For a girl that is so tall and lean, it makes her appear short and wide, and though her color choices and piecing on the bust look fantastic, I feel overall it comes off a bit nightgown-y. Nevertheless the movement is nice and should keep her dancing all night!

Christian
This design was actually my favorite out of all of them, though the execution is what sent it crashing to its death. The color is phenomenal, as is the overall design concept: the lace work, the pleating, and the fullness. It kept reminding me of a dress and I couldn't remember it until a few hours later, but I see elements of the McQueen dress SJP wore to the MET a few years back, that I believe Christian worked on:

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The layering of the exposed tulle, the asymmetry of the shoulders, the overlaying of the black lace. I so wanted him to pull this one out because I think it could've been a "wow" moment, but alas, the stars were not aligned, and we were left with an opinionated client in a heavy-handed dress. raterunway_01_220x415.jpg

Kit
This one I don't exactly get ... mainly the suspender-esqe straps w/buttons. That color blue is gorgeous, and though it's not my personal style, I think the color blocking on the bust is at least interesting and unexpected. I think my first reaction is (having been in this situation) that the client said "Oh, I forgot to tell you, but I need to wear a bra with this dress" so you unfortunately have to put a piece of fabric to hide the straps ... but she's 17, and young, and cute, and as far as I can tell she doesn't need her boobs to be strapped up in a harness for support -- a strapless bra would've worked just fine. raterunway_08_220x415.jpg

Ricky
Overall, I like this, but as The Kors said, the whole thing could've been turned up. The proportions are fantastic on her (as is her hair -- way to go Tresemme!), the fit is nice, and the texture gives it a little interest. I really have nothing else to say that wasn't already said on the runway ... turn it up. raterunway_04_220x415.jpg

Rami
This was one of the first real misses for me with Rami. With bringing such a youthful edge to the last candy challenge, I wish he would've done the same here. His client is adorable, but I again, agree with what was said on the runway -- it's not a bad design, but it was for this challenge. I do, however, applaud him for trying to get away from stereotypical prom looks, but unfortunately he didn't end up in the right place. raterunway_05_220x415.jpg

Sweet P
My favorite part of this dress is the color -- it is so chic, so sophisticated and so clean -- I love it. This design is obviously on the other side of the spectrum of Victorya's, but she completed the traditional look very well: it was sexy where V's was flirty; it was classic while V's was modern,;shiny vs. matte; long vs. short, etc, etc, etc .... It really came down to appropriateness. Great job, though, and congrats to finally making it to the top tier. Keep it up!

Leanne Speaks!

May we present season 5 winner of Project Runway- Leanne Marshall!

Bravotv.com: How did you feel when you won?
I was just in shock for a good couple of minutes after Heidi called my name. I was exhausted and exhilarated. It was the most amazing moment of my life.

Bravotv.com: Were you shocked by the result?
I was shocked. It was a big shock. I had hoped and I had my fingers crossed but it had been a long week and I was really sleep deprived so I didn't know.

Bravotv.com: What are you going to do with the money?
Going straight to the horse races... No, I'm actually going to re-locate to New York to further develop my clothing line. I'm actually going to hire some people to help me and hopefully show at fashion week again.

Bravotv.com: What did you think of the criticism the judges had for you?
I definitely would have had a lot more variety. I just always had in my mind, throughout doing the collection, to keep it really cohesive. Creating it I had so many different ideas and I started to go off on tangents so I was thinking that I can't do too many things with such a small collection, I had to keep it cohesive.

Bravotv.com: What did you think of the other collections?
I think Korto showed a really strong collection. I loved her colors and she makes great clothes for women. I think Kenley had some surprising pieces that looked really great on the runway. I definitely liked certain elements of Jerell's collection, the drama and the sparkle. It's very Jerell. Joe surprised me too. It was really well made. And Suede also did a really good job.

Bravotv.com: Are you prepared for your life to totally change as of tomorrow?
I'm not. After finding out and coming back I've been living my life normally as if nothing ever happened. Yes, it's going to be crazy and I'm really excited about it all.

Bravotv.com: How did you keep the secret?
I threatened to break anyone's arms who spilled. No... My family, my boyfriend, everyone was as strict as making sure that they don't say anything as I was. It's a great surprise and we want everyone to be surprised in the end. And I don't want to ruin it for anyone.

Bravotv.com: You're only the second female to win Project Runway. How do you feel about that as a female designer?
It's awesome. It's really exciting. I think there are a lot of strong female designers out there. It just so happens that a lot of the Project Runway winners are male. It's definitely about time.

Bravotv.com: Have you kept in touch which any of the other contestants?
I have been in touch with Korto and Jerrell. Also, Blayne every now and then. I definitely would love to keep in touch with them for a long time.

Bravotv.com: Where can we buy your clothing?
Go to my website, LeanneMarshall.com, and I also link to my Etsy page where I sell things online. Two shops in Portland, Oregon, Seaplane and Foundation Garments. And I just got a ton of requests so hopefully everywhere soon!

Bravotv.com: Any final words for your fans?
I'm just so touched and thank you for supporting me, coming up and saying hi and all that. I love it and I'm so appreciative of all of it. It kept me going and propelled when I was creating my collection. It's hard putting your self out there but one of the rewards is having [great fans.]