Monday, March 10, 2008

Project Runway Finale: My Take on Tim Gunn's Take

Top o' the Monday Morning to you, Genteel Readers. This is the first of my regular Monday Blogs, and how better to start those off than by gossiping about the finale of Bravo TV's reality fashion show called Project Runway and its host Tim Gunn.

Christian SirianoChristian looks rather fierce here. Reminds me on his playacting with Posh Spice during the show. I fell in love with Christian's selection from the first outfit to walk out, because I noticed the hats. I loved that about Princess Diana. And by the gods, I hate that full fringe that's all the rage. It suits very very few faces and with very very few hair styles. Heidi Klum is not one of them.

Hey, Tim talked to Marion Cotillard on the red carpet. That's cool. I didn't see him, but I saw Heidi arrive with her husband. She has three children, and yet she's a supermodel-thin and travels the world for various events.

I'm glad they brought highly talented people with experience to the show, as opposed to mediocre ones with hobbies. This is why I like Dancing with the Stars as opposed to American Idol. I want to see talented people do things that awe me. I'm not so much into what the ordinary citizens do. Snob Alert!

I was glad to see the back-stabbing drop away as the show wore on. All that high drama can be tiresome to watch. One of the chief complaints I have against DWTS is that America's Ballroom Dancing on PBS doesn't have people talking and talking about how they feel, how their brother feels, and their opinions on everything. ABD was about dancing. So the contestants danced. Now I know some of you will say that showing some personality is good, but Samantha Harris (beautiful and beautifully gowned) always gets on my nerves. Bias Alert!

Tim GunnI had a great big chuckle over Tim's comment on New York City apartments. In my voluminous correspondence with authors Amanda McCabe and Diane Gaston, I had commented that apartments in NYC like apartments in Paris are handkerchief-sized--you enter in sideways and exit similarly--unless you're nouveau riche or connected to old money and connections. Bourgeoise Alert!

I'm so glad Tim brought up Laura and talked about her business savvy. Now those are clothes I'd love to wear. Most of all, I appreciate how Tim has stayed in touch with former participants and continues to guide them. Too bad about Uli from last season. She seems to be as flowy as her work, however, I thought she had more business savvy than say Carmen (spit-mark). There was no mention of Jeffrey Sibelius and what happened to him.

Rami KhashouThe Bryant Park pre-contest between Chris and Rami was such a high-stakes contest that was wholly unnecessary in my view. They could simply have had four finalists and have them compete against each other. However, I liked how Tim differentiated between Rami and Chris in that final elimination by who is customer-focused and who doesn't care who his client is. Now that makes the choice so much clearer. This is couture after all, not a carnival.

So, Genteel Readers, do you guys know why Posh was chosen as the finale guest judge? Granted she's a couture fashionista, but since when has Victoria become an arbiter of fashion? Why not John Galliano, for instance? Posh tipped the scale towards Christian automatically with her love of McQueen and European designers.

I think Tim's spot on worrying about Christian's narrowing his focus too early and putting blinders on his talent. I think for that reason, he shouldn't set up his own shop right away. He's too young and immature; and he needs to somehow be with other designers, directed and challenged, just not too much under anyone's wing.

JillianAnd regarding courtesy, I think that is one of the main reasons why I liked Rami so much. Other than that brief period in the middle where he was insufferable, he's been balanced, polite, and with nerves of steel. Jillian's flapping around at the last minute is one reason I can't take her career too seriously. She does her talent injustice by pulling everything through by the skin of its teeth.

I like Tim so much more this season. He's hilarious when he has his diva moments. And I had no idea before that he was seminal to the show, as opposed to a c'mon-buck-up fellow. He's involved in the auditions, too. And he really knows the industry and the business. I don't know how PR would survive if he chooses to leave after season five. He should let go of his own Guide to Style show though.

Thank goodness Michael Kors perked up as the season wore on. Heidi Klum and Nina Garcia, editor of Elle magazine, have always been steady and attentive from the begining to the end of the season. Oh, and there was a telling typo in the article a Project Rungay instead of Runway.

So Genteel Readers, what is your take on Tim Gunn and Project Runway and season four versus the other seasons? Do you have Tim's book Tim Gunn's Guide to Style?

[Edit 3/10 6:51pm PT -- I was completely mistaken about the typo. I've since found out that Project Rungay is a very active blog about Project Runway from a gay perspective.]


Maggie Robinson said...

Project Runway is my favorite show (see my Myspace page). That said, I'm just a spotty watcher, catching it at odd times on repeats. I was most loyal to season 2 (Santino should have won!!!), didn't see much of 3 and caught about half of 4. I do look at the website though. Christian, the evil little sh*t, did not do it for me. His clothes looked like uniforms for anorexic videogame warriors. Peplum jackets, so 80s. And I remember. *g*

But I find it incredible these creative people can work with budget, material and time limitations and create such amazing stuff. When they made clothes out of plants in season 2 I was riveted. So even if Christian is an annoying imp, he's got a future ahead of him.

And I like Tim, the calm before the storm.

Congrats on your blog, Keira! I'll add you to my blogroll!

Erica Ridley said...

Hi Keira! Welcome to the blogosphere. I've got nothing of substance to add since I've never seen this show, but it sounds very entertaining! =)

terrio said...

I love PR and Tim Gunn. I became addicted season 1 and have been with them ever since. The odd thing is I know nothing about fashion whatsoever. No interest in it. But I love this show.

I actually missed the final two shows this season but I know Bravo will play them over and over again so I'll catch up. Soon.

Congrats on the blog, Keira. Another to add to my loooooong list. *g*

Amanda McCabe said...

Totally agree about the trend for thick bangs. Not very many people look good in them (if they make Heidi Klum look older than her years, what do they do for us normal folk??), and I worry that they will bump into things due to the impaired vision. :)

Also agree about DWTS vs. America's Ballroom Challenge! I do not need to know all about divorces, children, whether or not someone is a virgin (!)--just dance, people. And, as you know, I love weird little Christian and his fierceness. :)

terrio said...

Forgot to mention that I love America's Ballroom Challenge. My PBS shows it every Wednesday night but what's up with Jasmine Guy? She's horrible at reading off a teleprompter (cue cards?) and sounding natural.

lacey kaye said...

I would never have pegged you for a Project Runway girl! You learn new things all the time, eh?

Diane Gaston said...

Lacey-- Keira, Amanda, and I bonded over Project Runway. I was so grateful to have someone to talk to about the show.

I'm with you, Maggie (Hi!!!!), Christian's clothes did not appeal to me, either.

I found one of the websites that showed Chris's final collection. It looked like all his models walked down the runway; we just didn't see it on TV. Some of his dresses were gorgeous!

I have not seen America's Ballroom Challenge. I always just missed it or couldn't figure out when it was on.

All I can say is.....On to Top Chef!!!

Susan Seyfarth said...

Hey, Keira--
There was a rumor in the bandita lair that you were blogging, so I thought I'd drop by & say hello. And I'm with terrio--I know nothing about fashion but I find PR absolutely compelling. There's just something fascinating about watching talented, creative people work their magic under deadline & with limited materials & especially with a lot of fierce (sorry, couldn't help myself) competition. (I do find myself saying fierce alot more since I started watching PR.)

Congrats on jumping into the blogosphere, Keira!

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, Keira, great to see you've got a home we can chase you down at. Love the blog! I think it will become a Bandita second home!

Oh, woe is me! I have nothing to contribute to this discussion. I don't watch Project Runway. It's on here on cable and they're even doing a local version too this year.

But I did want to say I LOVE your list of recommendations ;-)

Candice Hern said...

Welcome to blog-land, Keira! I'm another one who's never seen Project Runway, so I can't comment. Just wanted to say congrats on the new blog!

Christine Wells said...

Hi Keira! Just heard about your blog from the banditas. Congratulations, it has a lovely look and feel--I'll be back often!

Project Runway--Love it! I'm not into reality TV shows at all but this one has so many parallels to writing, it really grabs me. Haven't had time to watch lately and I'm not sure we've had season 4 in Oz yet but I'll look out for it. I like the way the contestants are all thrown together in a pressure cooker situation but I'm not so keen on all the amateur dramatics. These people know they're being filmed and I can't help thinking they ham it up for the camera.

Hmm, haven't had a full fringe since I was seven. Not a good look for most people;)

Keira Soleore said...

Sorry for being so late folks. Late night. Ms. Wee (my daughter) wasn't well. All's fine now.

It's simply FABULOUS to come here to see all these comments. Thank you for visiting and writing.


So Christian got on your nerves badly, eh? I admit he was annoying at first, but I got used to him and his ways, because his talent simply blew me away.

Tim's a real cool cucumber...

Keira Soleore said...

Erica, thanks for your support and for reading this incredibly long and enthusiastic message about a show you haven't seen. But perhaps, I can convince you of it next season??? :)

Terri--hi! I bit the bullet. I was never a fashionista, but I love the show. Then thank to my dad's expiring airline miles I became the recipient (dubious at first) of Allure, GQ, and Bazaar. Now, I find myself rifling through them the day they arrive. The sticking point will be when I have to pay for them.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

CRAZED FAN ALERT! Hey Keira! Not only am I a Keira fan, I'm a PR fan. I love Tim Gunn, but agree with you that he should probably drop the TG's Guide to Style show. Um, go through my underwear drawer? I don't THINK so!

I think PR's really amazing for the sheer creativity these people pull out of thier respective minds and fingers. On Season three, the recycled materials challenge? Yikes!

I also find it a wonderful view into people's mental processes. You see some who gear up and say to themselves, GREAT! Another cool challenge. That's where I think Christian had a big advantage. He didn't boo-hoo, even if he bitched, he dug in and did it. I loved Jillian's clothes, and Chris's flair. I loved Rami's colors - they suit me even if they don't suit Michael Kors! Ha! I didn't like Christian personally, but hey, he's haute couture where as real people could wear Uli's clothes, or Jillian's or Rami's. Ha!

Okay, enough from me. Welcome to blogland, Keira! Don't forget us in the Lair, now that you're a blog Master too! Grins.

Keira Soleore said...

((Ammanda)), my dad calls those bangs: shaggy dog look. He wonders how it'll impair their vision. :) Ah, so you admit to loving Christian in public, eh? Hm. And someone talked about their virginity?? Fierce!

Terri, I hear ya about Jasmine. At least with Samantha Harris, no matter how annoying I found her, she looks like she's memorized her lines and can ad lib if needed.

Keira Soleore said...

Despite sitting across the table from me, Lacey, every Saturday afternoon, you didn't know I was a PR fan? Infatuated. Completely. Just clarifying in case the long blog didn't convince you of that. :)

(((Diane))), hi. Didn't know you know Lacey. She's been keeping me honest about my writing. I would've loved to have seen Chris has the chance to show his collection on the runway. After working so hard, he should've had the chance to show it all, not just three outfits.

On to Top Chef *chop chop*

Keira Soleore said...

OMG. The Banditas are here!! jumps up and down while waving madly

See, all that working out this past month had to be good for something. I can multitask physically now. ;)

Susan, I'm totally with you and Terri. I went from loving PR to being interested in fashion. Not to wear, just to ogle.

There's just something fascinating about watching talented, creative people work their magic under deadline & with limited materials...

Fierce summation there, Susan. As Maggie also wrote, I was impressed with the bios of the people when the season first started. Over the years, PR's been able to attract better and better contestants with talent and experience.

Keira Soleore said...

OK, Jeanne. I get it. You don't want anyone 'sides you rooting around in your underwear drawer. I mean, we talk about having clean underwear when you're found injured on the roadside, but on live TV? Everything held up for display? I don't know WHO would sign up for that. Not Tim the Gunn himself. I've become a fan-girl of Tim myself, but I still can't watch his show. PR is what he does best.

((Foanna)) m'dear, I'll make a convert of you yet, whether the American version or the one Down Under. Blimey! I'm right honored to be called a second home for the Banditas to beat those Monday blues. curtsying

Keira Soleore said...

Candice, given your love of Oscar fashion, I thought you'd be one of the greatest fans of PR. Can your not having watched PR be laid at the feet of your miniscule television? What was that? 4" or something? :)

Christine Pirate, glad to see you loving PR. You need to nudge that Bandita down the road from you to watch(!!). I've had fringes and bangs, but not till my eye lashes. It sure looks cute on Katie Holmes, but not on Heidi Klum. And wouldn't you say writing contests are like that, with the Golden Heart the finale?

Keira Soleore said...

I think I've caught up to everyone's comments now. Thank you all for visiting. It's so much fun. This can get addictive.

(And Lacey Kaye gives me a look. No, no. Just Mondays for now. Just Mondays.)

Cassondra said...

Hey Keira!

LOVE the look of your blog! It's GORGEOUS! Did you design that page? Oh, my!

I admit that I outed you to the other Banditas. I knew if they found out you had a blog and I knew it and didn't tell, they'd hang me from the chandelier in the lair upside down. I hope that's okay. I wasn't certain if you had everyone's email or not.

I admit that I don't watch Project Runway, but that's cuz I don't really see tv much. Our tv is usually just for videos and dvds. :0/

I'll look forward to this on Mondays now!

Keira Soleore said...

((Cassondra)), thank you very much for outing me to the Banditas. I did not have everyone's address, so it's been great to see all of you popping by to write a note.

I wish, oh how I wish, I had the design skills needed to make a truly handsome page. I used one of Blogger's templates. I'm learning how to tweak it bit by bit, so expect to see it changing every time you visit. I have good examples of blogs that work and Michelle Buonfiglio's fantabulous advice (at the today) on blogging.

I'm going to convert you Banditas to PR, one by one. Say, you're rooming with me, right? Aha! Project! :)

Caren Crane said...

Keira, darling, you know I rarely watch TV, but I get a full dose of PR from Entertainment Weekly (some there are obsessed with it!). I have to say, watching people design under pressure must be like watching a train wreck about to happen.

I think most of the fashions are ridiculous, but then haute couture is, as well. Could anyone get away with those clothes unless they starved themselves?

Oh, the thick bangs totally work for Tyra Banks's about it. Wisps, people, wisps. Don't get me started on hair!

Congrats on the blog launch, Keira. You know the Romance Bandits will be back!

Nancy said...

Hi, Keira--Just heard about your blog in the lair! I love the graphics.

I just discovered PR last season in re-runs, so I really have no perspective. Christian's clothes looked to me as though they belonged on the pages of haute couture magazines. They definitely have flair and style. Given his background, that wouldn't be surprising. I'd be more comfortable personally, though, not having Heidi's or Posh's figures, in Jillian's clothes.

My favorite designer was Sweet P. She seemed overall to be pretty nice, and I could often imagine wearing her stuff. I'd like to imagine wearing Rami's stuff, too, but I think you gotta have a particular form to have that draping do it justice.

Your page looks great, Keira, template or no. Congratulations on launching your Monday blogs!

jo robertson said...

Great blog, Kiera! Popping over from the Bandita Lair to say hi! Although I must confess I don't watch Project Runway :-(, the Freudian slip was hilarious. And the "w" and "g" keys don't even use the same finger! Too funny.

I agree that the dancing shows should be about dancing. I LOVE to watch them, probably because I'm a total klutz!

JoMama, who trips over her own feet.

Joan said...

The GR was clucking about one of our fav Banditalitos (???) starting her own blog.

Congrats to you, Keira!

I, um...don't watch PR either *ducks* though I admire any woman who can strut in 4 inch heels.

Keira Soleore said...

Caren dear, I wouldn't call PR precisely a train wreck. It's more a case of watching what bubbles up from the pool of contestants. Strength of character and staying power play just as important a role as talent and experience.

Monday Blogs: I like that, Nancy. Re-runs are totally the way Bravo hooks people. I like that I can catch up on missed episodes or watch a previous season. And they have lots of extras on their website, pre-episodes, post-episodes, games, etc. I've always liked this about Bravo, but until MichelleB's blog today at The Lair, I wasn't paying close attention to what works and doesn't work in different media.

JoMama, you've totally taken over being punny from Foanna. And watching PR? I'll convert ya.

Jillian's clothes or Laura's clothes from last season are what I would wear. While I loved Rami for many reasons, his clothes won't work on me either, Nancy. And I certainly cannot see myself wearing Christian's or Chris's clothes, but I thought them especially "fierce" on the show, JoMama. So you have a good theory going on there with wanting to watch (OK, Caren, obsess over) that which you're lacking. fiercely deep :)

Keira Soleore said...

Banditalitos!! Har. Har. Har. Now there's a mouthful. Joan, you'll have to go back to the drawing board for a new term for us Bandita Buddies.

Sorry, GR, but my blog over here is hopping and clucking and so much fun that I couldn't stop by sooner at The Lair to pick you up.

Santa said...

Hi Keira! Great first blog. You are a braver soul than I.

I have to admit that I'm not much of a reality TV watcher and have never seen an episode of PR - except the one where Christian was chosen, lol.

I'll be bookmarking your blog and will pop by as many Mondays as I can.

Keira Soleore said...

Hey Santa. It's grrrreat to see you here. All kinds of piratical folks dropping by and a vixen or two. So, you've been a fan of Christian since the beginning. Perhaps first impressions are best left untampered--Maggie would've prefered that he'd lost right then and there. :)

Everyone, thanks for all the adds to blog rolls.

Keira Soleore said...

Time for me to turn in. Thank you, thank you everyone for all your support in making this such a fine debut. I look forward to more Monday Blogs with you.

Annie West said...

Hi Keira,

So sorry to be late but it's been one looong day here.

Just wanted to congratulate you on your blog. Of course, being in Aus I can't see Project Runway, but loved the pic and the info. Will look out for it when (no doubt) it hits our shores.

Slinking off now before you notice my fringe.


Trish Milburn said...

Keira, I'm following my fellow Banditas over from the Lair, and I find your fun post about PR. I'm a late convert (as in the last five or so episodes of this year), but I did find Christian funny if arrogant, but I really liked Rami too.

Keira Soleore said...

Annie!! Hey, so nice of you to visit. Christine tells me that you have an Oz version of Project Runway and they show the American version on cable. So, perhaps, cough, at least one? :) And hey, I'm not against a fringe. I'm POSITIVE it totally suits your face.

Oh Trish, me, too. I liked Rami certainly for his calmness, courtesy, and short quick advice when needed by his fellow constestants. He really impressed me with his sang froid. Everyone else had their moments of freaking out, but not Rami.

Thank you both for visiting.

Janet Mullany said...

Hi Keira, nice to know you have a digital place to hang your hat (or your bonnet).
I've never seen Project Runway but wanted to stop by and say hello.

Keira Soleore said...

Janet, so good of you to pop on by. I have this amazing photo of you modeling with such panache your hat and gloves from the Beau Monde auction last year, that I thought for sure you were a fan of the show.

PJ said...

Hi Keira! I got your email but wasn't able to stop by until today. Looks like a great turnout for the premiere of your Monday Blog. What a lovely site!

I've always loved beautiful clothes but have never really been much into "fashion" and don't watch PR. I always figured I'd never be able to slip my curves into those runway clothes anyway so why torture myself. :)

I'll be stopping by every Monday to check out what interesting topic you've chosen for the week...and I have no doubt that they *will* be interesting. Sending cyber chocolates and champagne to celebrate your launch. One of days we'll do it in person!


Keira Soleore said...

(((PJ!))) How wonderful to see your note. Love that photograph of you with the tiara. And ooh your chocolates. I'll take even virtual ones. I'm totally down about your not coming out to SF, but I'm hoping that your plan with your girlfriends for a trip out to Seattle is still on.

terrio said...

I know I'm days late but I just got a chance to watch the actual collections and I think Rami should have won. His stuff was incredible and wearable and I have no idea why Nina and Michael have so much trouble with his colors. At least he uses color!

Christian's stuff was fine if you wanted someone to make costumes. But I can't see Christian making clothes that people would actually wear. Well, except Posh I suppose.

Keira Soleore said...

Hey Terri, missed your comment on last Monday's post. Totally agree with you on Rami's choice to add colors into his collection and the choice of his colors. I find Jillian's and Rami's clothes imminently wearable, and given Michael Kors's clothes, I'm surprised he wasn't rooting for these two more.

They were looking for "big" ideas, but Chris's were too big. Christian is haute couture whereas Chris is costumey. Chris's choice to use human hair had an ick factor for everyone.

The judges were enamored with Christian the wunderkind. So, regardless of what he'd produced, they were predetermined to like his work.