Project Runway: Episode 5.13 Chic or Freak?
Project Runway: Episode 5.13 Chic or Freak?
Well, folks, now we know. Jerell Scott, the messier, but generally more likeable contestant, was kicked off Project Runway 5, and Kenley Collins, the grating but tidier designer, will be officially part of the competition for the finale.

With what was shown last night, I have to say I really can't quibble with the decision, but it was very heart-wrenching nonetheless. After the designers seemed to all reconcile upon their return to Project Runway, Kortu Momolu tearfully noted that while she of course wanted to make it to Bryant Park, she didn't want to see any of the other designers go home either, not even bad girl Kenley. More than any other season, I think, these designers seemed to have been more consistently openly emotional about these last few challenges, and it made the whole thing a little sad to watch.

I can't do much more with this column than echo the judges' findings and, in fact, echo much of the overall commentary from them and the contestants since they seemed to say what I was already thinking.

CHIC



Leanne Marshall's was lovely, modern, feminine and well-crafted. Sometimes I wonder if she will eventually expand past her architectural details (I could see if becoming too repetitive someday), but for now, I admire how polished and sophisticated her efforts have consistently been throughout the season.


Kenley may have had her ups and downs, but based on these two dresses alone, she deserved her spot in the final collection. As Michael Kors put it, she is “kooky but meticulous.” As I've said before, even when I don't like her efforts (and I do like both of these designs), I do appreciate that they always look well-made. I didn't see the Alexander McQueen dress that Michael Kors referenced, but quite frankly, originality isn't exactly Kenley's thing. Her thing is taking retro or familiar ideas and filtering them through her very individualized sensibility. The wedding dress, to me, wasn't particularly original even without seeing McQueen's. But it was cute, well-crafted, and truly reflected Kenley's sensibilities.

FREAK


Jerell's looks also reflected his sensibilities, but unfortunately, they did not have that pulled-together and polished feeling of the two Chic efforts. His tulle did look dirty, and I've been worried about his color palette all along. He seems to gravitate towards drab, and it's a legitimate aesthetic choice, but dangerous to play with for a wedding dress.

I think Jerell is a dear, and charming and clever to boot. I also think he does have some real design talent in there and hope he can find the fashion career he wants. I think what might be his path to success in fashion post-Project Runway is to find a design partner who can balance out his excesses and help act as an external editor. His work with Stella Zotis showed he can be a good team player; while he might sass a bit, he doesn't seem to have the excesses of ego that could undermine a true partnership. I would love to see him as a player in the fashion world so wish him all the best in his future endeavors.


I'm a little biased towards Korto because I just seem to love everything about her, but I don't think her wedding dress or bridesmaid dress were really reflective of her sensibilities. When looking at the rest of the collection, there is a clean, sophisticated glamour to everything else, but as she said herself after this elimination show, with these two, “altogether it was a mess.” She seems to occasionally succumb to the yips, a hiccup of nerves that makes her produce something that doesn't seem at all in line with the level of taste and beauty we've otherwise seen her offer. Last night was, to me, one of those nights, but I'm glad her collection will still be included in the finale of Project Runway 5.

- Leslie Seaton, BuddyTV Staff Columnist
(Images courtesy of BravoTV)

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