I am thrilled to report that we resume episodes with endings this week. We start before we left, Claire is the winner, Michael walks off stage, Heidi and Tim want to know what's up. Batani seems to be the first on stage to cave to the pressure of all the questions and mentions that there were concerns about Claire (and SHawn) copying other designers and their own clothes. Backstage, Michael tells Tim, and is joined by Margarita. Tim says copying the clothes you are wearing (by which we mean using them to pattern) is within the rules. Michael and Margarita go back on stage, Claire remains the winner, Batani is out.
The designers return to the backroom to catch the others up. Claire is understandably upset that she got sideswiped on the runway for concerns that had clearly been going on for weeks that no one had mentioned to her. Margarita seems to have realized that by venting to Michael and not to Claire she has not actually preserved the nice with Claire. Let's talk about this. I am going to in some ways make some assumptions about motivations, but I think Margarita had noticed this patterning off their own clothes that both Shawn and Claire were engaging in, and referencing other things - they had pointed out in the model episode that Shawn's top look for her model basically looked like exactly what the model wore when she visited Shawn. The designers had hoped that this lack of originality would get noticed by the judges. And while no one has brought out the word seamstress, that's what this is. They think Shawn and Claire make good things that look like what is out there. And that designers innovate. And they were assuming the judges would agree, especially since Shawn and Claire spent time in the bottom. And yet, here Claire is. Claire asks if all this came up now because she won money. No one appears to answer, but you have to wonder.
In the discussion, Margarita, who I think was trying to vent to Micheal to diffuse her own tension and now realizes that she has spread the tension further so is taking some responsibility to explain her concerns, says in addition to patterning in the bathroom, she has seen both Shawn and Claire measure items in their own closet in the hotel room. Amy, who you may recall is a fashion professor in her other life says, well, having design tools outside the workroom is a violation of the rules. Claire - who I want to point out did have a legit gripe that people were jerks whispering about her but not talking to her - now seems to see that okay, there was this one fair point. Tim enters the backroom, asks Claire to confirm she has been using tools outside of the workroom, she does, and her win is rescinded. And also she is gone and Batani stays. And the cup pattern will go to Brandon who you may recall was neither top or bottom, lending credence to the idea that the biggest problem with the product placement challenges might be the product placement people.
So, on to a normal show. It's...a product placement challenge. It's avant garde Shopkins. The designers are given consultation with a Shopkins fan, aka kid. Amy says it makes her miss when her kid was that age. Michael is thrilled his superfan is so inspired by disco given it's influence on fashion. (I am pretty sure his fan just likes glitter, but hey, they bonded.) Margarita wonders why eliminated designers can't come be their seamstresses, and when asked who she'd want, she says Samantha.
As with many of the avant garde challenges, it's avant garde in the sense that you could wear this to the Met Ball and look like you didn't just wear a regular outfit. Heidi says they have four top scores (I'm guessing there were ties) and two bottom. Kenya and Kentaro are safe. Ayana has made a delightful outfit that looks like a giant pink ruffle bell with a huge bow, and polka dot legging peeking out from underneath. Michael has made a glitter jumpsuit with some glitter piping (remniscient of Sandia) wrapping around to simulate a melting disco ball. Brandon's outfit looks like a strappy thing, and when guest judge Kate Upton says her cooking apron is the same color, well, that was what it reminded me of, a fashion apron. That the judges love and say they knew was his. Margarita uses a few fabrics to create volume and glitter sparkle touches that looks poufy but interesting.
Batani returned to her pattern matching ways, and has also made use of volume, but in a way that is less successful, especially as she has a part on the side, she didn't cover, so it looks unfinished. There's also a cut out in the back that emphasizes that the whole outfit is a little too tight for her model. And Amy has made an outfit that is very Amy and could have easily been something that Amy would have entered in any other challenge. It has a high neck, uses Amy's signature neutrals, and it's well made but makes the judges feel like she didn't try.
Batani is back out. And Amy is too. So we finally got a double elimination.