Project Runway’s fifth season came to a close October 15 after thirteen episodes full of cat fights, drama queens, garment disasters, and innovative fashion. Last week, the judges (Heidi Klum, Michael Kors, and Nina Garcia) eliminated Jerrell Scott after the remaining four had to design a wedding dress and an accompanying bridesmaid dress during a final “walk off” to choose the final three. With Jerrell’s elimination it left three women as the final competitors, the first time in Project Runway history. Leanne went on to win the competition, leaving Koto to be chosen as the fan favorite.
This season of Project Runway went back to basics with the first challenge being reminiscent of the first season by having the designers construct a garment out of materials found in a grocery store. Since then, following challenges have required designers to produce outfits inspired by the New York nightlife, nature, car part materials, and drag queens. The competing designers also got the chance to design for fashion icons such as Brooke Shields and Diane von Furstenberg.
The last challenge that was supposed to choose the final three who would show their collection at Bryant Park took a surprising turn when the judges couldn’t decide on a “loser.” Instead, they decided that the four remaining competitors, Korto, Jerrell, Leanne, and Kenley, would all have to design their complete collections and at the end of the twelve-week period the judges would then eliminate a designer. Jerrell was eliminated when the judges claimed his wedding and bridesmaid dresses were too over the top and unfitting for a wedding. This choice, however, left many fans dismayed as Kenley, an annoying and rude designer, was chosen over Jerrell, a fan favorite.
I am a huge fan of Project Runway, and I don’t even care for fashion and labels too much. But I was hooked from the moment I started watching re-runs of Project Runway about a year ago. While this season wasn’t particularly my favorite, it delivered in all the ways that have made this show a standout among other reality TV series — ridiculous challenges, over-the-top garments, bitch fests among the designers, fair judging, and a prize that truly helps the winner.