Fashion Nexus

A fashion blog for anything & everything fashion, including fashion law topics

Tony’s & CMT Awards

Double the pleasure, double the fun, as is the case with my recent best dressed list, featuring my fave looks from both the 2017 Tony Awards and the 2017 CMT Awards. Enjoy!!

Carrie Underwood

Sara Bareilles

Liu Wen & Zac Posen

Clare Bowen

Sally Field

Wearing an elegant Christian Siriano

Denee Benton

Rachel Bay Jones

Tina Fey

Tina Fey in Sally LaPointe

Carly Pearce

Cynthia Erivo

Cristina Ottaviano

Cristina Ottaviano

Taye Diggs & Amanza Smith Brown

Amanza is wearing a stunning floral lace Jovani gown

Cobie Smulders

Amy Brown

Glenn Close

Bee Shaffer & Anna Wintour

Lady Antebellum

Ben Platt

Hunter Hayes

ASOS blazer & shirt

Jacob Davis

2017 CFDAs

The Council of Fashion Designers of America Awards (otherwise known as the Academy Awards of the fashion world) took place this pat week at Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City. The 2017 CFDAs, in partnership with Swarovski for the sixteenth year, was hosted by funny man Seth Meyers, who previously hosted the award ceremony in June 2012.

There were some notable presenters including Karen Elson and Amber Valletta, as well as Jon Bon Jovi’s giving the first-ever Swarovski Award for Positive Change to his good friend, designer Kenneth Cole.

According to Council of Fashion Designers of America’s site, the awards, which began in 1981, are the “highest honor in fashion and recognize the outstanding contributions made to American fashion in womenswear, menswear, and accessories as well as journalism, creative vision, personal style, and lifetime achievement.”

Sprinkled throughout this post are all the winners of the evening, as well as my top red carpet looks for the night!

Menswear Designer of the Year
WINNER: Raf Simons for Calvin Klein
Nominees: Robert Geller; Thom Browne; Tim Coppens; Todd Snyder

Meg Ryan

Kate Bosworth

Accessory Designer of the Year

WINNER: Stuart Vevers for Coach

Nominees: Irene Neuwirth; Rachel Mansur and Floriana Gavriel for Mansur Gavriel; Paul Andrew; Ashley and Mary-Kate Olsen for The Row

Diane Kruger

Lily Aldridge

Swarovski Award for Emerging Talent

Nominees: Laura Vassar and Kristopher Brock for Brock Collection; Gabriela Hearst; Virgil Abloh for Off-White; Sander Lak for Sies Marjan

WINNER: Laura Kim and Fernando Garcia for Monse

Olivia Munn

Joan Smalls

Womenswear Designer of the Year

WINNER: Raf Simons for Calvin Klein

Nominees: Marc Jacobs; Joseph Altuzarra; Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez for Proenza Schouler; Ashley and Mary-Kate Olsen for The Row

Haim

Sailor Brinkley Cook

Elizabeth Chambers & Armie Hammer

Jac Jagaciak

Elsa Hosk

Alexi Ashe

The Founder’s Award: Pat McGrath

Board of Directors’ Tribute: Cecile Richards, Gloria Steinem and Janelle Monáe

Fashion Icon Award: Franca Sozzani, Italian Vogue editor-chief, posthumous

Proj. Runway — Who Won $50K!!

Well it’s more like not just who, but which two! In the setup for this week, an overall $50,000 was awarded and yes, that is actually half of the cash prize the winner of PR receives. Of course the winner gets a host more of other prizes, but $50K is still a pretty hefty prize!

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Tim met with the designers to provide all of the details and joining him in the workroom was Barbara Shipley, Sr. VP of Brand Integration from AARP. AARP was the challenge sponsor, and ultimately who awarded the prize. As part of the challenge, the designers would be creating a look for a very special client and this look would be a part of representing that client’s next chapter. The special client turned out to be for each designer a family member or friend.

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The winning look would not only awarded $25K to the designer, but another $25K to the client. This I believe was the first 2-day challenge of the season. And with that, the designers were off to Mood with a $250 budget.

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When designers typically work with real world clients to that of models, sometimes issues or drama arises. This time there was not much of that with the exception of Jenni and her mom as their seemed to be confusion on the direction of the look. I wondered during Tim’s critiques though if he was being a little extra hard on Erin and Dexter? It was clear he thought Cornelius should not have gone home, only then assuming Erin or Dexter should have. He certainly didn’t hold back on critiques!

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I believe the biggest workroom issue of the week however was Nathalia and really biting off more than she could chew. This week’s guest judges were fashion and beauty trendsetter Olivia Culpo and co-founder of Birchbox, Katia Beauchamp (who also is on the new Lifetime show, Project Runway: Fashion Start-Up).

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The safe designers of the week were Laurence, Cornelius, and Dexter. I pretty much agreed with this result, but Dexter would have been in my top 3. His look was a knockout and really fit his client well. I thought he gave his friend exactly what she wanted, while still ringing very true to his designer aesthetic.

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SHOUTOUTS — Sally Beauty for a gorgeous, chic straight look & JustFab, love these killer blue booties

The judges’ top three was Roberi, Mah-Jing, & Rik. All were very deserving, but my winning look was Roberi. I got why they chose Rik, but Roberi, just as Dexter did, stuck true to his designer POV, all while giving his client a very fashion-forward look. I thought Rik’s dress was super great as well, but I’m not sure I really would have known it was his work in the midst of some very strong designer aesthetics.

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Roberi’s choice of prints and the ability to mix them together was genius. The look was fun and the pops of color were spot on!

JUSTFAB SHOUTOUT — More cute heels!!

Rik was certainly deserving of accolades though. His dress was very cute, perfect for his mom, not about the bells and whistles, but rather conveying a story, with very intricate details. It was very much age appropriate, but didn’t come across as a mature, mumsy creation.

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SHOUTOUTS — Sally Beauty, love the hair & Mary Kay, love the bold red lip

Mah-Jing certainly stepped it up though this week. His look was bad-ass. I didn’t get the same vibe as the judges that his mom was really working the look. I kind of thought it was wearing her and not the other way around. Perhaps in the right setting, but Mah-Jing really did give her what she wanted and he designed the look beautifully.

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The bottom 3 was Erin, Nathalia, and Jenni. All who have been in the bottom before and all who unfortunately had the worst 3 looks of the week. Erin was again saved from the bottom two. If I’m not mistaken, every time she has been in the bottom, she has escaped the bottom 2 — very interesting. I wonder if she can find her way back to the top. I’m not seeing much by the way of improvement or growth from her the past few weeks, and she really is doing the same coat over and over again. And with this being a 2-day challenge, I would have expected her dress to have looked way better since we know she can do a coat easily in a day, if even that.

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JUSTFAB SHOUTOUT — Gorgeous killer heels!

Nathalia escaped elimination this week, I believe her ideas were her saving grace. She attempted to do a lot and pretty much each article of clothing was poorly constructed. Everything read too oversized. She listened to her mom and the idea was there, but not fully conceived with regard to execution. I wish her coat had been longer and more fitting. I didn’t love the concept of a bell-bottom pant either. Jenni has had some success in the top so I would have picked her to stay in this scenario, but with 2 friends making up the bottom, sadness was inevitable.

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SALLY BEAUTY SHOUTOUT — Lovely waves!

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So yes, with that, Jenni was out this week. Her look too had some construction issues, but a more major issue here was this look was not at all suited for her mom. It read “Jenni” 100%, but there wasn’t any adaptability to the client. I really wouldn’t see her mom wearing this at any of the events she mentioned. Jenni does have a strong aesthetic, but in terms of it being expansive and having the ability to be molded to different occasions, I’m just not sure she is there yet.

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Proj. Runway & Swimwear

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This week, the Project Runway designers took on swimwear. With Tim being all decked out in a special ensemble, he & Heidi joined the designers on the runway to further show off more details on the challenge!

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Each designer would create their own fabric to use in designing a stylish swimsuit & cover-up that would fit in with/be inspired by Heidi’s line, Heidi Klum Swimwear. The winning design would be sold as a part of the line.

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To create the print, the designers would work with technical & digital experts. The designers would then head to Mood, with a budget of $100 for supplemental fabric, all for this 1-day challenge.

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The episode began with a little hate-or-ade being spewed on Erin. Natural jealousies of course since she has won 2 challenges. Moving onto a little workroom drama, we first saw Cornelius having some difficulties with this swimwear challenge. Of course, as the episode progressed, we saw other designers were too facing trouble.

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Heidi soon popped in, alongside Tim, for some critiques. Naturally, she had some pretty choice opinions. I was certainly ready to get the runway started! This week’s guest judge was model & author Lucky Blue Smith. So who rose to the occasion this week, and which designers sank?

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Before the judges top & bottom 3, here are a few personal shoutouts of my own —

pr15-ep4-nj-final  Nathalia J — I thought the swimsuit was pretty cute, interesting print, Also, SHOUTOUT to both Mary Kay & Sally Beauty here, love the entire beauty look!!

pr15-ep4-co-final  Cornelius — SHOUTOUT again for both Mary Kay & Sally Beauty, another stunning glam, beauty look!

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Dexter — SHOUTOUTS — All areas, JustFab, killer heels, Mary Kay, love that pop of red on the lip, & Sally Beauty, curl-icious!

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On now to the judges top 3, getting right to the winner, since I was certainly in agreement with both the top 3 and the winner, let’s discuss Rik. The swimsuit, the cover-up, all super chic, and in black & white, LOVE! Also, SHOUTOUT to Mary Kay for this beautiful makeup look, very natural & fresh.

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The judges almost gave the top spot to Alex, however my close 2nd would have been Roberi. I loved this print, it exuded such fun in the spirit and with all the colors.

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And then of course, as mentioned above, Alex was also in the top 3. I do think Alex did a great job. The cover-up here seemed more than just a cover-up, so I appreciate the effort he put into that piece. The overall look was very Grecian, and the trim of royal blue was the perfect pop of color!

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Moving on now to the bottom 3, sadly, I don’t think Sarah should have been the one to go this week. I say sadly, because of this bottom 3, my choice would have unfortunately been Tasha. I just don’t think she did much here. Sarah’s print was a little more inventive and unique. I figured Jenni would be in the bottom because she dismissed Heidi’s suggestions, but this bikini was barely wearable. I do like Tasha, so I’m hoping she will bounce back!

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Jenni, again, in the bottom, basically not listening to Heidi. I thought the coverup was interesting, and given the off coloring of Jenni’s print, I think she did her best to make it work.

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SHOUTOUT — Mary Kay, lovely beauty look

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So that means Sarah was out and I do think that was unfortunate. She did a pretty decent job the week before, and I don’t think of the entire bunch, her swimsuit was the worst. The cover-up was not great, but let’s get real, a lot of other cover-ups were throwaways as well. And this print, it was very vintage, definitely something I can see as a print being used today.

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SHOUTOUTS — Mary Kay for the makeup look & Sally Beauty for the luscious curls!

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2016 Emmys — Best Dressed

Took a bit longer to get this Best Dressed list out than usual. But of course, I had to do one for the 2016 Emmy Awards. Here are my faves —

KRISTEN BELL

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SARAH PAULSON

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Makeup artist Adam Breuchaud emphasized Paulson’s created a metallic eye look using Eye Tint in Cold Copper topped with Eyes to Kill Intense Eyeshadow in #6, both by Giorgio Armani.

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NEVE CAMPBELL

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CONNIE BRITTON

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ALLISON JANNEY

Allison Janney

MEGALYN ECHIKUNWOKE

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EMILY RATAJKOWSKI

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Makeup artist Hung Vanngo re-imagined the classic cat eye in iris-brightening jewel-tones. To get the look, try Line PRO Eye Pencil in Navy and Aqua, both by Lorac.

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CARLY CHAIKIN

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ABIGAIL SPENCER

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EMILY ROBINSON

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SHIRI APPLEBY

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HOLLY TAYLOR

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PADMA LAKSHMI

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Makeup artist Patrick Ta proves that fuchsia lips are more than a summer staple. To get the look he mixed two shades of Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks, bright lavender and hot pink.

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NANCY O’DELL

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LARA SPENCER

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FELICITY HUFFMAN & WILLIAM H. MACY

William H. Macy, Felicity Huffman

Felicity is wearing a stunning Tony Ward lace gown.

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TERRENCE HOWARD & MIRA PAK

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MARIO LOPEZ

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ZAC POSEN

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PR — The Finale

So yes, finally getting around to blogging about the final eps of Project Runway and definitely just happy to get it over with at this point. I got behind on the episodes, but ultimately, I wasn’t feeling these final few shows of the season, all in all, quite disappointing. And the way everything ended up with the final 4, it certainly wasn’t making me jump to my computer to blog away. But as an avid PR fan, blog away, I must, and I did want to applaud one designer I was happy with this season — Kelly. She was my winner for the season. More on that later, but first, a bit on the episode before the finale (yep, definitely not dedicating 2 separate posts for this finale!).

pr14-ep13-episode15So of course as the almost finale began, it was clear Edmond would be saved, despite the edit attempts of it all being drawn out. Tim Gunn save used. The designers were headed home with 9k to create a 10 look collection. The Tim visit of course came sooner rather than later and the designers were quite eager.

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Tim advised Ashley to keep her hand natural when designing and not to go too matronly. For Candice, he made sure to warn her about over-designing, to keep an editing eye. Kelly found a fan in Tim, but he asked that she make sure her looks had a luxe feel, not to go the cheap route. And finally, with Edmond, he was left with a lot of work to do as not much had been accomplished.

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The designers were back to NY, Kelly feeling as if she was done, while Edmond still had 3 looks to complete and he was not even unpacking! Tim came by shortly after everyone had settled into the workroom. He told the designers they would present 3 looks to the judges for feedback. However, one of those looks had to be brand spankin’ new, created just in that 1 day. The designers were then headed to Mood with a budget of $250, which could be used in any way to enhance their collection. At Mood, we saw some zipper wars and Edmond somehow racking up a whopping $395, way over budget!! It was then again Tim-time.

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Tim instructed Kelly to think of proportion and Ashley received this same critique. With Edmond, it was all about what to present to the judges. And with Candice, there was worry over cohesion. So at this point I would cut to the judges’ critique on the 3-look presentation, but I will save that for my final discussion on each collection. So instead, I will skip to the next segment right before the final collections were presented at Fashion Week. After the judges’ critiques, the designers had 2 days to get to work and many had lots of work to do, well…..according to the judges.

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The final episode of the season began with Tim allowing the designers to hit up Mood once more. Tim himself would do the shopping. Ashley & Kelly only took part, with no objection from Candice or Edmond. Tim later went over the judges’ notes with each designer. Brian Bolain of Lexus popped in to let the designers know they could make use of 2 Lexus coops to arrive in style for their shows. Lots of last minute craziness was of course occurring in this episode. But as per usual, everything seemed to go off without a hitch. And the guest judge on the presentations of the final 4 was country music superstar Carrie Underwood.

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So without further delay, let’s get to the most important part of the finale of PR — the fashion week presentations. Ashley won, but I am going to begin with my choice for the winner, Kelly!

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After the judges’ initial critiques I was afraid Kelly would drastically change up her collection as Candice did and that would have been such a shame. Kelly is a really cool designer and this is a very hip collection. I am not sure I can rock all of Kelly’s looks, but they do make me kind of want to try. Kelly is all about experimentation and she very much makes me want to experiment with my own fashion choices.

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Kelly was the designer who stayed most true to herself. She has such a clear vision. She has a type of girl and this girl will go and buy these pieces. She has a unique spirit and you can see that in her work. Her styling was also very spot on, just such great work on the accessories, the hair (Sally Beauty), and the makeup (Mary Kay) — it was all spectacular.

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When it came down to the judges thoughts, early on, Nina was quick to quip that she couldn’t tell what garment was made in only a day, because what she saw, it was hard to tell. She also said that this didn’t feel like a collection that was 9k worth. How the judges could think this, but somehow feel as if their winner Ashley’s collection looked like 9k, mind boggling! Like seriously! I think the tip to amp up the styling was a good thought, but overall, Kelly was lacking in judges’ support and the producers when it would come to naming her as the winner. There were other plans in mind!

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But overall I applaud Kelly for staying true to herself all season. She was a dark horse and coming in 2nd was a huge accomplishment for her. I will definitely be keeping an eye on this talented lady in the future!

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I wish Candice had channeled some Kelly vibes when it came to her final presentation. I will still keep an eye out for Candice in the future, but her major downfall in this finale was listening to the judges in their initial critique. Her collection could have used some downplay, but taking out most, if not all of the drama, spice, and intrigue was a major mistake. She had some highlights still, but her moment felt much more blah without the full on Candice I’m sure we all wanted to see.

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If the winner was always going to be Ashley, even if Candice had gone full on in her presentation, it wouldn’t have gotten her the win, but it would have made her way more memorable. Having seen what was there before, it just really made me want more. I really just wanted to see that big ole’ dress she made, hoop skirt and all walk the runway!

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And I think the last minute changes led to some of what the judges later critiqued on, which was fit issues. I’m not sure what the judges were going on about with cohesion. I totally still saw Candice in what she presented. And had she done it the way she initially intended, I think the cohesive elements would have in fact been stronger.

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I’m sure she will present again and I’m sure she will not let anyone hold her back this time! But another great bit of work here from the Mary Kay team, Sally Beauty squad, and Just Fab accessories!

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Edmond, sadly, was the throwaway of the final 4. He started out so strong this season, but started to lag in the final few challenges. Tim Gunn had a save to use and thus he was saved. But based on this collection, it was not needed. The judges’ critiques early on were about ampin’ up the sexy vibe they had come to know from Edmond. But that was my biggest issue I had with his final pieces — where and who was Edmond??

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I’m not sure based off these final pieces if I could pick an Edmond original out in the future. This collection left me wondering who he is as a designer. There were some pretty dresses here, but nothing inventive or too creative. In fact, the one piece I adored the most from Edmond, below, is the one I see as the least like him of the bunch.

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More gorgeous work from Mary Kay, Sally Beauty and the Just Fab accessories!

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This work reminded me of Edmond’s Just Fab challenge win — the sexy red dress. It was a gorgeous dress, so sexy, so wearable, but a bit of a snooze-fest in the way of being unique. Nothing really here knocked me out of my socks or was that intriguing. I wasn’t taking too many 2nd glances. I’m sure a lot of women would want to wear some of these dresses, but likely wouldn’t know who they were wearing. It wouldn’t me memorable enough for them to want repeat looks by the designer.

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This leaves us with discussing the winner of Project Runway this season, Ashley. I have loved so many of Ashley’s looks this season. But as the season dwindled down, I became less and less of a fan. There always seemed to be so much drama and so many tears. I was kind of over it after a bit. And then came her final presentation — a first ever for PR, a plus size collection. I applaud the effort and I was happy she went for it, but to me, she came up sub-par.

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I know I am not the only one to think this or to even say it, but Ashley won this season solely so PR could get the headline — “First plus-size designer wins PR.” It was all about the press and the headline because it surely wasn’t about these pieces. It was an okay collection, but there were so many fit issues and so many flaws. There were very few standouts. I was also unimpressed by the repetition — lots of crop tops and skirts — yawnnnnnn!

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And the only way I think 9k was utilized on this collection was because of the headpieces. They were gorgeous and looked more thought out than some of pieces. But yes, we sure had to hear enough about them. I think Ashley missed out by not using any prints, but many of these pieces didn’t feel luxe to me. And I again point out the flaws — all of the shorts were so ill-fitting.

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The color palette didn’t lend a hand in that department either, so many baby pinks and light teals, left the collection lacking in a rich, special quality. The exception is this look below, which was oddly enough the one she banged out in a day. The deep color was beautiful and the overall quality was heightened.

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One other standout was the floral motif skirt below and it was a bit of a showpiece, but one of very few that looked like work was put into it and even some of that 9k.

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I digress again, it seemed as if the end was predetermined — that a larger vision was in the midst. It’s happened before where the winner was a bit questionable and I’m sure it will happen again in the future. But for an overall disappointing season, I didn’t expect much here.

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A final rant/note then on reunion episode, which of course was filled with some laughs, drama, and intriguing aspects. But of course the focus was back to the most drama-filled episode this season, we all know it, the “Mean Girls” episode. And yes, I use quotation marks because I questioned the episode back then and still question the big deal over it now. I loved that it was pointed out that the girls were all being judged, yet none of the guys got called out for not picking Ashley. I don’t care if they had a plan to not do so. If she was such a great designer, one whom everyone should have wanted to work with, how only the female cast should take the blame is beyond ridiculous. She didn’t lend much to the creative process and her look was pretty much crap that week. It was one of the worst ones, so she should have taken some heat on this. She had already gotten one free ride from the Hallmark challenge, so to see her put out another bad look on the runway was clearly an issue in my opinion. It seemed to me as if all of a sudden, just this episode, those few girls were dubbed as mean girls, no mention of this before and really there was no evidence of anything shown in the episode where these girls were badmouthing Ashley or treating her so poorly. If the drama was there, the producers would have shown more. It was such a stretch. And then poof, it was all soon forgotten. No more mean girls the rest of the season, yet somehow, in the reunion episode, it was all brought up again.

Very much ready at this point for All-stars, next season, anything to get true competitive juices flowing again!

Best Dressed Combo — Flower Power

A couple of major red carpets occurred over the past week, thus deserving of some best dressed nods. There was the 2015 Tony Awards and then the 2015 Critics Choice Awards (TV). So here are my fave picks!

Vanessa Hudgens

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I am all about some florals for this best dressed list, especially Vanessa in this vibrant printed floral Naeem Khan gown. Paired with her look, a glittery gold Rodo clutch and Norman Silverman jewelry.

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Her glam squad — Laura Polko creating this elegant updo, and Natalie Saidi for styling the look.

Jennifer Grey

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Jennifer looked stunning in this stark white, lace Zac Posen fitted gown with feathers adorned on the hem. Her Glam squad details are as follows — Vanessa Heshima for both hair & makeup and Danielle Levy for styling.

Anna Chlumsky

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There were a couple of maroon gowns gracing my best dressed list. First one being Anna in this full length, silk Sophie Theallet dress. She accessorized with Solange Azagury Partridge jewelry.

Patricia Clarkson

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Not sure who Patricia is wearing, but with another bold floral look, I couldn’t resist in adding her to my list. I love the contrast of this shortened black dress with the lively, crimson red rose print.

Elisabeth Moss

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Elisabeth too donned some florals, her choice, a fitted white Oscar de la Renta gown with multi-colored flowers embellishing the bodice.

NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 07:  Elisabeth Moss attends the 2015 Tony Awards  at Radio City Music Hall on June 7, 2015 in New York City.  (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Tony Awards Productions)

NEW YORK, NY – JUNE 07: Elisabeth Moss attends the 2015 Tony Awards at Radio City Music Hall on June 7, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Tony Awards Productions)

She also had an amazing glam team, Kemal Harris & Tommy Buckett for styling, and Daniel Martin for beauty.

Kristin Chenoweth

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Kristin was shimmery and shiny all over in this metallic silver Zac Posen gown, fitted to a tee and with a slight train. Deb Watson was her stylist for this look.

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Leanne Cope

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More flower action from Leanne with this dark grey, mixed media, Randi Rahm dress. I am usually not a fan of florals and polka dots mixed, but here, it works! She paired with her look. Oscar Heyman earrings. And for her overall look details, we have Dessange for the gorgeous updo and makeup from L’Oreal Paris.

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Debra Messing

Debra was my other maroon pick, her dress being a shortened Zac Posen halter strapped look. Beautiful accessories for her look include matching Jimmy Choo heels, a Judith Leiber clutch, and lavender DeGrisogono jewelry.

Kelli O’Hara

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Not sure of the designer details for Kelli, but it’s another floral look, so of course I’m on board. But really it has such a vintage, antique quality to the dress that I am just such a fan!

Josh Groban & Kat Dennings

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I am not sure who Kat is wearing, but I do know who helped in putting the overall look together — stylist Lawren Sample, makeup by Carolina Dali with use of Chanel products, and hair by Gareth Bromell.

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Nick Jonas

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Nick is looking quite handsome in his all black tuxe, courtesy of Louis Vuitton.

Dule Hill

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Dule is another stylish looking gent, his suit though in navy blue and by Ralph Lauren, with black Salvatore Ferragamo shoes and accessories by Scott Kay.

Constance Zimmer

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The UnREAL actress floated down the carpet in a floral crop top and a matching full skirt by Leanne Marshall. It must be the summer in the air, but I am really just loving all of the bright, colorful floral looks!

Jaimie Alexander

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Jaimie went ultra-understated, but also ultra-chic with this ombre slate Halston Heritage strapless dress. Her accessories were all perfection, a Pasquale Bruni diamond bracelet, a metallic Halston clutch, Doves ring, and black Kurt Geiger heels.
Cat Deeley
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And to complete my list, a final vibrant look from Cat, a tangerine Azzaro Couture, chiffon halter dress, embellished with feathery, navy embroidery.

 

Project Runway, Ep. 1 — Stunned, Shocked, & Speechless!!

**SIDE NOTE: Since PR is all about showing at NYFW, I have a free GIVEAWAY opportunity that is all about NYFW — 2 VIP Passes & a $3000 Visa Giftcard — Full details here!!

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aka Dazed & Confused! Of course, as a blogger, we know I’m not speechless, but I’m certainly all of the other alliterative “S” adjectives I mentioned above, along with a few others in fact! Despite the shock value, it was still a great Project Runway premiere night. I enjoyed watching the full 2 and a 1/2 hours. I hadn’t watched the “meet the designer” videos on Lifetime’s website so I really enjoyed the intro episode prior to the Season 13 premiere. It was great seeing that so many designers had really persevered to get where they are today and to make it on PR, whether it was from repeat auditions or a “rags to stitches” tale. And just as I mentioned in my own introductory PR post, it was hard to tell who would leave during this 1st episode. I had some hunches, but this was just one of the many shockers I was in store for during this premiere!

pr13-ep1-episode12                                      pr13-ep1-episode13So of the 18 new designers, sadly, 3 were quickly eliminated. Each designer presented a few pieces to the firing squad, aka “the judges”, Heidi Klum, Nina Garcia, & Zac Posen. I’m assuming the designers presented their audition pieces, basically showcasing who they are as a designer. So my first shock of the night came from who went home right off the bat!

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You could definitely tell there were some early judges’ faves. But personally, I was very surprised that both Emmanuel & Tim were cut. Maybe one, but both?? Heck, when I wrote my intro post, two of the six images I used were from them. I wouldn’t say I pegged them as potential winners, but something about their previous work did catch my eye! I wasn’t quite as shocked by Nzinga’s elimination, but I still applaud a designer who has a clear POV; it just wasn’t the judges’ POV.

pr13-ep1-episode8                   pr13-ep1-episode5                   pr13-ep1-episode9But we are still very early on in the PR process and that is how the PR cookie crumbles — each week, one designer must go. We just started this season off a bit differently, with 4 gone by the 1st episode’s end. But as we bidded adieu to three designers, one was “welcomed” to the fold. America casted their votes for the Runway Redemption candidates, Ken Laurence (Season 12), Alexander Pope (Season 12), and Amanda Valentine (Season 11). I’m generally not a fan of mixing new cast members with old ones, and this is for any competitive reality show. But I always considered Season 11 a bit unfair; it was very different than every other season. And I think if the designers weren’t forced to work in groups the entire season and further, were not eliminated based on those groupings, the season might have turned out differently. So just as I rooted for Katelyn Pankoke to come back last season, my choice this year was Amanda Valentine, and it was for the same reason. So I was very happy Amanda was the one chosen! With 16 designers ready to go, it was time for them to get their 1st challenge!

The designers were to create one piece this week that would give the judges a glimpse of what their Spring 2015 collection might look like. There was of course a huge twist though, “a trunk of doom!” Each designer was given a trunk with 5 fabric options, not likely their 1st, 2nd, or even 3rd choices! The designers didn’t have the same fabrics so they were left to just create or get to bartering! I think the other designers didn’t want to give the vet much help though, so it seemed as if Amanda wasn’t able to play the trade-game. And as per PR usual, the challenge only allowed for one day so the designers were off to quickly work! Tim was also back to his norm PR mentor status, giving a great mix of helpful advice.

pr13-ep1-episode15                       pr13-ep1-episode23Back in the workroom we were already seeing a few gossip sessions going on, mainly Mitchell & Korina — highly doubt they will be the only ones though! Mitchell redeemed himself somewhat, very nice of him to help out Sandhya when he finished his look. There were very interesting moments during the model fittings this week — many designers not ready and making some determinations as to what could be hanging out a little (side-boob, etc.)! The most stress and time management issues came from Angela & Sandhya this week, but no worries, no naked models went down the runway! Sooner rather than later it was time for the runway show. Heidi announced the Tim Gunn save would be back this season and that the prize package this year was over $300K. The judges were joined this week by Emmy award winning “Modern Family” actress Julie Bowen. With so many designers presenting this week, it had to be tough naming a top and bottom 3. It was no surprise that this was where even more shockers came to fruition.

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There were certainly a lot of safe looks this week. Many will have to step it up — I will hold off on names for now! But two looks I thought stood out and I was surprised weren’t given any top contention, were Korina’s tomato red look & Sean’s chic knee-length dress, pure minimalism at its best. I guess that is what happens though when you have 4 different judges scoring 16 designers!

pr13-rr-ep1-sk-f     PR1301-Korina-Emmerich-1-900x1350The bottom 3 wasn’t so surprising, but because of its unpredictability with so many designers, I was going to be shocked no matter who went home. Angela’s 2-piece look certainly had some mistakes, but I saw some other mistakes go down the runway too. There was a lot going on in this look, and with how much airtime she got this week, you could definitely see her bottom 3 placement coming! But I wouldn’t peg her as a repeat offender quite yet. I think she can bounce back!

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Mitchell was another bottom 3 placement I wasn’t so surprised by. Tim wasn’t a fan of this look either. I think he mixed his fabric choices well, but the look was very basic, definitely not a show-stopper. It also seemed very “junior” and for this show, that is not what the judges are looking for.

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The big surprise of the bottom 3 was not Jefferson’s placement, but that he went home. I was not a fan of his prior work because I’m not a fan of drop crotch pants. The main issue with this look was exactly what Nina said — proportions, mainly, the shorts were toooooooo short! I don’t think he should have gone home though. But Heidi seemed to not dislike Mitchell’s look quite as much as the others so I’m guessing Heidi had the final say-so on this one!

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While the bottom was not so jaw-dropping, the top 3 was a completely different story. I, like pretty much every other designer, thought Sandhya was for sure in the bottom. I didn’t think she would go home, but to find out she was in the top, needless to say I was stunned. However, later finding out she was the night’s winner, I kind of went from shocked to disappointed. In certain PR seasons, the judges hang onto a fave (Patricia Michaels, Anya Ayoung-Chee, Alexandria von Bromssen). America is not always on the same page! I’m hoping Sandhya is not that token fave this season that will get by with work such as this just because the judges have drank some crazy Kool-aid and are in a love-fest! The judges said Angela’s look had far too much going on, well what the heck do they think this is — frayed edges, capped sleeves, dyes, prints, etc. Based off of Sandhya’s prior work, I also don’t think anything in her collection would look like this. And also, with this floral curtain-like print, the dye, the color chosen, it just looks like a stained old piece of drapery. I am still completely baffled by this decision, but that’s PR for you!

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I think based on the task at hand and with who the judges picked for the top 3, Char should have won. This looked like a piece Char would actually have in her collection and it also read “Spring!”

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But Amanda too had a very chic and well put together look. If this is the new Amanda aesthetic, I can’t wait to see more. I’m not sure if it screamed “Spring”, but I could see it being in Amanda’s wheelhouse. And I disagree with Julie on the use of the pattern. A basic top and pants would have been a yawner! But the print made the pants pop and I was also impressed by the great fit they had.

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And finally, just like my UTG posts, I will name a stand-out for Aldo accessories, Mary-Kay beauty looks, and Philip B. hair looks!

pr13-rr-ep1-fzg-f     For my stand-out Aldo accessories look, I pick  fäde zu grau — statement jewelry pieces (bracelet & necklace), but not over-the-top or overshadowing the look, & simple, elegant black heels. I also think he did a great job of intermixing his printed fabrics for the skirt portion of his dress.

pr13-rr-ep1-hl-f    For my standout Philip B. hair & Mary Kay make-up look, it’s one in the same — Hernan Lander — chic ponytail & clean, fresh beauty look/

Celebs Buying Their Own Red Carpet Gowns — A Scandal??

NO!! I THINK NOT!

So we are in the midst of red carpet season — The Grammy’s, Golden Globes, SAG Awards & with the Oscar’s still to come. Outside of best & worst dressed lists there was one other topic that made some headlines recently — Hayden Panettiere buying her own dress for the Golden Globes. To me this sounds like “Wow, who cares, big deal!” I was surprised it was even discussed and thankfully that all seems to have subsided, I imagine because the whole issue was kind of pointless. But since it was discussed, I now have time to add in my 2 cents so here goes!

71st Annual Golden Globe Awards - ArrivalsSo Hayden is a huge fan of designer Tom Ford. The deal with red carpets usually goes that a designer lends their gowns/dresses to a celeb to wear via their stylist; this even goes to the jewelry, the heels, and the clutch. Generally you will only see 1 designer look per red carpet. Although lately, I’ve seen a few doubles — Lena Dunham & Sofia Vergara in Zac Posen at the Golden Globes; Virginie Ledoyen & Chiara Ferragni in Alberta Ferretti at the Venice Film Festival; Selena Gomez & Shannon Bex (of Danity Kane) in Versace at the 2013 VMAs. And heck, when you get to the accessories you see Jimmy Choo heels, Lorraine Schwartz  or Harry Winston jewelry, and Edie Parker clutches all over the place! But so if Hayden wants to wear a Tom Ford dress and she has yet to have the opportunity to borrow one, it makes no logical sense why this is a bad thing.

index                                                                                 71st Annual Golden Globe Awards - ArrivalsFirst off, Hayden didn’t do this intentionally or at least with any malice in mind. She loves a designer and wants to wear a piece from the designer. So she did what any other person in the world that could and would do — she bought a dress & wore it! She attempted the borrow method and it was not an option so she risked loss of status and having to wear a dress from last season just to show her support. And you can’t forget, she paid the big bucks, $10K to be exact!

Secondly, Mr. Ford didn’t seem all to bothered since he sent Panettiere flowers to thank her for the support, which she tweeted about. Even though, a point was made when Tom Ford’s reps said they didn’t “officially” dress the Nashville star. And Ford is known for wanting that fashion moment by usually only dressing 1 female per red carpet.

Bd84zozCMAADW0WBut how bad could it be to double up on that fashion moment? Naomi Watts was the lucky lottery winner for the Tom Ford look on the night of the Golden Globes and she certainly stunned. But it’s not like Hayden didn’t receive great comments as well. So now, Ford is getting even more recognition, and for what?? — exactly what he should want, his stunning designs and creations.

naomi-watts-2-290And yes, a designer is certainly about the creative process, but making money certainly fits into that equation too! For this situation, several parties are making money on it — the store and the designer. I think this older comment I found from “The Fashion Spot” is quite literally spot on! These dresses range from $5000 and even up to $30,000. Most gowns are on loan and so it leaves me to wonder who is buying these lavish gowns? I’m sure people are, but you have to think that number is very limited — someone with money and a place to wear it. Hayden’s dress was from last season and clearly still available so it’s not a bad thing for it to be purchased now. The longer it stays on the rack, the more money that is lost, DUH!

Kate Hudson recently discussed the issue of loaning gowns and about why she doesn’t purchase the ones she wears, simply put, it’s too expensive! Of course this was in no relation to this recent fashion “faux pas.” This again goes to show that the celebs & the Hollywood crowd are not buying these lavish gowns. So if a celeb wants to splurge once a year on a gown then perhaps the fashion world should encourage this rather than disc, shame, and pick fun at! Maybe that is why celebs haven’t done this too often before. But consider this, if it’s a big honor for a designer to loan you a dress, isn’t it just as big an honor for a person to spend $1000s on that designer’s dress?

o-KATE-HUDSON-570Also, it might be this big anointing feeling when a major designer wants you to wear their look, but you have to remember one thing, the celeb is very seldom given that dress. Yes, J.Law looks great in Dior, but she is not keeping all those dresses and that is the same for other designer/celeb partnerships — Taylor Schilling w/ Thakoon or Kristen Stewart with Balenciaga. I think if people weren’t worried about this backlash they might splurge once in awhile. Again, this boosts the economy and specifically to the fashion sector, no harm, no foul.

The major contention seems to be coming from fashion journalist Jim Shi and a tweet of his — “Hayden Panettiere BOUGHT her Tom Ford dress at RETAIL. Tsk tsk”, which is apparently the equivalent of “sorry, this seat is taken!” Although, I’ve yet to find another site or critic who was quite so harsh. It’s nice to see that most fashion critics and journalists get the logic here.

And is this all really unheard of? I didn’t go back to discover past celebs who’ve purchased items for the red carpet, but apparently Edie Falco also bought her Lanvin gown, which she too wore at the Golden Globes. Emma Roberts was also in Lanvin on the same night, but Edie’s purchase wasn’t discussed in any of the various articles on this fashion rule that was supposedly broken by Hayden, kind of odd??

Edie-Falco-GOlden-GLobes-20141I say go Hayden, go Edie, and go whomever else wants to treat themselves every once in awhile and wear what they want. If you don’t make that designer’s short list, to heck with it! No one should be made to feel that they are not worthy enough to wear a gown. If they are willing to go the distance in buying a gown, support that, don’t hate!

In the meantime, I can’t wait for fashion week and more red carpets!!