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Thursday, December 2, 2010

TFS S2E4: House of Emerald

The underdogs pull one out.

Mood board: soft, neutral, pastel colors

Not to take anything away from Team Emerald (although we guess we're about to do just that), but collectively, the team didn't put out anything demonstrably superior to Team Nami. It's just that they managed, for the first time, to put out a collection that wasn't obviously inferior to Nami's. We'd say both collections were roughly on par, but Emerald got the win because Jeffrey made a great dress and because the judges probably just wanted to give it to them after the beating they've been taking.

Cesar: 2001

We'd say Cesar had the hardest task, given what his point of inspiration was. A "cocoon" concept wasn't a bad way to go, all things considered. We love the top, love the plaid of the pants, hate the construction of the pants. It's way too "look at my crotch" and that's not really a sentiment that springs to mind when one recalls 9/11.

Jeffrey: 1989

Absolutely the best look of the week and the best thing he's done yet. We still maintain that 1989 is pretty hard to detect here. When he had the sleeves attached, we could see it, but without them, there's nothing here that really references that time. Not that he should have kept the sleeves; removing them made the outfit what it is: a long, tall, elegant column.

Cindy: 1961

We thought this moved beautifully on the runway but looks decidedly less elegant in stills. The dress seems like it's being pulled in a bunch of different direction, giving it a clumsy, disheveled look. The coat is nice, but seems a bit grandiose for that dress. In addition, she could have used a little more color. We realize the team decided on a softness in tones, but that doesn't have to mean drab.

Golnessa: 1951

She came roaring back after last week's unfortunate "exit wound" dress. What we love here is that she managed to do something very few of the designers did this week. She referenced her year without replicating it. Some of these looks - most of them, in fact - you can't tell what year they were inspired by and in most cases you can't even tell what decade. This is instantly recognizable as coming from an early '50s starting point, but updated with some twists. Literally, in this case. Tom thinks the bunched up, criss-crossing fabric on the bodice is a bit distracting, but Lorenzo loves it. Either way, it added some interest and prevented this from becoming a too-literal Lucy Ricardo cocktail dress.

Cesar: 2001

So little attention was paid to this by the judges that we wonder if it was really worth the effort on Cesar's part. You can claim he was doing it for the team but let's be real: he was giving himself a second chance to impress the judges. While we could see where he was coming from with the other 2001 look, we're not really getting the connection here. It's not a practical, real-world kind of garment, but it's perfect for adding some punctuation to a runway show.

We think the talent level for both teams is about the same. Team Emerald has consistently had issues with some tacky color and fabric choices. Going with a cool understated palette helped them tremendously and having their fabric choices limited by assigning them all plaid was a godsend to them. Although we suppose they could have chosen ugly plaids in vivid colors. Still, we feel like the competition's a little less one-sided now.

[Photo Credit: Heidi Gutman, bravotv.com - Screencaps: www.tomandlorenzo.com]

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