Season 10, Episode 9, "It’s All About Me," was all about creating a textile design and modern runway look inspired by the designer’s cultural heritage. Print week is often emotional, and the bar was set high when Mondo Guerra showed up to tell them to dig deep and be real. His HIV statement print pants won this challenge on Season 8 and he told the newbies, "I think we do our best work as designers when we show truth." Well, the truth is, Ven Budhu felt the wrath of karma! Tim Gunn for his maxi pad homage to a menstrual cycle, while Fabio Costa happily created a print about "penis and vaginas f--king."
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No one had a problem with Fabio’s genitals, but Tim definitely had trouble with Ven on the rag. The judges, however, were more annoyed with the fact that Ven did his rose thing again, his fan thing again, and another flower. They didn’t think he knew what to do with this print. However, their biggest criticism was for Gunnar Deatherage, who created a print about bullying that got bullied itself.
It seems like Ven is made of Teflon. He can insult his client, he can make the same look over and over again. And yet he persists. Even Dmitry went out of his box this week, creating separates for once. And he FINALLY WON for it! Still, Gunnar went home just when he made up with Christopher Palu and started becoming really likeable. His print wasn’t that bad — and at least it was unique. Ven has seriously done the same thing so many times there’s no surprise left — other than guessing how the judges will rationalize his work this time.
VEN’S PMS Ven wanted to use a hibiscus symbol because it’s prominent in his religion. (Hindu?) However, when Tim saw the look he said, "I see an homage to a menstrual cycle. It looks like cloths that have soaked up blood."
He added, "I just hope no one's offended by it. 'Cause they look like maxi pads." Ven teared up about it when talking to the cameras, and probably some viewers will be saying he got what he deserved because of the not-so-nice things he said about his client, Terri, in the everyday woman’s challenge. Still, he stuck to what he believed in. Ven does what Ven wants. Ven does not change. The judges are wasting their time to want something different.
FABIO’S SEXY TIME Fabio is a cheeky lad. His hot boyfriend was one of the loved ones who showed up to talk about the designers' heritage, but for some reason Fabio was most inspired by men and women having sex. As Fabio explained to his fellow designers of his print: "It's fallopian tubes. A vagina and a penis."
"Looking closer at it," Fabio told the cameras, "I see penis and vaginas f-cking, I really do. There's copulation happening. It's the source of life." Um. Awesome?
HIGHER SCORES • Melissa Fleis’s blood-is-thicker-than-water dress was considered very Park Avenue. Heidi Klum wanted more coolness, but Nina Garcia thought it was chic.
• Nina called Dmitry Sholokhov’s separates (no dress this week!) “Crazy good,” even though Mondo found it overdesigned. Nina called his jacket “phenomenal,” but everyone said he needs to work on his styling.
• The judges loved Sonjia Williams’ print and pants. Heidi said it’s hard to make pants with that much print look good (although Mondo did it when he won this challenge.)
WINNER: Dmitry! Finally! It’s about freakin’ time! Huzzah! Cheers! Balloons! Tears! Hugs! Two more Huzzahs! Having said that, his #1 enemy Elena Slivnyak should've been in the top three as well, instead of just "safe." Never thought we'd defend her, but she was robbed." alt="Image1" class="image-fit">
LOWER SCORES • Heidi said Ven’s model looked like a Hawaiian airline hostess. They were sick of the flower on the bottom, which he always does. “There’s so many things wrong with this. It’s really one of the worst things today.”
• Gunnar's bullying print was roundly trashed. Heidi called it bizarre. No one wanted to buy it. Even sweet guest judge Anya Ayoung-Chee called it “non-fashion.” Mondo said it was boxy and “crafy” and read as junior.
• Christopher’s dress was deemed just OK and fine, but that’s not enough. He didn’t seem to love the cocktail dress either. He admitted it’s “expected” and “prom dressy.” Nina said it was the most disappointing thing from him.
In an unusual move — maybe even a Project Runway first — Heidi called Tim to the runway to ask if he said anything to Ven about doing the same rose/fan look over and over. Tim said he’s said that to Ven before, but not this week ‘cause he was so focused on the menstrual cycle.
ELIMINATED: Gunnar. Sad face.
ALL-STARS In two weeks, on September 27, we’ll meet the new Project Runway All-Stars! Do you think that week's eliminated designer will be joining the cast and that's why we're getting the announcement at that point?
FASHION WEEK FINALE COLLECTIONS Head here to see all eight designers’ finale collections at New York Fashion Week. No spoilers! Most of these are decoys, we just won't know which ones are decoys until Season 10 gets down to the finals. But here is a spoiler: Ven does his flower look AGAIN.