Racked is no longer publishing. Thank you to everyone who read our work over the years. The archives will remain available here; for new stories, head over to Vox.com, where our staff is covering consumer culture for The Goods by Vox. You can also see what we’re up to by signing up here.
In an effort to make reading Racked as much like being at Fashion Week as humanly possible, we'll be liveblogging the shows all week, from the suspense of waiting in line (will the seats be any good?) to the drama of the runway (will anyone stumble?) to the post-show euphoria. This time around: the semi-secret season finale of Project Runway; it's going to be a long one, folks.
Show location: The Tent
The skinny: Since the show is in legal limbo, we never saw the three finalists—just their collections. The first was urban, body-conscious, and leather-heavy; the second dramatic and feminine; and the third, which struck us as the most sophisticated, involved a lot of structured jackets, big sweaters, and Peter Pan hats.
Celebs spotted: The Project Runway judging trinity of Heidi Klum, Nina Garcia, and Michael Kors, plus of course Tim Gunn and previous contestants Chris March, Christian Siriano, and last season's Blayne. Critic Suzy Menkes was a guest judge, Fashion Week overlord Fern Mallis sat front row, and Project Runway producer Bob Weinstein got a hug from Heidi at the end of the show.
Takeaway: There were some lovely moments in the first two collections, but the third really seemed like the work of a designer with a vision. Now we're really hoping we'll get to see the season some day.
8:29am: Got to the Tents at 7:50am, but they said they wouldn't open them up until 8:30. We are so cold.
8:35am: Finally inside of the main tent, but being held in a clump outside of the doors into the actual runway venue tent. Security guard just said incredulously: "All of this travel. All of this waiting. For ten minutes."
8:37am: More gems from security: "I'm used to doing fashion, but this is a TV show." The usual rules of last year's show and the ones before it don't apply this time as they haven't closed the whole tent just for it.
8:39am: Chris March and Michael Kors sighted! Finally!
8:44am: A herd of people just marched through the ropes. Are they this year's contestants; who knows?
9:03am: We're in and taking our assigned seat, but drama! Several others are laying claim to our seat. Currently being shuffled around by the PR team.
9:06am: Amidst the shuffling, we've spotted Blayne and Jay McCarroll. We hope Christian Siriano didn't party it up too much after his own show last night; it's just not Project Runway without him.
9:11am: We spoke too soon! Christian is here and sitting pretty in the front row with his boyfriend. Also, the PR team has got us in a game of musical chairs.
9:12am: Nevermind, seated! And it's better than all the others we've had in the last few minutes.
9:16am: Nearing the beginning of the show as Heidi Klum, Nina Garcia and Michael Kors all take their seats and stand for pictures. Heidi is wearing a pink pantsuit and has her hair slicked back into a bun (wunderbar!). Hugs all around.
9:20am: Woman in 3rd row has been standing for the last 15 minutes taking pictures; no one behind her (including us) can see. The girl next to us shouts "amateurs!"
9:21am: Nina is sitting between Kors and Suzy Menkes of the IHT
9:22am: It's starting; we're holding our breath.
9:24am: Heidi is introducing the designers, and says that she is sad they don't have any recognition this season. She states: "We're in a bit of a limbo with the show." She asks the crowd to be supportive anyways.
9:25am: Suzy Menkes is a judge!!!
9:28am: First collection seems kind of tough and urban with leather pants (officially a trend for fall 09) and miniskirts.
9:31am: They are not telling us any of the designer names. We did not love that first collection; all the girls had big headbands (Marc Jacobs, hello?) and noticeably large, false eyelashes.
9:36am: Second collection is very feminine and frothy, with goddess dresses and waterfalls of ruffles.
9:41am: Third set has structure, hoods and sweaters. This person has a real sensibility. We likey except for the weird, Peter Pan-meets-300 hats
9:42am: Kors still has his sunglasses on.
9:44am: Third set was best yet as it reaped the most applause. Now for the first Tim Gunn appearance of the morning...
9:45am: Tim expresses sadness that the designers can't come out with their fashions. He thanks the Weinsteins; Bob is here but not Harvey.
9:48am: It's over! Apparently there are no decoy collections as we don't even know the identities of these final three designers. It will be odd to watch the season in reverse, as we've got the finale impressions to begin with...that's if the season ever airs.