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"For the first time, I have one designer back there that I'm rooting for," teased Heidi Klum, but then never told us whom she liked. And Heidi's favorite wasn't the only secret of Project Runway's live finale taping. Normally, during each season's Fashion Week show, nine or ten of the year's designers come out on stage and introduce their collections. Three or four are actual finalists and the rest are decoys—because the producers don't want word to leak out about who actually made it to the finals. This year, however, due to scheduling issues, only eight of the designers showed collections and we weren't informed about who created any of them.
In most cases, we couldn't guess who the designer was. Many of the collections had similar color palettes—blacks and burgundies and the occasional touch of mustard, but the quality levels varied considerably. Quite a few were so poorly fitted that we feared that a couple of models' breasts would be joining Lena Dunham's in the overexposed category. But there was one collection, Number Five, that was fantastic, beautifully made with lots of wools and high necks with unusual metal hardware. We have no idea who created that one, we just hope it turns out to be one of the finalists.
We did spot a few clues to who designed a couple of the collections. One included Native American tribal drumming-inspired backing music, Mohawk-inspired hair and the kind of fabric manipulation and dying that show's first Native American designer, Patricia Michaels has already become known for. So we'll take whatever odds Vegas is giving to bet he was the creator of that one.
We also got a hint at the visionary behind another collection when all the contestants appeared to pose for photos at the end of the show. We noticed that one designer, Samantha Black, just happened to be wearing a top in a print that looked suspiciously like one used repeatedly in one of the collections. We're guessing that since the producers let her get away with that, we won't be seeing Samantha's collection anywhere near the finale.
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