The Critic's Dish

Server of dry wines and bitter spices.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Challenge One: Style.

This week, the designers were asked to make an outfit or dress that conveys who they are as a designer. I gave them a week to produce their design to be judged. Here are the results.


Caitlin ( She told us that her design was inspired off of a Green Day song (the title is so apropos!). She told us she’s about elegant dresses, sleek lines, revealing tops, and a whimsy, feminine feel. She created a green evening dress with a slightly bouffant skirt. Chiffon straps line the bust and the skirt in a somewhat symmetrical manner. My only real problem with this is that it could’ve been too busy; if it was symmetrical, then the symmetry wasn’t executed too perfectly. If it’s intended asymmetry, then I feel the straps could be arbitrary. But it pretty much works. She added a touch of glam by lining the bottom of the torso with rhinestones. A charming touch to an already charming dress. Solid start, Caitlin!

Max ( Max’s designs revolve around New York City and various urban influences. His title to the piece, “Eve of Destruction,” is symbolic of the death of all suburban/rural wear (aprons, overused floral, etc) and a revolution towards more urban wear (bitchy, black, austerity). And he achieved just that. He created a sleeveless leather jacket, only closeable with a white sash, with a low lapel made from a black and white snake print. Under it, a white collared shirt fitted with a beige flat-bottomed tie. My only concern was that there was too much black and white and not enough color, but the tie and accessories alleviated that problem for me. The belt with raised silver circles was interesting and the leather pencil skirt was essential to the intention of the piece. Excellent job.

Erik ( Erik stated that he’s not for all the flurry and ruffly femininity that grips today’s fashion. He wanted to take us to a different side of wear, more masculine, clean detailing as opposed to princessy minutia. Unfortunately, his translation was boring and extremely commonplace. A collarless grey vest, black pants, and a beige sweater, being the only color in the picture. The accessories were nice, but nothing to save the look from being drab and uninspired. I, along with the judges, agree that this could be seen at a lifeless Wal-mart.

Jen ( Jen prefers to be a trendsetter instead of a trend-follower. She achieved just that with her stunning evening dress. She used various colors including green, white, and black and used piping to create a geometric pattern on the bust and skirt. The skirt ends as an exaggerated fishtail, allowing for one leg to peek out as the model walks. It was innovative, provocative, and trendy. I thought that there were a few arbitrary elements, including the squares and the asymmetrical bracelet/strap on the upper arm, but besides that, picture perfect, Jen!

Alex ( Alex wanted to create a feminine, flurry confection. He made a long pink dress with an asymmetrical bust. On top of that, he added a pink fur strap to wrap around a shoulder. The judges and I were overall underwhelmed from the basicness of this dress. On top of that, we felt that the fur strap was awkward. Alex felt that the pink fur added a touch of urban to the look, which we didn’t really see. In end, he said he’s about flowy and feminine, but like Erik’s design concepts, ‘flowy and feminine’ compose of just… yet another designer.


Caitlin, you’re in. Again, solid performance.

The top two designs for this challenge were Jen’s and Max’s. Jen created a fabulous, geometric dress that fulfills her need to trendset. Max created a bitchy urban outfit that utterly encompasses his design philosophy. Jen, your design was spectacular but arbitrary in some aspects while Max, your outfit was sublime but could’ve been more colorful… however, you also had a more mature, developed design and Max, YOU are the winner for this challenge! Yay congratulations! *Applause!!!*

And now for the bottom two. Alex, your design was unfocused yet at the same time, boring and basic. In addition, we don’t need to hear that you like feminine and flowy. Everyone can be feminine and flowy. Erik, we get your design aesthetic and appreciate it, but your design showed us that you’re about boring, everyday clothing, not worthy of a point of view.



Second challenge: Analysis.

Now that I know YOU as a designer, I want you to familiarize yourself with the best of the best; the handful of designers that made it into THE Olympus fashion week. You must pick one designer from the Fall 2006 fashion week that you like, explain what YOU think his/her collection is conveying, and then make your own piece that is a extension to the collection. Take note that this piece must reflect that designer’s collection, but must have your stamp on it as well.


Go to

Go past the introduction and click “previous seasons” on the left. Once you reach “fall 2006,” go to “designers.” Choose one from the left to analyze and depart from.

This is due by the midnight proceeding after Friday, September 15th. This gives judges a long time to judge each piece. The results will be posted Saturday afternoon.

Good luck! :D.


Blogger George said...

Very cool to see who these designers were. I enjoyed seeing what they had to say was their point of view and commenting on their efforts.
SOrry I was not able to include my scores in but...the results were RIGHT on. I agreed with the other judges.
A decent first challenge. I hope to be even more wowed next week!!!

3:46 PM  

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