Anya's collection was pretty and relaxing and I can see a lot of women wanting to wear her clothes ... unless they already have them.

*** Oct. 27 Post-Finale Update*** Anya won. I think she won a long time ago in the judges’ eyes, but certainly the second she decided to do a resort-wear collection. That’s the way to Michael’s and Nina’s hearts. (See Gretchen.) I still think Viktor should’ve won, but of the final two I’d pick Joshua over Anya. ***End Update***

The “Project Runway” Season 9 finale collections just showed at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week on Sept. 9 in NYC. Overall, I think it was with more of a whimper than a bang. Everything was much too quiet. Nothing went to 8, never mind 11.

Just from the photos posted on Blogging Project Runway, I saw a lot of casual, resort wear stuff and things I feel like I could’ve bought in a catalog last year. But I never wanted to. (Stop trying to make me buy diaper-type shorts!)

If they do the usual thing, six of these collections are decoys and only three are finalists. I can’t tell who is in the running and who isn’t since they are all so dialed-down.

Joshua M. and Anthony Ryan had the most "edgy" collections and I do like this Josh look.

Here's another flowy Anya look. Easy breezy beautiful. Reminds me of Uli. Funny, Josh is reminding me of Jeffrey and Anya reminds me of Uli. Only scaled down versions. Can they just air the Season 3 finale again, instead?

I’ve never been a big Anya Ayoung-Chee fan, but to me her collection is the strongest of the nine designers who showed. I would also put Joshua McKinley on the list of possible winners. Wouldn’t it be just like “Project Runway” to reward the “villain” again?

But even for my top two, Anya and Josh, I feel like I’ve seen stronger versions before. Even my boy Anthony Ryan Auld didn’t wow me, although he certainly has the quirky/eccentric things going for him. At least he went for something odd. (Those wigs!)

*Update* The more I look at these collections, the more I like Viktor’s and the less I like Joshua’s. There’s just no cohesion with Josh’s and some of it is way off. I do like individual pieces, though.

But where’s the originality? The creativity? The attempt to surprise and impress? Am I just being fussy and way too out of it in terms of what’s next?

Here are my impressions after viewing the collections, posted benevolently by the lovely and amazing Blogging Project Runway, where you can go to see all of the collections right now. What are you thinking? Anya, Josh and … who else makes the finals? Maybe Laura Kathleen, Viktor or Bert? Will Josh not make it at all, due to those ugly lime green shorts? He is all over the place, but at least he has a couple of looks that stand out.


The “Project Runway” Season 9 Finale Collections

(Click on each designer’s name to see his or her full collection.)

Viktor and his collection are both growing on me by the day.

Laura Kathleen: Surprised so many veterans chose this as their favorite. I feel like I’ve seen most of it before. I don’t think she was a finalist, I think she’s one of the decoys. (*Note* That was my first impression. After having seen everything, now I’m not at all surprised this was a favorite collection. It’s less to do with Laura’s looks being great than the other designers’ looks being sub-par. I do like that first gold chain skirt and the fifth look.)

Bert Keeter: Very simple and chic. Classy. Everything looks very well made. But I also think he’s a decoy. No wow here for me. (*Note* Looking back, I think Bert has one of the best collections. But it’s just so quiet I can’t get excited about it. I want a strong reaction to the clothes, not just “Yeah, that was good.”)

Bryce Black: I don’t like this, although the last look is all right. Not surprised to not like this, since Bryce has been up and down all season, but mostly down for me.  He was one of my pre-season favorites but it just didn’t work out.

What's with the wigs, Anthony Ryan? The mixed prints are interesting and seem very "right now" — even though I'm not going to dress like that —but are they what's next?

Anthony Ryan Auld: It’s like a mix of Mondo’s mixed prints and Gretchen’s casual style. What’s with the wigs? It doesn’t look like a winning collection to me, which is sad since at this point he’s still my favorite designer of the season. Does he get knocked out before the finale, too?

I do NOT like this look, I just wanted to give an example of Olivier's Vulcan thing.

Viktor Luna: I had high hopes for this one, since lately Viktor has put up some gorgeous skirts and dresses. This disappoints, although I do like the top on the first look. I’m starting to get nervous since so far NO ONE has put up even a single “wow!” look for me. I don’t want to buy any of this and even last season I wanted to buy something from Gretchen, Mondo, Andy, Michael C. and even April. (*Note* The more I look at this collection, the more I like it — especially in comparison to everything else. I’m just underwhelmed by everyone. I miss the collections from Seasons 1, 3 an 4!)

Kimberly Goldson: I had high hopes for Kimberly, too, but this is not inspiring me. What is going on, y’all?

Olivier Green: I want Olivier to make it to the end just so we can see his home and meet his family. I’m curious. His finale models all have extreme eyebrows — he’s not doing  *quite* the frosted thing he did in the pet challenge, but it’s just as distracting. I hate the styling. They look like Vulcan princesses. I don’t like what I’m seeing here either. Maybe I’m just completely out of it, fashion-wise.

Anya Ayoung-Chee: I think we have our winner. Michael Kors is going to die over this resort wear collection. It’s like Uli lite, but since no one else this season is even close to Uli caliber, I think this will take it.

I like Josh M.'s last two looks and how they fit together, but some of the other stuff seemed like it came out of someone else's collection.

Joshua McKinley:  The more I look at this, the more I like it — at least in comparison to everyone else this season. I’m into the prints, although … what is happening at the bottom there on the fifth look? It’s bad, whatever it is. At least more than one piece is standing out to me — especially the last two looks in a row. They feel kind of Jeffrey Sebelia. I’m not seeing a lot of continuity, though. Just the shoes. And the first look — which is always supposed to “wow,” according to Heidi — is too simple. Why did he start there?


What do you think of these looks? Overall impressions? Favorites? Least favorites?

Catch up on my other “Project Runway” stories in this nifty archive.