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The Loneliest Little Girl on the Runway

We've forgotten Althea again!

Okay, no we didn't. It's just that there's always the top, the bottom, and then there's Althea. Sort of like Maude.

Model: Lisa Blades

Well, Maude did a pretty damn fine outfit, we have to say.

It's stylish, it looks expensive, and it's perfect for St. Tropez (because it's stylish and looks expensive).

We love the metallic shorts, and the easy, breezy, sexy quality of the whole look.

Our criticism (and you know there is one) has to do more with the technical aspects.

It seems to us that Althea has some good design skills but not-so-good technical skills, which is why she winds up in the middle so much. If we had to guess, we think the judges tend to like her work quite a bit but give it a pass because it's often a little clumsy-looking, execution-wise.

Not that this looks is awful or anything. Just that the sheer top looks a little half-assed, and since the whole look revolves around that top, it needed to be flawless for it to work. Althea said as much to Tim in the workroom. It's a pretty good design and perfect execution could have bumped it up to the top three.

Tim Gunn's Workroom Critique:

[Photos: Mike Yarish/ - Videos: - Screencaps:]

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Perhaps one more day would have given Althea the time she needed to really polish that top. The number of one day challenges has, I hazard a guess, contributed to the uneven/half-assed ensembles we've seen this season.

You're right. Generally with althea her execution is off but her concept is good. I think when she has 3 months to work on a collection (if but hopefully will) she will fix her technical issues.

(seriously didnt mean to bombard with comments)

Liked her look- didn't love. But I did feel badly for her when she got sent off alone!

A thin, sheer pile of meh.

It looks ok. I do see the influence of the location, but it doesn't look that expensive to me.

But then, I am not fond of beige.

The outfit on its own is okay I guess, but it does NOT look anything like something you would wear to or was inspired by St. Tropez. At all. These pieces look more like they're reconnoitered from yellowed granny clothes from the attic than like they belong on a yacht. Someone buy girlfriend a plane ticket...and a clue.

I didn't watch the episode but from the pictures the look doesn't seem to be that beautiful or interesting. In general, I am finding Althea to be way over-praised, just as Gordana is under-praised.

I really liked the fabric she used for the shorts. For me, the sheer blouse worked with them, and together she made a combo I wouldn't have thought of.

C'est moi, c'est moi Lola

"It's just that there's always the top, the bottom, and then there's Althea. Sort of like Maude."

Cracked me up! Thanks, guys.

Althea, you hair honey. It is so 1977. In fact, it is dangerously approaching the teased and peroxided mess my older brother's date had at the 1977 high school prom in Buffalo.

and then there's Althea. Sort of like Maude.

Ha! Love you guys.

Not lovin' that top, though. It's barely flattering on Lisa, so I can't help but think it'd make a mere mortal look sloppy & thick-waisted.

I suppose the colors might be right for St. Tropez, though I haven't been there since previous husband, so I don't exactly remember.

I'm not crazy about the colors, but it was a nice casual look.

This was a pretty spectacular look for anybody from this season of Project Runway. Besides being aptly St. Tropez, it perfectly expresses Althea's aesthetic. I didn't even mind the bland colors so much this time, because the choices looked so chic when rendered this way.

My big complaint is the boobies. This model shouldn't be going braless and Althea shouldn't be designing stuff that accentuates the low hanging boob problem if worn braless while simultaneously being cut so that a bra can't be worn under it.

Althea definitely turns out some pretty classy, understated, and elegant garments. If she ever manages to master the issue of fitting boobs correctly, she'd really shine.

Also, it would keep her garments from reminding us of random 50's scat music. Boob booby do do, booby do do, dooby do wop wop wop woooooooow.

Althea needs to learn one important lesson: What a bra is and how to use one. Not for her, for the models she keeps sending down the runway flopping in the wind...

she makes the same three pieces every time! The stupid tank for small breasts, the blazer/cardigan, and the shorts or skirt. ALWAYS the same.

Meh. Middle of the pack for me.

Why is there a seam down the center back of a sheer blouse?

Kind of a cute look, so I see how it got her the pass, BUT the drape and tiny tiny snap? button? fastener in the middle of the sheer top combined with the stringy belt really annoys me. It throws the entire concept off into twee-ness. And hot pants, let's send them back to the seventies where they belong and I could wear them! Some lush colors might have brought this closer to the top.

SS: Why is there a seam down the center back of a sheer blouse?

Could it be because she didn't have enough fabric and had to sort of jury rig it??

I am not impressed. It's pretty blah to me and I don't think it looks expensive at all. I agree that it's poorly executed, although that sheer fabric is difficult to work with. She has had better showings.

Not bad, but certainly nothing special.

Anon @ 12:28

Exactly what I was about to say!

She has made the same outfit (or a variation of) in at least four challenges: The Model challenge, the Blue challenge, the Film challenge and this one.

I had to look up St. Tropez to find out exactly where it was and what it was all about. The moment I saw Althea's outfit, I knew automatically she was safing out. However, it would have been mighty interesting if Logan had safed out and Althea had been bottom third- it was a rather close call.

Can she PLEASE learn to stand up straight? Argh. Look at her. She looks like such a schlub.

Anyway, the outfit. It's ok. It definitely works as a St.Tropez look, but I'm not crazy about those shorts.
I'm also sick of the same old kind of look from her.
It can be argued that Uli made the same look over and over again, but Uli's stuff was well made.

It's cute, but it doesn't look expensive. You could put that together from a department store no problem. Also, I second everyone who's said anything about her needing more chest support in her design life. I am SO tired of them bouncing around or being pushed apart or what-have-you in her looks.

Goldielox said...
Anon @ 12:28

Exactly what I was about to say!

She has made the same outfit (or a variation of) in at least four challenges: The Model challenge, the Blue challenge, the Film challenge and this one.

10/27/09 12:39 PM

You think she'd get a clue by now that the judges may be getting bored with it. Either that or she's convinced herself she can win twice with the same outfit.

yeah! ho! wah!

i dont think the look is very special. not bad but kinda bland. and im getting soooo tired from the lack of colour.

Heidi is clearly not paying enough attention to the fact that many designers are sending out the same outfit each week, with very limited variations. Carol Hannah's dress this week is nearly an exact copy of the Sun 'n Surf dress. At least Irina is trying to challenge herself because she's not getting enough heat from the other contestants.

I thought her outfit was cute and appropriate; also, I think with the metallic on the short, too much more color might have been a bit declasse.

I think someone needs to show her a clip of herself-- with the hunch and the hairdo (or lack thereof), she constantly looks like the barbie that someone left out in the yard overnight. Maybe Tim can give her a complimentary intervention.

That center back seam was irking me, too, Siren. I suspect she made enough mistakes that she was piecing together with scraps in the end. Because really, it seemed barely big enough.

Loved the look, very chic, very sophisticated. I can totally see Althea doing well with her aesthetic.


I expect more from JCPenney than that shoddy top Althea sent down this challenge. The back seam, oddly placed closure and the poorly placed, too-thin belt were all too weird and too bad. She should be thanking the boys for tanking so much this week.

then there's Maude. LOL!

I thought she should have won.
It was kind of a toss up between her and Irina. Irina's was more like what a cartoon charachter would wear to Aspen in a youtube spoof of the ""real" housewives of "new" money go to a ski resort" (for real, who would wear a sweater with a whole in the back? That was super stupid)so it goes without saying she gets the win but, I liked Althea's much more.

They have GOT to give the designers more time. This half-a$$ed execution is driving me bananas - that heinous seam down the back of the jacket, the fact she didn't have time to make a bra, that sort of thing. Not just from Althea, but across the board. Really like the shorts, though.

This one doesn't quite work for me. I'm not a huge fan of the length of the jacket/cardigan thing; I think it should be a few inches longer. As is, it makes the model look a little thick in the middle, especially when combined with the way it sort of flares out at the sides. In fact, it's general shape and texture has the hallmarks of a cheap fabric to me. I also totally don't get why the closure and the tie are so distant; again, it makes her look a little thick, which she is totally not.

It was clear that Althea had to Google St. Tropez to find out what it was..."a fishing village...." Oh dear! MK's age is showing, and so is mine. For me, St. Tropez = Brigitte Bardot and the whole late-60s scene. I don't think it's a spot that younger people give much thought to.

So given that rain-soaked Barbie was without a clue and given that they had the usual ten minutes to design and an hour or two to sew, she did pretty well.

But that's the problem with this season, isn't it? Everything conspires toward "pretty well."

Well, yes maybe she ran out of fabric (poor planning), but why didn't she split the back of the blouse top to bottom and hide the seam under the belt?

For me this falls head-first into the "clothes not fashion" pool. It succeeds as a (slightly sloppy) outfit with expensive overtones, but is there really anything on that model that you can't pick up at Macy's?

Sewing Siren: based on the presence and placement of the button on the blouse/jacket, maybe the belt was an afterthought?

Sewing Siren said...
Well, yes maybe she ran out of fabric (poor planning), but why didn't she split the back of the blouse top to bottom and hide the seam under the belt?

10/27/09 1:15 PM

Because she'd have to do it all the way around to avoid having it look stupid (on the two front pieces as well). That would be cutting three pieces horizontally, with more chances to screw up, including that the seam might not hang horizontally on some of the pieces when worn or match up at the front. Also, when the model walked, it would start to pull out from under the belt, creating a sloppy, uneven line.

If Althea was having problems with not enough fabric, then she chose the smartest way to handle it.

I'm not seeing the love for this look. Maybe it looked better on the TV, but to me, this looks just like what every woman I know wears during the summer in every suburb I've ever lived in. And lest you think I've lived in some kind of super-hip suburbs, as far as I can tell they've all been decidedly unhip.

I am tired of booty shorts from her. They are rarely wearable or appropriate or elegant or tasteful, so they make each look she pairs them with have a very narrow aesthetic.

I do like the fabric of the shorts.

@virginia, I think you must have someone else in mind. Althea hasn't done shorts before.

The idea was good, but the proportions are a little off. Lisa is really tall and it looks like Althea didn't keep Lisa's actual measurements in mind. The shorts are just a little too short, especially in the back, and the low rise waist seems a little too low. And the sheer top is a little too narrow and looks too small. Plus, the already well-documented boobage issues. Althea chose well on the accessories though. The shoes and jewelry help to complete the look.


The fit on those shorts is a bit wonky...but I like the look.

Facing running out of fabric, a better designer would have incorporated the need for a back seam into a design element, perhaps having a larger middle panel, with two narrower panels on either side, or something like that. But she unfortunately has proven herself fairly mediocre given the consistent boob issues and one-note looks.

My pick for the final three is Gordana, Carol Hannah and Irina, based on this point in the competition.

I vaguely remembered St. Tropez being mentioned back when I was a little girl in the early 80s...but it is not a name I hear often nowadays. Hence I had to look it up!

I was okay with Althea being safe with this one. I really don't care for her model's look, which isn't fair of me, I know, but she throws her hips out too far in front and the clothes just never look right to me. The look was okay, but just okay. Another super-short look from Althea? check.

If this poor PR season had had consistent judges and judging this season we would have heard more about designers sending the same damn thing down the runway over and over. This season all we get is Heidi's inane "I would wear that" and that's the end of the analysis.

AARRRGH they have ruined my show!

I don't mind the top --- it's just styled wrong. I mean, some amazing accessories could've bumped the look right on up to the top three. I'm no stylist, by any means, but could see an amazing metallic belt (not overwhelming the look), a chunk 'o bangle bracelets and some killer metallic sandals do the trick. Or, maybe just some killer handbag and amazing embellished flats. I feel the same about Althea -- she's always lost in the runway shuffle. However, she has proved challenge after challenge that she's definitely got enough skills to be a contender for Fashion Week.

- edina -

I can't even look at these clothes or say anything coherent about them because ARGH! Lisa is such a slob in this outfit. Is she the worst model left or is it just me?

Who knows, maybe it's a chicken/egg problem. Does the slobby model make the clothes look slobby or do the slobby clothes make the model look slobby?

"boobage" is definitely not a problem on the French Riviera; bras are "de trop" in St. Tropez.

Points for getting the best out of the Macy's accessories wall.


Honestly? I didn't like this at all. I almost like the material for the shorts but they are just SO short. I hated the center seam down the back of the flowy over-shirt and I thought the white wife-beater just didn't belong with the other two pieces and was about as far away from "expensive" as you can get.

Nope. Just cannot like this.

I wish she had bronzed her model and slcked back the hair -- how come we never see sunglasses on the models? ANyway, I like the color of short but the are so short and loose, I just don't see them staying put and not creeping up the bum.

Vocabulary Police

Dear LuLu,

Althea does NOT look like a "schlub". There is no such thing as a "schlub". Althea looks like a zhlub.

Vocabulary Police

What's with the vocabulary police? They're right, though, the consonant is the same as in Zsa Zsa.

Come to think of it, wouldn't it be fun to replace Heidi with Zsa Zsa? If she didn't like what came down the runway, she could just slap the designer on the face.

I liked the overall feeling of the look, but not the nude top. Make it white and I'm good.

MouseAnony said...
Althea definitely turns out some pretty classy, understated, and elegant garments.

Classy? F'real? Althea's work is all about the booby and the booty -- jackets flying roundly open to accentuate the breastesses, bottoms sculpted to highlight the cheekiness of it all, etc. Maybe high-end call girl, but not so much classy, I don't think.

The outfit makes the model look so hippy though.

I did not like this outfit at all. It's a big zero to me. The shorts are not St. Tropez, they are more STripper Trapeze.

Thanks Sara, for:

"she constantly looks like the barbie that someone left out in the yard overnight"

Yes, please, send in Tim or an entire gay team. She could be a knockout with a more natural hair color, some better makeup, and a serious slap upside the head about her posture.

But... Althea seems like a nice person, although she either doesn't have great technical skills, or she doesn't respond well to time constraints.

I think she may have the chops to upset either Dr. Whitfield or Gordana if either have a bad day.

Good luck, sweetie!

I really don't think this look turned out as well as Althea invisioned. I think she blew her savings on the leather for the shorts and pieced the rest of the look based on whatever fabric she could get. Like the white knit for her tank.

Speaking of which, we certainly saw a lot of that fabric this week. Between Nic's wrap, Christopher's scoop-neck tank and now Althea's V-neck tank, that fabric has more lives than a cat.

Meh, it's definitely middle of the pack, as was PP's in my opinion. I don't see much difference between the two as far as their outfits representing the locale. They both are rather generic looking in that they 'could' be worn at such and such a place. PP's at least had a mad design for his top. This one is just so so. Did she get a pass because she put high heels, a clutch and bangle bracelets with short shiny shorts? PP didn't seem to have the sewing or execution issues with his middle of the pack look as Althea clearly does. I disagree with the judging on this challenge.

I didn't like the fit of the shorts on this one.

If this had been the first outfit she'd done on the show, I would've been impressed. The thing is, she has made this look half a dozen times already, and I'm so over it. It was hard to notice the good things about this outfit because it's such a retread. Chris has his potscrubbers and Nicolas has his Ice Queen(Capades) but no one's called Althea out for being really repetitive, too.

It may be 'stylish' as you guys say, but I'm not seeing the 'expensive' aspect to this look. To me it looks like something available at at my local humongamall. Meh.

Something's gone amiss in the PR process. This late in the season, to be seeing this kind of blah work out of the remaining designers? It's as if there were no potential fashion leaders out there left to compete, only followers and imitators. I'm thinking the growing commentary about the ridiculously short time constraints on these challenges and/or the LA move is correct. I suspect that with previous seasons' constraints at least some of these designers' talents would have been better showcased and they would have wowed us by now.

I agree with the others who have noted that her look is always the same. Way-short bottom, a tight top with a low scoop neck, and a skinny belt in the middle. And I agree about the execution issues, but to me it's more that the proportions of her clothes are a little off. The models never have a flat-enough chest for the tops, the skirts look like they were borrowed from a short friend, and the waistlines always look a little tight (the skinny belts sometimes make that seem worse)...I always think the outfit is a size too small for the model and I might like it if I could see it in the next size up...

I just wish she'd do something other than short shorts or long gowns... XX's

I thought it was boring...

What would've made me like this: colour, something other than a tank top, a bra. What I think as is: eh.

The leg of the short is too wide for the length of them. They are crotch-showers. You sit down in those, you're showing crotch. Go up a set of stairs in them- crotch/bun/crotch/bun.

Not wearable.

You poor boys! Everything is so boring that you're seeing style in the middle meh. I think a liquor intervention should be in hand.

This sucks. Boring. Dull. Bland. St. Tropez? Because she is wearing gold leather stripper shorts? That's so gauche.

Okay, kudos for three pieces. But it's the same three pieces she always makes. Ridiculously short bottom, a jacket-like thing with sleeves and a horrendous tank top that makes a skinny models little boobies look like an 80 year-old mother of 12's boobs.

If you notice, dear Althea needs to wear a bra on her girls as well or they'll be down at her ankles by the time she's 40.


Random Thoughts:
To me Althea's look was no better than the three on the bottom, perhaps she lucked out and placed in the middle by a slim margin.

I don't get the criticism of the time constraints, if you look at the outfits made, several of the designers made multiple pieces, pieces with sleeves. pants and whatnot, they had time, they just used their time to make boring stuff.

Milla Jovovich was an excellent judge, her "well if this is Project I Didn't Mind It..." comment was priceless.

Heidi looked a little unkempt, no? I was wondering if the latest addition to the Seal household was conceived ten minutes before she walked on the stage.

ros wrote: "@virginia, I think you must have someone else in mind. Althea hasn't done shorts before."

Actually, she did do shorts before, they were the bottom part of her suit during the "dress your model" challenge.

This outfit grew on me. Was in serious Meh Mode when I first saw it, but seeing these pics I really like the shorts and think it was wise of her to keep everything else pretty neutral. Also, seems to be improvement fitting the bustular area, which I appreciate. But as conceptually good as Maudthea can be, I am more often than not underwhelmed by her execution.

As a completely superficial aside, I know she's busy but hopefully she got a minute to touch up those roots!

I will admit those bracelets are HOT!

Can someone PLEASE explain to me the attraction of this model, Lisa? She is always among the first chosen and I do not get her. She is only ok looking (as far as models go), her face shows no animation, and her walk isn't great. Educate me.

This was my favorite look.

But, boy, now that I see it better - It's kind of slutty.

Althea's poor construction skills will probably not improve by giving her more time.

Also, IMHO the designers from this season could have benefited from a "make-over the designers challenge", especially Althea, Carol Hannah (make-up) and Logan.

Asparagus lust

The judging, the judging...

This slutty slutty slutty outfit and cheesey, very underdone illusion over/blouse (and staple t-top, we get it, Althea, when in doubt give your "look" a t-top) do not merit the praise and consideration heaped upon it. Even the auf'd Nicolas did better than this. Who cares if the shorts - read hot pants - were ooooh mettalic. Cheap in a cheap way, all of it. She should be gone, she sucks .

It's...okay. But the sheer top looks like it would disintegrate if you sneezed while wearing it.

I'm personally not feeling much love for a tank top and shorts, but it's certainly not Auf material in this year"s Bizarro PR World.

I don't think Althea likes boobs. They always seem wonky and undersupported in her clothes. Embrace the boobs, Althea!

This one left me cold. I'll take everyone's word that it looks expensive; and perhaps I just don't know enough about St. Tropez to see the connection.

And I think Brooklyn Bomber said it first, I agree that it's a look that would not flatter most as the model comes closer to looking "normal" (as opposed to willowy and sleek) than a size 0-3 model should in an expensive looking outfit should.

EEK/STL said: As a completely superficial aside, I know she's busy but hopefully she got a minute to touch up those roots!

Good grief, yes. And if she's going to bleach her hair (I think it's bleach. Her roots look really dark, although that could just be in relation to the blond), she needs to find someone who can get it past that awful yellow.

Overall, I liked this look, i.e., "I don't mind it". But the sheer blouse doesn't make it special. It's too long in the back, and so tight the button is straining. Lisa looks like she's going to bust right out of it. With the belt being right under the button, there's no flow to the look. I like the shorts, but they could be a smidge longer. I don't want to see those ridiculous walking shorts Stacey and Clinton force on every woman they make over, but no visible butt cheeks would be nice.

So, maybe it's not that I like the look. I like the idea of it.

TO: aimee@10/28/09 11:27 AM I don't think Althea likes boobs. They always seem wonky and undersupported in her clothes. Embrace the boobs, Althea!

Yet, when the models took the divorcees out for drinks, Tanisha told her divorcee that Althea is all about boobs and that she emphasizes the boobs. I think Althea misses the mark on the bust nearly every time. Either it's too small, like the pregnancy dress, or too floppy.

I really like this outfit, it's chic and elegant. Good job, Althea!

Everybody sing: "Bain de Solei for the St. Tropez tan"

Seems her outfit could have done with a dash of color: turquoise, azure, cerulean, aquamarine, etc.

Oh well, she was in the middle again - kind of like Ohio. (And yes, I currently live in Ohio, so I know of what I speak)

Yet, when the models took the divorcees out for drinks, Tanisha told her divorcee that Althea is all about boobs and that she emphasizes the boobs. I think Althea misses the mark on the bust nearly every time. Either it's too small, like the pregnancy dress, or too floppy.

I would say that Althea emphasizes the boobs—just not in a good way. You certainly can't help but notice the boobage when Althea's looks bounce down the runway.

I WANT those fucking bracelets!

Say What? said...

Everybody sing: "Bain de Solei for the St. Tropez tan"

Oh, thank you. It's been popping in and out of my head all week, but I could *not* remember the name of the tanning lotion.

That sheer top is a complete failure. It is the opposite of luxurious. It is skimpy.

The comments would be, "Your clothes don't fit you, darling."

Am I the only one who thought the top made her model look huge and boxy?

BALMAIN for women

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