The following story contains spoilers from the seventh and eighth episodes of season 2 of Amazon’s “Making the Cut”. Read our review of last week’s looks. here.
Episode 7: Goldilocks Concept Stores
The penultimate episode of the season finds the three remaining competitors – Andrea Pitter, Gary Graham and Andrea Salazar – three days to imagine and create conceptual brick-and-mortar stores that showcase the identities of their respective brands (along with the help from the entire show designers). They’re also tasked with creating three looks to display in the store alongside all of the pieces created for previous episodes.
Episode 7 is one of the few to pull contestants out of the Malibu fashion bubble, for two good reasons. First, the concept stores came to life in the Row DTLA shopping complex, where Season 1 winner Jonny Cota (who does a cameo at the start of the episode) has his shop. Second, as Klum explains to the remaining troika, the ultimate winner of the season would not only get the $ 1 million top prize and Amazon Fashion mentorship, but also a three-year no-charge lease for a store there. low.
Graham, a winner of three challenges, opted for a space inspired by a Shaker Round Barn, with a round wooden interior silo as the centerpiece, old photographs on the walls, and a dense block of explanatory text at the entrance. Among the clothes he created for the challenge was a solid black dress which Tim Gunn said was a bit too simple (Graham responded by adding hand-painted details) and jersey leggings with some familiar prints from previous episodes.
Fresh out of her first challenge victory, Pitter opted for a space designed to resemble a New York City subway car, with seats, metal poles, and her tag name spelled out in the subway tiles. For her new looks, she chose to add color – particularly a shade of sunny yellow – which has appeared in a range of silhouettes, including dresses and flared pants.
Salazar, who entered the last two episodes without winning a single challenge, seemed to know she was in a winning or homecoming situation and went all out for a museum-themed concept shop. who presented his label Seta as a fashion show presented against gray walls and on mannequins.
Instead of watching the clothes parade down the catwalk like in previous episodes, the judges – joined by Amazon Fashion President Christine Beauchamp – visited concept shops before making their decision. (While this was a refreshing change from the show’s usual format, it only offered a glimpse of the newly designed clothing.) The judges found Graham’s boutique too heavy on the nostalgic backstory and not modern enough for their taste. And, while they liked Pitter’s chic train car concept, they thought it looked more like a storefront than a retail space.
This left Salazar as the episode’s Goldilocks with a concept store that was right, managing to telegraph his brand identity not only through the clothing on display but also the lighting and even the scent of the store. space with a personalized scent sprayed into the air. Another big factor in delivering the victory to Salazar was a full-length, social media-ready mirror leaning against a wall with the hashtags #youareLEGEND and #SETAMUSEUM at the top.
With Salazar winning the concept store challenge, that meant one of the other two would be fired, right? Wrong. The judges ruled that neither Pitter nor Graham deserved to be kicked out of the bubble: the three designers would face off in the season finale.
The takeaway: Challenge pieces from Salazar’s concept store dropped off at the MTC store include a black faux leather jacket with military-inspired detailing ($ 92.90) and a black layered tulle midi skirt (119.90 $) with metallic gold glitter. Both are toned down (read: more commercial) riffs on silhouettes she’s paraded multiple times this season.
Episode 8: A roller coaster ride
The last episode’s challenge: The remaining designers had four days to create collections of 10 looks and prepare a formal sales pitch to deliver to Amazon Fashion’s Beauchamp the day before their final runway shows. All three used their final collections to show their ability to grow as creatives and their time of presence with Beauchamp to sketch their ability to grow as businesses. And, like the previous episode, this one didn’t focus much on the clothes themselves.
Salazar, whose pitch Beauchamp considered the most pragmatic of the group, dubbed his latest runway collection âThe Phenomenonâ, drawing inspiration from natural phenomena around the world as well as his family. While the judges noted his increased use of lighter colors (many of his pieces earlier in the season were on the dark, glittering spectrum), that wasn’t enough to give him the victory.
Graham, who seemed to take every note from past judges to heart, did it again here trying to add both a sense of modernity and a touch of sexy to his final collection, which he says has was inspired by gunslingers, the Wild West and Alison Arngrim. Character from “Little House on the Prairie”, Nellie Oleson. Several pieces caught the judges ‘attention, including a sheer gown that judges Jeremy Scott against those in Degas’ ballet dancer paintings. And while Scott emerged as one of Graham’s most vocal supporters in the episode’s closing moments, that wasn’t enough to get the designer from Franklin, NY, the votes he needed to win the first price.
The collection that brought the heat – and enough votes for victory – belonged to Brooklyn-based bridal wear designer Pitter. “I kind of wanted you all to be on a roller coaster ride [like] I participated in it, âshe told the judges before her show. “It’s gonna be a party”
And it was a party, with so many colors, patterns and sparkle on the catwalk that there was something fun for just about everyone – from the opening look to the brown sequins-dress- over-lingerie to the sleeveless zipper set in shimmering blue animal print and the bouquet of floral prints on the sweat jackets, wide leg pants, bathrobes and dresses in between.
Pitter’s business pitch was also factored into the victory, with Beauchamp telling the judges that the designer’s strong point of view and her desire to create clothing for women of all body shapes and skin tones was a powerful part. of its presentation.
âI came into this competition to get out of that bridal box – from a bride’s point of view, from a personality point of view,â Pitter said at the end of the episode. “I have learned that I am certainly not stuck in a box.”
Where she will be – at least for the duration of a three-year no-charge lease – is in a space at Row DTLA. With that endgame award, along with the $ 1 million top prize, mentorship, and the ability to co-brand a collection with Amazon Fashion, we’ll likely see a lot more of Pitter’s work products.
And maybe also at Salazar and Graham. In a final twist of a second season “Making the Cut” filled with them, Klum also informed the two that Amazon Fashion’s Beauchamp was so impressed with their brands’ visions that the two would have the chance to sell their collections. finals through the âMTCâ online store too.
The takeaway: even though Pitter ended up winning the show’s second season – and will soon be opening a store at Row DTLA and designing a new co-branded collection with Amazon Fashion – the decision to make the final Graham and Salazar collections available on purchase (prices vary but are around $ 100) alongside his own, it’s a win for them too. And, perhaps more importantly, it’s also a win for the fans who stuck around for the entire 10-episode, eight-episode roller coaster ride.