Project Runway Season 14: Merline’s NYFW Collection

Merline was one of those contestants who never expected to win. The show clearly didn’t expect it either. From those early “isn’t she the most annoying black lady?” edits, one could tell the production never expected her to get very far. Once the chaff started to fall away though, and Merline hung in their, the edits got nicer, especially when it became clear she would be crossing the invisible line of demarcation that is presenting a dummy collection at NYFW.

NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 11: A model walks the runway at the Project Runway fashion show during Spring 2016 New York Fashion Week: The Shows at The Arc, Skylight at Moynihan Station on September 11, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for NYFW: The Shows)

And I think it’s safe the say, that’s all Merline really wanted. HeR cheering demeanor when she was eliminated spoke to that. She wasn’t sorry to be going at all. She was relieved to not have to try to force her own working style into the Project Runway schedule. As we saw from her last week’s episode, she’s a mood boarder, which is a process that takes at least a day by itself. Part of why her outfit simply didn’t go far enough is that she needed a week or more to create her concept fully.

As for her collection, as you can see above, hers were the ones with the hats. NATCH!

NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 11: A model walks the runway at the Project Runway fashion show during Spring 2016 New York Fashion Week: The Shows at The Arc, Skylight at Moynihan Station on September 11, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for NYFW: The Shows)

Hats, and architectural lines. Unfortunately these outfits, though perfectly acceptable, aren’t exactly the sort of thriller runway show.

NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 11: A model walks the runway at the Project Runway fashion show during Spring 2016 New York Fashion Week: The Shows at The Arc, Skylight at Moynihan Station on September 11, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for NYFW: The Shows)

In fact, with looks like this, the white blouse looks like it has a onesie flap in the front and random tails in the back.

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I like the concept of the sleeveless leather knee-length style blazer. But unfortunately in practice it looks a bit like the adult version of an elementary school smock for art time.

NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 11: A model walks the runway at the Project Runway fashion show during Spring 2016 New York Fashion Week: The Shows at The Arc, Skylight at Moynihan Station on September 11, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for NYFW: The Shows)

While this flap in the front just feels unnecessary.

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The thing is, I like the circular pencil-ish tube skirt. I just don’t like the blouses. They all feel like bibs.

NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 11: A model walks the runway at the Project Runway fashion show during Spring 2016 New York Fashion Week: The Shows at The Arc, Skylight at Moynihan Station on September 11, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for NYFW: The Shows)

This one was my favorite outfit (obviously, since it’s the one I used for the sampler.) There’s nothing hiding the skirt, and the little nub in front looks just like a nice quirky detail, instead of taking over the entire outfit.

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Another outfit I really liked, The skirt pockets are a little bulgy, but I think that’s deliberate.

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And here I like the coat…except as it swayed, one realized the length is only in the front. Between the lack of sleeves and lack of back, how is that supposed to keep one warm?

 

NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 11: A model walks the runway at the Project Runway fashion show during Spring 2016 New York Fashion Week: The Shows at The Arc, Skylight at Moynihan Station on September 11, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for NYFW: The Shows)

In all, one can see that Merline’s modern styling didn’t make for the most exciting runway show. But it is definitely her style, and the sort of look she was trying to create during her run on the program, even if she rarely managed it.

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