Other than Laurence Basse, Erin Robertson was the clear favorite to win Project Runway all season, so it was no surprise when, despite having one of the oddest collections we've seen, the judges' darling came away with the top prize.
Smitten as usual with Robertson's creations, the judges claimed that the "pop glam" look came across as expensive. They loved how each look popped on the runway. And it's true — Robertson's looks are nearly always memorable, to a fault. But there's a difference between being memorable and putting forward a sophisticated, high-quality collection. We're not convinced Robertson managed to strike the right balance.
There is some argument to be made for Robertson to land in the finale, even if she wasn't necessarily the best of the finalists. And despite a brief period of clearly relying on embroidery, she ultimately proved that she could be very versatile with materials and tailoring.
Robertson's not a bad designer per se, and her looks certainly did add a lot of interest to Season 15. But looking at her full range of work this season and comparing it to the repertoires of the other contestants, it's clear that she was outclassed by, at minimum, Laurence Basse and Roberi Parra (and according to some critics, even Rik Villa was more deserving of the win).
We're certainly not alone with our skepticism regarding this season's victor. After the Season 15 winner was revealed, several disappointed Project Runway fans took to Twitter to share their frustration.
Erin winning #ProjectRunway perfectly sums up the dumpster fire that is 2016.— Shawn Jeffers (@shawnmjeffers) December 23, 2016
So disappointed with the finale. Erin's collection is nice if YOU ARE 12!! Ugh #ProjectRunway— Diane (@diane9158) December 23, 2016
#ProjectRunway it's not so much that I think Laurence or Roberi or rik should've won. It's that I think Erin definitely should NOT have won— Jill Spoden (@Willis_527) December 23, 2016
The judges, on the other hand, are thrilled, as we knew they would be. They'ved adored Robertson all along and made excuses for her time and time again when her looks just didn't translate from her admittedly creative thought process to the runway.
She's creative and flashy and knows her embroidery, so we're sure Erin Robertson will go on to make a splash in the fashion world. We hope that the other, arguably more deserving contestants are also to achieve success in this notoriously competitive industry. Most of all, we hope that the judges develop a greater appreciation of nuance. Flashy and kooky always superior, and we think Robertson's work is proof of that.
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