Talk of the Tents

New York Fashion Week photos, live blogging, runway highlights and celebrities.

Michael Kors returns, Heidi Klum plays favorites at 'Project Runway' finale

"Project Runway" judges Zac Posen, left, Heidi Klum,

"Project Runway" judges Zac Posen, left, Heidi Klum, Michael Kors and Nina Garcia appear before the contestants' show at the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in Manhattan. (Feb. 8, 2013) (Credit: Getty Images)

Snow and wind started brewing early Friday morning, but that didn't stop "Jersey Shore" star Sammi "Sweetheart" Giancola from driving into Manhattan to see the "Project Runway" season 11 finale at Lincoln Center.

"Oh my God getting here was a hassle," she told Newsday, adding that she walked through the snow in her little lace dress and peep-toe booties. "It was ruining my hair and makeup and I was freezing . . . I'm not wearing any stockings."

But it was worth it to Giancola, who debuted her own line of activewear at New York Fashion Week in September.

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"Fashion is my thing . . . I love the show," she said. "I've been watching it for years. I love how the designers each have different styles and personalities." 

Giancola said Michael Kors was her favorite judge, and although Zac Posen replaced him on the show this season, she was in luck. Kors made it back to see the show, taking his usual spot beside the runway.

Eight collections were shown, but unlike "Project Runway" finales of the past, the designers were not revealed. (The designers identities won't be disclosed until the show is aired on Lifetime Television.) Instead, all 16 came out at the end.

Host Heidi Klum did reveal, however, that she has a favorite.

"I have to say for the first time I have one person that I love very much back there," she said before the show. "There's one designer who I'm rooting for."

Throughout the collections, leather was widely used — from high-waisted shorts, pencil skirts and cutout dresses to pantsuits, a cropped cape and even a pair of oxblood-red overalls. The sheer trend also carried into their designs, on maxi-skirts and dresses with well-placed appliqués.

Most of the designers chose strong, structured silhouettes — one went for futuristic, slightly pointed shoulder pads and added an abstract take on peplum — while another used soft draping in splattered prints instead. The most well-constructed collection combined both, layering contrasting shapes with beautifully done outerwear for a wearable yet expensive, high-fashion look.

A bright, Aztec-inspired collection that included colorful prints, gold statement jewelry and fringe broke the mold of the other darker fall collections, all of which were well done for amateur designers, besides the final one — a confusing hodgepodge that didn't leave anyone wanting more.

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