Sunday night marked the end of Diane von Furstenberg's TV-documented search for a new brand ambassador, and rather than close out the season with some basic, run of the mill reveal, von Furstenberg coordinated the finale with her star-packed New York Fashion Week show and created reality TV synergy with appearances from It model and "Keeping Up With the Kardashians" cast member Kendall Jenner. Plus, the audience was treated to cameos from a boatload of celebrities — from Olivia Palermo to Paris Hilton to Allison Williams to Whoopi Goldberg. Oh and Diane's husband, media titan Barry Diller showed up and (holy shitake mushrooms!) five previously gift-bagged contestants -- Tiffani, Lenore, Jinna, Abby and Codi -- came back!
Picking up where the last episode left off, von Furstenberg was torn three ways amongst the final trifecta. After a contemplative walk along the Highline — while wearing jeans — she held a strategy session with her team, whose input wasn't ultimately so helpful. To sum it up with the best quotes: Kier is "not that stable," courtesy of Stefani Greenfield. As for Brittany, "she’s insincere, she’s a backstabber," says Jessica Joffe, but we know who she's gunning for anyway. And Amanda, Greenfield says, is "a delightful, fabulous happy girl, but is that enough?" (Although, I felt like Greenfield is being diplomatic to avoid Joffe's burning glare.)
The final three — unstable Kier, reformed Brittany and disingenuous Amanda — were tasked with running the dress rehearsal of DVF's spring 2015 runway show and wrangling some of the biggest models in the biz. In the end, and based on the performance in the final challenge, the best woman for the job won the coveted Brand Ambassador contract (and we learned how completely ungraceful a loser Kier could be). And did my ears deceive me or did von Furstenberg say, "I forgot my tequila" when she exited her chauffeured car on the way to her show? Because that is awesome.
Anyway, to close out this season, let's play a final round of Dos and Don'ts — starting with Don'ts for old time's sake.
Underestimate supermodels. So Kier, Brittany and Amanda are tasked with running the pre-runway show dress rehearsal, which would be disastrous if that really were the case. (Because let's be honest, show production house Bureau Betak was probably doing all the heavy lifting, but it's part of the TV illusion, I get it.) With newfound confidence (or an inflated ego), Amanda jumps on the job of directing the models — mind you, DVF stacked her show with professionals at the top of their game, including Isabeli Fontana, Ming Xi, Anna Ewers and Malaika Firth. "I hope they get the runway route right because it’s my job to tell them and well, I’m not really sure if they’re ingesting what I’m saying," she snarks. Perhaps Amanda should have been questioning her own capability instead, as she somehow confused the already rehearsed line-up during the actual show. I'm kind of wondering if Amanda even knows who any of the models are. (10 bucks she confused Daria Strokous for Daria Werbowy, "the model" from the fall 2014 campaign.) I was vicariously throwing Amanda shade through Lily Donaldson's glorious side-eye.
Ever, EVER touch the models. The models are in the midst of hair and makeup, thus delaying the dress rehearsal. "No one wants to get up when they’re getting pampered and getting their hair and makeup done; I wouldn’t either,” says a clueless Amanda. Of course, they're doing their job, not hanging out at the salon for a girls' afternoon; but an overzealous Kier attempts to physically block a hair stylist from putting extensions into a model's hair (could anyone tell who was actually saying that? Because the voice-over didn't seem to match what was on screen... ), causing said model to protest, "Do. Not. Ever. Touch me like that." BOUNDARIES, Kier, boundaries.
Harbor delusions of grandeur. While Amanda is busy thinking she's smarter than all the models, Kier has an inflated sense of self and hey, we're all about self-confidence, but come on. She claims she knows "all these bloggers" sitting front row, most of whom are definitely not bloggers. First she approaches stylist Brad Goreski like she knows him and he, probably thinking he met her before and can't remember, politely plays along. She then tries it on Bryanboy, who couldn't give two shits, but just wants her to help him find his seat. And then Joe Zee completely ices Kier and her offer to find his FROW spot and walks away as she's still talking. “I’m seating them instead of sitting next to them," she says. "It’s so embarrassing." They don't know who you are, Kier.
Forget to leave a glass of champagne for DVF. Party foul when the girls pillage the unattended tray of bubbly-filled champagne flutes in von Furstenberg's office after the show. At first, Jinna demurred, "You know my ass would get in trouble so I’m not going to be the first one." But she caved, as we knew she would. Problem was, there wasn't a glass left for DIANE VON FURSTENBERG. "Where’s the champagne?" she asks, empty-handed. So when von Furstenberg gave the final toast to winner Brittany, she settled for Kier's secondhand, lipstick-stained glass instead.
Be a sore loser. “I’ll be even happier when you mess up and DVF has to call me to step in,” Kier says in response to Brittany's win. Did they call yet, Kier?
Dance it off! In what I can only imagine was an homage to dearly departed (but now returned -- Staten Island is but a subway ride away) Lenore, von Furstenberg, J. Jof and Greenfield enjoyed a jubilant and impromptu dance sesh on the runway before the show. (She didn't even need her tequila!) And in crime scene booties, or ShuBees, no less. I'm calling it: The soft elastic, CSI-chic shoe covers are a thing now. Even a Princess wears them.
Work it like a supermodel. In an interesting turn of events (and much to Amanda's dismay), during rehearsal, Kier is asked to sub in for Naomi freakin' Campbell, who has the honor of closing out the runway show. But, oh wait, somebody forgot to tell von Furstenberg. So as Kier is stomping that runway like she's an "America's Next Top Model" contestant, von Furstenberg looks on in horror, assuming the blogger has finally gone off the deep end. "Enough, Kier, enough!" Not to be deterred, Kier updates von Furstenberg on her given assignment and... the designer is DELIGHTED.
Include as many gratuitous Kendall Jenner shots as possible. This do is more for the "House of DVF" producers, but there can never be enough Kendall, even when a shot of her has nothing to do with the actual scene. (See above.)
Professionally take charge of the situation — especially if DVF is looking. After Amanda somehow effs up the show line-up after the dress rehearsal (apparently she doesn't know who Candice Swanepoel is), Brittany confidently — and in a non-mean, non-condescending way — sorts out the problem. And, of course, all this goes down in front of an impressed von Furstenberg (as Kier also points out). Then, buoyed by her newfound leadership role, Britt sets her eyes on the original supe who's closing out the show. "I have to get Naomi Campbell on this runway. Now." Thereby sealing her winning fate. Meanwhile, Amanda stands around pretending to work while Kier probably plots how she'll score a a front row seat next season (in other words, they do nothing).
Appreciate the magic of Fashion Week. "[This] reminds me [of] when I was their age," von Furstenberg says. "I had my first fashion show. It’s always that first moment in a life of a girl that is magical."It was quaint to see the girls freak out about seating 800 guests in five minutes by the show's 5 p.m. "start time," when we all know fashion shows are typically at least 30 minutes late -- not that the girls shouldn't "hustle," in the words of HL Group Director Caroline Curtis. But in the end, the contestants were moved to tears by the experience, basking in the magical fairy dust that is New York Fashion Week. (Yeah, it is pretty cool.)
Remember that Ellen could show up at any time. Von Furstenberg's sweet and unassuming assistant is like the Grim Reaper of reality TV. As the girls were still enjoying NYFW afterglow, Ellen showed up to kill their buzz by calling them into von Furstenberg's office for the final decision. Dum de dum dum...
Encourage failed contestants to talk behind the backs of the final three. In von Furstenberg's office after the show, as the booted contestants start quaffing champers before their hosts arrive, Greenfield and co. invite the girls to share who they think should and shouldn't win. Of course Abigail has BFF Brittany's back and Lenore, like Joffe, backs Amanda. But Jinna really pulled out the claws when she said she's fine with either Brittany or Amanda claiming the prize, as long as it's not Kier.
Play nice with Jessica Joffe. Well, it's been four months since Brittany's contract commenced, so hopefully the new brand ambassador kept her sass in check. Although, I think a reality show featuring Britt and J. Joff conquering the world of fashion might be kind of interesting. Like "Jessica and Brittany Take the Hamptons" complete with more pool parties, inconsiderate VIP guests, cat fights and shirtless bros. E!?
So are you happy with von Furstenberg's choice?