SPOILER ALERT: Do not read if you have not yet watched the season finale of “Project Runway” Season 18.
This season of “Project Runway” couldn’t end without Sergio Guadarrama fighting for one final cause. This time? The arctic, and what humanity is doing to it. He also stole some spotlight for a personal proposal. But in the end, he didn’t come away with the biggest prize — Geoffrey Mac did.
Last week, viewers were left with a cliffhanger. The episode ended with the final four contestants — Guadarrama, Mac, Nancy Volpe-Beringer and Victoria Cocieru — still in the running to advance to New York Fashion Week and ultimately take home the quarter-million dollar prize and CFDA mentorship.
Cocieru’s looks paid homage to Moldova, her home country, and included crocheted hats that her mom helped her make. The judges were impressed, but the collection wasn’t quite there to put her in first. Love her or hate her, Cocieru’s antics during the season were nothing less than iconic, and her final presentation was a girl’s asymmetrical fantasy.
Volpe-Beringer, whose relatively older age has been referenced throughout the entire season, also had a complete moment during the final runway show: Her collection was the dictionary definition of inclusivity and featured a model who used a wheelchair, a model with a prosthetic leg and a plus-sized model. Inclusion is Volpe Beringer’s entire ethos and the designer said her life and mission changed after designing for a Paralympic athlete in Episode 11.
Throughout the competition, Guadarrama received flack for being a little too inspired by other designers (read: toeing the line a little too close to copying). In true fashion, he didn’t miss the chance to take a page from Glenn Weiss and proposed to his partner after the runway show. Love wins!
But ultimately, it was Mac who was crowned the actual winner of “Project Runway” Season 18.
The atex maverick (and fan favorite) had flip-flopped between thriving and flailing throughout the competition, but his final collection — hype beast but make it Billie Eilish — secured his spot on top. In the finale, guest judge Serena Williams praised the designer’s jackets, revealing her love for all things outerwear despite her Floridian residence, while Elaine Welteroth raved about his oversized, Rick Owens-esque pieces. The best feedback however came from his father, whose career in the military served as inspiration for Mac in the competition.
“I hope I made you proud,” he told his father between tears on a phone call after winning.