Tim Gunn later wrote in a Washington Post op-ed that the Ashley win was basically a producer-driven travesty.
This season, something different happened: Ashley Nell Tipton won the contest with the show’s first plus-size collection. But even this achievement managed to come off as condescending. I’ve never seen such hideous clothes in my life: bare midriffs; skirts over crinoline, which give the clothes, and the wearer, more volume; see-through skirts that reveal panties; pastels, which tend to make the wearer look juvenile; and large-scale floral embellishments that shout “prom.” Her victory reeked of tokenism. One judge told me that she was “voting for the symbol” and that these were clothes for a “certain population.” I said they should be clothes all women want to wear. I wouldn’t dream of letting any woman, whether she’s a size 6 or a 16, wear them. A nod toward inclusiveness is not enough.
Although Tim Gunn has championed designing for "plus size" models, I didn't like him as a mentor, especially after his Under the Gunn show. He was downright nasty on that. On Project Runway I found much of his advice off the mark, and quite often if the designers followed it, they were dinged on the runway.
I like Christian and his dry manner. Mileages vary of course!