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Friday, January 27, 2012

Project Runway All Stars: A Matter Of Taste

This week the Project Runway All Stars faced a challenge of taste--the taste of gelato to be specific. Each designer took a gelato flavor as the inspiration for their look. To make the challenge more exciting Diane von Furstenberg came on to tell them they would only have six hours to complete the challenge. The designers were the excused to scrabble and sew as though their lives depended on it.

I love DvF. Who doesn't? She alone would have made the challenge more exciting. The extreme time constraints only make for uninteresting fashion. No one can be creative, unique or over the top when they have such little time. No one wants to watch boring clothing. The drama of only have six hours to work doesn't really translate to a one hour television show anyway. Give them a day or two. Let them make it good. Also, why did the producers waste DvF on this challenge? Why didn't they save her the for "make your own print" challenge? Don't waste the DvF.

The next twist to the challenge came on the runway, after the looks were finished. The designers would have not one, but two guest judges. Supermodel Miranda Kerr (of Victoria Secret and married to Orlando Bloom fame) would not only be judging but also wearing the winning look. That would have been good information six hours earlier. A dress for Miranda Kerr is very different than a "tasteful" dress based on gelato.

Kenley chose passion fruit gelato. Then, she made a twee little dress I'm pretty sure I could buy at Modcloth or Gymboree if I was a toddler. The dress was cute enough, but complete unoriginal, unimaginative and lacking in passion--the very fruit she was representing.
At first, I thought Rami's look was too busy on top. I still kind of think his kiwi has gone kiwrazy (sorry), but it might has worked if he had continued the top into a full wrap dress. The skirt is boring anyway so we wouldn't miss it. I also think his black accessories are too heavy.
Jerell's dress looks a bit wide and odd standing still. And it's too similar to his dress from week one. However, it looked really cool when it moved, and DvF was grinning about it when it walked the runway. I was surprised it didn't end up in the top three the way she smiled about it. I also think he lived up to his Fruits of the Forest inspiration.
Austin should be banned from using white. Joanna warned him about going too wedding. I like that this felt like a nymph or fairy dress, but I don't know how that brings out the vanilla Madagascar flavor. It's white like vanilla, but Madagascar vanilla is exotic and full of flavor. This dress is typical and a bit tired. Step it up, Austin.
Mila landed a top spot. Maybe it was for lack of other great looks, and maybe this looked better in person. I don't care for it. I like the idea of this layered flowing look to embody the flavor of milk and sour cherries. She did her flavor justice, but did she do her personal taste justice? The accessories feel heavy. If this is milky why no let it flow instead of chopping it up with a big belt? What did you think of this look? Should it have been top three?
Mondo continues to land in the top three. His cantalope look was very literal yet very surprising. I didn't expect to like a caftan, but I did. I also didn't expect to love the colors together, but I did. Isaac hated it because it wasn't sexy, but the open back gave it a sexiness. DvF said, "If it were on the cover of a magazine and the magazine was called Cantaloupe, you got it!" True, but not helpful. Overall, I think it was a great look and good strategy for a six-hour challenge. And to Isaac I say--woman don't always have to dress "sexy" so that is not grounds for putting this down. (I'm starting to worry Isaac's influence is too strong on the judging panel.)
Michael's fast sewing skills really did come in handy. Also, his amazing ability to drape gave him the most dramatic look. If this dress has been a brighter ruby red grapefruit color, and he had had the time to fit it closer to the body (which he would have done had he known Miranda Kerr would be wearing it), I would have been all about this dress. I love the sleeves. I want the sleeves. I need the sleeves. I also love this shape of dress because it's so easy to wear. I'm not crazy about the slit up the front, but I love the sleeves (did I mention that?) enough to overlook it. DvF loved it and told Michael to call her after the show. This made him freak out like a little an eleven-year-old girl who just touched Justin Beiber. I'm happy with the win, but I would have been happy with a Mondo win too.

Anthony was inspired by the way his green tea gelato melted over his hand and the cone. Once the judges heard this inspiration, I think they wanted to switch Anthony out of the bottom for one of the boring safe designers. His look was interesting. The top didn't quite work because he only had six hours to make it, but it was a good idea. Also, the skirt was cute. I'm not sure he deserved this bottom slot so I'm glad he went to safety first.
Kara got stuck with the last flavor--chocolate with cayenne pepper. I would have jumped at that just because it sounds so tasty. Also silky brown with firy pops of red would be lovely. Sadly, Kara made what Jerell called a pregnant cupcake dress. Her passion on the runway probably saved her from elimination. Also the dress looks finished even if it isn't very good. I expect Kara to go home soon, and I am sort of bummed we didn't get it over with this week.

April finally made a look that wasn't a Tim Burton reject. She finally used color well. She finally didn't try to be overly dark or sad. She embodied her blueberry well. Sadly, she couldn't even come close to making this design in six hours. She didn't fit it to her model right. She ran out of fabric. She didn't make the corset well enough. If this challenge had been two days, I think April would have created a really pretty look. Sadly, the time constraints sent her home. Also, she had the worst model in Project Runway history. She made every one of April's designs look worse. April has potential. I'm just sad she wasn't able to live up to it on her second go at the Runway prize. What did you think the of the winner and loser? Were we all losers when the designers only have six hours to create? Are you losing your enthusiasm for the All-star season like I am? Are you hoping there aren't any crazy twists next week?

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