Friday, January 27, 2012

Project Runway All Stars: Hot Gelato Mess

This week's "Project Runway All Stars" was all about taste.

Well, taste, and sewing really, really, ridiculously fast.

The result was a crazy, gelato-inspired hot mess.

Diane von Furstenberg showed up to give them their assignment - make a dress in 6 hours inspired by a gelato flavor. It's the fastest challenge in "Project Runway" history.

The flavors they chose are:

  • Michael - Grapefruit
  • Mondo - Cantalope
  • Mila - Milk with Sour Cherries
  • April - Blueberry
  • Jerell - Fruits of the Forest
  • Kenley - Passionfruit
  • Austin - Vanilla Madagascar
  • Anthony - Green tea
  • Rami - Kiwi
  • Kara - Chocolate with Cayanne Pepper

Sadly, the judges must have gotten ahold of some of Heidi, Michael and Nina's patented judging crack, because they did not choose the right top three or the right winner, but we'll get to that in a moment.

They have 30 minutes to sketch, and then they're off to mini-Mood, in their designer lounge. This causes a few problems for the designers - they don't have black jersey for April, and Mondo doesn't get enough fabric. "Shucks," he deadpans.

Michael does a drapy piece, which is extremely not surprising. He works fast, but it's also a little simplistic. "So easy a chimpanzee could do it," Jerell says.

Everybody goes crazy on this challenge, and their rushed work causes a lot of problems. Michael cuts his fabric wrong. Austin keeps freaking out, everybody runs back and forth going crazy. It was really almost a little stressful to watch.

Joanna Coles brings them a snack of gelato and some advice.

She calls out April when she tells her that she is staying in her comfort zone. "How can you have a fashion moment if you stay with what you're comfortable with?" she asks. She tells Austin, "Don't channel the wedding thing, channel the fabulous thing." She asks Rami if he's sucking up to Diane von Furstenberg by making a wrap dress. She wonders if Mila is going too literal.

My favorite workroom moment came when Austin walked into the sewing room and saw Kara sewing at his machine. He admits he thought about getting in an altercation, but decided against it. (Thank you, Austin!) However, he "gave her the look of death," which was actually pretty scary.

In the end, everyone got their garments done, barely - Austin had to sew his model into her dress - and they were off to the runway to be judged by Angela Lindvall, Georgina Chapman, Isaac Mizrahi, Diane von Furstenberg and supermodel Miranda Kerr. They announce that Miranda will wear the winning designer's look to an industry event.

You can see the designs here.

  • Mondo - Cantalope - An orange caftan with green pattern sleeves. It is super chic, with a great color scheme. I like that Mondo really went for the color! He also did a great job with construction, and it looks like it took more than 6 hours to make.
  • Anthony - Green Tea - He made a structured top in a light green and a tulle skirt in almost a greenish beige. I don't love the colors necessarily - they're a little muted and ugly - but they work with the green tea theme and I like the structure, even though it might be a little overworked.
  • Kenley- Passionfruit - She made a cutsie little pink dress with yellow bubbles and a yellow collar. It's definitely well made and cute, but it might be a little too little girl/Barbie/Easter for me. I would probably wear it, but it's definitely not really high fashion.
  • Rami- Kiwi - He didn't end up making a wrap dress per se, but the top is sort of wrap dress-looking with a little skirt. He used several different colors and patterns of green, not all of which are nice colors, but I definitely like the concept. It definitely looks like a kiwi - in a good way. 
  • Mila - Milk with Sour Cherries - Color-blocked red and white little dress. The colors are too literal and it just looks ugly and messy to me. Definitely one of my least favorite dresses. The accessories are too heavy, too. Blech.
  • Jerell - Fruits of the Forest - What. The. Eff? It's a weird, hippy-dippy dress that just has too many elements. It wouldn't be that bad if it was styled very clean, but with the styling it's just so over-the-top. I actually like the shape of the dress and the way it moves, and I don't even mind all the little beady things on the bodice, but it's just a little tacky overall. Love the reds and oranges in the fabrics, though.
  • Kara - Chocolate with Cayenne Pepper - A ruffled, layered nightmare. It starts out bright white on top, goes through some dirty handkerchief colors, then brown and, finally, red at the bottom. It's ugly, and when Jerell said in the workroom that her skinny little model looked like a "pregnant cupcake," I just nodded. It's a perfect way to put it.
  • Michael - Grapefruit - He made a big drapy dress in a nude, shiny fabric. To me, it just screamed, "Crazy old heiress in a nightgown." It was just too much all over, though I did like how well it was made overall.
  • April - Blueberry - She made a short little purple dress with dark purple tulle over it. It is really badly cut and constructed, and the judges were thatclose to seeing her model's asscheeks. It's tortured, badly cut and ugly. Oh, and the colors don't scream blueberry. They're just sort of blah. It's a sad dress.
  • Austin - Vanilla Madagascar - He made a light, flowy little white dress with a lovely little woven detail climbing up one shoulder. It was styled very beach-vacation-y, with brown and gold, and it moves really well. He did a good job keeping it from looking bridal, too.

Safe designers were Austin, Rami, Jerell and Kenley. I was confused, because I would have put Michael, Mila, April and Kara in the bottom, with Mondo and Anthony in the top. BUT NO.

The top was:

Mila (REALLY!?) - Isaac and Angela liked the colors and the way it reminded them of cherry ice cream, but Diane thought it looked like it was done in little time. Georgina was distracted by the weight of the accessories. Miranda liked that she would be able to just throw on the dress.

Mondo - It seemed that all of the female judges really liked the look and the color, but Isaac thought it was too covered up and not sexy enough. Umm, hello, Isaac, a women doesn't always want to show off all her goodies! Diane thought it looked like cantalope, and Angela liked the color.

Micheal (REALLY!?!?) - Isaac didn't love the color, but Diane loved the draping and fluidity. "Michael, you gotta call me after the show," she said. Miranda liked the flow, but Isaac thought it was too familiar. Georgina didn't really like the fabric. HOWEVER .... they gave Michael the win. REALLY JUDGES!? REALLY!?

The bottom was:

Anthony - The judges thought that the colors weren't good and it looked amateur. However, Diane did like the skirt, and they all liked the concept.

Kara - The judges didn't see her passion, and they all thought her model looked pregnant in the dress. Also, Miranda doesn't like ruffles. (I am betting she especially doesn't like ruffles that make her look like she's hiding a baby bump.) Angela also, correctly, said it was too literal.

April - Georgina said she was too ambitious and the dress was all over the place. Diane thought it was too "Halloween, spider thing." Georgina did like the colors, though.

In the end, April was eliminated, and I was OK with that even though Kara's dress was super heinous. April, a favorite of mine on her season, just hasn't delivered in All-Stars. Ta-ta, April, dear! At least the judges got SOMETHING right this week.

Judges, you are on notice. I have been singing your praises. Don't let me down like that again.

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