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Project Runway All-Stars, Jan. 12 – Having a Ball

The next morning, everybody gets back to work.  Michael tells us, “You have to half-ass things a bit.”  In other words, since the designers have only hours instead of weeks or months to finish their frocks, they have to use shortcuts that would be unthinkable in real couture.  The models then come in, and Kenley sends her model straight to hair and make-up to buy herself time to finish.

Then it’s off to the runway, where the designers are re-introduced to Mark Badgley and James Mischka, this week’s guest judges.

Kenley is up first, and she sends down a wide, frilly full-length  pale pink skirt with a pink, polka-dotted bodice.  Gordana made a sleeveless lavender gown with a beaded bodice.  Rami sends down a  shoulderless magenta gown.  Mila made an asymmetrical black dress with a single shoulder.

Sweet P sends down an orange bodice and a long skirt with a floral pattern that’s mostly orange and pink.  It looks too simple and not glamorous or formal enough to wear to the opera.  Mondo made a silver and white knee-length dress with a wide yoke and a train.  Jerrell made a brown dress with a full print skirt that made the model look like she might be pregnant.  Kara made a sleeveless floral print dress with a wide skirt.  It’s okay– but not for a grown woman to wear to the opera.  It might work for a young girl, though.

Anthony made a draped, asymmetrical white gown with a plunging back and front.  One side was sleeveless, while the other side had a billowing white sleeve.  The model also wore long black leather gloves and a jeweled belt with a green pendant.  Austin made a sleeveless gown out of gold lamé and black tulle criss-crossing each other.  The look includes a wide gold collar attached to the dress by bands of black tulle.

April sends down a long gown with a red upper portion and a dyed black skirt.  It basically looks as if the model had waded through a swamp on her way to the runway.  Michael made a slinky sleeveless black dress with a high neck and a peekaboo window in the front.  The fancy feather and beads combo he’d made earlier decorates the model’s shoulders.

Angela calls Anthony, April, Sweet P, Austin, Kara, and Michael.  They have the highest and lowest scores between them, while the others are safe.

The judges start with Anthony, who tells them that he wanted to do a cream or white dress– and make it edgy.  Isaac likes the plunging front and calls the look “vampy and sexy.”  Angela likes the black gloves, while Georgina thinks they’re a little much.  She does like the draping, though.

April wanted to make a red dress.  Isaac praises April for using some color other than black, but dislikes the dying.  Mark and James don’t like red and black paired together.  Angela thinks the cut is interesting and April tells her that she was inspired by the Red Queen from Alice in Wonderland.  Whether you’re talking about the book or the Disney movie, that doesn’t have a lot to do with opera.

Sweet P tells the judges that she wanted to make a “modern-day Cinderella” look.  Isaac thinks it looks more like a prom dress than a ball gown.  Georgina dislikes the mixing of the solid with the print.  Mark thinks the color scheme is unique, but adds the bodice was poorly made.  Angela likes the colors, but thinks it looks more like a day dress.  James agrees.

Austin wanted to make his dress “sensual, yet refined.”  Isaac loves it and calls it “fresh, classic, and expensive.”  He likes that the dress is modest, while James admires the cut.  Georgina and Mark spot a bit of lopsided tulle, which Austin immediately adjusts.  Georgina would have preferred a lower bustline, but loves the dress aside from that.

Kara tells the judges that she doesn’t usually use prints, but wanted to make a dress suitable for a summer evening.  Okay, I suppose it could work for an outdoor concert– but it still doesn’t look like something an adult would wear to the opera.  Isaac likes the print, but doesn’t think it’s perfect enough.  Mark spots a problem with the ribbon in the back.  He thinks the dress is good, but could have been spectacular.  Kara tells the judges that she added pockets, which they all love.  Georgina doesn’t see Kara’s personal style in the dress and adds, “It could be anybody’s dress.”

Last up is Michael, who simply wanted to make a spectacular dress.  Isaac is astounded that he did so much in so little time.  He also says it looks like “Kim Kardashian at the opera.”  Angela loves the strap across the back, while Georgina loves the fabric.  She also deems the dress flattering.  James loves the closed-up front and the bare back.  Angela adds that she wants to wear the dress herself.

The judges then deliberate, starting with the designers they didn’t like.  April’s dress looked as if the model had fallen into an oil slick.  It looked too random.  Sweet P made a nice skirt, but her look wasn’t a ballgown.  The bodice was also poorly made.  Kara’s dress lacked personality and looked like something that could be found in a store.

As for the top scorers, Anthony’s dress was well-made and beautifully draped.  Austin’s dress was tasteful and the “freshest dress” there.  Michael’s dress was spectacular and boasted exquisite embroidery.

Angela then calls the designers back in to announce the judges’ decision.  Anthony is safe, while Austin is the winner.  Michael and Kara are safe, leaving April and Sweet P in the bottom.  April is in, which means Sweet P is out.

Next week:  The designers have to make a flamboyant cocktail dress for a very discerning judge:  Miss Piggy.

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