Project Runway All Stars: The Art of Construction
November 8, 2014 3:42 PM - Season 4, Episode 2 - Subscribe

It's the unconventional materials challenge! Designers take masculine construction materials and create a feminine look.

Designers get 15 minutes to fill wheelbarrows full of tarps, tubing, plastic mesh, construction tape, and colorful climbing rope. Justin is the clear winner ; his plastic mesh dress threaded with black and white zip ties was outstanding. Alexandria, Chris March, and Michelle were in the bottom but there was no question who was the expendable designer; Alexandria goes home.
posted by TWinbrook8 (9 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Justin's dress was gorgeous, he really does have a unique perspective and sense of style. And although it lacked any originality, I thought Kate's dress was pretty, given the materials she had to work with.

I liked Michelle in her season but she's irritating me now - I wouldn't have minded if she'd gone home. I'm so glad Chris stayed, I adore him. Alexandria's dress was atrocious. Michelle got it absolutely right when she said it looked as if a girl wearing a trash-bag dress had got so drunk she'd fallen into a construction site and got some fence stuck on her.
posted by essexjan at 3:51 PM on November 8, 2014

I was really disappointed with most of the entries, esp Chris's. He just seems like he has no energy but I am still hoping for wonderful things from him. Dimitry's, I swear we've seen this exact rope dress before. The only good thing about Michelle's was the colors and for that, she used paint. Kate, I wished the judges had dinged her for another bridal outfit, although it did fit the brief. Most were forgettable, but I really liked Samantha Black's. The bodice reminded me of a Schiaparelli design. If she had made it with a floor length skirt to up the wow factor, I think she would've scored higher than Kate.

btw, if anyone wants to write up the PR post directly after it airs, please do. I am multiple time zones away with a shaky internet connection so I'm lucky if I can see the episode at all (this time, like who were the judges?) But I do want to read what everyone else thinks, even if I can't watch it.
posted by TWinbrook8 at 5:46 PM on November 8, 2014

YES Justin's dress was awesome. I would wear it. I'm glad Alexandria is gone, but I just - even during her season - couldn't figure her out. She's so abrupt and cold, yet worked with children and seemed to care about them. Seemed so odd.

Anywhooo. I totally think Michelle is just floating along. Also, okay, so you guys all made dresses. Dresses don't automatically mean feminine. Also for Kate's dress, when she was taking that tile off the backing, I was excited for her to use the cool shimmery tile, but NOPE she used the netted backing?!

Chris's attitude bugged me during this episode. I mean, 90% of everyone in that room took some of that rope. I don't think Dmitry "stole" his look. It felt like Chris only had one idea then when it was "stolen" he kinda gave up. He could have done something super cool with that top to make it different that Dmitry's like adding in another color or weaving in another material. Plus that bottom was just, weird.

Yet again I must say, let the host go home. I told my husband when I was watching that she seemed visibly uncomfortable and out of breath, and he said "Oh you mean like every time she talks?" It's very distracting.
posted by Crystalinne at 11:46 PM on November 8, 2014

Since the show is filmed in advance, has she had her baby yet? Because she looks like she is about to pop. Is she even going to make it to the filming of the finale?
posted by TWinbrook8 at 1:44 AM on November 9, 2014

I think Michelle is coasting on her I won Project Runway egotrip. And reusing the construction worker vest fabric should have earned her a couple demerit points.

This was the unconventional materials challenge, and too few of them really stretched themselves. Tile backing and not tile? Rope? Come on. I expected more from Chris especially on this one, and he didn't even think next to the walls of the box, much less next to them.

I kinda get Alexandria's personality. Being reserved doesn't mean being passionate or kind or loving; it just means you present a shell to the world that people can have trouble getting around. Being protective of yourself on TV probably aggravates the situation.

Justin's dress was head and shoulders above the rest, but I also liked the ad hoc caution-tape dress. The pattern created by the yellow and black was interesting.
posted by julen at 2:49 AM on November 9, 2014

TWinbrook8: Did you not see who the judges were? They had Elie Tahari, designer and founder of a fashion company with an annual revenue of hundreds of millions US$. Also Jersey Shore's J-wow and Snooki, who are (in)famous for being drunk and fighting on TV. Keep it classy, Project Runway.

Kind of sad to see Alexandra go. I totally get it with what she sent down the runway, but from what I can remember she was capable of making interesting clothes. Compare that with Kate who I fear will only ever do variations on bridal.

And I was disappointed with Chris too, him being a contestant definitely played part in me tuning in for this season, I wasn't a fan of his look overall but I kind of liked the deconstructed rope skirt. Actually, I'm going to agree with the comment above that it was a mostly disappointing runway. Helen's was like a messy craft project (although I'm thankful we didn't get any drama from her during the episode, maybe she's saving up). Gunnar was unlucky to not have the judges from regular PR, they would have eaten that thing up with the dangling metal bits, and I have to say his looked way better than that thing Amanda made. And I quite liked Sonjia's tape dress, especially the top part, the bottom was a bit boxy from the back. Finally I can't argue with Justin's win, that looked really good and made good use of the materials.
posted by bjrn at 10:44 AM on November 9, 2014

I am also sad to see Alexandria go. She was very reserved and often misunderstood, but I believe goodhearted and often made cool or at least interesting clothes. The thing at the bottom of her dress was unfortunate but the plain black dress looked very nicely made. SO wish they'd taken the opportunity to boot unlikable Michelle! (But I didn't think her dress was too bad.)

I like love Chris March too much to complain about his attitude this episode. He acted better than many would in a one-day unconventional-materials-challenge pressure cooker. I do think the final edit used too much of his complaining, but I also doubt it was as constant and tiresome as they made it out to be. He seemed SO TIRED at the judging. I suspect they actually have to stand up there for an hour or maybe two, and that isn't even comfortable for someone of a healthy weight. I will agree he seems generally less cheerful than in his regular season, and I hope he both stays and feels better!

I love Dmitry but agree previous rope dresses have been made better. (Michael Costello made a great black and white one, I believe.) Sonjia pulled out a last second save with that yellow and black tape dress. I didn't love the top but the bottom really moved terrifically!

Truly the most horrible fashion this episode can be nothing other than that white grid maternity horror they put on Alyssa Milano. NOT NICE AT ALL. Ugh.

The guest judges. I don't even. Sad.
posted by Glinn at 1:30 PM on November 9, 2014

Truly the most horrible fashion this episode can be nothing other than that white grid maternity horror they put on Alyssa Milano. NOT NICE AT ALL. Ugh.

Or that denim jumpsuit she wore at the beginning. Awful. Seriously, WHO wears jumpsuits? They're so popular as designs on these shows, but I have never seen one out in the wild worn by a normal human being. Then again, I don't get out much.
posted by MsVader at 2:53 PM on November 9, 2014

Some more thoughts: I didn't realise that Justin never won in his season but his zip-tie dress reminded me so much of the 3-D-printed plastic jewellery that he created for his final collection that I wondered if the entire "make from construction materials" challenge had been engineered for him.

At the end, Alexandria said she didn't work with plastic. There was some voice over commentary that she had ALL THE MATERIALZ so she def had enough to work from. I thought she had more imagination. She had my favorite final collection in her season; she has a strong minimalist aesthetic. Maybe when she saw Helen was another contestant, she decided she didn't want to deal with her again because you KNOW the producers would've paired them in a team challenge.

Thanks bjrn, I didn't know that was Elie Tahari. I wonder what were his thoughts when he learned he'd be sitting on a panel next to the Jersey Shore couple. That the producers thought it was a good idea to include them is indicative.
posted by TWinbrook8 at 5:22 PM on November 9, 2014

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