Project Runway All Stars: Seeing Red
July 8, 2023 7:42 PM - Season 20, Episode 5 - Subscribe

The designers are forced to share a single bolt of fabric to demonstrate how they can stand out from one another and prove why they're the top designer; actor, producer and Emmy Award-winning writer Lena Waithe joins as guest judge.
posted by lizard music (6 comments total)
Really enjoyed Nina's being "alarmed" by the runway this week. I enjoyed this episode for the most part (apart from the sponsored shopping trip). But the backstage attacking of Anna for repeating a look made me feel really bad and ended things in a weird off way.

Given the challenge to show your POV, I don't get the drama and group dynamic that was happening about repeating a design, which didn't look all that similar to the last one. Isn't 'I put ruffles on things' a legitimate POV to have as your creative drive, and isn't messing around with that a normal way to create/do the challenge? The judges' positive response to a designer's work isn't that designer's fault in any way.

Did Korto (who seemed to have done a lot of drinking) and Kayne (who personality wise seems like a reality show drama bomb waiting to go off) have lingering resentment about last week's judgment?

It seemed weird and off and I am discouraged by all the crying shown in next week's preview.

Hester's design and styling was just bad. I liked that Elaine's main defense of it was "if you wore it someplace like a disco with bad lighting, it's cheap looking but fun." That is not praise I would feel good about!
posted by lizard music at 8:00 PM on July 8, 2023

It was so lame that they never identified the red fabric; we gradually found out it was “stretchy” “polyester” “crepe” which unfortunately suggests draping and then the judges were pissed because several created similar draped looks. Brittany was the clear winner but I liked Kara Saun’s and Korto’s as well. I didn’t know who they’d send home of the bottom three, to me they were all equally popular designers with equally meh designs but I honestly thought Anna was a bottom when they called her name. Ruffles are fine but there are many types of ruffles; she just uses one technique, applies them vertically. and tacked them down to the same silhouette she used in episode 3. At most, a safe design.

There was an Instagram kerfluffle with Korto and Laurence after the episode aired that was discussed on Reddit. From what I can gather, the “real” fight backstage was not just about Anna although the editors focused on that. It was to do with the judging and the favoritism being shown to the more recent designers.

I was sorry to see Hester go although she hasn’t really wowed me this season unlike her original run. I’m disappointed that my favorite “level playing field” challenge used such cheap, crappy fabric in my least favorite color.
posted by TWinbrook8 at 9:50 AM on July 9, 2023

I was amazed that Fabio's draped outfit was the one that ended up in the bottom. It was far better made and way more stylish than Kayne's.

Korto's outburst was disappointing. I thought she had more grace than that. Anna's ruffle dress wasn't great and she'd also done a similar outfit two weeks earlier, but at least it was a different silhouette.

Brittany's outfit was by far the best though, and she definitely deserved to win.
posted by essexjan at 11:49 AM on July 9, 2023 [1 favorite]

I just wanted to say thanks for posting these episodes. I'm unlikely to contribute to the conversation, as I'm typically behind. I watch these with my mom when she's got time (she's the one with thew sewing talent and I'm sure could have run rings around a lot of the contestants back when she was sewing more) but I love reading the discussions.

I will say I'm disappointed that we don't find out what that red fabric is. That's the kind detail I want more of from this show (and less of the interpersonal drama).
posted by sardonyx at 12:08 PM on July 9, 2023 [2 favorites]

Just last episode I was thinking it was nice to have a season free of drama. I must have forgotten to knock on wood! I can totally understand being angry about the decision. I thought Hester's was much more interesting and fun. Anna's was a terrible blocky length, for one thing, and it had puckered seams in the back. But really, the ruffles are bad enough on their own.

Even so, I think it's unfair to hold the judges decision against her, when all of them are all equally at the whim of these judges (who are not always consistent and who do seem to have favorites sometimes).

Brittany and Kara Saun really killed it and should both get to the end.
posted by Glinn at 8:42 PM on July 17, 2023

The chief villain here is the producers. If you want everyone to show their distinctive point of view starting from the same materials, you need to give them a reasonably neutral (for fashion) color in a reasonable quality fabric and two days to exercise their technique and their creativity! Even Hester's bomb of a look would've improved with time to redo that waist.

I suspect that the Ruffle Dalek would have been in the bottom, maybe even gone home, if not for the judges wanting to send a message.

Korto looks like someone who gets a little fighty when she has a couple of glasses in her (see earlier bar scene); it happens, but she's old enough to know that and know better. But I'm more irritated at Kayne. Korto was reacting in the very heat of the moment. Not great, but it's the end of 24 hours of extreme pressure, you have to give people a little slack. Kayne chose to reopen the wound after silence had fallen, and, as far as I can tell, just because he wanted to sing along to Radio KRHNY. Buddy, you may be on an Andy Cohen show, but you don't have to live like it. For all that, you didn't even land yourself a promo spot.

Hester, you got up my nose in the worst way but you left with reasonable grace and even hugged Anna when her look was announced as in the top, so...go forth and make your weird shit.
posted by praemunire at 9:15 PM on August 7, 2023

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