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Project Runway All Stars Gets Distressed About The Apocalypse

The designers must bring fabric-distressing techniques to a post-apocalyptic fashion challenge. Who most deserves to survive?

Our Players

Hello, I'm East Coast Editor Sarah D. Bunting.
Hello, I'm West Coast Editor Tara Ariano.

The Talk

Tara, how can we go on with this season of PRAS without Kelly From The Deli?! ...Not that I don't understand what the judges were saying about her look...and of all contestants to biff a distressed-fabric challenge with a post-apocalyptic narrative! But it's pretty unusual for "too many ideas" to be sent home over "dated and a bad color story" -- and in my opinion that wasn't the only thing the panel biffed this week.

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Sarah, only you can truly know how heartsick I am to have to bid farewell to my beloved Kelly From The Deli. I love both Kelly and the Deli that shaped the artist -- nay, the woman -- we have come to hold so dear. That said: you're right that the judges had a point about her look, and it's always tough when a designer really thinks she's created a bomb-ass feature on her garment -- in this case, Kelly's bodice -- and as a viewer, you're like, "...idk, sure?" It's definitely an interesting element, but she clearly spent too much time on it to the detriment of the rest of her look, which even for this challenge was unfinished bordering on violating indecency laws. But was it worse than Amanda's Slim Stripebody Lizard Queen? To me, it was not.

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She looks like a pile of vaginas. Nothing against vaginas! They should not be in a pile. And Amanda was feeling herself so hard about it, too! I hated pretty much everything about that look, and you could tell the model agreed with us. That shoe pairing! Why! ...Another designer who should count herself lucky the judges liked other things less: Kimberly. She had an interesting idea with the carapace-y side part of the skirt, but it didn't quite work, and that rope bodice...no.

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Kimberly owes her model a spa day for the crimes that dress committed against her figure: it made her look like an especially thick version of those wooden drawing figures, all blocky rectangles, and the rope was such a non sequitur. I was also not a fan of Joshua's Tank Girl concept; I realize the distressed/edgy space is not his usual area, but it was very clichéd.

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I liked elements of the coat, like the collar and the backpack-y straps. But the coat I really liked was Melissa's: the fabric, the belting, the off-center cut, everything. It fit her model perfectly, too.

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I guess the judges weren't necessarily about the over-garments this week, though, since I thought the best element of Ari's outfit -- aside from Ari's flawless eyelash narrative right next to them, of course; she needs to come over and teach me her tricks -- was the robe, and we barely saw the robe. The dress was fine, but not much more, to me.

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I absolutely agree: her model looked like she had so much more of a story with the coat on, whereas the dress was merely pretty. And I also agree that Melissa should have been in the top; when the challenge was announced, I expected her to kill it since she has kind of a shaggy/edgy aesthetic; I thought her look was sharp and interesting and her model styling was on point. It's a shame there are still SO MANY of them, but I guess she wasn't one of my top 3 either. (Top 4 for sure.) How about the other looks we liked? I was with the judges on awarding Anthony the win: he figured out a way to marry his ladylike design ideas with this very un-him challenge.

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Same here. And Anne Fulenwider's advice was on point, for once, instead of seeming kind of just mean for mean's sake; Anthony needed to get into a story so he could relate to the brief, and once he found one, he was off to the races. What did you think of Merline's? I liked the contrast between the crisp, armored-looking top and the destroyed bottom of the garment, but she should have gotten clocked for a couple of those 3D flaps that made the model's butt look like dryer vents, and in general it felt over-praised. We get it, she took direction.

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I do love it when the judges reward designers for listening to them. Positive reinforcement works, as my treat-ravenous dogs can attest. I didn't really get Merline's, but it was definitely FASHION; plus her girl and Edmond's could have gone to the same party at the...I don't know, oxygen bar or Mind Gym or wherever parties are happening when the shit's going down. (I'll never know, since I'll be dead in the first wave.)

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Oh, same. Although that's the only way you could get me to part with my Melissa jacket.

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