Friday, November 02, 2012

Project Runway All Stars Season Two Episode Two: BOGO!

For this challenge the designers need to create nightlife looks inspired by the new Seventies collection by Christian Siriano for Payless Shoes:

Buy One Get One half off!
Ah, yes, the 1870s, I remember them well. The war was over, spirits were high, and women everywhere were ready to do a line of blow and get out on the dance floor:

This woman is ready to party like it's 1899
Before we get to the clothes, I should mention the two moments of "fun" in this episode. First, the designers get a letter from Carolyn Murphy informing them that she has been hanging out with Karl Lagerfeld and he taped a message for them:

Karl Lagerfeld: "Hello, Project Runway designers. My very dear friend - what does this say? - Oh, right - Caroline Murphries, has asked me to give you some advice. To be a great designer you need to follow your heart and also pay someone to do push-ups for you every day. It's how I stay so young. Good luck."

This inspiring message had all the designers in tears. The other bit of "fun" we had this week involved Kayne taking responsibility for designer entertainment this season, forcing everyone to form a conga line and play shuffleboard:

Kayne Gillaspie, your cruise director: "Did someone mention a line of blow?"
On to the challenge. So, I was totally wrong about Anthony Ryan not winning anything last week. His huge prize is that he gets to pick the first shoe. Of course, he picks the ugliest shoe. Whatever.

Joanna makes her rounds:

Joanna: "As the only one here who actually remembers the 1870s, let me just say that you all suck."

Well, that's not very helpful. Here's the thing: I think designers should have an understanding of fashion history, but when you are trying to draw inspiration from a specific period you need more to go on than just a shoe. They needed some pictures to help them out. Otherwise you end up with what we ended up with: ugly clothes that had nothing to do with the seventies.

Joanna: "Kayne, those stripes look terrible. Uli, you must have been asleep during the seventies. Joshua, there's a difference between 'show-stopper' and 'total-shit.' Laura Kathleen, your blazer is making my lady parts dry up. Ivy, you're crazy. Andrae, nobody wants a stupid organza coat. Althea, you make me sick. Wendy, it's too Halloweeny. Emilio, I think of the seventies as the decade when fashion died, and your dress fits that perfectly. Anthony Ryan, you're making my eyes bleed. Casanova, your dress is perfect. And Pleather, that's putting me in the mind of a white man's overbite, if you know what I'm saying."

Pleather: "I do not."

Joanna: "It's a British saying that basically means bite me."

Wow, Joanna is in a bad mood this week. And I don't blame her. These garments are unusually hideous. Half of them have nothing to do with the seventies and the other half have nothing to do with nightlife.

Laura Kathleen's was, once again, pretty good. It was attractive and looked inspired by the seventies (like all her clothes), but it wasn't much of a nightlife look.

Casanova, shockingly, made something tasteful and pretty. It was sexy without being trashy and it was retro without looking like a costume. I agree with Georgina that it was a dress we've seen before, but that's kind of a dumb complaint when they are supposed to be inspired by another decade. He should have won. No one is more shocked than I am that I actually liked something he made:

Casanova: "When we were told we were supposed to make super slutty dresses this week I was so happy!"

Well, that isn't at all what you were told to do, but if that's what it takes for you to make tasteful clothes, then go for it.

The top two were Uli and Ivy. The more I look at Ivy's the more I like it. She made a green romper with a weird organza skirt. The proportions were off, but I think if the skirt had been a different length it could have been nice. It had a seventies vibe and it was sort of appropriate for a club. But Uli won with her little white sequined dress. It was a cute dress, but it was maybe more sixties than seventies. But, of course, the sixties didn't get to Eastern Europe until 2003, when Paul McCartney finally made it to Moscow. Anyway, congratulations, Uli!

Some of the worst looks - Joshua's, Althea's, and Pleather's - got a free pass this week. Althea says she knows the seventies, but I just talked to the seventies and they deny any relationship with her. 

Kayne, Wendy, and Andrae are the bottom three. Kayne's giant pants look seventies, but nobody would wear them to a club. He's safe.

Apparently the question every week is going to be What happened to Andrae? Seriously, I wonder how many weeks this can go on. I really hope he gets his act together. Anyway, he's safe again.

Wendy originally had a giant button on her garment that Joanna hated:

Joanna: "You know when you are cooking and you are stirring the food? You are stirring it with a spoon, possibly a wooden spoon, though it doesn't have to be wooden? Actually, yes it does have to be wooden. What else would it be made out of? Metal? Plastic? Yuck. Anyway, you know when you are stirring the food in the pot - maybe you're making soup or sauce or something else that you would be cooking in a pot - and you need to take the spoon out of the pot for some reason? I don't know why. Maybe you want to put the lid on the pot. It doesn't really matter. The point is you want to take the spoon out of the pot and you need to set the spoon down somewhere. And you don't want to put the spoon right on the countertop because it's covered in sauce, assuming you are making sauce, though you might be making something else. And obviously I mean the spoon is covered in sauce, and not the countertop. If your countertop is already covered in sauce then you don't really need to worry about setting down a sauce-covered spoon. But let's say your countertop is clean and you need someplace to set down your spoon. They have these things that you can buy at a store and I'm assuming you can get them online - I'm not sure because I inherited the one I have from my mother - and you can put them next to your stove and they are the perfect size and shape to set down your spoon. Do you know what I'm talking about?"

Wendy: "You mean a spoon rest?"

Joanna: "I don't know. I'm not a cooking expert. I don't know all the fancy terminology. The point is I hate that button and you have to get rid of it."

Wendy's outfit was pretty tacky. Look, I was never a Wendy hater. We understand how reality competition shows work now, but when she was on the first season of Project Runway her only frame of reference was Survivor and Big Brother, so I don't blame her for thinking the show was all about strategy and alliances and psyching out your competition. I always liked Wendy. However, I never liked her designs. So, while it was exciting to have her back on the show, she was going to need to make decent garments to stay on. Wendy is out this week

Carolyn Murphy: "Wendy, you are such an inspiration. I remember watching you on television when I was a little girl."

Wendy: "bitch."

Before I go, I'll give a shout out to an actual pair of Christian Siriano for Payless shoes:

we think these shoes are hot

These shoes are $39.95 and, according to a Payless customer, the reason they are so expensive is that they are designer. So it's totally worth spending twice as much as you usually spend on shoes, you cheapskate!


Cliff O'Neill said...

Agree on Casanova. TOTALLY disagree on Ivy's. That dress made me grrr angry. Was OK with Uli winning. It was vaguely ABBA/Cher in "Half Breed" '70s, so not really "disco," but close enough.

Now I need to run out and get one of those spoon things.

eric3000 said...

Cliff, I completely understand about Ivy's look. I thought it was really ugly, but then, for some reason, it started to grow on me.

MoHub said...

As someone who lived through the '70s (and the "50s and "60s and beyond), the disco midpoint was the period I never wanted to see again—at least, not until I got through the '80s. However, there's no doubt in my mind that the win should have gone to Casanova, and there's no way Kayne should have been in the bottom 3.

Also, as far as the elimination, my personal conspiracy theory is that Wendy was sent off because she failed to provide the bitchiness she was likely invited back for, while Andrae was still bringing all his quirky instability—even though his design was far worse.

lovemesomeuli said...

Love your Joanna comments. She is awesome and the best part of the show for sure. Love that Uli won even though, as you pointed out, her dress didn't appear to be inspired by the 70s. And I secretly love that Casanova had a challenge right up his alley, 'cause I kind of love him and want him to stay on as long as possible. Exhaaaaaaactly!

libby said...

So true about Casanova being right in his wheelhouse on this challenge! Why do I get the feeling he's made this type of dancing dress for girlfriends...He seemed so knowledgeable about 'women's concerns' at clubs.

I was sad the outfits weren't more 70's-looking. It's my childhood era, the one I'm most nostalgic about, the era I collect at thrift stores. Most were just decade-less club outfits.

Wendy's was the outfit the stripper arrives in at the bachelor party.
I refuse to ever let go of Andrae, no matter how long it takes him to remember what clothes are!

Spoiler Alert: Doesn't the winner have to be someone that Joanna wishes to see in her offices for the next year? Wouldn't the contestants be right to, um, TRY & seem NOT insufferable and nasty, especially to HER? A pro tip!