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Project Runway All Stars, Episode 4: “Keepin’ it Classy”

Designers gather outside of P.S. 212 to receive their challenge.

Protractors, binders, rubber bands, and floor mats were just some of the materials used in this week’s unconventional challenge.

As the designers waited for their transportation outside of Parson’s, no one suspected that the approaching big yellow school bus was coming for them. However, once the doors opened, the designers were instantly transformed. From the bouncing up and down in their seats, to the carefree round of jump rope they played later on in the workroom, these designers had found their inner child.

Next stop: P.S. 212. Upon their arrival, the designers were told they had four minutes to collect materials from a room full of school supplies. With these materials, they would have to make a high-impact runway fashion in just one day. To spice things up, Mary Kay revealed their new line of makeup on this episode, and allowed the winning design to be featured in a Mary Kay ad in Marie Claire magazine.

The guest judges this week were Academy Award nominee Gabourey Sidibe and actor Michael Urie. In addition, it was announced that all designs would be donated to P.S. 212 so they could be auctioned off to raise money for the school. Christopher Palu was this week’s winner, but for some reason no one was eliminated.

On to the designs…

The top:

Christopher’s WINNING look, made out of black binders, folders, scissors, and magnets:

Christopher's design

Viktor’s design, made with cut-up rulers, construction paper, floor mats, and thumb tacks:

Viktor's design

The bottom:

Jeffrey’s design, made from floor mats, binders, folders, and jump ropes:

Jeffrey's design

Mychael’s design, made with jump ropes and construction paper:

Mychael's design

Korto’s design, made from rubber bands, kick balls, geometric tiles, bean bags, rulers, and binder clips:

Korto's design

The rest of the looks:

Elena’s design, made with binders, pencil cases, and protractors:

Elena's design

Irina’s design, made from construction paper, paper clips, and pencil cases:

Irina's design

Seth Aaron’s design, made from folders, rulers, and a kickball:

Seth Aaron's design

I must say that this was my favorite episode so far this season. I love seeing how everyone uses the same materials in completely different ways for the unconventional challenges. I especially liked how Viktor used cut-up rulers to create a feathery effect for his dress. Also, who knew binders and folders were so form-fitting?

On the other hand, the poor judging kind of defeated the purpose of this episode. All I can say is, why didn’t they send anyone home this week? Jeffrey has been in the bottom for three weeks now, and just sent a dress down the runway that barely covered the model’s lower half. Similarly, Mychael ran out of time on his outfit, and watched his dress start to peel apart on the runway. Why are the judges being so lenient? Do you agree with Elena’s theory that the only reason Jeffrey remains is that he’s good at defending his work? Share your thoughts below!


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  1. sbsings | | #1

    I totally disagreed with the judges this week. I thought Irina's dress looked the most professionally crafted and Seth Aaron's the most innovative. Elena always does wonderfully constructed garments, but they are all beginning to look the same. Christopher's story was great; his look was too Darth Vader for me.

  2. stsimon | | #2

    I really don't like these "unconventional" challenges that are really just arts and crafts projects. Who cares if someone's dress falls apart because he didn't use the right kind of glue or have enough time for it to dry. I'd rather see what these designers can make out of fabric--clothes!-- for different kinds of people.

  3. SeamsSew | | #3

    I agree with stsimon. I am not watching to see these designers doing arts and crafts, I want to see them design and construct beautiful clothing using real fabric. I would rather see unconventional models (real people!) than unconventional materials. I hope we've suffered through the last of those episodes for this season and we can get on with the real designing.

  4. sews4fun | | #4

    Personally, I LIKE the unconventional challenges, I like to see what the designer can come up with out of what he/she has to work with. I thought Christophers look was the winner and not because of the sob story he told when he described it. I felt it was the most innovative of them all.
    I would like to see the final three be Seth Aaron, Irina and Christopher, I think it would make a very interesting show. I guess Elena knows how that model felt when she took credit for the models suggestion. Viktor returned the favor.
    I do like Elena's stuff but it is beginning to look like De Ja Vu all over again.

  5. User avater
    ladycher1 | | #5

    I thought Irina's design was gorgeous, feminine, fluffy and so different from the others that looked stiff and straight..

  6. User avater
    Ree65 | | #6

    In my humble opinion, the designs of Viktor and Irina looked more 'believable' to me as fashion garments, however the winner's design does look a lot more like the items you see on the runways (lord help us).

    I am still a bit baffled as to what is at the neckline of Christopher's look. Is that a piece of constructed jewelry that just looks strange at that camera angle or part of the garment?


  7. DRWsews | | #7

    I enjoy watching the show however I would prefer to see more detail of the construction process & how the decisions of what not to try due to the time constraints are made. I also would really like to see the details of the true short cuts they make. What I REALLY don't like is all the drama of tears, especially from contestants that do not show the ability or willingness to try something new or different in their designs.

  8. ASiverson | | #8

    Irina's design was fabulous and her model appeared to be the only one actually smiling while wearing the creation. And, she, the model, looked comfortable and glam!

  9. User avater
    krawz | | #9

    I really didn't get it. What were the judges thinking? How could Irina's dress end up in the middle? This is the kind of thing that makes you wonder if the judges really do base some of their marks on the designers personality. She so obviously had one of the best creations - if not THE best. Irina and Elena had the best - I really didn't like Christophers design and thought Viktor's was a good 3rd place.

    Not sending Jeffrey home seemed ridiculous. They had to put blurs over his model's privates that showed as she walked down the runway! I don't know if this is the same model he made wear a hood over her face as she walked down the runway, but he should not get away with treating his model(s) so badly. I thought he shouldn't have won his season either - he's showing very clearly how little he is capable of.

    I was thrilled that they changed the way the regular Project Runway was done so that we could see more of the design details. I was hoping that change would carry over to Project Runway All-Stars.

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