New Show Recap

New Show Recap: Project Runway All Stars, 3.09, “Milly, but Hopefully Not Vanilli”

It has been weeks, Persephoneers, weeks since I mocked anyone from the teevee. Well, mocked them on the Internet. About sewing. Did you don neoprene or put some half-ass cutouts in a tee shirt because you missed Project Runway All Stars? Personally, I’m wearing Mondo as a cape right now.

Last episode, Korto won (yeah!) and Viktor got auf wiedersehen-ed.  Guest judge Nina Garcia personally unhinged her jaw to swallow poor Viktor whole, like a chic snake feasting on a guy named Viktor.

This week’s challenge for Korto, Elena, Seth Aaron, and Christopher was to whip up a ready-to-wear look.  They were tasked with making an affordable garment (well, $400, hrm) for the New York design house Milly, created by Michelle Smith.  She asked them to create an “urban tribal” look.  The designers got to play in Milly’s fabric closet, and I seethed with jealousy.  The president of Milly, Andrew Oshrin, had to approve their designs, which he did in a silver-foxy sort of way. Ooh, fiscal responsibility never looked so sexy.

Except for Elena’s design, which had to be changed after a workroom leather-tearing catastrophe.  Oh noes! She soldiered on, hoping that she wasn’t building her own doom. Michelle Smith herself came to the workroom with Not-Tim to critique. They told Elena to stick to the original design, duh. Christopher, too, was trying to make a silk purse instead of a sow’s ear. Michelle told them to remember costs, keep it simple and edited, and not to fuck up. Maybe not that last part. But that is what RuPaul would tell them, and that’s good enough for me.

On to the judging, which is the most important part of every activity.  I’ll be judging your comments later, FYI. This week’s guest judges were Kristin Chenoweth, Human Delight Monster, and Certified Cutie Patootie Nick Cannon, who has a line of accessories for men coming out! How awesome is that?! Also judging:  Michelle Smith of Milly, and also Larry, Moe, and Curly. Seriously, there were a lot of judges.

Urban Tribal:  Sometimes Offensive, Always Trending Anyway

Christopher and Seth Aaron designs Project Runway All Stars Season 3 Episode 9
Christopher, Seth Aaron (L to R) (all images courtesy of

Christopher’s black and white was interesting, but didn’t blow me away.  There was a lot going on:  asymmetrical black and white/vegan leather and chiffon halter neck, chiffon tribal* print (also B&W) faux-saronged at the waist over a black vegan leather miniskirt. Whew. It looked kinda like he took a city-girl dress and threw a wrap from the beach togs shack over it. Complicated, expensive, and more jumbled than jungle. Alyssa liked that juxtaposition, and Kristin liked the ability to wear a bra with it. Georgina dug it, but was confused about who Christopher was overall.

* I’m not gonna harp on and on about “tribal” shit, but really — what tribe, exactly?  The Caucasian Nation? The Weekend WASPs of Conn-E-Cticut?

Seth Aaron, I’m gonna need you to send me your dress so that I can test it. As an Official PRAS Blogger, you know? Call me. Anyhoo, this was cute as shit. The dress had a simple shape, kinda skater-ey in its form-fitting bodice and flared skirt. No sleeves. But it was the use of colorblocking and print texture that elevated this design.  The bodice was made of thick, horizontal bands of black and white, with a vertical center detail of bands of hot pink and check. These bands flanked the center front zipper and continued up to the neck. Demure, yet sexy as hell. Damn, I love that. The skirt was pieced of the check fabric and the white, and it ended up fresh and bright. Wow, loved, very design, much cute. Michelle called it spectacular, and pretty much everyone agreed.

Korto and Elena designs Project Runway All Stars Season 3 Episode 9
Korto, Elena (L to R) (all images courtesy of

Korto mixed two bright, busy patterns as only she can and came away with a wonderful dress.  She used two tribal prints of small scale in slightly differing palettes — majority muted brights striped with grey and minority hot pinks and purples. She edged the sleeveless, V-neck bodice in black leather, adding an edge to a sweet dress. The skirt was a slight tulip, and the back bodice formed a sexy hourglass between the model’s shoulder blades. This was a crazy cute dress, and felt very now. But it wasn’t quite the showstopper that Seth Aaron’s was. Alyssa called it the most wearable, and how freaking true is that? You can tell that Korto thinks about the real woman who will wear the clothes, and that’s one of the many reasons I love her. Kristin called it “Democrat in the back and Republican in the front.” Ha!

Elena made for us another spiky-shouldered, form-fitting, knee-length mini dress. How many is that now? This one was vertical panels of  white leather and white mesh, with neon yellow peeking through the mesh. It was a great dress, but yawn, we get it, you like this one, Elena. Mr. Mariah Carey said she’d look good in it, and Kristin said that she felt she could eat a Big Mac and still wear it. That Big Mac thing is a clothing requirement for me, too. Mizrahi called it really fresh. There was some debate about the front zipper, with Georgina and Alyssa being anti, and Nick being pro for easy access. I think this judging panel really got to the nitty gritty of fashion (sex, hamburgers), and I appreciated that.

King of the Urban Jungle

The judges were très happy with the runway offerings, but the big prize went to Seth Aaron, obvs. It was his first win. But almost more important than this runway was the choice of which three would go to the finale. Seth Aaron, naturally. He will be joined by Elena. That left Korto and Christopher, who were given a trident and a net, respectively, so that they could fight it out old-school Star Trek style. Not really, but please consider that for the future, Lifetime. Their challenge was to, on the runway, take three past challenge designs and turn them into one spectacular new look to be judged. Oh, and do it in an hour.

Korto and Christopher designs Project Runway All Stars Season 3 Episode 9
Korto, Christopher (Top to Bottom) (all images courtesy of

They ripped, they sewed, they shook, they stirred. Korto made grey separates from recycled menswear and punk. Her sleeveless jacket draped beautifully, and belted at the waist to create a soft, asymmetrical peplum. The straight skirt began life as pants, and the light grey contrasted beautifully with the deep grey of the top.  Christopher ended up with a black, silky, draped one-shoulder top over and blue and black miniskirt with a skinny tan belt.  Personally, I thought Korto had the edge in both originality and design.

There could only be one second-to-worst designer, and it was Korto who wiggled into the finale. Yes! I am shocked that Christopher is out, but Korto has been my favorite from the beginning, and I hope she kicks ass next week!

What think you, Persephoneers? Who will win — tell me in the comments!

By Lucy Woodhull

Lucy Woodhull is a novelist, humorist, parodist, and all-around geek. Her new venture is THE SHITTIEST PRINCESS, a series of un-fair-y tales right here on Persephone. You can check out her sexy, fun romantic comedies at

3 replies on “New Show Recap: Project Runway All Stars, 3.09, “Milly, but Hopefully Not Vanilli””

Man, I am so sick of Elena. I would much rather have seen whatever Christopher put together than deal with her in the finale. That being said, I am super glad Korto is safe. I really enjoy her stuff, and I do think she designs super well for wearable clothing.

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