This week on PR All-Stars the name of the game was Resort Wear — to make elegant looks for a glam getaway. John Peters, President of USA Today Travel, joined Alyssa poolside to provide the details for the challenge. The designers were offered a fun incentive to really encourage them to go for the win. The winning designer & their look would be published in a photo story in USA Today Travel. The winning designer would also get to customize their own glam getaway to the Caribbean. But of course with such a lucrative prize, the All-Star designers also received a couple of twists!
Each designer was not only responsible for a glamorous resort wear outfit, but they also had to design an attention grabbing swimsuit. And just to spice things up a bit, the designers would also be working with a new model. But now for some fun, with the Pool Boys arriving poolside to assist the designers in collecting their swimsuit fabric, which was conveniently placed underwater. Everyone I’m sure enjoyed this segment as the shirts came off and the shorts came down. And with no time limitations, each designer got the fabric they wanted. Dmitry did have to switch his choice up since he & Michelle initially picked the same graphic print, but he seemed fine with his next choice. So with a $150 budget to help the designers in completing the other half of this week’s challenge, everyone was off to Mood to get started on this 1-day challenge.
Justin was off to some quick work upon returning to the workroom, but he was not happy with his initial design. He decided to switch things up and use the backside of his swimsuit fabric, going with black instead of the print. Many of the designers had never made a bathing suit. Michelle declared herself the novice swimsuit designer of the group and was more than eager to share some tips in making one, with the use of elastic. However she was not quite so eager to share any of this elastic. Dmitry likely would have been more than happy had Michelle decided to share this elastic, but I think he managed just fine without it!
Zanna was joined this week during her mentor-time by Alison Maxwell, fashion editor of USA Today. The designers were reminded to remember the elegance factor for their resort wear look, and to give it their all since there was a major prize at stake. It was not until model fittings however where another huge switch up came about. Dmitry’s model was way taller than I guess he imagined and he was not feeling his look anymore. With only a few hours remaining he began work on a new dress. This was not the end of the craziness though. Justin was running low on fabric and not sure how he would make the top portion of his look. And poor Samantha had the top portion of her jumpsuit all twisted up before she began sewing, so she had a lot of work to do in order to correct this major snafu.
The morning of the runway flew by with the normal amount of craziness and running around. But it was then time for the runway. And joining the judges’ panel this week as the guest judge was renown fashion photographer Nigel Barker.
There were double the amount of looks gracing the runway this week as each designer put down 2 pieces. I was not sure how the top & bottom rankings would go. I, like the judges, found myself liking the resort wear look, but then not so much the bathing suit, or vice versa. But there was one designer where I thoroughly loved both looks and I’m so happy he was the winning designer for the week. Yes! Justin!
First & foremost, this was just such a great color, very rich and luxurious. The royal blue hue made Justin’s dress so regal. The look had such versatility. I could easily see it transitioning from a day at the beach to a night out on the town.
Let me just say — I WANT THIS DRESS NOW! & Justin also gets tons of shout-outs this week — Chi hair care, so straight & chic; Mary Kay beauty, natural beauty look, gorgeous!; & QVC, love these nude heels & silver statement necklace.
Justin’s swimsuit is also totally TDF. I loved every aspect of the silhouette, from both angles, the front & back. It was so striking and looked great all-around. The peak of the print with the trim, as well as the stunning silhouette, made this more than just your everyday average black bathing suit.
The judges were GaGa over Michelle’s suit, but I think Justin’s was way better. He didn’t have a print doing most of the work for him, it was his design that was speaking the most.
Dmitry came in a close 2nd. I’m sure he’s not loving 2nd, but it’s better than the bottom! I loved his resort wear look. It too was very regal, very upscale. I’m not the biggest fan of asymmetry, but I loved how Dmitry was not afraid to work with it in spite of Isaac’s comments last week.
Another QVC shout-out, another pair of nude heels I love! Dmitry too played a bit with a print as a peek-a-boo trim.
There was such a chic ease about Dmitry’s dress. He also made a smart color choice this week, making his dress all the more elegant, which was the goal of the challenge.
My only issue with Dmitry’s work this week was this camouflage print. I guess that comes from being in the South too long — camouflage everywhere! But I really liked the silhouette and it would have been a homerun for me in any other print.
And rounding out the top 3, Sonjia, although she clearly had mixed reviews from the judges. And I was very much on the same page, lots to love, but definitely some room for critique as well.
She took a risk by mixing lace with denim. I don’t think it paid off and I don’t think it was needed. I do think a full on lace ensemble wouldn’t have worked either. But I say “keep the pants” and to have then played with the top somehow.
The denim just gave the look a heavy feel, which doesn’t go with the concept of vacations. But Sonjia’s swimsuit was a very different story!
The proportions worked. The print was bold! And I agreed with the judges, loved this bandeau top!
I would totally not mind rockin’ this bikini at the beach — sign me up!
Michelle likely could have been in the top as the judges loved her swimsuit, actually naming it the best of the runway. But they were very much not fans of her resort wear piece, and neither was I. She was far too concerned with boasting about how much she knew regarding swimwear. She thought the other designers would be in trouble with half the challenge and being afraid of the swimwear part. It seemed as if she forgot herself about the other half, the resort wear part!
I agreed with Jay. Her dress looked very messy in parts. She seemed all about the sparkle, but the dress was a bore to me. I don’t think there was too much going on. You can’t let a print or fabric do the work for you. But again, I think too much focus this week went to her bathing suit, which really was quite odd. If she knew so much about swimwear, you would think that would have freed up more time for the resort wear aspect of the challenge.
A few positives, QVC shout-out, killer black heels! Chi hair care shout-out, such luscious curls. And, Mary Kay make-up, stunning natural beauty look, nude lip, bronzed cheeks.
And yes, Michelle created a great one-piece, but I don’t agree it was the best of the bunch. But if we remember, she was all about how graphic this print was. It’s a bold print and really helps make this 1-piece so amazing.
But there were so many bad bathing suits so props still to Michelle for making one I would actually wear!
Speaking of bad swimsuits, Jay’s was definitely not a great one by any means. The judges were right, the proportions were off here and the bottom looked odd. Alyssa really didn’t care for this print.
I think Jay’s model was not loving this suit either. I think the where the bottom came, being so off, kind of made the model look bigger — never a good thing.
Unfortunately for Jay, the judges didn’t love his resort wear look either. It was not his best work, but I’m glad he was not the one to go. It had such great movement, flowing so lovely down the runway. My problem was the print was a bit of a yawn, not very striking. It didn’t read resort wear.
The judges problem was more that there was too much going on, the zipper and the leather neckline. It didn’t bother me quite so much, again I point to the somber hues, the brown, grey, off-white. I think if your on vacation, you wouldn’t mind a bit more color!
This left Samantha being the 3rd member of the bottom 3 and the one ultimately being eliminated. But being plagued yet again with many execution issues her elimination was long overdue and made the most sense here. Jay may have had some questionable design choices, but at this point in the competition, the designers shouldn’t have quite so many execution issues. And each week, Samantha has had more than her fair share.
She was on the right path. A jumpsuit was the right call. She then picked a great color. This mint green was bright and playful. But with her sewing snafu likely being the reason the bodice was so ill-fitting, it kind of threw the effect all off, just as Isaac said.
QVC shout-out, love this statement necklace.
If the execution issues had ended there, perhaps Samantha would have deserved yet another chance to stay, but her swimsuit was also a bit wonky. The judges actually thought the suit was close to being offensive.
I think Samantha is talented, but was not fairing well under the time constraints. Far too many mistakes, leading to wonky ill-fitting designs.