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The Project Runway All Stars Blog

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Designs

By kim_messina Fri., Nov. 16, 2012 ,4:48 am EST

The challenge by the people, for the people! Can I get a heck yeah!

There have been a decent number of "design a look based on a photo" challenges over the years, but I really enjoyed the fact that this time around it wasn't the designers choosing what to shoot. It was in the hands of you, America. (Heck, it was in the hands of the world...the power of social media!)

After Joanna Coles was done explaining the challenge, she let the designers go in pairs to pick photos. I didn't really understand why the designers were able to pick who would get to select a photo with them. If there were only 10 photos, then I'd get why you'd want to make sure your biggest threat picked last. But there were thousands of photos, so the odds were in everyone's favor that they would find something inspirational. Off the bat, my favorite photo was Emilio's only because little Sophie is freaking adorable. But the headline "Sophie's Choice"...not so much. I'm glad Emilio didn't go with that.

My favorite workroom moment of this episode was probably brushed off by many, but it literally made me laugh out loud. While talking to Joanna, Ivy said in reference to her photo of a butterfly, "You don't really realize that a caterpillar can turn into something as beautiful as a butterfly." Really?! A caterpillar turns into a butterfly?! Shut. The. Front. Door. I have nothing but love for Ivy, but for the moment, I'm calling her Captain Obvious. (And for the record, I LOVED her final look.)

Normally this is the part of the recap where I break down the final looks, but I'm in an unusually sassy mood, so what I thought would be fun is to take some of the final designs and show you what I (or what the All Stars) think the designs really look like...and it's not the original photos!

Project Runway All Stars Season 2 Episode 4 AltheaAlthea's pants suit screamed to me, "Beverly Hills, what a thrill!" It was very Wilderness Girl-chic.

Project Runway All Stars Season 2 Episode 4 EmilioJudge Carolyn Murphy said she'd looked like a Chinese lantern if she wore Emilio's dress. You be the judge.

Project Runway All Stars Season 2 Episode 4 Joshua"Rainbow colors will cheer you up." I don't disagree with Ivy when she said that Joshua's dress looked like Rainbow Brite.

Project Runway All Stars Season 2 Episode 4 KayneCasanova saw a "Parisian prostitute with a chicken in the head." I saw a tacky version of the lovely Kate Middleton.

Project Runway All Stars Season Tavi GenvinsonAnd for fun, the resemblance between guest judge Tavi Gevinson and Michelle Williams is uncanny.

I think from the beginning it was very clear that Anthony Ryan was going to win this challenge. I thought his photo gave him a solid, clear vision of what his design should look like, and his dress was chic without being overly slutty. There are very few designs that I see on the runway that I would wear, but this I would pay full price for!

As for my dear Andrae, next episode I'm going to see the designers gathered at the edge of the runway and think, "Where's Andrae?" I'm going to miss you and your large vocabulary and Muppet-like movements.

Which look was your favorite this episode? Did you also think Anthony Ryan was the clear winner?

Photos: All Runway: Courtesy of Lifetime; Chinese lantern: IRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images; Kate Middleton: David Crump - WPA Pool/Getty Images; Michelle Williams: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images