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Project Runway All Stars Blog

Kara's Exit Interview

By Tracy_Goldenberg 02/21/2012 04:37PM GMT

We were happy to ride the emotional rollercoaster along with Kara Janx on "PRAS," but now that the ride has finished, we're hoping the Season 2 vet will just, like, invite us over for a home-cooked family meal or something! After her teary Episode 7 departure, Kara turned on that ol' Southern [African] charm and discussed her friendships on the show, her business persona and which man in her life drops her legendary "Project Runway" "pee pee" line on command.

Kara Janx Project Runway All StarsLisa: How has it been since last episode?
Kara:
Well, it’s good. I mean, you know what’s coming so it’s no surprise to me. But it’s really so emotional, I had to turn off the episode.

Do you watch every week?
Oh, of course, of course. I’m completely addicted and hooked. I want to see what went down for sure!

How do you feel about the way you were portrayed this time around?
I look like I’m panicking constantly and for the most part, I am. But a lot of that is my process, a lot of that is sort of how I deal with my creative energy. I anticipate having some self-doubt — it’s like, “panic, panic, make beautiful clothes, panic, panic.â€ù I’m so professional and I have such a strong business persona butâ€_ it’s very bizarre. It’s also just the difference from my regular life, being in a reality TV format. It’s just a different environment and I handle different things obviously in different ways, so no surprise there.

You mentioned your business persona, and other designers have talked about how you are one of the more successful of the All Stars — you actually sell clothing at Neiman Marcus, is that correct?
Yes I do, thank you. Going into the show, my agenda has always been to translate that into more grand equity. For me, it equals sales. It’s how you market yourself. It’s a direct reflection of your business and how you sort of yield the results of the show with the consequences of the show. For me, it’s always been a business consequence. I work really hard, I’m part of that hamster wheel of showing collections to the retailers in that shuffle and it’s really been good for me because that’s really my niche, that commercial space.

On “All Stars,â€ù you talked a lot about your family and we can see what an influence they are in your work and life. I don’t think you seemed “panickedâ€ù on the show, but more “emotional.â€ù
That’s a much better word for panicked, you’re right, I’m very emotional by nature. I’m very passionate, I’m very outspoken and I’m just sort of an open book. My family is everything to me as it would be to any mother and I go on the show in the best interest for my family, you know what I mean? You leave your kids and go on a show and it’s such a natural thing to miss them and not be at your peak.

On Season 2, I had nothing to lose and I had no personal attachments on the home front and now I have a great husband and beautiful kids and that’s a massive priority for me so if that’s how I went through the show, so be it. For me, it’s important that my kids know I have integrity and that I work really hard and I do what I do with the utmost passion.

What do they think when they watch the show. Or, are they allowed to watch the show?
They’re allowed to watch a little, they watch the recorded version. I think every time they watch it, my little boy laughs and says “snip your pee pee!â€ù My daughter loves Miss Piggy, every time she sees me, she’s like “I always think it’s cool you were with Miss Piggy!â€ù They know mommy was on a TV show and mommy’s on TVâ€_ it’s a very normal thing. Very normal. (laughs)

So they quote your iconic “Project Runwayâ€ù line?
Right because of the commercials, you know in the beginning, now my son just sees and he’s just like “snip your pee pee!â€ù and he just finds it really sort of cute and humorous.

That’s so cute!
It’s so cute. They’re tiny you know? They take it at face value, so it’s nothing. Well, it’s not nothing, it’s just like, “Oh, kids, mommy’s on TV.â€ù

Well, you seem emotional but you also just seem like a mother and that really came across this season. You seemed kind of like the glue that held some of the people in the workroom together.
That’s very complimentary and I love that. I just feel I had some tactic relationships. There was no hidden agenda or malice so I feel like if they asked for advice or if they needed some kind of emotional console, I was there. I didn’t want to be the mother hen and by no means did I set out to do it, but we had such strong bonds and strong friendships. I’m always so gracious to be in that contemporary environment with similar minds. If you go and get those opportunities to be one of the people who are nice about design and competition and all these things, so I definitely like to think that I love them and they love me, so that’s nice.

I heard that you, Rami and Anthony were the Kardashians?
Yeah, my sisters! We were the ‘Dashes. We were our own little family and we loved that because it was our way of leaving that working place and just being our own little thing. It was hilarious, you can imagine how hilarious it was, especially with Anthony. I was Kourtney, you know, I was the one with the kids and the ponytails. I was quite happily Kourtney.

Yes, that’s a good one. Rami said he didn’t know why he was Kim.
He has the physique of Kim! He’s Kim! Like, how do you not know that?! Rami has the physique of Kim, Anthony has the physique of Khloe and I have the psychic of Kourtney. It’s obvious!

Kara and Kenley in the workroomYou also seemed really close with Kenley.
Kenley and I were best, best buddies. I like that she is just an open book, she’s so emotional and we really sort of connected. We both find each other completely hilarious and we just really enjoyed the experience. We went through the journey together. Watching last night reminded me of our special journey together. We were there for each other and we encouraged each other and picked each other up when we were down and, you know, you need that. She’s just a great girl with a lot of fantastic energy and I think sometimes she gets a bad rep and I just adore her, I just absolutely adore her.

Did you know that Mila was so perturbed by your relationship with Kenley? Watching the show, she talks about it almost every episode; did that come across in person?
Well, everybody has their ideal workspace and I think that everyone has to adjust and insert themselves into the environment that they’re in and I don’t know that Mila wants two girls running around, or that she wants a symbiotic, co-dependent type relationship. I don’t mean we were co-dependent, I just think that’s sort of how we are in our lives. I always say that the TV is a direct reflection of who you are in your life. In my season, I had Santino who was loud and crazy and would sing 24/7 but it was funny too and you just got to sit back and look at the situation and accept it so you can really embrace it. It’s difficult for everyone. Everybody works differently.

Next episode, the designers are creating looks based on flags. What country’s flag would you choose as inspiration?
Oh, I think that’s obvious. I would definitely go with the South African flag, for sure and I know its culture and its history and its change.

Do you have an idea of what you might do?
No, no, no, no! I’m not even going there, it’s always funny because whenever I watch seasons before I even knew I was going to be on “All Stars,â€ù I would be like, I can’t believe I did that! Or, I don’t know how they do it! And when I went back I’m like, “I’m going to do it anyway!â€ù But I’m actually not going to try and do it because I don’t know that anyone could give me a challenge again.

Who would you want to win this season now that you’re out of the running?
You know, I’m going to tell you that everyone can and may the best man win but obviously I’m rooting for my peeps, Kenley and Austin. It’s an exceptional challenge, you know, Mondo, Kenley, Austin, just very exceptional. And not easy.

Watch Kara's video exit interview and view her portfolio of work from this season and past collections here!