Project Runway All Stars Recap: Miss Piggy Takes The Runway

On Last night’s episode of Project Runway All Stars, the designers were challenged to make a pig look like a lady. Miss Piggy to be exact!

Hostess Angela Lindvall takes the runway and coyly reveals that the designers will be dressing a world-famous celebrity, known for her red carpet style. The air was breathless with anticipation. And a collective sigh of disappointment escaped when our intrepid sewers learned they were actually dressing a Muppet!

The designers are tasked with dressing Miss Piggy for the red carpet to promote the new Muppet movie. At first I was very annoyed at the obvious product play this challenge presented – and really a dress for a puppet? Nonsense! But the way all the designers and the judges approached the challenge, as if Miss Piggy were a real-live lady, was refreshing in an ironic and fun way. It definitely provided some interesting commentary!


I really wish the requirement had been to make gowns that would actually fit Miss Piggy‘s measurements, but instead the designers made model-sized garments with the winning design recreated for Miss Piggy’s Muppety physique. Miss Piggy’s style is definitely classic, but very girly and outrageous. We know she counts Marilyn Monroe among her fashion icons. She also loves pink and sparkles.

Interestingly, the designers all really seemed to think about Miss Piggy‘s character and carefully consider what she would wear. All but Mila – who again decides to dress herself, cause Mila knows best! Kenley decides that since she and Miss Piggy are pretty much the same person she is going to ace this challenge and then steal Kermie for herself! Kenley is also choosing to dress herself, but her aesthetic luckily coincides well with Miss Piggy’s.

Austin Scarlett was beside himself with glee over the thought of designing for Miss Piggy, because for some reason he is a huge Muppet fan. Was that surprising to anyone else? Austin has an extensive knowledge of The Muppets and Miss Piggy’s personal wardrobe. Which is why it is completely strange to see what he put together.

At Mood many of the designers selected black for Miss Piggy, who is famous for her love of pink. I was happy to see Rami grab polka dots and I was intrigued by Austin’s shiny color palette, but the finished product turned out pretty scary! Kara decides to give Miss Piggy a little sex appeal and honestly it was an interesting approach.

Mentor, Joanna Coles arrives to give the designers her input and really, she is so insightful. I appreciate the very thorough questions she asks of the designers and the way she expects them to concisely explain their decisions and their work. A nice change from the phoning it in Tim Gunn of recent seasons, who merely exists to dole out hugs instead of constructive criticism.

Joanna warns Gordana to be wary of her dress looking too much like a nightgown with the lack of structure. She also cautions Mila against a headband that may constrict Miss Piggy’s prominent ears! She questions Austin’s intention to turn Miss Piggy into someone’s Christmas gift by adorning her with bows from all angles.

After two weeks of a drama-less workroom, there are a few verbal scuffles over the accessory wall. Namely elbow length gloves, which are a Miss Piggy (and Mondo) favorite. Kara wants the exact same pair Mondo does and then the next day Austin has decided to use all the accessories Kara planned on using and already discussed with Joanna. They can’t call dibs? All in all, it was handled maturely and amicably, which is one of the reasons I am enjoying this show.

The other workroom drama comes in the form of the chronically insecure Kara, who has taken up a friendship and partnership with the chronically over-confident Kenley. Oh, Kenley… I never have words for you. Mila is confused about why these two competitors are relying so heavily on each others’ opinions.

BTW: Was it fascination day at the PRAS headquarters? Every other look seemed to contain one.

The guest judges are Eric Daman, Television Stylist and Miss Piggy, Muppet Queen, puppet-sized fashionista and besotted lover of Kermie. Isaac Mizrahi is absent for this challenge.

Ok, let’s trash discuss some looks!

Anthony: I actually really liked this. I’m not usually a huge fan of sheer, but the striping was interesting and I liked the layered peacock skirt. The feathered, bedazzled bib was a bit ridiculous and seemed to eating the bodice of the dress. Something about the arrangement of those feathers was off, but the intent was good. Anthony really is a pageant designer at heart.

Mondo: Flintstones drag queen goes mod. The fabric, the buttons, the shape — all too mod — with no modernizations. This was the first time I truly wasn’t a fan of one of his creations and I was very surprised he was so confident. The construction was impeccable, but he really needed to edit and re-evaluate the look from head to toe. The helmet hair was not doing this any favors.

Kara: YAWN. Cute, but standard. She needs to step it up.

Jerell: This was a vast improvement from last week’s disco maternity gown with a fur boob shield. I actually really liked this and it did look a Miss Piggy dress. The lace epaulets/sleeves were an unnecessary detail and they were competing with everything else going on. These designers are really lacking in editing skills lately, aren’t they?

April: hmmm… this fell into the mix-reviews category for me. I liked the fishtailed hemline and the feathers, but April tragically suffers from an inability to focus and tone it down. Doing so many elements is distracting and it obscures the body and the wearer. A garment for a real-life client should compliment the person wearing it, not make her look like a pregnant, goth Barbie. I hated the babydoll shape of this. Furthermore this is not something Miss Piggy would wear. It clearly has no relationship to this Muppet’s actual style. I’m somewhat surprised she wasn’t called to task for this.


Congratulations Michael: Were the judges seriously this excited about that dress? It does have a lot of Marchesa elements – perhaps that it explains it. I really dislike the exposed zipper – isn’t that out already? This just doesn’t impress me and it’s been done a zillion times. It was a simple dress with some three dimensional ruffle stapled to the front and it didn’t exactly cause me to take a second look!

I was very surprised the judges liked this so much. It’s pretty generic. The judges just didn’t think this would work with Miss Piggy’s silhouette and definitely questioned how the fascinator would work with her ears! A comment Miss Piggy did not appreciate! The judges also wondered if black was her color. Then after all that, Michael won.

Rami: Listen, that is an exact replica of 80’s Lacroix. I have this dress in blue polka dots and it actually is vintage Lacroix. Personally, this was over-reaching – it’s totally Barbie and an absolute costume. Now, I think Rami embraced the challenge and, of course, designing for a Muppet known for her outrageous fashions is definitely something to take into consideration, but this was a little silly. I was surprised that the judges swooned over it since it looks so incredibly costume-y. Really, it was straight up drag show!

I think if the ruffle at the neckline wasn’t there it would work better. As it is though, Parisian Hog Couture. Miss Piggy is a fan. The judges described it as a whimsical and fun dress and thought it worked well given the context. I was shocked he didn’t win given the way they were lavishing praise on him like he invented the polka dot.

Kenley: Kenley designed for herself, but like she said, she and Miss Piggy have a lot in common. This was a really fun, spectacular dress; I love the print and the shape of the skirt. It was definitely a little too ‘direct replica retro’ for my taste (especially with the fascinator) and it looks more like a Kentucky Derby Dress than a red carpet one, but I guess considering that it’s Miss Piggy, it works. My biggest quibble was the construction of the bust. It was totally wonky and ill-fitted. The shape was too boxy because of the square cups and it was not flattering. The boning looked bumpy.

Georgina was right to criticize the construction of it and question if it would work for Miss. Piggy. Good for Kenley for having fun with this, but really she does the same dress every week. She and Mila have a lot in common now that I think about it…


Austin: What a mess! This was just bizarre. It was too busy, with way too much going on. And the bow panniers – I’m sorry unless your dress is as big as a room (aka Scarlett O’Hara) they are not working on any garment. Austin tragically made a runway dress, failing to realize how it would work on the red carpet. And no woman, whether puppet nor girl, wants her hips to be be-bowed.

Additionally, the boudoir color scheme, on top of all the seaming and pleating and stitching was distracting. Even the construction was a mess. There was a lot of puckering at the seams and the bust was a disjointed, unflattering mess.

The judges questioned if this was flamboyant in a classy way or just a draggy one (draggy for the win!)? Eric astutely pointed it out that it looked like 90’s Gucci. Totally, totally Tom Ford inspired– badly done, knock off Tom Ford. None of the judges, including Miss Piggy, understood the bows or the color combination.

Mila: I did not like this at all. She needs to get over the stripes she uses day in and day out. The fabric looked like basketball shorts material. Horrid. This is not Miss Piggy’s aesthetic at all and the judges were right to immediately point that out. Mila only designs for herself, which is totally fine – she can find many women who adore that style – but in this case she blantantly ignored the customer.

The judges really wished there was some color in this and didn’t think Mila had fun with the challenge. Miss Piggy didn’t think it screamed her name. I’m not sure what saved her over Gordana, but if she continues creating the same garment over and over she won’t stick around much longer!

Good-Bye Gordana: I really like this dress, but it just seems so meek. I think it’s a beautiful dress for a woman with quiet sensibilities in her clothing. I can easily see Michelle Williams wearing this and looking stunning. The color and the details are gorgeous, but I think it’s a bit shapeless – particularly on someone as petite as Miss Piggy. Furthermore, this doesn’t connect to Miss Piggy’s very outlandish and vibrant aesthetic.

I really think where Gordana failed was not taking the client’s natural style into consideration. This was twee and youthful to a fault. Miss Piggy doesn’t go for little girl inspired looks — she goes Old Hollywood Glamor. Ultimately, the judges decided Gordana’s look, while well-made and pretty, just didn’t suit the challenge and failed to impress the client.

Next Week: Diane Von Furstenburg gives the designers six hours to do something and Miranda Kerr shows up.