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The unconventional challenge might be a favorite of Project Runway fans, but not for designer Casanova, who was eliminated in Thursday’s All Stars episode.
The competitors were tasked with using items from a Christmas store to make non-holiday design. Casanova, a 36-year-old who lives in New York, struggled during the challenge, starting over several times. He created two different looks before finally sending a third — made with items the other designers had bought and didn’t need — down the runway.
He was asked Friday in a conference call with reporters why he struggled so much.
“Of course I can do something amazing out of unconventional items, but I need to do planning,” he said. “During the competition, they reveal the challenge and you have 30 minutes to sketch and do everything, so clearly I don’t have the time for planning.”
Casanova said he also bought too many poinsettias and items that were red and gold, and he realized when he got back to the workroom he didn’t have the kinds of materials he needed to make an outfit that didn’t look like it was made out of Christmas decorations.
“When you are looking around and you see Anthony Ryan with the silver things and Laura Kathleen gets almost the same thing and Uli almost gets the same thing, so I was trying to go away from that color palette and be different,” he added.
Casanova said he also didn’t agree with judge Isaac Mizrahi’s criticism that his designs are more appropriate for an “older” client.
“He came with this comment I have this [tendency] to design for old ladies,” he said, adding: “I don’t do anything at all matronly, so I don’t get where he came with this comment.”
“I’m ready to do something different, something away from fashion,” he said. “Maybe surviving on an island.”
Asked if that meant he’s moving away from being a fashion designer, Casanova replied: “I will die as a fashion designer, but I can do something else. … If I can show I can dance, I will do it. If I can show that I can survive, I will do it. But I won’t go away from fashion; it’s the only thing I know how to do really well.”
Six designers remain on the Lifetime reality competition, which airs at 9 p.m. Thursdays.
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