Mondo Guerra Recaps 'Project Runway: All Stars': 'Tis the Season to Be Gluing

It's time for the unconventional challenge, as the designers raid a Christmas store for materials to create a non-holiday look.

[Warning: Spoilers ahead if you haven’t seen Thursday's episode.]

Christmas came early for the all-stars this week when Carolyn Murphy revealed everybody’s favorite -- the glue gun challenge! I mean, the unconventional challenge.

The designers get $350 to spend at the Christmas store for materials to create an innovative, non-Christmas look. The winner of this challenge will receive a watch from de Grisogono as a special present.

The remaining seven designers are also hoping to impress special guest judge Kylie Minogue. Let the glue gun battle begin!

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In the Workroom

Some designers are reliving their past struggles with the unconventional challenge. Emilio chose purple materials to distance his design from Christmas colors but he seems overwhelmed by the task.

Uli, on the other hand, is in trim heaven. She has a clear vision and focus for her dress. The problem is another designer may be out to steal her thunder. Anthony Ryan is also attempting a mixed appliqué approach.

Joshua grabbed what he thought was some sparkly blue fabric. Turns out, it was the case for a Hanukkah decoration. Oops! He needs to come up with a plan B quickly.

Meanwhile, Casanova has already gone through plans B and C. He can’t seem to find his direction. Finally, he resorts to recycling the other designers’ leftovers as an emergency.

On the Runway

Lala Anthony joins Kylie Minogue as a guest judge. Then it’s show time!

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Here’s what I thought about the looks this week:

Since Uli and Anthony Ryan’s looks were so similar to me, I came up with this:

Let’s start with Uli—beautiful design, excellent execution. Overall, the perfect holiday cocktail dress. Reminds me a lot of Marchesa.

Now, Anthony Ryan. Although his dress was well executed and the design is divine, compared to Uli’s it was a designer imposter. Think Marchesa vs. “Marquesa.”

Ivy: I enjoyed this dress. I think Ivy did something new for this challenge and her dress did not remind me of a Christmas store. She was one of the few that didn’t give me a Narnia moment. I was sad that she was in the bottom.

Joshua: I like the architectural approach to the top and the hot pant was a good idea. He didn’t just send a dress down the runway like everyone else, which I appreciated.

Emilio: Gift wrap gone wild. That is all.

Casanova: I was proud of Casanova for not giving up. Even though he went through a few designs, what really impressed me about him was that he wasn’t afraid to ask the other designers for help.

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Laura Kathleen: I think the dress was pretty. There could have been some editing. It didn’t need the whole Christmas kitchen sink. I loved the styling, concepts and the pockets. Good work.

The Judges’ Decisions

In the end, the judges named Uli the ice queen while Casanova was left out in the cold.

Did the judges get it right? Sound off in the comments below.

Denver fashion designer Mondo Guerra earned a runner-up finish on Project Runway season eight then went on to claim victory on the debut season of Project Runway All Stars. In addition to an upcoming guest editor position at Marie Claire, Mondo has also launched I Design, a new HIV/AIDS education campaign with Merck. To learn more about Mondo, visit