Project Runway contestants with the most successful post-show careers
Project Runway debuted on Bravo in 2014 and has produced some of the best fashion designers. Find out which candidates are having the most success.
Since its creation in 2004, Project track featured more than three hundred designers, and it’s time to talk about the most successful contestants after the show. With 19 seasons under its belt and countless spin-offs in several countries around the world, the series has become a leading vehicle for designers who wish to launch and further their careers in the fashion industry.
Hit show Bravo has faced multiple reports that contestants often don’t get career boosts from appearing on Project track. The series’ producers have been criticized for providing little or no help to the contestants, some of whom attempt to distance themselves from the show after the competition. However, there have been candidates who have thrived. From designing wedding dresses and owning boutiques to collaborating with Disney and dressing celebrities, here are a few contestants who found success after the show.
Unquestionably the most successful competitor, Christian Siriano was named winner of Project track season 4 at the age of 21. Before appearing on the show in 2008, he studied abroad at American InterContinental University, designed bespoke wedding dresses and interned for Marc Jacobs and Alexander McQueen. Christian has since been included in Time Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People of 2018. He has also worked as a senior costume designer for Disney and is a member of the Council of Fashion Designers of America. Her designs have been worn by various celebrities, including Lady Gaga, Cardi B and Michelle Obama. Christian returned to Project track as a mentor in 2019, following the departures of Tim Gunn and Heidi Klum.
Along with Christian Siriano, Chloe Dao, Leanne Marshall and Irina Shabayeva have all had major success since appearing on the show. With nearly 30 years of experience in the fashion industry and a thriving boutique in Houston, Texas, it’s no surprise that Chloe was named the winner of Project track season 2. She has since partnered with QVC, the Susan G. Komen Foundation, and the Salvation Army of Houston, and started an initiative to donate face masks to those in need. She also served as acting executive producer and judge for Vietnam Runway Project back in 2014.
Season 5 winner Leanne Marshall has wowed the fashion industry’s best and brightest at New York Fashion Week since 2008. The wedding dress designer’s signature collection launched in 2011 and is still available in stores and online. Having moved to New York from Portland, Oregon following her win, fans can find Leanne’s flagship design studio and showroom in the Fashion District. Irina, who won the following season, launched a bridal collection exclusively with Kleinfeld, the boutique at the center of TLC say yes to the dress. She also launched a ready-to-wear line and a lingerie collection, dressed several celebrities (including Carrie Underwood and Madonna) and competed on Project Runway All Stars seasons 3 and 7.
Anya Ayoung-Chee and Erin Robertson are other contestants who found success after the show. Anya miraculously won the Season 9 title with only four months of sewing experience. The former pageant queen has since created a resort clothing line. She also runs a boutique and cafe in Trinidad and Tobago and appeared as a mentor in Tim Gunn’s spin-off, Under the gun. A recipient of the Council of Fashion Designers of America’s Teen Vogue Fellowship, Erin won the sometimes scandalous award Project track reality show. She won season 15 in 2016. Erin continued to design for her line, An-Erin, and collaborated on a collection with Starburst candy. His designs have appeared in numerous publications, including Marie Claire, teen vogueand Forbes.
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