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Interview with Heidi Klum of "Project Runway" on
Lifetimeís Q&A Session with Heidi Klum ĖPROJECT RUNWAY
Moderator Who can we expect to see as guest judges?
H. Klum Obviously I can never give too many guest judges away, but some
people that I was allowed to mention was Patricia Field. She has been a
stylist. She has a store here in New York City. Sheís very well known
for doing Sex in the City, The Devil Wears Prada. She does a lot of full
movies and television.
Sheís actually been one of our very first judges ever on Project Runway.
She did our very first challenge on our very first season. So we thought
it would be fun to bring her back. She is a very well known New York
woman. I love her very much. So we brought her back ten seasons later.
For our very first challenge that we did in Times Square we also had
Lauren Graham. I can give her away. A lot of people did see her when she
was out with us here in Times Square. Hayden Panettiere has been one of
our guest judges. Also Krysten Ritter, and I think Iím not allowed to
give anymore away.
Moderator Whatís it been like being back for the tenth season for you,
as the host and judge?
H. Klum Itís been amazing. Itís been ten seasons and we all wouldíve
never thought that we would make it this far. Michael always says that
weíre on longer than I Love Lucy, which we always laugh about and I
canít believe it. But he Googled it and he was like, ďThey did so many
seasons and we did ten seasons. Weíre on longer, on television, than I
Love Lucy,Ē and we always laugh about it because we all love I Love
Lucy. Itís amazing. Ten seasons is a milestone. Itís a long time.
And I have to tell you even though weíve been doing it for ten seasons I
still love coming to work every season. I love being with Michael and I
love being with Nina and Tim. Theyíre all so much fun, and we have
become a family.
It is always exciting to see these new designers, to see their story.
They all have a different story to tell and theyíre all passionate.
Theyíre young people that come here with green eyes and not really
knowing 100% what this business is about and theyíre not jaded. Itís
always fun to have these people that are so hungry for it all.
I donít know; we love it. We still laugh and we sit there and have a
great time. So itís exciting and weíre proud you know? Weíre very proud.
I started Project Runway from the very beginning. Going around New York
City trying to sell the show to networks and trying to explain what the
show was all about.
Iím very proud of it. Itís like itís one of my babies. I love the show
and I love what itís become and weíve got a lot of fans and itís become
a cult. Not a cult, but an iconic kind of show that people recognize and
weíre all very proud of it.
Moderator Can you tell us how you think this group of designers compares
to past groups, in terms of talent level?
H. Klum Itís always hard to compare because I never like to say that
this season we have more talented designers than previous seasons
because they were all always talented. And each season fashion evolves
and fashion becomes different and so do our designers. I think we have
some on this season that are not that talented and we quickly see that.
We have some that are really amazing that have come up with new things
where we sit there and weíre like, ďWow, we havenít seen anything like
that,í or, ďYou have a different technique.Ē
So itís always mixed. There are always some designers there that arenít
that great that weíre hoping to be better and they just arenít. And then
there are some that blow us away and they do beautiful work in the time
that they have. So itís always both, good and bad Ö
Moderator How would you say that they compare in terms of temperament?
Some seasons are more dramatic than others. Is this one more dramatic or
more low key?
H. Klum Itís also mixed. Our show is based on talent. Itís not based on
having characters on. I feel like there are so many shows out there that
just put people on because they look a certain way or they talk in a
certain way or theyíre goofy and funny or they do a lot for show or they
do a lot for TV.
I think weíre had longevity of a great show because it is about fashion
and that is the main focus about our show. I think thatís why people
appreciate what we put on the air. That itís not about gossip and who
sleeps with whom and who does what and who is getting on whoís nerves.
Obviously, when things happen, we do show some of it, but this is not
what our show is based on. Our show is based on fashion and I think
people appreciate that and I think thatís why we have been out for so
But, people in the fashion industry; theyíre very proud and they are
designers and they stand behind what they make. So thereís always
friction and thereís always jealousy amongst them and they think one did
something better than the other. That always happens.
Moderator My daughters were 12 and 11 ten seasons ago when they said I
had to come watch this show in which people went to a grocery store and
had to create fashion.
So Iím wondering in all that time, are there any particular fashions
that stand out? Any finished products as being just your absolute
favorites or maybe something that was just the worst thing in ten
seasons that you saw?
H. Klum I personally always love the pieces that actually get to go out
there in the real world. Weíve done things for example with Banana
Republic where people could buy things or where they created something
for Barbie to wear. I mean obviously I love the challenges where they
have to use unconventional materials and yes, those pieces do stand out
We had, for example, a challenge with a car where they had to use
materials that were part of the car. Someone made a beautiful trench
coat out of seatbelts or the mirror of the car and broke it and made
jewelry out of it or it was part of the dress. They get really creative
when they donít actually have fabrics and I always love that.
The same with Austin Scarlett and his very first challenge, which was
also a big thing for us, was Project Runway going to work or not when we
did the challenge where they had to go to the grocery store and Austin
Scarlett made this cornhusk dress. So I love those too.
But I like the pieces that actually go out there for people to buy,
because our designers are so proud when people can actually buy their
pieces. Theyíve designed things for me for my New Balance line before
and people can buy this and they can say, ďOh yes, this is one of the
Project Runway designers.Ē Or for example, this season the designers get
to design a new outfit for the Rockettes.
This is something that will go down in history, and I love that, because
even 10 or 20 seasons down the line when people do documentaries about
the Rockettes and their costumes, it is something that will never go
away. That is not something that will be forgotten.
I went to Radio City Hall and I saw all the costumes that they had on
the mannequins. Theyíve been around since the 40s, and now there are all
these beautiful show outfits that theyíve worn and now there will be one
for all the 39 Rockettes that a Project Runway designer did. I love
that. It really means that we were part of other things too than just
Project Runway. Itís great for these designers.
That also is one of my favorite challenges. I always love it when
reality all of the sudden comes into it and people get to see their
design in different places than just on our runway.
Moderator If you had to choose any designer right now to make you a red
carpet dress, can you possibly sayó?
H. Klum Yes. I have to say Christian Siriano because weíve become
friendly over the seasons. Heís a little Jack Russell. He does not give
up. Heís the kind of person that jumps up and down on you and then makes
it happen. Heís not someone that falls asleep somewhere in his Lazy.
Heís definitely someone, and you have to be like that.
The squeaky wheel getsówhat is it? Gets the grease? He squeaks all the
time. Heís like, ďI got new things.Ē Heís like, ďÖ Klum I have to send
you things. Oh, my God, this is fabulous,Ē and, ďWhat are you wearing
for this event? What are you wearing for that?Ē He always makes sure
that you donít forget about him too, which is important. And he then
also comes up with the goods. He makes beautiful clothes.
So I like his personality. I like that he hustles, because thatís what
you have to do. Itís a very competitive world out there and there are
many great designers. Yes, I can get big designer names. He calls and
heís like, ďIím going to make something.Ē
So last season for the Emmyís I wore a Christian Siriano and Iím proud
to wear his clothes. He worked to the last second to make it special and
I love that about him. So I would pick him, Iíve worn many of his
outfits over the seasons.
Moderator Iím noticing that we donít have any Portland designers on this
season, but we have had several designers from Portland over the
seasons, including the two winners; Seth Aaron Henderson and Gretchen
Jones. I wanted to ask you, because we here in Portland donít think of
ourselves as very fashionable and we seem so far away from what we think
of as the big world of fashion, do you have any idea why people from
Portland have done well in terms of getting on a show like Project
H. Klum I think that creativity is in a person or itís not. It doesnít
matter where you come from. You can be from the smallest town somewhere
in the middle of nowhere but thereís the Internet. There are books.
Even if you have never traveled the world, you are either interested and
you learn about fashion and you want to be part of it or you donít. So
it doesnít matter if you come from New York City or any other fashion
city or if you come from a smaller town.
Michael Kors, for example, heís from New York City. He grew up here and
his mother is very fashionable and he kind of got in there in a
different way, but there are a lot of people that have made it in this
industry that come from all over the world. So it doesnít matter if you
come from a big city or a small town.
Moderator Do you have any advice to the people here in Portland who
would love to have a career in fashion? Any advice for them on what they
need to do?
H. Klum I think definitely the people that have been on Project Runway
all got a huge casting platform. People had seen them and even if they
maybe wouldíve not won I think they had a great opportunity to showcase
what they can do.
If youíre a designer and if you want to design for the masses or if you
want to design for a big fashion house or for a big name, you just have
to be where those designers are. If you want to design for Michael Kors
or Giorgio Armani or Ralph Lauren you have to be in those places and
try. You have to show your book and you have to show what you can do and
you have to go to school before. I mean there are definitely things that
these places will check off in order for you to work for them, if that
is what you want to do.
Some people want to be designers but want to design maybe and have a
small line and have a small store within your town. Not everyone wants
to design for a big label. Some designers might just want to design for
their town. Everyone has a different ambition and everyone wants to
design different things. Some people want to design out of old antiques
and sit on the flea market every Sunday and Saturday and sell their
fashion there. Everyone has different vision, a different point of view
on what they want to sell and thereís nothing wrong with that.
Our show is about designers who want to break into the real fashion
world, that want to show a New York Fashion week that have the critics
criticize them. Someone who designs for a smaller town, say in Portland,
might not necessarily hear about it, but that is okay too. That is great
too if thatís how you want to make your living and if thatís what
fulfills you. It doesnít have to be all big and in the fashion world.
You can also be a designer on a smaller scale.
Moderator Is there one memory that stands out in your mind from the
first day or from the first season that you knew that you had something
special on your hands?
H. Klum Yes. I always say it was after the very first challenge. The
very first challenge I gave the designers $50 and one day and they had
to go to the grocery store. I was so worried about this. The producers
and I were all sitting together beforeóbecause we had other more normal
challenges also, but we thought Ö unconventional material challenge.
That will either set the tone and either showcase the designerís talent
or we will just tank because it will all look like arts and crafts
So we were a little bit worried about it, but at the same time we jumped
in the cold water and we just gave it a shot. I just have to say
afterwards Iím so happy that we did because the very first episode set
the tone of what the showís all about. Itís about creativity,
innovation; people who have great talents and can really make clothes
out of anything. We wanted to make sure of that.
Not every piece of clothing that they made was supposed to be worn; each
challenge is a different challenge. I loved that about the show and I
still do. We rack our brains every season to come up with new challenges
to surprise the audience, to surprise even our designers.
I donít want them to sit in front of me and theyíre like, ďOh okay, she
gives us a few hints. Thatís means weíre going to do that.Ē We donít
want that. So every time we really think about coming up with new
things. It is difficult after so many seasons, but I feel like we still
Moderator Since there are so many trends that are coming back, like the
90s trends with all the neon and even the parachute pants, is there one
trend from the 90s that you just donít want to come back at all?
H. Klum I was never the biggest fan of the gigantic shoulder pads, for
example. I know everyone did it. If it wasnít overly huge, maybe I did
wear one or two of those jackets, but really to me that does not look
I like the MC Hammer pants. I even like the stonewashed jeans, the
ripped jeans when they come and go or the 70s, if theyíre low or high
wasted or the neon. I do like those trends when they come back because
they never really come back exactly how they were. I think the designers
today do take those ideas but then they make them new again for this
time around. But definitely I never loved those gigantic shoulder pads.
I can live without those.
Moderator I know you spoke about the Rockettes challenge, but can you
talk about any other challenges this season that weíll see on the show?
H. Klum We did this big one in Times Square. I donít know if you guys
heard about it. My dream was always to bring the show out on the street
so fans could stop by and watch the fashion show. Iíve been nagging on
about it for many seasons and this season I finally got the yea.
So we did our very first episode in Times Square where the designers had
to make two outfits. One outfit they had to do at home to showcase who
they are as a designer and then we gave them a choice when they came to
New York City where they had to make another second look and then we
We had like a big stage in Time Square and we had hundreds and hundreds
of fans there. They were really nervous. They didnít know we were going
to do this so they all had shaky knees and they were scared to go out in
front of such a big audience. It was a lot of fun.
Moderator Are there any other new contestants that we should keep our
eye on? Could you point to anyone in particular?
H. Klum I canít really tell you; otherwise you know already whoís going
to stay a little longer. I can tell you another challenge. We had one
where they had to make clothes out of candy. We actually went to Ralph
Laurenís daughterís storeó
So we went to the Dylan Candy Store and they loved it. I loved it too. I
love the unconventional challenge when they get to make clothes out of
things that are not fabric. .
Moderator As a mom, are there any Project Runway designers either from
the current season or the past seasons that you would like to see do a
H. Klum Itís funny you should ask. You definitely have to watch this
season because there might be something very interesting about that.
There will definitely be something like that incorporated in this tenth
I know that some designers have gone into baby clothes. I think Seth
Aaron actually did or Jeffrey Sebelia, very punk, a little bit more rock
and roll. Itís a little harder. You should definitely watch this season.
There will be something along those lines.
Moderator As far as your own kids go, do you have as much fun dressing
them up as you do yourself or have they kind of developed their own
senses of style now?
H. Klum Well some do and some donít. I mean Lou and Johan didnít really
care that much about clothes. They like when they have cool things on
and theyíre in the mirror, but my fashionistas are definitely Henry and
Henry changes clothes ten times a day and he wants to be very cool. I
mean he would wear a t-shirt and then he will wear a tie just around his
neck, knotted, and then a belt over the t-shirt. He does very unusual
ways of dressing where Iím like, ďReally? You want to put the belt over
t-shirt and the tie around your neck?Ē And heís like, ďYes, mom. Iím
We have a rule in our house. Rule number one is always to look cool, and
rule number two is donít forget rule number one. Then we have other
rules like you canít walk down the street without holding hands or you
canít go in an elevator without an adult. So we have all these different
rules, but rule number one is always to look cool. They know that, and
Leni and Henry take that very seriously. But I let them dress the way
they want to do it. I donít really tell them what to wear.
Moderator Even the younger ones pick out their outfits sometimes?
H. Klum Yes, I mean out of their closet but not so much when we go
shopping. Lou has one polka dot leopard dress that she loves and then
she will say, ďMamma, I have my polka dot leopard dress on.Ē So she does
acknowledge what sheís wearing. Sheís Ö in clothes instead of naked. She
will say what she has on if she likes it, but sheís not that fussy about
Moderator We have been hearing gossip that a couple of the designers
left the show early under unusual circumstances. I wondered if thatís
going to be something weíll see on the show itself and if you could tell
us anything about it?
H. Klum Yes, you will definitely see it on the show. This has never
happened to us before. I think they just couldnít make it work. We
always say, ďMake it work. Make it work.Ē They just could not make it
work and in the morning they were gone. They literally packed up their
bags and ran off in the middle of the night when everyone was sleeping.
We just couldnít believe it either.
You would think that a grownup would say, ďThanks, but I canít make it
work. Iíve got to go early or something. This is something that a kid
would do, but we were all very surprised. But if people canít make it
work then leave the spot for someone else that wants to make it work.
Moderator Iím sorry you lost the cast but it should make for interesting
viewing. I was wondering if the designers will be designing anything for
any of your lines?
H. Klum Yes, yes, yes, yes.
Moderator I know you said that you want more challenges out in the
street. How else do you see the show evolving for future seasons?
H. Klum I mean this was already something very difficult for us to go
outside. I would love to go overseas maybe for future seasons where we
go to other fashion cities, such as Paris or Milan or Ö. We would love
that. Itís difficult.
We are definitely not one of the gigantic budget shows that are out
there. Weíre still in a way very documentary style. We do everything at
Parsons. Parsons is the design school. Right now Iím in a classroom
before I go downstairs onto the runway, because itís summer time right
now so there arenít any classes here at Parsons.
Other shows they have stages and they have budgets to travel all over
the place. We donít. Everything really happens here at the school.
Michael and Nina, theyíre next door. Thereís another classroom. Theyíre
getting ready. Iím getting ready in this classroom and then we meet
downstairs on the runway.
Itís very gritty. Itís not very Hollywood letís say. So itís hard for us
to travel to different countries and that kind of thing. Iím fighting
for that. I would love for that to happen, that we can maybe go to Paris
Ö Fashion Week or visit some of the great designers that are more
settled over there that we can have as guest judges because some donít
travel here. So I would like to bring my designers over there.
But I feel like with this first challenge that weíre doing in Times
Square where we made a big push that cost them a lot of money to put the
runway on Times Square and book that spot for a few hours. So weíre
making baby steps in the right direction.
Moderator Since Project Runway has paved the road for so many other
fashion reality shows, is there more pressure now to be better than the
competition? How do you deal with that?
H. Klum I think thereís always competition in any job that you do and we
just try to be true to what Project Runway is all about. I definitely
think that we were one of the first ones who did a reality show about
fashion. Thatís why it was so hard to sell the show to begin with
because people were always saying to us, ďWhy would someone want to
watch how clothes are being made?Ē
We had to explain why it is interesting to show the talent of people,
that they make something beautiful out of a piece of fabric or
unconventional materials. So yes, there are definitely a lot of shows
that have originated from Project Runway. And to the sense even though
there are competitions Iím kind of proud of that too, because we started
Competition doesnít make you rest and just sit on the couch with your
feet up. I think it also pushes you to still work very hard at it. Even
though we are doing the tenth season we still all love coming to work
and we work all very hard making new challenges and thinking of new
ideas and keeping it fresh. Even though weíve been doing it for ten
seasons we still want to keep it fresh and exciting for all viewers. We
definitely do not fall asleep over here. And with competition, it makes
you work harder in a way.
Moderator Since fashion has become even more accessible nowadays, how do
you approach the challenges now as compared to other seasons? Is it that
H. Klum We just try to think of challenges for them to do that they
havenít done before. We try to think outside of the box. Obviously there
are still challenges that are attached to certain companies so that we
get their clothes out for people to buy. I always think that thatís
important. Itís important to our fans to be able to buy the clothes and
itís important for our designers to be seen out there. So we just try to
keep that same mixture as weíve always had, but we donít really look at
We try to come up with new challenges, and we do. We do. I donít know
how, but we always do. We brainstorm. We come up with things and then we
have conference calls. We meet and then we mull it over. Someone sparks
an idea and then someone else finishes that idea off. Weíve all known
each other for a long time and so itís a lot of back and forth and we do
come up with new things. We always do.
Moderator Iím curious about how you choose what youíll wear on the show
when you present the challenges to the designers? I was wondering do you
purposefully try to wear something that wonít give them ideas when
youíre presenting a task or is that not part of the consideration?
H. Klum Yes, I donít think about the challenges or what Iím wearing. My
outfit never has anything to do with what the challenge is about.
I do have a stylist. Her name is Maryam Malakpour. What we do is we
basically have one or two days of fittings. Many different designers
send things to me, some designers that are big and some new designers. A
lot of Project Runway designers will send me things. Then I basically
for like four or five hours try clothes on and then we create the look
so that when I come to work I donít have to think about what I have to
wear. So we do all of that before the season starts.
It never used to be like that when we first started. When we first
started I was in my own closet. I was like, ďWhat am I going to wear?Ē
Also being ten seasons ago I was not having the closet that I have today
and not the kind of clothes that you have to have when you do a
television show about fashion. As a model, you go to a job and then you
wear the designerís clothes but you donít really own all of that in your
I didnít really have a stylist in the beginning. So when you see all the
old episodes of when I come out sometimes Iím in jeans and in a strange
top or whatever, thatís what I had in my closet. So Iím very thankful
that we have grown in that sense that we can now afford a stylist who
can help me.
Moderator You always look so great. I was wondering what was your
experience like when you shot the Project Runway print ad with all the
scissors. Were you scared or were you just like, ďLetís do it. Itís not
a big deal.Ē
H. Klum Actually I put a video on my Facebook page if you guys want
toóbecause a lot of people thought it was retouched, that I just did a
photo in my lingerie and that the scissors were kind of put around me
afterwards. So I wanted to let people see how it was done.
No, they had basically all the scissors laying on this piece that was in
the shot and they kind of left a gap for me in the middle so I could
just like lay right down in the middle of it. The photographer was above
me on kind of like a little cherry-picker crane, something like that,
and just shot down on me. It was fun.
Iím used to wearing lingerie from my Victoriaís Secret days. I was happy
that I actually got to wear something. Last season I had to be
completely naked. I donít know if you guys remember Ö from last season.
So I was happy that I got something on this time around.
Moderator Can you touch a bit on the challenges again? Are there any
particular challenges over the seasons that you thought would never work
that were a success? In turn, is there anything youíd like to try that
you havenít yet?
H. Klum Challenges that didnít workóLast season it was, unfortunately,
one of my ideas. I was wearing stilts one season on Halloween. I was a
gigantic robot from the future and so I thought it would be really cool
if we did a runway show and we called it ďLarger than LifeĒ where the
designers make an outfit for models that are on stilts, because I
thought that it would really create more of a dramatic show with a lot
of volume, in terms of fabric and flowiness when they walk over the
I have to say I was very disappointed in what the designers came up
with. They came up with weird kind of clown pants. They werenít as
fashionable as I wanted that challenge to be. So that unfortunately was
not as cool as I thought it would be.
I think it was still dramatic, but they just thought too surfacey or
something. They were thinking too much costume instead of fashion. I
thought that you could still make a real fashion outfit and then just
have it on stilts, but it just went the other way.
Moderator What do you feel it is about the show in particular that
continues to resonate so well with viewers?
H. Klum I think viewers like when they see people who have maybe a job
at a completely different place. For example a bank or some who maybe
still go to school for something or a lawyer, and their passion is also
design and theyíre really good at sewing and coming up with great things
and here they are on Project Runway living a dream that is within them
too. I think that people like to see that. They like to see people who
have a talent with something. I think thatís why it works.
I think also thatís why itís great to see those shows where people have
another talent, like signing for example. Where you see these people who
have a completely different job but then theyíre on television belting
it out. They have this amazing voice, this hidden talent.
I think people enjoy watching that dream of another person, that dream
that these people have. You fight for them. You root for them. You want
them to do well and you want to see what they can come up with.
Moderator I noticed there are a lot of gay competitors on this season. I
was going to ask about Gunner. Could you talk about how he didnít make
it last season and what made your decision to have him in this season?
H. Klum We were thinking about Gunner. He came last season and he didnít
make it. He had this dress that confused us. It was kind of this
prom-looking gown that he had and it was just not very on trend or
fashion forward. It was very Cinderella, old school, and we just did not
believe in him that much.
I think he grew in that season and he showed us a lot of great things.
He showed us that he evolved as a designer so we wanted to give him a
shot. Last season we didnít give him a shot and this season we wanted to
give him a shot. So he made it on the show and heís a good designer.
We like it when weíre wrong. We like it when they prove us that weíre
wrong, that theyíre better than expected. Heís fun. Heís a fun guy and
he deserves to be here.
Moderator Are you going to bring your book signing to Chicago? Weíd love
to have you here.
H. Klum Iím here in New York right now and Iím filming so I was able to
go. Iím going on Friday. It is not my book. I wrote a little bit for it
and there are definitely some of my stories in there, but itís not my
personal book. Itís the showís book and someone else wrote the book. I
was very excited that they asked me if I would go to Barnes & Nobles on
Friday and sign a little bit, but Iím not going to go on a book tour.
Moderator What has been your most awkward moment ever when filming
H. Klum Well for me a lot of the times I would make my outfits too short
and then I have to sit in the directorís chairs and I literally have to
tell the camera man to please keep me from the waist up, because no
matter how I cross my legs itís always too short. Michael is like, ďPut
your cards on your lap. Put your cards on lap.Ē But that is for me,
personally, one of my awkward moments.
I would do my fitting and Iím like, ďThis is too long. Letís shorten
it.Ē And then we would shorten it and then we get it back and I
shortened it too much and I forgot I have to sit in this dress and then,
oops, it all rides upóyes, so thatís an awkward moment for me. But then
I have to make it work because I donít have anything else to wear for
Moderator Well speaking of the judging segment, do you ever have moments
where you feel sorry for the stressed out and the sleep deprived
H. Klum Of course I do. Sometimes I feel bad. I launch into this whole
thing, what I donít like about this and how I donít understand why you
came up with something like this. The challenge was X, Y and Z and you
just gave it away and youíre such a designer. I launch into a whole
thing and then afterwards Iím like, ďOh no, now I feel really bad that I
said all of that.Ē
I fight for them. I fight for them and I root for them and I sit there
and I want them to do good and I donít understand sometimes why they do
these things where I know that they can be so much better because
theyíve shown it to me before. And afterwards I sometimes think, ďWow
that came out rather harsh.Ē
Moderator Iím from Argentina and we have a Project Runway here too, the
Latin version. I was wondering if you have ever considered doing an
international all-stars like you did last season or to bring some of the
elements of international versions to the main Project Runway?
H. Klum Maybe that is something we can do after this season is over.
Maybe we can incorporate other countries or maybe go to other countries.
For me it is hard to goóyou mean for me to go to Argentina and other
Moderator Or bring the internal all-stars participants or the winners
from different Project Runwaysó
H. Klum Together and then they can compete?
H. Klum I think that is a great idea. We should definitely do something
like that. To have a Project Runway winner from Argentina or from
Germany or from Italy, all those winners, to bring them together and do
an all-stars. I think thatíd be great. Then all the countryís winners
can fight with each other. Who is the best designer?
Moderator I guess everybody on that team must be working like crazy to
get something new in a ten-season old show.
H. Klum Not so much Tim, Nina and Michael. They donít really participate
in the producing of the show. I do that with the producers of the show.
Itís people that no one really knows. We work behind the scenes and we
work months and months in advance before we start shooting.
But it is definitely hard because you want it to always be good. It
definitely is hard to always come up with new things. When youíve been
around for so long it is hard, but we do always pull it together. We do
always make it happen. It always works out. We always do come up with
Moderator Whatís the difference between how you leave the show when
youíre making it and the things that we as viewers get to see? For
instance, I always think that maybe that was not the dress or why did
this guy do this stuff and then we see something different on the show.
Maybe you get to see a different aspect?
H. Klum Iím sure there are a lot of people in the audience that think
why are we judging the way weíre judging, but I think thatís normal. I
think also a lot of people who are maybe not in the fashion industry
will look at things differently. They would say, ďOh but that was so
But then when we talk about a certain outfit and we say, ďHonestly, this
is very much a knockoff of what Prada did four seasons ago and he did
exactly the same thing,Ē then we donít appreciate that. But maybe a
person whoís not in the fashion industry does not know that Prada did a
certain something four seasons ago. Do you see what I mean?
So sometimes there are certain aspects as to why someone continues and
why someone doesnít and each challenge is different. Sometimes we also
think about the challenge. This person wasnít particularly very good but
we believe in this designer. He did all the other challenges. He did a
really a good job. And sometimes we say, ďOkay, therefore weíre going to
keep this person in.Ē We give them a last chance.
Each week is different. Thereís always a reason why they continue on or
why they donít. Normally you cannot always explain to everybody why that
is or that everyone will always understand why that is. We do try to
explain it when we do the Q&A with the designers and why we like it and
why we donít like it, but maybe it doesnít always come across as well as
Moderator How have you and other judges grown relationship wise in the
past nine seasons?
H. Klum We know each other so well. We have lunch together almost every
day when weíre shooting. We talk about the theater. Michael is really
into the theater and he talks about things that he just saw. We just
talk. Weíre friends. He asks about my kids and what Iím up to. He brings
his husband, Lance, and then we all chat. Nina talks about her children.
So we always have a good time together catching up. Itís always a very
intense time when weíre together. Itís nice. Itís very comforting to
work with people that you know and love and have fun with. We laugh a
lot together. Itís not hard for us to do this. We really enjoy what
Moderator When you guys are all exhausted and overwhelmed from filming
this show whatís your favorite place to go hang out and unwind with the
other judges in New York?
H. Klum To be honest, we donít really see each other that much outside
from being here. We all have lives and people in our lives that we want
to spend time with. Michael works a lot. He has a whole fashion house
that he has to run and when he doesnít do that heís here on Project
Runway. Nina does Marie Claire Magazine. She has children. She has a
husband. So when sheís not here sheís with her family or sheís at work.
And itís the same for me. On days off Iím with my family.
We shoot until like 8:00 at night. We donít go out afterwards. When we
spend all day together we all go to our personal lives and weíre all
with our families. Thatís what I do on my days off. I do things with the
children. We go to the theater or we go to the water park. Yesterday we
went to see Brave. Every day I have off I do things with the kids. So I
donít really spend that much time outside of being here with them for so
many weeks. Then everyone does their own thing.
Moderator Whoís been your favorite guest appearance so far and who would
you want to come on someday?
H. Klum Favorite guest, itís hard. Weíve had some great people on. I,
for example, personally love Bob Mackie. Iím a huge Barbie collector and
I have all of Bob Mackieís Barbies and all the special Barbies. So when
I met him for the first time I was really like, ďI love you Bob Mackie.Ē
For some of the designers maybe it was more like Christina Aguilera or
like a Victoria Beckham. I donít know. Everyone has a different kind of
excitement for a certain person. For some people, the bigger the star
the more excited they are. For me it wasóI love Bob Mackie, for example.
So everyone has a different guest judge.
Some actresses that have been here that Iím personally friendly with, I
obviously love having them here. Debra Messing is a friend of mind.
Sheís been here in the past. I love having people who I spend personal
time with. Having them on here is always fun too.
Moderator For you personally, what do you tend to weigh more heavily on,
idea or execution? I mean obviously the best designs on the show are
excellent in both, but which do you tend to value more?
H. Klum If itís one idea that is so amazing, that is so different from
anything Iíve ever seen before, then Iím not that strict on execution.
Like if the hem is crooked or if itís something like that. But if itís a
very simple dress and then the execution is bad, then I donít know why
that person is necessarily here.
Itís a design show. Itís about design. So itís not about making basics.
Itís not about making a basic pair of black pants or a basic t-shirt or
a basic blouse or a basic dress. Itís a design show. So they have to
come up with really innovative, new designs. If there is one thatís
really stunning, then Iím not as harsh on them if the hem if off.
Moderator What do you guys look for when selecting contestants? Whatís
the ďitĒ factor that makes people get chosen?
H. Klum When we do the casting so many different people come to the
casting. Sometimes people bring the craziest things to the casting, like
t-shirts with studs in them or they knock things together but not in a
cool way. Itís clear they havenít seen the show. They donít know how
hard it is to be on there.
You have to be able to sew. You have to do all these things and theyíre
like, ďOh,Ē or they just want to come for shock value or some bring
things where you know clearly they have not done that. Where someoneís
cut the label out and theyíll just show you that. There are numbers of
people who were fake or not really real.
Itís difficult for us to kind of weed through all of these people, but
then that person just all of the sudden walks in the door and they would
have some clothes where we raise our eyebrows and go, ďOh wow, thatís
cool. Tell me more about yourself and what your point of view is and who
you are and who youíre designing for.Ē They can also string sentences
together and they can actually have an idea on who they are and whom
theyíre designing for.
So itís kind of like a little bit of all of that. Come with some great
clothes and know who you are, because you do need to know who you are as
a designer if you want to be here and show your point of view.
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