EXCLUSIVE! Former 'Project Runway' Contestants Tell Season Eight Designers How To Win Over The Judges!

Thu, July 29, 2010 3:22pm EST by Add first Comment

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Want to know how to get on the Project Runway judges’ good sides? Past season contestants Althea and Chris share the tricks of the trade!

Ever wonder how Christian Siriano got on the Project Runway judges’ good side? Not surprisingly, it took a lot of hard work and talent! But fortunately for the designers competing on the upcoming eighth season, we’ve got some insider tips that might just help them win! We caught up with two designers from season six, Althea Harper and Christopher Straub, on July 28 at the Project Runway premiere party at the Empire Hotel in NYC, and they gave us crucial directions for the show’s newbies:

  1. “Focus on your designs,” says season six runner-up Althea. “You know you’re going to get a lot of publicity for being on the show,” but don’t let it distract you.
  2. “Build relationships,” Althea suggests. “Be able to take whatever you can the next level and create long lasting relationships.”
  3. “Get your name out there,” says season six designer Christopher Straub.
  4. “Be honest and lay the cards on the table,” Althea says. “You have to have all the confidence in the world because you’re surrounded by a lot of talented people and you’re getting rejected day in and day out.”
  5. “Stand up for your piece,” Chris says. “If you wimp out, they’re going to send you home because if you can’t believe in it, they’re not going to believe in it.”
  6. How to win host Heidi Klum over: “I would say be yourself is the tip to Heidi’s heart,” Althea says. “Keep surprising her,” suggests Chris. “She loves the exciting, she loves the short and foofie — [so] love to give it to her.
  7. How to win judge Michael Kors over: “Have a sense of humor” Althea says. “Michael — he’s going to make some harsh jokes about you … as long as you can laugh it off and take it for what it is, then you’ll be good.” Adds Chris: “Michael loves really appealing sportswear and he loves exciting wearable clothing.”

The biggest tip of all: don’t get too cozy with your competitors — they are fighting for the same prize that you are!

“When your friends are your competition, and then they turn on you, that’s something really hard,” Althea told us. Even harder than getting judged by Heidi, Michael, or Nina Garcia!

Just remember: in fashion, “one moment you’re in, the next your out!”

We can’t wait to see if this new batch of designers has what it takes to make it on Project Runway. Be sure to watch the season eight premiere tonight at 9 p.m. on Lifetime!

— Lindsey DiMattina & Jaclyn Hendricks

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