Why do we all love reality TV? In the case of Lifetime’s Project Runway, it might be our innate fascination to watch ordinary people transform into stars – and also to be fashion critics while sitting on our couches.
The show has continued to be successful throughout its 12 seasons and 3 “All-Star Editions”, but whatever happened to the aspiring designers from the show’s early days on the Bravo network?
One of the most memorable characters was Santino Rice, the 3rd place finisher in season 2. Santino was definitely a memorable personality who most viewers had a love/hate relationship with. His kooky designs and sarcastic comments were featured parts of every episode.
Santino’s impressions of Project Runway mentor, Tim Gunn, were a standout part of the season. As well as much needed comedic relief for the designers!
Since his early runway days, Santino has appeared as a judge on the Logo reality show RuPaul’s Drag Race, a talent competition for drag queens.
He was also featured in another Lifetime show On the Road with Austin and Santino, where he traveled the country with another Runway cast-off, Austin Scarlett, and designed clothes for ordinary women.
Another standout who appeared in season 4, Chris March, was known for his larger than life personality and designs. He finished in 4th place in his season, as well as 4th place in a special Project Runway: All-Star Challenge episode that aired before the season 6 premiere.
One of the weirder moments from his season came when mentor Tim Gunn visited the designers at home to check on the progress of their final collections.
Chris’ “unique” human hair trimmed pieces became a major talking point of the final episodes. Project Runway fans know Tim is all about encouraging different points of view, but there is a limit to everything…
Chris worked as primarily a costume designer prior to the show, and has returned to his eccentric roots since then. His clientele reads as a list of the biggest personalities in the music and movie industries, including Lady Gaga, Beyonce, Madonna, and Meryl Streep.
As for his latest ventures, Chris has segued his successful costume career into a line of Halloween wigs for Target.
For those of you who have always wanted to get your hands on an original piece from a Project Runway alum, this is your chance! It may not be the ball gown or perfect pair of jeans you were expecting, but at least you’ll have a standout Halloween accessory ready to go for next year.
To check up on your former favorites, current contestants, or take the ultimate trivia challenge, check out the official Project Runway site.