Whew! LSU alum and local designer Anthony Ryan Auld made it through the first round of cuts - five of the 20 contestants were “auf’d” Thursday night - on the first episode of Lifetime Television’s “Project Runway” Season 9.
Not only did Auld survive the brutal eliminations, his design was picked by the judges as one of the top three on the show.
After making it through the “why should you be on ‘Project Runway’” quizzing by judges Michael Kors, Nina Garcia and Heidi Klum and mentor Tim Gunn, Auld and the remaining contestants got a 5 a.m. wakeup call and their first challenge -- make an outfit from your pajamas and one sheet from your bed.
Auld, who admitted he’s colorblind, was wearing a yellow- and gray-striped tank top and bright green gym shorts. He transformed his tank into a super-cute top, using black trim from the designers’ sewing room to hide the vivid yellow stripes. The gym shorts became a very short mini with black trim.
In a “best-quote-of-the-show” moment, Gunn questioned Auld’s original placement of feathers on the skirt. “There’s a way to use these feathers without making them a pubic patch,” Gunn advised.
Auld got the message and pulled together a great look. Garcia called the top “adorable” and “cool,” and Kors said he liked the overall look. Klum and guest judge Christina Ricci also praised Auld’s design.
But, the judges gave the win to Bert Keeter, a 57-year-old designer just getting back into the game. Keeter used his bright orange gingham boxers and dyed the bed sheet different shades of taupe to produce a chic little dress.
Interestingly, in previews for upcoming episodes, it appears that Auld and Keeter get into a bit of a shouting match on the runway.
The winner of “Project Runway” gets a $100,000 prize, a fashion spread in Marie Claire magazine, a $50,000 technology suite and the opportunity to sell an exclusive collection on Piperlime.