‘Project Runway’ season 17, a riveting journey into the world of fashion, brought together a cohort of exceptionally talented designers eager to prove their mettle. Aired in 2019, the season featured intense challenges and insightful critiques of industry veterans. With mentor Christian Siriano guiding the contestants and renowned judges, including Karlie Kloss and Brandon Maxwell, evaluating their designs, the stakes were high.
Now, as time has woven its threads, let’s unravel where these season 17 contestants are right now. Are they shaping the fashion landscape, pushing boundaries, or perhaps finding new avenues for their creative passions? Join us as we delve into the post-‘Project Runway’ tales of these designers, discovering the twists and turns that have defined their journeys since the runway lights dimmed.
Sebastian Grey’s Designs Have Graced Prestigious Fashion Weeks
Sebastian Grey, the triumphant winner of ‘Project Runway’ season 17, has seamlessly transitioned into the realm of high-end fashion. Armed with a Master’s degree in the Management of Luxury Brands from Istituto Marangoni, Sebastian has established himself as a force in the industry. His work for Nonchalant label reflects his distinctive style, featured prominently in Elle Magazine and Vogue. From New York to Santo Domingo, Sebastian has graced prestigious fashion weeks and even judged the 16th Annual Recycled Fashion Show.
Collaborations with the SIX Broadway Production and Disney’s Mulan showcase his versatile talent, marking him as a rising star in the fashion cosmos. In his post-‘Project Runway’ journey, Sebastian not only conquered the design world but also collaborated with entertainment giants, solidifying his position as a multifaceted creative. With support from his husband Matt, His foray into luxury management underscores a commitment to excellence, making him a trailblazer in the ever-evolving landscape of haute couture.
Hester Sunshine is Working to Build a Sustainable Fashion Empire
Hester Sunshine, the vibrant Jewish finalist of ‘Project Runway’ season 17, has transformed her eclectic vision into a sustainable fashion empire. Fronting Hesta and the eponymous Hester By Hester and Sunshine By Hester, she’s making waves in the world of ready-to-wear. Notably featured in prestigious pages and TV news channels, Hester’s commitment to sustainable fashion sets her apart. With an online platform selling her distinctive costumes, she continues to redefine the boundaries of style.
In her post-show endeavors, Hester stands as a beacon for conscientious fashion. Her influence extends beyond design, capturing the essence of responsible and impactful creativity. As she continues to craft her narrative, Hester’s commitment to sustainability reflects not just a trend but a transformative ethos in the fashion industry.
Gary “Garo Sparo” Spampinato Has Dressed Music Icons and Celebrities
Garo Sparo, the maestro behind the scenes, has dressed music icons and celebrities, leaving an indelible mark on the world of fashion. Known for designing for the likes of Cardi B, Lady Gaga, and Mariah Carey, Garo Sparo Atelier’s creations have graced stages from BBMAS to The Met Gala. His outfits have not only been featured on ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ but also appeared in ‘Drag Race Germany.’
With an illustrious career spanning award shows and opera houses, Garo Sparo continues to shape the visual landscape of the entertainment industry. Garo’s influence has only expanded, transcending the confines of reality television. His designs, a fusion of creativity and craftsmanship, continue to captivate audiences globally. As a testament to his enduring legacy, his garments stand as timeless pieces on some of the world’s most iconic stages.
Bishme Cromartie Became The Winner of ‘Project Runway: All-Stars’ season 20
Bishme Cromartie crowned the winner of ‘Project Runway All-Stars’ season 20, has seamlessly transitioned into the role of CEO at Bishme Cromartie LLC. His clientele boasts names like Lizzo, Andra Day, and Karrueche Tran, while his designs have graced the pages of Elle, Essence, and Vogue. Overcoming personal tragedy, Bishme debuted his collection at New York Fashion Week 2023, solidifying his status as a design powerhouse.
In the aftermath of the show, Bishme has not just showcased his designs but curated a narrative of resilience and triumph. Attending The Council of Fashion Designers of America awards, he continues to be a beacon of inspiration in the fashion world, proving that true artistry knows no bounds.
Tessa Clark is The Store Director at Idlewild Today
Tessa Clark, the store director at Idlewild founded by her mother and cousin, seamlessly balances her role as the designer and founder of Grind and Glaze. Beyond the business, Tessa’s personal life unfolds as a love story, sharing her adventures with Dimitri on Instagram. As she prepares to star in a new reality TV series, ‘The Collective,’ Tessa embodies the fusion of creativity and reality in the fashion industry. Tessa also extends her influence from the shelves of Idlewild to the screens of reality television. Her commitment to family, love, and design paints a holistic picture of a designer who not only creates fashion but lives it.
Jamall Osterholm Ventured Into The Realms of Film and Design
Jamall Osterholm, a creative force associated with Kerby Jean-Raymond’s Pyer Moss label, has ventured into the realms of film and design. As a Forbes 30 under 30 Honoree, Jamall’s trajectory has been nothing short of spectacular. From designing for Pyer Moss and Garo Sparo to creative-directing award-winning films like ‘Patron Saint,’ his journey is marked by innovation and artistic prowess.
In the post-‘Project Runway’ era, Jamall continues to shape the narrative of fashion and film. His role as a Creative Director at Jamall Osterholm and an Adjunct Professor at the Rhode Island School of Design underscores a commitment to mentorship and education. As he ventures into new projects like ‘Playland’ and ‘Exorcisms,’ Jamall’s influence extends beyond the runway, solidifying his status as a multifaceted creative force.
Venny Etienne is Now The Chief Executive Officer at LeVenity
Venny Etienne, now the Chief Executive Officer at LeVenity, has transcended the show’s stage to create bespoke fashion experiences. Renowned for crafting a custom blazer for Beyoncé featured in the visual album “Black Is King,” Venny’s designs have graced publications like Texas Monthly and Coveteur Mag. As a board member of Fashion Group Intl Dallas, he continues to shape the fashion landscape.
Venny’s cultural contributions as a Haitian-American were honored with a NYC Proclamation certificate, solidifying his impact beyond the runway. He has also become synonymous with luxury and cultural pride. From presenting vibrant collections at EssenceFashion House to earning accolades from Brooklyn Borough President and New York City Council Member Farah Louis, Venny’s journey is a testament to the transformative power of fashion and its ability to bridge cultures.
Lela Orr Has Evolved Into a Luxurious Fashion Brand Owner
Lela Orr, the creative force behind Ferrah, has evolved her journey into a luxurious fashion brand. Ferrah, now a US-based fashion label, offers limited-release ready-to-wear, bridal, and special occasion wear crafted from natural and sustainable materials. Recognized with the FGI of Dallas Rising Star Award, Lela Orr is a trailblazer in the sustainable fashion realm. Lela’s brand, Ferrah, is a testament to her commitment to eco-friendly fashion. Her designs, gracing both everyday wear and special occasions, embody a harmonious blend of elegance and environmental consciousness, showcasing a paradigm shift in the fashion industry.
Renee Hill is Now a Business Owner
Renee Hill is today the founder of Harx Four, through which she has extended her influence beyond the runway. She, as a renowned fashion designer, is also a recipient of the Apparel Magic Grant. Her work has been featured in Philly magazine and ABC News Live multiple times. To add a personal touch to her work, Renee’s live talk series in collaboration with her husband, J Malik Frederick, ‘Weekend Coffee with Renée & Malik,’ delves into authentic and healthy relationships. As a mom and business owner, she brings a multifaceted perspective to the world of fashion.
Sonia Kasparian Blended Art and Fashion With Her Brand
Sonia Kasparian, a sculptor and designer, has seamlessly blended art and fashion with her brand Urchin & Life. Featured in Portland Bride and Groom magazine multiple times, Sonia’s designs are a testament to her artistic prowess. Beyond traditional fashion, she carves a unique niche by infusing sculptural elements into her clothing. Sonia, today continues to be a trailblazer in the intersection of fashion and art. Her creations, featured in prestigious publications, elevate fashion to an art form, proving that clothing can transcend its utilitarian purpose and become a canvas for expression.
Rakan Shams Aldeen is a Recipient of The FGI Womenswear Rising Star 2020 Award
Rakan Shams Aldeen, recipient of the FGI Womenswear Rising Star 2020 Award, has transitioned from working with industry giants to founding his label, RAKAN. With a background in esteemed fashion houses like Retrofête and Christian Siriano, Rakan’s designs have graced the pages of Vogue and Chicago Splash. His pop-up shops and online store further establish him as a rising star in the fashion constellation. Since the show, Rakan has continued to shine brightly in the fashion sky. His innovative designs and entrepreneurial spirit showcase a designer not just creating fashion but making a lasting mark in the industry.
Kovid Kapoor’s Designs Has Featured in International Magazines
Afa Ah Loo is The Board Member at the Pacific Island Chamber of Commerce Today
Afa Ah Loo, currently the Soft Goods product developer at Purple and fashion designer at AFA AH LOO LLC, has expanded his influence far beyond the show’s stage. Serving as a Board Member at the Pacific Island Chamber of Commerce, Afa’s commitment to community development is as evident as his prowess in fashion. With a background in fashion styling and a degree in fashion and apparel design, Afa’s journey includes a license for Advanced Design and Industrial Design.
Afa, now not only crafts garments but also shape communities. His role as a board member and the honor of designing for Prime Minister Honorable Fiame Naomi Mataafa highlight his multifaceted contributions, making him a designer with a heart for both fashion and the community.
Nadine Ralliford is a Creative Director and Designer Today
Nadine Ralliford, the creative force behind Rutherford Hall designs and Mad Max, embarked on her fashion journey in 2023 and swiftly made an impact. As a creative director and designer, she presented her creations at Atlanta Fashion Week, marking a significant milestone. Nadine’s fresh approach to design is poised to leave an indelible mark on the world of fashion.
Nadine’s brand, Rutherford Hall, has become synonymous with innovation and style. Her debut at Atlanta Fashion Week sets the stage for a promising future, showcasing her ability to weave tales of creativity and craftsmanship.
Frankie Lewis Has Garnered Well-Deserved Recognition
Frankie Lewis, despite an early exit from the show, has emerged as a self-trained, now widely recognized fashion designer of note. With a background in designing theatre costumes and contributing to Pink’s Beautiful Trauma Tour, Frankie’s artistic flair extends far beyond the runway. Featured in numerous publications, her resilience and talent have garnered well-deserved recognition. Frankie today proves that creativity knows no boundaries. From the stage to the pages of prestigious publications, her ability to captivate audiences with her designs underscores the enduring impact of her artistic brilliance.
Cavanagh Baker Has Elevated Her Brand to International Acclaim
Cavanagh Baker, a luminary in the world of luxury womenswear, has elevated her brand to international acclaim. Recognized by celebrities like Beyoncé, Billy Porter, and Heidi Klum, Cavanagh’s designs have graced esteemed publications such as Forbes, Elle, and InStyle. With an online store and appearances at New York Fashion Week, she continues to redefine the boundaries of luxury fashion.
Since her time on the show, Cavanagh has stood as a beacon of luxury and innovation. Collaborations with renowned brands for fashion shows and her online presence showcase a designer at the pinnacle of her craft, making her a force to be reckoned with in the world of high-end fashion. She has also found love in her life with Chris.