It's time to make it work! Project Runway kicks off its ninth season with 20 talented designers - the most in the series' history.
The new crop of designers will encounter host Heidi Klum, mentor Tim Gunn and judges Michael Kors and Nina Garcia and top-name guest designers and judges from the worlds of fashion, film and television, including Kim Kardashian, Christina Ricci, Zoe Saldana and Malin Akerman, as they face inventive challenges, unexpected eliminations and other surprises along the way.
In a Project Runway first, during the premiere episode, 20 designers must go in front of Heidi, Michael, Nina and Tim to make a case why they deserve one of the 16 coveted spots this season.
Once they are chosen, the 16 designers barely have a chance to celebrate before being awoken at the crack of dawn with one of the toughest first challenges in the series' history.
Filmed on location in New York, each episode will feature more couture creations and fashion flubs as the designers attempt to make the cut to show at New York Fashion Week at Lincoln Center.
As part of the winner's prize package, this season's victorious designer will receive $100,000 from L'Oréal Paris to start his/her own line, a fashion spread in Marie Claire magazine, a $50,000 technology suite by HP and Intel to create his/her own vision and run his/her business and the opportunity to design and sell an exclusive collection on Piperlime.com.
The model paired with the winner of Project Runway will also appear in the designer's editorial feature in Marie Claire and receive $25,000 from L'Oreal Studio Secrets Professional.
Project Runway is produced by The Weinstein Company, Bunim-Murray Productions and Full Picture. Executive producers include Bob and Harvey Weinstein, Meryl Poster of The Weinstein Company, Jon Murray and Sara Rea of Bunim-Murray Productions, Heidi Klum, and Jane Cha and Desiree Gruber of Full Picture Entertainment.
Barbara Schneeweiss oversees the production on behalf of The Weinstein Company. Rob Sharenow, Gena McCarthy and David Hillman of Lifetime Television also executive produce.
Season 9 Contestants
Amanda Perna, 25, from New York, New York
Anthony Ryan Auld, 28, from Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Anya Ayoung-Chee, 29, from Port-of-Spain, Trinidad and Tobago
Becky Ross, 38, from Portland, Oregon
Bert Keeter, 57, from Los Angeles, California
Bryce Black, 26, from Portland, Oregon
Cecilia Motwani, 34, from Woodside, New York
Danielle Everine, 26, from Minneapolis, Minnesota
David Chum, 29, from Boston, Massachusetts
Fallene Wells, 29, from Denver, Colorado
Gunnar Deatherage, 21, from Louisville, Kentucky
Joshua McKinley, 25, from New York, New York
Joshua Christensen, 29, from Los Angeles, California
Julie Tierney, 35, from Grand Junction, Colorado
Kimberly Goldson, 35, from White Plains, Maryland
Laura Kathleen, 26, from St. Louis, Missouri
Olivier Green, 22, from New York, New York
Rafael Cox, 27, from Atlanta, Georgia
Serena da Conceicao, 31, from Brooklyn, New York
Viktor Luna, 30, from New York, New York
In Project Runway designers compete against one another in weekly design challenges held at the Parsons New School For Design in New York City.
Eager to give aspiring designers a chance to break into the notoriously difficult-to-crack fashion world, supermodel Heidi Klum heads a panel of industry luminaries, including top women's and men's wear designer Michael Kors and Elle Magazine fashion director Nina Garcia, who serve as judges and industry mentors charged with selecting and moulding the budding designers.
The judges eliminate one contestant each week until only three top performers remain. The final three face off during New York's Olympus Fashion Week in February.
There are also guest judges each week based on the specific challenge. Tim Gunn, Chair of the Parsons The New School For Design, guides the contestants through each of their challenges.
The winning designer walks away with $100,000 in seed money to help them launch their own line, as well as other prizes which vary from season to season.
Project Runway takes place in New York City with designers using a workroom at Parsons School of Design, shopping for materials at a fabrics store in New York's Garment District, and living together at Atlas New York (an apartment building near Parsons).
At the beginning of each challenge, the designers are given the outlines of their assignment, usually to create a garment from non-traditional materials, such as recycled materials or items from a grocery store, or to design for a certain person (such as figure skater Sasha Cohen or Miss USA Tara Conner), corporate fashion line, or specialised theme.
The designers are given a stipend and limited amount of time to finish each garment. Often the designers work independently, although on some challenges contestants must work in teams.
Once the deadline is reached, the designers must dress their models and select their hair, make-up, and accessories.
Each model walks down the runway, and the garment the contestant made is judged by a panel of judges. The judges then interview the designers and share their opinions before conferring as a group and selecting winning and losing designers.
Generally, the loser of each challenge is eliminated from the competition.