The Betty Interview: Nina Garcia
Project Runways’ most candid judge tells BettyConfidential about her favorite designers from the show, which fashions to splurge and save on (including the must-have item for spring!), and she shares a side of herself we’ve never seen on TV: mommy.
Project Runway is back tonight (at 10 p.m. ET/PT) with a new crop of 16 designers trying to out-sketch, out-design and out-sew each other. Season seven (on Lifetime) returns to New York City and luckily the outrageous personalities have come with it — not just the contestants, but judges Nina Garcia, Marie Claire’s fashion director, and Michael Kors, the master of American sportswear. The absence of their witty critiques and candor was a big part of what made last season, which was filmed in L.A., lackluster. “It’s nice to hear people missed us!” Nina, 44, tells BettyConfidential. That’s an understatement, Nina!
To really get into the Project Runway spirit, we are giving one lucky reader the chance to win a Project Runway gift pack, which includes a cool messenger bag (made with vinyl from the season 7 billboards), umbrella, iPhone and BlackBerry covers, a hoodie, scarf and wrist pin cushion. Click here for your chance to win!
What can you tell us about the contestants this season?
They’re more international [from countries including China, the Ivory Coast, Dominican Republic and Mexico], and they come from a wide variety of experiences. Some have just started, some have professional experience under their belts, but they’re all very talented. I think there are a larger number of really talented designers this season. That will be apparent very quickly, too.
Who is surfacing as the show’s standout personality?
Anthony Williams’ personality is fantastic. He’s great and he has a very interesting and very valid point of view — you’ll see. He’s a good one. I think people will fall in love with him. I know I did. It’s hard not to like him.
Last season was criticized because people said the contestants themselves were boring. Do you think there are more compelling personalities this year?
It’s really about the talent, so that’s what I’m focusing on, but to me talent and personality go hand in hand. Creative people are a little eccentric, like [this season’s] Ping. She is very unique in the way she does things. Stay tuned.
Do the judges ever really disagree on who should be sent home?
Yes, it happens a lot. We vote and add up the numbers and sometimes we don’t all agree with the outcome so we deliberate for a long time. Viewers don’t get to see how in-depth those deliberations really are. But in the end, whether we like it or not, the numbers are the numbers.