‘Project Runway’: Who Are The Season 16 Designers And Guest Judges, And When Does It Start?

Project Runway Season 16 is starting on August 17! The Emmy-nominated reality series about fashion design has just released the names of the 16 designers who are on the show this season. There is even a rumor that for the very first time, twin designers will be competing. What are the names of the 16 designers and who are the guest judges this season?

Project Runway is starting soon, and the new season promises a lot of drama, and hopefully some amazing fashion. Heidi Klum, Nina Garcia, and Zac Posen are all back, as is “make it work” mentor Tim Gunn.

This is the very first season that Project Runway designers will be creating garments for models between sizes 0-22. There will be models of all sizes, and they will be rotated.

Heidi Klum was recently on Live With Kelly And Ryan, and spoke about the new season. She confirmed that this is the first season with twin designers, and she has something to dish about them!

“We have twins this year. They are very, very naughty!”

She also mentioned that this is the first season that designers are walking off the stage. She explained that the designers are telling lies to each other, but when they are on the runway, they tell the truth.

This led to Ryan Seacrest asking Heidi if these designers are causing some drama.

“Are you saying that they’re backstabbing and conniving? Imagine that!”


This year, the ages of the designers range from 23-46, and come from all over the United States and beyond. This new season includes a designer from Puerto Rico and another from Taiwan.

  • Aaron Myers, 23, Ridgewood, NY
  • Amy Bond, 46, Los Angeles, CA
  • Ayana Ife, 27, Salt Lake City, UT
  • Batani-Khalfani, 32, Inglewood, CA
  • Brandon Kee, 24, San Francisco, CA
  • ChaCha, 24, Taipei, Taiwan
  • Claire Buitendorp, 27, Grand Ledge, MI
  • Deyonté Weather, 36, Lynwood, WA
  • Kentaro Kameyama, 38, Los Angeles, CA
  • Kenya Freeman, 37, Atlanta, GA
  • Kudzanai Karidza, 32, Atlanta, GA
  • Margarita Alvarez, 30, San Juan, Puerto Rico
  • Michael Brambila, 25, Oakland, CA
  • Samantha Rei, 36, Minneapolis, MN
  • Sentell McDonald, 33, New York, NY
  • Shawn Buitendorp, 27, Grand Ledge, MI

The guest judges for Project Runway Season 16 feature some familiar members of the Project Runway family, including Marchesa designer, and Project Runway: All Stars judge, Georgina Chapman; Marie Claire Editor-in-Chief, new Project Runway: All-Stars mentor, Anne Fulenwider; and Project Sammy’s Way’s “Tammy,” Carly Chaikin. The other guest judges include Demi Lovato, Katie Holmes, Olivia Munn, Yolanda Hadid, Kate Upton, Maggie Q, Kelsea Ballerini, Dove Cameron, China Anne McClain, Asia Kate Dillon, Maddie Ziegler, Sophia Stallone, and Rachel Brosnahan.

This year, the winner of Project Runway Season 16 will receive $100,000 to start their business. In addition, the winner will “collaborate” with JCPenney on a “limited edition capsule collection,” which will be sold online at jcp.com, and at select stores. This is new this year, although Ashley Nell Tipton worked with JCPenney, and launched a collection there after her win on Project Runway Season 14.


Brother is again a sponsor of Project Runway, and the winner will receive a selection of their beautiful sewing and embroidery machines. This year, the winner gets a “lifetime supply” of Pilot FriXion Erasable pens. They are also giving a luxury trip to Japan, with all expenses paid. Again, Lexus is back as a sponsor, and the winner receives a Lexus NX. Wow!

As always, the winning designer and model will be featured in a Marie Claire fashion spread.

Also, Project Runway has just earned five Emmy nominations! The nominations are in a variety of categories, including two nominations in an editing category.

  • Outstanding Casting For A Reality Program
  • Outstanding Picture Editing For A Structured Or Competition Reality Program – for the episodes “An Unconventional Launch Party,” and “Finale, Part 2”
  • Outstanding Host For A Reality Or Reality-Competition Program – Heidi Klum & Tim Gunn
  • Outstanding Reality-Competition Program

Are you ready for Project Runway Season 16? Are you looking most forward to the “real women” sized models or that there will be twin designers this season?

[Featured Image by Lifetime Television]