• Alexander Pope from Project Runway Season 12
  • Alexandria von Bromssen from Project Runway Season 12
  • Angela Bacskocky from Project Runway Season 12
  • Bradon McDonald from Project Runway Season 12
  • Dom Streater from Project Runway Season 12
  • Helen Castillo from Project Runway Season 12
  • Jeremy Brandrick from Project Runway Season 12
  • Justin LeBlanc from Project Runway Season 12
  • Kahindo Mateene from Project Runway Season 12
  • Karen Batts from Project Runway Season 12
  • Kate Pankoke from Project Runway Season 12
  • Ken Laurence from Project Runway Season 12
  • Miranda Levy from Project Runway Season 12
  • Sandro Masmanidi from Project Runway Season 12
  • Sue Waller from Project Runway Season 12
  • Timothy Westbrook from Project Runway Season 12

Helen Castillo

25, Union City, NJ

Describe your family?

Living mother, father, half-sister, half-brother.

Past jobs?

Gallery NYC, Reebok NYC, hair salon assistant, outerwear designer, sportswear designer.


Two cats, Sookie Stackhouse and Pugsley Addams.

When did you realize you had designer potential?

Early teens.

First garment you ever made? 

An awful Peter Pan collar dress that was part of my first sewing course.

What's your design training/schooling, etc.?

Bachelor's degree in special occasion design (Fashion Institute of Technology).

Have you won any awards for your designs/work related to design?

Muuse.com features my designs for winning VoguexMuuse Young Talents 2013.

Strengths as a designer?

Couture sewing techniques.

Weaknesses as a designer?

Criticism for the way I look instead of acknowledging design strength.

What are your influences?

Organic repetition.

What's playing on your iPod when you're designing? 

I'd rather work in silence.

Favorite material or fabric to work with?

Silk chiffon/organza.

Item you're most proud of designing? 

My sister's wedding dress.

Favorite designer(s)?

Valentino, Riccardo Tisci, Vivienne Westwood.

Sketch or drape?


Patterns or solids?


Favorite colors?

Black, taupe, silver, lime green.

Biggest fear as a designer?


Fashion must?

Margiela tabi boots.

Fashion faux pas that drives you crazy?

Tights as pants.

Ugliest item of clothing/accessory you've worn?

Neon leggings in my teens.

Favorite style icon?|Alice Dellal.

What would you design for the First Lady?

An amazing royal-blue fluted silk chiffon gown.

Celebrity you wish you could design for?

Gwen Stefani, a really structural two-tone look.

Favorite supermodel muse?

Kate Moss.

If you had to name your label, you'd call it...?

Helen Castillo.

If you weren't designing, you'd be...?


Places/cultures you wish you could design for?


Dream place to set up your business?

New York, then Paris.

Websites that feature your work?

noirfache.com (my portfolio), muuse.com (search Helen Castillo), facebook.com/helencastillo

How were you described as a kid?


How are you described by your family and friends?

Outspoken, hardheaded, selfless.

Why do you think you're easy to live with?

I live alone because I can't stand sloppiness.

Favorite hangout?

Park on the waterfront in Hoboken.

Favorite movies and TV shows?

"The Craft," "Clueless," "Adult Swim"



Fast food or gourmet?


Cooking or takeout?


Favorite foods?

Chipotle, pizza.

Beer or wine?


Guiltiest pleasure?

Being too honest.

Biggest pet peeve?

Rude, selfish people who take advantage of my generosity.

How did you end up auditioning for PR?

I want exposure for myself and my designs.

Challenge you wish they'd bring back?

Prom dresses. I love working with kids.

Challenge you hope they don't?

Anything menswear.

Your take on team challenges:?

I work well with others because I'm a supportive leader.

What do you look for in a model?

Strong cheekbones, proportions even, great height.

Do you think you can win "Project Runway"?

Yes, because I am confident and take my designs seriously. I live to design.