The official site for "Project Runway" Season 12 offers video, designer portfolios, Rate the Runway photos, blogs and more.
Kahindo Mateene

Kahindo Mateene

Age 34, Chicago, IL - Out Episode 2
  • Exit Interview: Episode 2
  • Runway Rewind: Episode 2
  • Runway Rewind: Episode 1
  • Meet The Cast of Season 12
  • Kahindo Mateene's Home Visit
  • Kahindo Mateene's Closet Tour
Q&A Kahindo's Take
QDescribe your family. AI am the 4th of 5 siblings. I have 3 older brothers and one younger sister. Both my parents are deceased.
QCurrent occupation? AFashion designer and owner of Modahnik.
QPast jobs? AHuman resources specialist (resigned May 11, 2012).
QWhen did you realize you had designer potential? AAfter I showed some of my designs to some friends and they put in orders.
QFirst garment you ever made? AMy senior collection from design school is the first pieces that I made that I am really proud of.
QWhat's your design training/schooling, etc.? AI have a BFA in Fashion Design from the Illinois Institute of Art-Chicago and a BA in International Business & Economics, minor in Spanish, from Blackburn College.
QStrengths as a designer? AUse of color and prints as well as designing to accentuate a woman's body. Attention to detail.
QWeaknesses as a designer? ADraping.
QWhat are your influences? AMy African culture and heritage. Travels to places such as Puerto Rico and Cape Town.
QWhat's playing on your iPod when you're designing? AEclectic mix, which includes Adele, The Script, P-Square (Nigerian artist), Mbilia-Bel (Congolese artist), Madonna, The Voice.
QFavorite material or fabric to work with? ABold, colorful prints.
QItem you're most proud of designing? AMy Spring-Summer 2013 collection from my brand Modahnik.
QFavorite designer(s)? AStella McCartney, Alexander McQueen, Peter Pilotto, Mary Katrantzou.
QSketch or drape? ASketch.
QPatterns or solids? APatterns.
QFavorite colors? AYellow & blue.
QBiggest fear as a designer? ANot being successful.
QFashion must? AColor.
QFashion faux pas that drives you crazy? ATights as pants.
QUgliest item of clothing/accessory you've worn? AHated my green boarding-school uniform.
QFavorite style icon? AMichelle Obama and SJP.
QWhat would you design for the First Lady? AAn off-the-shoulder tailored pencil dress in a bright, bold print.
QCelebrity you wish you could design for? AJessica Chastain for a movie promo event. I would combine a bold print with leather details into a dress that has long sleeves, a pencil skirt and an open back detail, to show off her curves and give her a feminine look with an edge, and of course include pockets.
QFavorite supermodel muse? ANaomi Campbell
QIf you had to name your label, you'd call it... AModahnik (an anagram of my first name, Kahindo, and last initial, M).
QIf you weren't designing, you'd be... AA philanthropist.
QPlaces/cultures you wish you could design for? ABrazil and India.
QDream place to set up your business? ABetween New York and Cape Town, South Africa.
QWebsites that feature your work?, facebook, pinterest, instagram, twitter,,,,
QHow were you described as a kid? AShy.
QHow are you described by your family and friends? AOutgoing, passionate, loyal and ambitious.
QWhy do you think you're easy to live with? ABecause I am funny and love life. Why aren’t you?
QFavorite hangout? AAt home with some wine and good company.
QHobbies? ADancing, listening to music and travelling.
QFavorite movies and TV shows? A"Scandal," "Shameless," "The Following," "Game of Thrones"
QFavorite books/authors? AChimamanda Ngozi Adichie, "Twilight" books, autobiographies.
QFavorite websites?,,,
QYour Twitter handle? A@modahnik
QFavorite Twitter accounts? AMindy Kaling, Vogue Italia, June Ambrose, DKNY PR GIRL, BellaNaija, Solange Knowles, Style Pantry, MTV Base Africa, Al Jazeera
QiPhone/Android/Blackberry? AAndroid.
QFast food or gourmet? AGourmet.
QCooking or takeout? ACooking.
QFavorite foods? AEthiopian, Nigerian, Congolese.
QBeer or wine? AWine.
QGuiltiest pleasure? AChocolate and reality TV.
QBiggest pet peeve? ABad manners.
QHow did you end up auditioning for PR? AAfter 3 failed attempts I was encouraged by the casting director to try again.
QFavorite past PR designer? ANick Verreos.
QChallenge you wish they'd bring back? ADuct Tape.
QChallenge you hope they don't? APajamas/Bedsheet.
QYour take on team challenges: AI'm up to the challenge, so I am fine to work in teams or alone.
QWhat do you look for in a model? AAttitude and their walk.
QDo you think you can win "Project Runway"? AYes, I plan on winning "Project Runway." I am up to the challenge as well as being very ambitious and tenacious. I work well under pressure, and it's time they selected a Black (African) female winner (Moi).