• Amanda Perna from Project Runway Season 9
  • Anthony Ryan Auld from Project Runway Season 9
  • Anya Ayoung-Chee from Project Runway Season 9
  • Becky Ross from Project Runway Season 9
  • Bert Keeter from Project Runway Season 9
  • Bryce Black from Project Runway Season 9
  • Cecilia Motwani from Project Runway Season 9
  • Danielle Everine from Project Runway Season 9
  • David Chum from Project Runway Season 9
  • Fallene Wells from Project Runway Season 9
  • Gunnar Deatherage from Project Runway Season 9
  • Joshua Christensen from Project Runway Season 9
  • Joshua McKinley from Project Runway Season 9
  • Julie Tierney from Project Runway Season 9
  • Kimberly Goldson from Project Runway Season 9
  • Laura Kathleen from Project Runway Season 9
  • Olivier Green from Project Runway Season 9
  • Rafael Cox from Project Runway Season 9
  • Serena da Conceicao from Project Runway Season 9
  • Viktor Luna from Project Runway Season 9

Anya Ayoung-Chee

29, Port of Spain, T&T

What was the first garment you ever made?

A slouchy gray jumpsuit that I wore to Miss Universe.

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

Reggae, soca, jazz, hip-hop, pop.

When did you realize you had designer potential?

When I had the opportunity to consult on my wardrobe for the Miss Universe pageant in 2008.

Favorite designer(s)?

Haider Ackermann, Stella McCartney, Gareth Pugh, Dries Van Noten, Yohji Yamamoto, Issey Miyake, Alexander McQueen.

Current occupation?

Fashion designer.

Can you describe past jobs you've had?

Graphic designer, stylist, merchandiser, beauty queen.

What is a fashion must?


What is your design training?

I have a fine arts bachelor's degree in communications design from Parsons School of Design.

Have you won any awards related to design?

I won a Cacique Award for excellence in styling for a theater production in Trinidad.

What are your strengths as a designer?

Spotting prints that create dynamic garments, bringing my graphic design training into my fashion design work.

What are your weaknesses as a designer?

I am on my way to improving my sewing and construction skills.

What's influenced your designs over the years?

My work is heavily influenced by the diverse cultures that comprise Trinidad and Tobago, and the Caribbean as a whole.

What's your favorite material or fabric to work with?


What's the item you're most proud of designing?

A long silk chiffon dress worn on the BET Awards red carpet.

Do you prefer sketching or draping?


Do you prefer patterns or solids?


What are your favorite colors?

Too many to list.

What's your biggest fear as a designer?

To lose creative control of my work.

What fashion faux pas drives you crazy?

People looking generic or the same as everyone else and having no concern about it.

What's the ugliest thing you've ever worn?

A silk curtain tieback on my head as a bandeau for a New Year's Eve party.

Who are your favorite style icons?

Kate Moss, Coco Chanel, Frida, Tom Ford, Rachel Roy.

If you designed for the first lady, what would you design for her?

A Caribbean holiday resort look

What celebrity would you like to design for?

Rihanna. I'd like to design a whole wardrobe for her!

Who's your supermodel muse?

Kate Moss.

What do you look for in a model?

An athletic build (fit and slim but not overly skinny), exotic looks, very high cheekbones.

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

It is already called Pilar.

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

Design consulting.

Dream place to set up your design business?

Between New York, London and Trinidad (or somewhere else in the Caribbean).

Websites that feature your work, including your own site(s)?

Pilarbyanya.com, anyaderogue.com, facebook.com/pilarbyanya, trinidadlookbook.com

Any other cultures or places you wish you could design for?

I'd like to design luxury resort wear in the Middle East, using the traditional graphic tiling patterns and historical architecture as inspiration.

How were you described as a kid?

Sweet, creative, girly, obedient, hardworking, driven, competitive, focused.

How are you described now?

Passionate, ambitious, somewhat rebellious, creative, hardworking, driven, fun-loving, very social, intense at times, dedicated to my family.

Can you describe your family?

Close-knit, large, lively (sometimes dramatic) and full of love.

Marriage or kids?

Single, no kids.

Do you have any nicknames?


Why are you (or aren't you) easy to live with?

Easy because I keep common areas neat and am quiet when others are around. Not so easy when I am designing a collection and there is fabric everywhere. Also, I do not cook.

What's your favorite hangout back home?

At the sea, an area called Down-the-Islands off the coast of Trinidad.

What are your hobbies besides designing?

Dancing, blogging, hanging out with friends or my brothers.

What are your favorite movies and TV shows?

Movies: Wasteland, Frida, City of God, The Pianist. TV: Seinfeld, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Entourage, The Daily Show, Project Runway.

What are your favorite websites?

The Sartorialist, Tumblr, Refinery 29, International Herald Tribune.

Your Twitter handle?


Favorite Twitter accounts?

Shareawakening, RevRunWisdom, TheDailyLove, CAFD, Refinery29, NiallRoyal

What are your favorite books and authors?

The Alchemist, The Diary of Anne Frank.

iPhone, Android or BlackBerry?


Fast food or gourmet?


Cooking or takeout?


Favorite food?

From Trinidad, curry, a delicacy called Doubles and a dish called Pelau; Caprese salad; almost anything Italian; sushi.

Beer or wine?


Guiltiest pleasure?

Sleeping in.

Biggest pet peeve?

When people are doing something in life -- a job or career -- that does not make them happy and they don't show any desire to change that.

Favorite designer from past seasons of Project Runway?


Project Runway challenge you hope they bring back for your season?

Designing resort wear.

Project Runway challenge you hope they don't bring back for your season?

Designing with burlap.

Your take on team challenges ... love them or hate them?

Looking forward to them! I really love collaboration and think that team challenges can be extremely creative and dynamic.

How did you end up auditioning for Project Runway?

I saw a tweet mentioning the deadline for PR applications and decided to apply on a whim.

Why do you think you will win Project Runway?

I am highly competitive, I have many of the elements that comprise a winner on this show, and I have a deep passion for representing not just me but also where I am from, on an international scale.