Michael Costello was contestant on eighth season of Project Runway. Out of the 17 contestants on the show, Michael finished in fourth. Ever since then it was nothing but success for designer who dressed celebrities like Beyoncé, Kesha, Lady Gaga, Caitlyn Jenner, Rita Ora, Nicki Minaj, Katy Perry, Jennifer Lopez, Toni Braxton, Ariana Grande, Carmen Electra. He along with his sister Stephanie Costello (who designs the Stello line) designed dresses for Kim Kardashian's wedding party. He custom-made Beyoncé's dress for the 56th Annual Grammy Awards and Los Angeles Times mentions how singer "stole the fashion show". Caitlyn Jenner wore one of his dresses for the trailer of her TV show I Am Cait. Costello was raised in Palm Springs, California and studied at Will Rogers High School. We caught up with designer himself after his Fall 2017 show as part of New York Fashion Week.
J: What sparked your interest in fashion?
M: I have loved fashion since I was a kid, I have been interested in designing since I was 3. I opened my first boutique at 15 and have never really been as passionate about anything else.
J: Describe your creative process.
M: This is tough, I start with the fabric and the form. I then start to drape and put pieces together to see how the fabric moves. It has always been very important to me to make sure that the way my designs fit make a woman feel sexy and confident. These two feelings can only come from a harmony of fit and fabrication. If the fit is off, or the fabric doesn't move the way its intended, my woman can't embody the way I want my designs to feel.
J: What is the DNA of Michael Costello designs?
M: Golden glamour. Its highlighting beauty and skin and sensual pieces of a woman through color and silhouette. Giving women confidence for wanting to be seen and heard and feel beautiful while doing it.
J: What kind of woman does your clothing speak to?
M: A woman who isn't afraid to be feminine, flirty, vivacious and unique. My gowns are always special and one of a kind. Made to make each woman feel ( for that event, at least) she is unforgettable. This takes a certain type of woman to pull off.
J: What other designers do you relate to, love?
M: Gianni Versace is someone I really relate to. He had an exceptional talent for making a woman sexy and sophisticated. His fashion shows were always so fun to watch. His designs and the essence of Versace is a complete show stopper.
Elie Saab is someone I idolize, his ability to create the most beautiful things is remarkable. You can always see an Elie Saab dress on the red carpet.
J: You dressed a lot of celebrities. Is there one you are particularly proud of?
M: If I had to pick I would say I'm particularly proud of Beyoncé, Jennifer Lopez and Lady Gaga.
J: Which celebrity would you want to see wearing your designs?
M: If I could pick celebrities to wear my upcoming collection it would be Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen.
Photo by Amaris Granado for Joliegazette
J: What are you fascinated by at the moment and how does it feed into your work?
M: I am currently fascinated by a French romance. It is playing into almost everything I am doing with my upcoming collection, from the music, to picking fabrics it has been a real place of inspiration for me.
J: What is next for Michael Costello ?
M: Well...I am starting to collaborate with more people within the industry. Joining forces with other creatives and brands is something I am personally excited for.
J: What advice would you give to young designers?
M: Let your fabric and your client speak to you. Design is a roller coaster of creativity Work with your materials and passion to guide you toward your goal.
Text: Juliet Belkin
Photo Amaris Granado for Joliegazette.