Headed for the Win!

Tonight is the season premiere of Project Runway on Lifetime Television in the US! The show will air at 9pm/8pm Central Time. Project Runway has always be one of my favorite reality fashion shows! The show is hosted by model Heidi Klum and features 12 or more designers.The contestants compete with each other to create the best clothes and are restricted in time, materials and theme. Their designs are judged, and one or more designers are eliminated each week. Ultimately this season’s champion will receive $150,000 from GoBank; $50,000 of next generation technology from HP and Intel to help enable their creativity and launch their new business; a year’s supply of Resource Natural Spring Water and an all-expense paid, luxurious spa retreat for two to the exotic Maldives, courtesy of Resource Water; a chance to design and sell an exclusive collection at Belk; a complete sewing and crafting studio from Brother Sewing and Embroidery; a fashion spread in Marie Claire magazine; a 2014 Lexus IS 350; a $100,000 fabric allowance from Tide Pods to inspire fashions that truly pop; and a $50,000 styling contract with L’Oréal Paris.


I am particularly excited about this season of Project Runway as I know one of the designers; Kahindo Mateene! I first met Kahindo at a friend’s birthday celebration in Chicago and have watched over the years as she has evolved and grown as a designer! After three failed attempts to be on the Poject Runway show Kahindo was encouraged by the casting director to try again and she made it to Season 12!


A native of the The Democratic Republic of Congo, Kahindo pulls inspiration from the Avant Garde spirit of the Congolese art and culture. She moved to the US at age 17 to attend college. Having lived and traveled in Africa, Europe and America, Kahindo expertly combines these different stylistic elements, bringing a unique point of view to her design aesthetic. Kahindo founded the design label “Modahnik” in 2009. The name Modahnik is an anagram of her first name, Kahindo, and last initial, M.


Kahindo describes the MODAHNIK woman as “a global nomad who views fashion as a creative expression of her individuality. She is classically feminine with an edge and dares to be bold.”

Prior to being a designer, Kahindo worked as a Human Resources Specialist and holds a BA in International Business & Economics, from Blackburn College. She has since furthered her studies and holds a BFA in Fashion Design from Illinois Institute of Art-Chicago. She is also an alumni of the 2011 class of the Chicago Fashion Incubator at Macy’s on State Street Designer In Residence Program.


MODAHNIK has been featured in WWD, Chicago Magazine, Chicago Sun-Times, Refinery 29 and on runways in Los Angeles, New York, Chicago and Johannesburg.


Her Spring 2013 Collection is to die for! My favorite piece being the “FLOTUS” named after the First Lady of the United States! Her designs are bold and colorful with blues and has had her compared to the great Alexander McQueen!

On her most priced possession Kahindo said; “My dream celebrity person to dress is Michelle Obama. I did send her one dress from my spring/summer 2011 [line]. I don’t know if she’s worn it, but I did receive a thank-you note from the White House. I carry it with me everywhere.”

She loves the style of Sarah Jessica Parker and would one day like to set up her design studios between New York and Capetown South Africa! We wish Kahindo all the best on the Project Runway Show and hope she will achieve the honor of being the first female African Designer to win!

“I think there is beauty in everything. What ‘normal’ people would perceive as ugly, I can usually see something of beauty in it.”
— Alexander McQueen


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