Delvin McCray, Project Runway designer showcased meticulous craftsmanship

Throughout Project Runway season 18, Delvin McCray was the meticulous craftsman, but an unfortunate challenge cut his season short.

From the first Project Runway season 18 challenge, Delvin McCray impressed the judges with his attention to detail. From the perfection in the fit to the strong lines, his designs had a different air than some of the other designers‘. While many people thought that this Chicago-based designer would make New York Fashion Week, his competition was cut short. Still, this expert atelier has greatness ahead of him.

Some Project Runway designers understand that this platform can be a stepping stone for more in the fashion industry. While there are personalities involved and appeasing the judges, the show can be an opportunity to put a face to a brand, push a designer’s comfort level and, potentially, get on people’s radar. Many people, including McCray himself, believe that this show could be that opportunity.

For McCray, the judges seemed to adore or shred his designs. While some pieces were beautifully tailored, other pieces seemed to miss the mark. Whether it was fabric choice, how the model was styled or just the judges’ opinions, there seemed to be no middle ground with McCray.

While no fashion designer ever wants to be “just safe,” McCray’s looks never fell into that category. Love him or hate him, everyone had an opinion.

As the force behind Delvin McCray and REDD by Delvin McCray, his designs outside of the show seem to be more complex than the limited time that this fashion competition allows. The pieces vary from structured, asymmetrical looks to bold colors which create drama. These pieces are for a woman who is confident in herself.

During his interview with Christian Siriano (as well as stated to Culturess), McCray said he believes that he will be the Jennifer Hudson of Project Runway. While that statement is emphatic, he is striving toward big goals. With a Paris Fashion Week show in his future, he definitely is looking beyond this fashion competition.

After being eliminated, McCray graciously answered some questions for Culturess. True to fashion, his candor is refreshing.

Culturess: Creating your own tie-dye textile added another layer to the challenge. Do you think that your own personally created textile helped or hurt your design?

Delvin McCray: I think my personally created textile hurt my design, new grounds for me, picking colors and working with them while trying to keep things exciting.

Culturess: Many fashion trends tend to have a comeback. Why do you think tie-dye is having a comeback moment?

McCray: Tie-dye is having a comeback moment because it was reinterpreted and presented in a clever way. I cannot think of anyone who would go shopping looking for a tie-dye [piece].

Culturess: This week’s challenge looked to elevate tie-dye. Do you think that any look, even one that tended to be causal, can be elevated?

McCray: You can definitely elevate a casual look. It’s all about how you style the pieces.

Culturess: The “Siriano Save” made a big impact on the competition. Do you think that the save changed the direction of the competition?

McCray: I don’t  think the save had that much of an impact on the competition. Had there been a tie in scores and the save was used, maybe.

Culturess: As the competition reaches the finale, the divide between the designers seems to be growing. Do you think that the personal dynamics impacted your performance?

McCray: The personal dynamics didn’t really affect my performance, lack of inspiration did.

Culturess: Looking back at the competition, was there one challenge that you wish that you could remake for your own brand or a client?

Delvin: The Cats challenge and the Ashley Longshore challenge.

Culturess: What is next for you and/or your brand?

McCray: Continuing to build and expand my brand, becoming the Jennifer Hudson of my season, and showing in Paris Fashion Week.

Delvin McCray is the designer behind Delvin McCray and REDD by Delvin McCray. He is based in Chicago, Illinois.

Project Runway season 18 airs on Bravo, Thursday nights at 9 p.m. ET/PT.

Next: Brittany Allen humbled by the Siriano Save

Do you think that Delvin was eliminated too soon? Could he be the Jennifer Hudson of Project Runway?

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