Prize: $100,000 to start your own fashion line, a magazine feature, $50,000 worth of computer equipment, and a chance to show at Bryant Park during Fashion Week
What You Actually Get: That prize, if you want it; a fashion show at Bryant Park, even if you lose
Project Runway offers its winner money to create their own collection, but often the contestants talk as if the real prize is being able to show a collection at Fashion Week in New York City. For the seventh season, the second to air on Lifetime, 10 of the 16 contestants presented collections at Fashion Week, although most weren't shown on TV. Those decoy collections have been presented since the show's time on Bravo in order to conceal the results of the competition, which was still being broadcast when Fashion Week occurred, but never before had so many of the contestants presented collections. On the opposite end, during the previous season, Lifetime's first, the finalists presented their collections but weren't allowed to be present because Fashion Week occurred long before the show aired and the designers were even announced. To top it off, at least one of the show's winners has rejected the actual
prize: First-season winner Jay McCarroll said no to the $100,000 to start his own collection because it came with too many restrictions.