LSU grad makes the cut, on 'Project Runway'

POSTED: Friday, July 22, 2011 - 6:23am

UPDATED: Thursday, January 17, 2013 - 10:21am

Anthony Ryan Auld, a 28-year-old LSU design apparel graduate from Baton Rouge, will compete in the ninth season of the hit fashion design competition program, “Project Runway.”

The “Project Runway” season premiere will air Thursday, July 28, at 8 p.m. on the Lifetime Television Network, hosted by supermodel Heidi Klum and featuring fashion experts Heidi Tim Gunn, Michael Kors and Nina Garcia serving as mentors and judges, along with Klum. Guest celebrity judges scheduled for the season include actress Christina Ricci, who will be the guest judge for the premiere episode, along with Kim Kardashian, Zoe Saldana and Malin Akerman.

Auld – who is originally from Linden, Texas, and still resides in Baton Rouge – will be one of 20 contestants to take part in the competition pitting up-and-coming fashion designers against one another for the chance to win $100,000 to put toward starting a fashion line. The winner also receives a spread in the Marie Claire fashion magazine, a $50,000 technology package from Hewlett-Packard and Intel and the opportunity to design and sell works in an exclusive collection through online fashion distributor PiperLime’s website,

Auld is a 2009 LSU graduate, receiving his bachelor’s degree in apparel design from the LSU School of Human Ecology. After winning Best of Show honors at that year’s Dallas Career Day event, he accepted a scholarship to continue his academic career in apparel design at the prestigious Paris American Academy in France, before returning to Baton Rouge.

“Ryan has worked so hard for this opportunity and I couldn't be happier for him to be on the show,” said Lisa Barona McRoberts, a professor in the LSU School of Human Ecology’s Textile, Apparel and Merchandising Program who taught Auld in both junior- and senior-level classes.

“His fashion-forward, marketable collections use sustainable and/or vintage elements and accompany beautifully rendered illustrations using a variety of media and nontraditionally finished paper,” McRoberts said of Auld. “His construction is also very well executed. Ryan used Grade 3 alligator skin in his casting collection, and it sparked interest from the judges.”

McRoberts said she is confident that Auld will be successful both in the competition and in his design career.

“Ryan should make it all the way,” she said. “I can't imagine there are many other designers as remarkable. Regardless, on behalf of the faculty from the division of Textiles, Apparel Design and Merchandising in the College of Agriculture’s School of Human Ecology, we believe he has already won on several counts. First, he followed his dreams and didn't give up. Second, he is the first graduate from LSU to make it onto the show. Finally, the combination of his tremendous creativity and extraordinary talent make him the complete package to succeed in the industry.”

Auld is not the only contestant this season with Louisiana ties. Fellow contestant Julie Tierney is a Baton Rouge native now living in Grand Junction, Colo.

For more on “Project Runway,” including Auld’s contestant profile, visit

To learn more about the LSU School of Human Ecology’s Textile, Apparel and Marketing division, visit

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