Following fashion convention has never been a strong suit for “Project Runway” alumna April Johnston. The 2006 graduate of Lake Norman High School says growing up in Mooresville, NC her personal style was “Absurd. I was pretty colorful back then,” she said with a laugh. “I wanted to make a statement — any statement — so badly, it just had to be obnoxious. I had no filter, and I wanted to get as far away from the Abercrombie & Fitch look as I could.”Soon after finishing her studies at the Savannah College of Art and Design in 2010, Johnston found herself cast as the youngest competitor on Season Eight of Lifetime’s reality fashion show. It was there the world got to know Johnston’s refined sensibilities, heavy on gothic romance with a modern twist.She has parlayed that aesthetic into a successful line called Mangled Courtesan, and the a collection of fabrics with Springs Creative of Rock Hill, SC, for Jo-Ann Fabrics. I caught up with her recently for an interview that will appear in the December issue of Lake Norman Magazine.You'll have to pick up the mag to read about her appearance on “Project Runway All-Stars” (set to air in January 2012) as well as her plans for an all-black wedding in Savannah’s Bonaventure Cemetery, but here's what she had to say about the recent finale of Project Runway's Season 9 (which found the sewing-challenged Anya as the winner):"(The finale) really upset me," April says. "I can’t believe that Anya won. I can’t understand how someone that has no knowledge of sewing, of putting together a garment of how it’s supposed to come off and on a body, how they could win. That is all really important."Echoing popular sentiment in the PR fan community, April continued: "It seemed as if (the judges, producers) had chosen her from the beginning as the winner."Who was her fave, and most deserving of the win? "Victor, for sure," she says. "To me, he had a couture sense of style and had a ready to wear look down. He made fun, wearable clothing. Out of everyone on that season, he was by far the most talented."What is your take on the end of season 9? Will you watch again?I always swear I won't but somehow find my way back. I am, however, looking forward to All-Stars. That'll be a whole lot of cray cray (Kenley? Hello?) in one place.
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