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A Miami Girl At New York Fashion Week, Day 4: Catching Up With Jay McCarroll

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When you're living in Miami, spotting celebs is nothing new. But it's on a different level here in New York -- especially at Fashion Week. Let's just say the A-listers are running rampant. In one day, I ran into Dita Von Teese, Anderson Cooper and a couple of Jonas Brothers.

But my favorite run-in so far has got to be with Jay McCarroll, the winner of the first season of Project Runway. What can I say? I'm a sucker for reality stars.

Here's what went down: We shoved our way into an elevator, headed to a fashion presentation for Ann Yee. Like everything in NYC, it's packed. And just as the door is closing, a hand pops in to stop the doors from closing. And who is it? Mr. Jay himself. Awkwardly, we whipped out our tape recorder and asked him for an interview -- and shockingly, he obliged. Here's our very candid convo.

New Times: What have you been up to since winning Project Runway?
Jay McCarroll: I have been managing a Duncan Donuts in Connecticut.


I was about to say...
I am such a liar. But I always say that and they are like, "Oh, good for you."

So, stop the bullshit. What are you really doing?
I am designing clothing and apparel for my website, JayMcCarroll.com. I just joined Twitter, @JayMcCarroll. I design fabric that is coming out in July. Oh and I teach college.

What did you think when Project Runway went to Lifetime?
It's the same show. I just have to scroll down a few more channels.

Do you still watch it?
I do!

Love it?
I don't love it. I watch it, though. My heart is with Dance Moms and Ru Paul's Drag Race.

Oh my god, Dance Moms. How is Abby Lee Miller both morbidly obese and a choreographer?
It baffles me too. My heart is warmed when she is yelling, "Ball change! Ball change!" She's such a bitch. I love her, though.

What's your opinion: runway shows or presentations?
I think there is more excitement in runway shows. Presentations can be boring, but you can actually see the clothes. At the end of the day, that is what it is all about. It's better for the designer because buyers can come, see the clothes, see what it looks like on a body, buy them and then they have the money to do this again next season.

What do you think about this one?
I like it! It's more casual. We are here, sipping drinks, eating rock candy; I am talking to you, from Miami. It's great.

What do you think of Ann Yee's Fall line?
I love it. We went to college together. She actually assisted me when I did New York Fashion Week. I helped her cast the models, and all of that good stuff. It's cool.

Her models are thin, but not too thin.
Yeah. I mean, models in this town are too thin. When I was casting, I asked them all if they had any horror stories. One was telling me that her roommate has been eating cotton balls soaked in orange juice. Most of them haven't eaten anything in weeks. I'm hungry just thinking about it.

I see a lot of military boots. Could I pull them off?
No. That's not your style. Don't do it.

But they look so comfy.
Keep to the wedge. Trends aren't for everyone. Like the jegging -- not for everyone. Leggings, pretty much for everyone. But those are over. Listen to me -- don't wear those boots.

OK, I won't. Promise.

Is there a trend everyone can pull off?

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