Project Runway Season 8 finalist, Andy South, sat down for an interview exclusively with NewNowNext to talk about the new flagship store he’s opening in Honolulu’s Chinatown and opened up about her gender transition.
Turns the uber talented designer and fan favorite from the season that featured the likes of Mondo Guerro, Michael Costello, and Gretchen Jones (the eventual winner) started her gender reassignment therapy before going on the Lifetime show. But when shooting started, she set the hormone pills aside. Now that she’s home in Honolulu, successful with her budding designer career (her label — Andy South — is carried by Nieman Marcus), the 25 year-old, beloved Hawaii native has started living her life as Nong Ariyaphon Southiphong.
Fans first got wind of the change when photos of Nong appeared on her Facebook page this March — the big tip-off: when the profile listed sex as “female.”
During our interview in her new chic Chinatown atelier (it’s the coolest area in town, natch), Nong not only addresses her transition but also gives us a first hand look at some of her new designs for the coming season.
In part two, next week, Nong tells us her top five favorite things to do in her hipper-than-you-thought hometown, Honolulu.
Related: Andy South