“Project Runway” Designer Michael Costello Comes Clean About Those Rumors

eight finalist Michael Costello
says he has no idea how
the rumor started.

He’s not talking about
the rumor that he dissed one of his fellow-designers to an audience invited to
vote on their designs. (Not true, he says.) And not the one that he doesn’t
know how to sew, either. (Also not true.)

No, what he can’t
figure out is where anyone got the idea he’s straight.

Even though his official
Lifetime website bio
clearly says he’s gay, for some reason he wasn’t
included in the "Team Gay"
roster provided to AfterElton.com when the casting lineup for the show’s eighth
season was announced. A quick Google search on "Is Michael Costello
gay?" turns up a number of places where fans firmly identify him as
straight – some based on this site’s exclusion of him from "Team Gay"
– and others where they debate the issue based on things like his friendship
with the show’s very out Mondo Guerra,
or even his mannerisms.

"Maybe it’s because I’m kind of a ‘Michael
gay,’" Michael speculated to AfterElton.com, referring to the out
designer and Project Runway judge.
"You know, I wear t-shirts and jeans. But I
make dresses. I use hand gestures. I’ve always liked boys. Look up ‘gay’ in the
dictionary, and my picture’s right there. What more do they want?"

There’s also the fact
that he used to be married to a woman and has two kids. "I come from a
culture that believes in arranged marriages, so I was married when I was
18," Michael, who is 27 years old, said. "We had two children, a boy
and a girl, thirteen months apart."

Michael with his son

His son lives with
Michael and his partner of 7 years, Rich. His
daughter lives in Texas
with her mother, who, he said, has remarried into "a really difficult
culture, and doesn’t even call to wish our son a happy birthday or merry
Christmas. And they don’t want me to call my daughter, or let me know where
they live. I send presents and get updates through her grandmother, but it’s
really sad. It breaks my heart."

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