Hot Gossip

Posted on 3 min read

    Hot Gossip Watch: What chic San Diego boutique owner and clothing designer is rumored to be a contestant on the next edition of TV’s fabulous Project Runway?

Gordana Gelhausen opened GOGA by Gordana with little fanfare on January,  at the corner of 4th and Market Street downtown.  She won’t say on the record whether she is or she ain’t.  But a little CityBeat sleuthing has led to the following clues.

For those of you living under a rock, the Project Runway is a reality TV competition, hosted by super-model Heidi Klum.  Aspiring fashion designers face tense challenges; much hissy fitting and drama ensue, along with amazing designs by the fabulous young talent. 

Gelhausen is not legally allowed to discuss the show, but there are clues.  If one and one equals two, she may very well be shooting the final episode even as you read this. 

According to the Charleston, SC City Paper- where Gelhausen also owns the boutique Goga on King Street-  the  former Yugoslavian born designer was living in Los Angeles during the same five-week period that the show was filming its preliminary rounds.

This week, your reporter has learned, Gelhausen will be in New York attending Fashion Week.  As it happens, Project Runway finalists are scheduled to display their collections for the judges at Bryant Park on February 20th.   

Gelhausen will say this much:   She was originally picked for the third season of the show,  but was rejected at the last minute because there was another contestant that also had an accent,  the East German Uli Herzner, who went on to win second place.

Project Runway is currently off the air indefinitely due  to a legal dispute that began in 2008 between the Weinstein Co., which produces the show and NBC Universal, the parent of Bravo. Weinstein sold the rights of the series to the Lifetime Networks for five years. NBC Co. sued, saying it had the right to first refusal to keep the show on one of its channels.  The show ran on the Bravo channel for five years.

GOGA by Gordana, her new store in San Diego, is the only designer-owned boutique in town.  It is a showcase of her couture (one-of-a-kind) cocktail and special occasion dresses, all of them beautifully hand sewn in silk.

As a youngster growing up in a small Serbian farming village in Bosnia, Gelhausen learned crocheting, knitting, and fabric-dying techniques from watching her aunt.  Growing up in that environment, people had to be self sufficient.  Says her husband O.R. Nasseri,  ”If you give Gordana a sheep, she’ll knit you sweater, and if you give her a lamb, she’ll cook you a stew.” The organic dying process she uses was inspired by dying Easter eggs as a child.  Her first experiment in fabric dying was making a dye out of boiled onions.  The water changed the texture and color of the fabric.  Her boiled water technique gives her fabric a unique almost organza-like effect.

Gelhausen says she is inspired by the work of designer John Galliano, the chief designer for Christian Dior, known for his wild fantasy, romanticism, and unfettered imagination.  But, Gelhausen’s real genius is that she creates clothes for normal sized women. In addition to her own designs, her stores in San Diego and Charleston carry clothing lines from other designers that are less expensive and more everyday

 As for Project Runway, Gelhausen has said that if she were on the show, “she wouldn’t be afraid of the work.”   She says that being on the show makes the statement, “Yes you can dream, and yes, you can dream big.”  She admits that  “It’s huge exposure and a huge honor,” but “ultimately whether you win or lose, it’s up to you what you do with your talent.  Everyone that make’s it to Project Runway is a winner”.

San Diego will be watching… 



  • Miles & Stephi
    March 27, 2009

    Hi mom!
    This is great!
    Love you!