'Project Runway' designer Daniel Franco talks 'Idol': 'Musicians, they all have fashion lines. Well, why couldn't a fashion designer sing?'

daniel-francoImage Credit: FoxOh, Daniel Franco, where did you go? To American Idol, it seems! If you were watching last night’s L.A. audition show, you might have caught the former Project Runway contestant on your TV screen. (Blink, though, and you might have missed him!) Yep, Franco was the guy featured in the Adam Lambert look-a-like montage who told judges: “If Adam Lambert and Susan Boyle had sex, which is pretty far-fetched, I’d be it, pretty much.”

So why did he decide to audition? “Anyone that knows me knows that I love singing,” he says. “I’ve been singing before I thought of becoming a fashion designer. You see, musicians, they all have fashion lines. Well, why couldn’t a fashion designer sing?”

Yet Franco says he didn’t use his reality TV show cred to get on the show — like the rest of the 11,000 auditioners, Franco stood in line for hours. (“I decided to be authentic about it,” he says.) As for the designer’s singing repertoire, Franco sang two songs: Bruce Springsteen’s “Thunder Road” and Cream’s “Sunshine of Your Love.”

Of course, there was one little problem: Franco is well over Idol‘s age limit.”They said, ‘You sound great, but rules are rules,'” he says. “[But] I wanted to present my case that age doesn’t matter that much. Look at Michael Bublé, Susan Boyle, and Mick Jagger. People sometimes should have other opportunities, other chances to do things. And I’ve always been a renaissance man.”

Good thing he has a back-up plan: Franco — who says his musical sound is a mix of Prince, David Bowie, and the White Stripes — says he has another show in mind. “I found out that there’s X-Factor,” says Franco, who also plays the guitar. “There’s no age limit. So I’m going for that.”

For now, Franco spends his days at The Albertson Wedding Chapel in L.A., where he hosts designer weddings as the owner of Wednow.net. (“It’s a Vegas-style chapel here in L.A. that’s not cheesy,” he says. “There are beautiful designer flowers. I’ve got fashion photographers. The business is booming.”) Owning the business also inspired Franco to launch a line of wedding dresses. “I love the idea of promoting love and style and giving people these dreams that can come true,” he says.

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  • fancypants

    what season of PR was he on? i started watching during season 2, but i don’t remember him. i also didn’t see him on AI (but i usually go online while watching).

    • Q

      He was on season 1 and then again on 3!

    • Doug

      Ugh. That stupid “follow your bliss” line got old after one ep. Thank the heavens he wasn’t on American Idol. I would have been blissed.

  • Peg

    He was on Season 1 and Season 2 if I recall correctly – and both times he stunk and was eliminated. He’s basically a desperate wanna-be.

  • Heather

    I was watching and thinking “He’s familiar, but I can’t think why”. This cracks me up, that someone from Runway tried out for Idol.

  • Dana

    noticed him right away. too bad we didn’t get to hear if he can sing

  • Tiffany

    I believe he was one of the first ones eliminated from Season 1 of Runway. They let him come back season 2, and I don’t remember him getting too much farther.

  • Sick Of Reality Stars Who Won’t Go Away

    Another case of a reality star trying to keep their 15 minutes going. You weren’t a good designer and I’m sure you’re not a good singer either. JUST GO AWAY!!!!

  • Dallas

    I also noticed Cassidy Haley of Skingraft in that montage. Hysterical, since he designed Lambert’s tour jacket and has his own EP on iTunes. Which btw is decent.

  • catlin


  • Joey Gladstone

    He appeared in season one of Runway and looks like a cross between actor Anthony LaPaglia and singer Steve Perry, not Adam Lambert.

    • Zoey

      He was on seasons 1 and 2 – he was kicked off the first challenge of season 1 and was the fourth person to leave during season 2.

  • Zoey

    He should’ve sang “Daniel Franco, Where Did You Go?” :P

    • GoddessLu

      Too funny Zoey–I hear Santino singing that in my head as I was reading this…

  • Victoria

    Who cares and he does not even come close to looking like Adam Lambert

  • Mavis

    I remember he told Heidi during one of the reunion shows “I love you Heidi” and then cut to Heidi who had a weird look on her face and she kind darted her eyes side to side as if to say, “Did he just say he loved me?”

  • Olivia

    Michael Buble? He’s only 34, what kind of point was he trying to make, there are much older singers he could have used for his example.

    • fancypants

      lol! that’s what i was thinking!

  • Jax

    your cool daniel franco. i love you.

  • AnnieWT

    I Love Daniel Franco, he’s a very talented designer and a sweetheart! He’s damn cute too! I hope he makes it on X factor!!!

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