'Modern Family' Jesse Tyler Ferguson as 'Project Runway' Season 12 Judge Poses Challenges [VIDEO & EXCLUSIVE]
Jesse Tyler Ferguson will appear on Thursday night's episode of Project Runway, but the Modern Family actor faced some challenges in deciding which contestant used his bow tie collection the best.
"It was definitely just kind of being a fish out of water," the guest judge told EnStars during a phone conference on Monday. "I didn't want to appear like I didn't know what I was talking about, which a lot of times I might not have."
It was also a new experience for Ferguson to judge a show that is taped far before it airs on TV. Unlike Zac Posen, Heidi Klum and Nina Garcia, who worked with the contestants since the beginning of season 12, the actor met the competitors for the first time and was treading unfamiliar territory.
"I never had the opportunity to get to know any of these people," he said of the contestants. "So, it was a little mind field that I walked across when I judged that episode."
During Thursday's Project Runway episode, contestants are expected to incorporate a bow tie from Ferguson's own line. The collection is a part of Tie the Knot, an organization he started with his husband, Justin Mikita. The proceeds from the sales benefit several organizations that fight for the civil rights of gay and lesbian Americans, including the Human Rights Campaign.
Drawing inspiration for the designs of their Tie the Knot collection isn't a difficult process for the pair, Ferguson explained.
"It's just simple sometimes," the recurring So You Think You Can Dance judge said. "Just seeing a textile that we really like, whether it be like a pattern on the street or a throw pillow in our living room."
The ties, which are priced at $25, range from simple black designs to fuchsia with tons of vibrant patterns.
The couple also incorporated these bow ties into their July wedding ceremony.
"We did design a custom bow tie for all our guests with our names and the date of the wedding on the back of the bow tie," Ferguson also said during the phone conference. "And those were the gifts to all the guests."
But, Ferguson and Mikita didn't wear any of the ties from their collection to the wedding. Ferguson said that several of their guests bought Tie the Knot bow ties and wore them to the ceremony, so it was important that the grooms did not match any of them.
Ferguson's appearance on Project Runway airs on Thursday night at 9/8c on Lifetime.