It’s a sad day for Project Runway fans. Season 1 contestant Wendy Pepper has died. She was just 53. 

Pepper, whose real name was Anne Eustis Pepper, died peacefully surrounded by her family and friends, according to an obituary that ran in the Washington Post. The designer is survived by her daughter Finley M. Stewart, as well as her parents, brothers, sister, and several nieces and nephews.

During her time on Project Runway, Pepper made it to the finals in Bryant Park. Ultimately, she came in third place overall, but despite not winning the overall competition, she did come in first in a number of challenges, including the opportunity to have a piece she designed sold in Banana Republic and to design Nancy O’Dell’s Grammy dress.

RELATED: Project Runway Contestant and Fashion Designer Mychael Knight Dead at 39

She was a popular contestant, returning to Project Runway All Stars, as well as two other Bravo reality shows Celebrity Poker Showdown and Battle of the Network Reality Stars.

Our thoughts are with her family during this difficult time. 



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