AceShowbiz - Designer Michael Costello has apologised to Leona Lewis, but admitted he was "completely blindsided" by the singer's claims that he bullied her.
The "Bleeding Love" singer weighed in on her experiences with Costello after he accused Chrissy Teigen of bullying him to the point that he considered taking his own life.
Lewis claimed that back in 2014, she was asked to take part in a fashion show to raise money for charity, with Costello assigned as her designer.
However, the British star alleged she was made to feel "very awkward and uncomfortable" at the fitting because "the dress was a sample size and he/his team clearly did not want it to fit me." She claimed Costello then cancelled on her, adding, "He no longer wanted to dress me and he abandoned his commitments to me and the show which made me well aware that I wasn’t the body type required."
Lewis said she suffered "personally and professionally" due to Costello's actions, adding, "The most hurtful thing is that it was to raise money for charity, and this went against everything we were trying to do."
Costello has now responded in a post on his Instagram page, insisting he was stunned by the singer's allegations as he believed they had a good relationship.
"I was really surprised to hear about your traumatic experience with me from the Go Red Women charity event in 2014. I flew to New York just to fit you and we had a wonderful time at the fitting. I fangirled over you and told you how much I loved your songs. You are one of the most talented and beautiful women I know. We took photos and I left options of dresses for you with the charity."
"You told me you absolutely loved the dresses, so much so that even after that event in 2014, you continue to wear and post me on your own IG in 2015, Your team has continuously reached out to me to pull custom looks for you, which I was happy to create. The most recent request I received from you was May 17, 2021."
He included screenshots of the conversations with Lewis' team and snaps of her on Instagram in his dresses.
"I don't take accusations of body shaming lightly, as I have built a career as celebrating diverse women of all shapes and sizes," he continued. "But if I did unintentionally hurt you and you continued to support me, I want to apologise to you directly. This caught me by surprise, I am completely blindsided."
Costello once again stressed the impact of all the controversy has had a negative effect on his mental health as he added, "I have lost tons of opportunities, sleepless nights, and I'm not in a good mental state of mind. I wish you spoke to me directly instead of on Instagram, especially when I am at my most vulnerable moment. After years of trauma and getting blacklisted with receipts shown to me by my friends and allies, I have been suicidal and often feel no purpose to live."
He also said that he hopes Lewis' "intentions are pure" and "that you're not acting recklessly in an attempt to smear me and all the dresses i created for you to save a friend."
Concluding his open letter, Costello wrote, "Whenever you're ready, I'm here. Let's have a heart-to-heart conversation. @leonalewis."
The "Project Runway" star is also facing further allegations from make-up artist Jordan Liberty, who claimed Costello sexually harassed him while he was going through chemotherapy.
"By the way, Michael Costello called out Chrissy Teigen this week for cyber bullying and has everybody p**sed at her. Meanwhile, he sexually harassed me while I was going through chemotherapy. The gloves are off today," Jordan said in his videos on Instagram before detailing the alleged incident where Costello is said to have sent him explicit pictures ahead of a work meeting.
Costello has yet to respond to Liberty's allegations.