Seattle womenswear designer Kristie Metcalf is in. She has made the cut, she's making it work, (insert other fashion-related catchphrases here), and is set to compete alongside 11 other designers on Bravo's new reality show Styled to Rock, headed by megastar Rihanna and premiering this Friday, October 25.
Aside from being a fashion competition, the show is basically a pop culture catch-all, with celebrities like Khloé Kardashian, Kylie Minogue, Kelly Osbourne, and Kid Cudi (basically anyone in Hollywood with a 'K' name) appearing as guests. Each week the designers are presented with the challenge of creating looks inspired by the guest stars. RiRi and Pharrell serve as mentors and judges.
The winner goes home with a $100,000 cash prize, a fashion spread in Glamour, and the chance to work on Rihanna's style team. Metcalf isn't disclosing any juicy details, but was kind enough to share her experience in our exclusive interview below.
Shop Talk: How did you get started designing and what brought you to sign up for Styled to Rock?
Metcalf: I've always loved fashion and making things; I was that quiet artsy kid that would draw unicorns for hours and sew outfits for my cats. I studied costume design at Western Washington University and then fashion at the New York Fashion Academy. I decided to audition for the show on a whim, really. I was feeling stuck in my day job and needed something to jump start my design career. So why not a reality competition show? It might not a traditional path, but hey, it's a pretty cool thing to put on my resume.
Do you think of yourself as a competitive person? What were your strengths and weaknesses going into the show?
I'm not an inherently competitive person, but when something really matters to me and I put my heart into it, I want to be recognized for that. And who doesn't like winning things? One of my biggest strengths is being a quick sewer, especially under pressure. Working in theater will bring that out in you since you're always on a deadline. And in theater you always have to deal with some unpredictable personalities, so workroom drama is nothing new to me.
Weaknesses? I have no weaknesses!
Okay, there may be a hint of sarcasm on that. I guess as far as reality TV goes my weakness is that I don't have a very big ego, and I'm a pretty even-tempered person. Don't expect any diva throw downs from me on the show, but I'll admit that there were times when being too nice could get you into trouble.
What did you learn from being on Styled to Rock?
The experience really solidified that this is what I am meant to do. It was grueling, but has given me great confidence to go out there and finally call myself a designer.
How do you rep the Pacific Northwest in your designs?
I was definitely one of the more wearable designers on the show. I think that's a very PNW trait, form and function. While it might seem that sometimes function rules Seattle's everyday street wear (as in too much polar fleece), Seattlelites are also known to break the rules and define their own style rather than blindly follow trends. I'm big on experimenting with patterns and color and have started to create some of my own textile prints influenced by that sense of urban edginess.
And we have to ask, Rihanna in real life…?
Stunning. She really is so flawless it's almost freaky. And very poised and cool. I was nervous, of course, but it was pretty awesome just meeting her.
Get a first look at Metcalf in the Styled to Rock preview below and follow her reality journey Friday nights at 8 on Bravo. We'll be cheering her on with weekly recaps. Now what do you think Rihanna's catchphrase will be?