Obsessed with the Dress hit TV screens at the beginning of this month! As with any reality TV show, if there's not drama- it doesn't sell.
When I first tuned in to watch Obsessed With the Dress, I was ready to see princesses complaining and crying because they couldn't "find" that perfect "winning" dress!
Boy, I was surprised! It was that, and so much more- friendships, backstabbing, and a beauty queen- well a few!
I had a chance to chat with one of the stars of the show, Sarah Hollins! She's so much more than what we see on TV!!
Me: Tell us about yourself!
Sarah: Well, I'm a 23 year old student studying Journalism! I am from Omaha, Nebraska where my family lives. I have been all over the place!! I graduated high school and started studying at Creighton University in Omaha. In 2009, I won Miss Nebraska Teen USA 2009 and with that a scholarship to a school in New York City called the new york film academy. I studied broadcast journalism and fell in love with it. I finished that one year program and headed back to the midwest to finish school. In the meantime, I've been working as a NPR radio reporter, a local news anchor, hosted my own online sports web show, and (my real passion) a video editor for a online news organization. I've started exploring the world of advertising and PR and continue to be interested in that. Currently, I'm training to possibly compete in another pageant. Overall, I am who you see on Obsessed With the Dress but consider myself a much more serious person. I am very academic and sometimes need to be reminded to have a little more fun.
Me: From a viewers standpoint, there seems to be favoritism when it comes to Beau. Now that you are watching it, would you agree?
Sarah: I can see where people would think that their is favoritism in the store when it comes to Beau and I. Michele has been apart of my life for 10 + years. We truly have a deeper bond than she has with any other employees. She coached and inspired me to win my title Miss Nebraska Teen USA in 2009, which has changed the path of my life. I will always have her back and I know she will have mine. When it comes to Beau and Michele. The truth of the matter is, in life we bond with people on different levels. We all have unique personalities that mix well with some and not so well with others. Michele, Beau and I have personalities that just mesh! I can't say the same for others in the store. Despite his appearance on Obsessed with The Dress, Beau is hands down the most loyal person that I know. To know Beau is to love him.
Me: What is the best part of working at The Winning Crown?
Sarah: Working with people I love. Although there is drama and the occasional yelling match, work is not work! I get to help people through a process that will change who they are. I truly don't believe we just sell dresses but we sell an experience. Winning a pageant has changed the way I walk, talk, and treat others in the best way imaginable. It's truly rewarding to experience the transformation in clients. They walk in with a lack of confidence and walk out like they already have a crown on their head, glowing.
Me: What advice do you have for going ladies who are trying to "win a crown"?
Sarah: I recently judged a pageant and it opened my eyes to what really out shines the competition. Be genuine. Be happy to be there, have fun every moment you get to be on stage, be yourself, and be so proud of the work you've put into it because trust me when I say, a judge can see it on your face. I can hear a GENUINE answer in interview. A pageant is a juggling act. Confident but humble. Excited but poised. Be prepared but real.
Me: What have you learned about yourself and others since the show?
Sarah: Well, it's incredibly hard to watch yourself on television. I sit on the edge of my seat anticipating my every word with both fingers and toes crossed that what I'm about to say is not stupid, mean, or all of the above. One of the things I've painstakingly learned through the first three episodes airing is to LET THINGS GO. The self confidence issues are not attractive. I can pick apart my hair, my clothes, the way I talk but how productive is that? I don't think its practical for anyone to say "they don't care what others thinks," that is just not true but I've learned to pick and choose my battles. Twitter/social media lends itself as a breeding ground of hateful comments from people whom you've never met. You've got to let it roll off your back. My mantra has become "you can't win them all," and you'll kill yourself trying. “Those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.” — Bernard Baruch.
Me: Is there anything you regret doing it saying on the show?
Sarah: OF COURSE!!! I can remember one scene in particular where I'm making fun of Tiffany's clothing. Although I do have to say I don't think her apparel is appropriate for the Winning Crown Boutique I could care less about what anyone wears. I truly believe in individuality and allowing people to just....BE. I never want to make myself look closed off to diversity in anyway. I would say besides that I really tried to be as authentic as I could be throughout this whole process.
Me: What's your relationship with everyone now?
Sarah: I think the cast is great. We have the diversity that people love to watch. Our show is interesting because we have personalities that clash big time. I am obviously very close with Beau and Michele. It's been an experience that has forces all of the employees together and although we don't get along all the time, only we can understand the process we went through and what it was like so we are bonded in that.
Me: You were Miss Nebraska Teen USA in 2009. How exciting! What have you used your platform for (charities, etc)?
Sarah: I was so lucky to be Miss Nebraska Teen USA 2009. It has really been the first stepping stone to everything I have accomplished so far in life. I had opportunities to work with organizations like Reach Out And Read, a program for underprivileged children to help encourage literacy by giving away books in pediatrician offices and educating parents about how important it is to read to your children. I was also lucky enough to work with program like Youth Emergency Services which provides shelter, programs, and advocacy for at-risk youths. I'd have to say most importantly that winning the title led me to my career choice in Broadcast Journalism. As a journalist I concentrate on human interest stories and have the opportunity to give a voice to the voiceless. So often news is bogged down by the bad and we miss out on all the good that inspires us. This is where I find purpose.
Make sure that you are following Sarah on Twitter at @SarahEHollins and tune in to Obsessed With the Dress on WeTV Friday nights!