When I found out that three07 designer Melissa Grimes was going to be on Under the Gunn Season One, I nearly jumped out of my socks! I was so very excited for her, and I could not wait to attend the premiere party!
During the first episode, I was sitting on the edge of my seat and falling in love with the dot-on-dot ensemble Designer Melissa created–it was so cute that I wanted to reach right through the TV to get it! Surprisingly, Melissa did not make it to the next episode; however, she stayed true to her classy aesthetic while representing the South fabulously with her precious and drama-free attitude–that is better than winning any reality TV show in my book.
Now, without further ado, I present to you the VIP Interview with designer Melissa Grimes!
VIP: Melissa, tell me a little bit about yourself.
Melissa: I am originally from Mobile, Alabama; and I moved to Birmingham two years ago to work on a clothing line that I co-own with two of my best friends from college [April Moore and Courtni Tyre]. We all attended the University of Alabama together and starting a clothing line was always something that we dreamed about in school!
VIP: What inspired you to audition for Under the Gunn?
Melissa: Auditioning for Under the Gunn was not something I ever thought that I would have the guts to do! We were contacted by someone who had seen our work, and they suggested that we try out–it was an opportunity we simply could not pass up!
VIP: Who are you as a designer?
Melissa: It can be hard to differentiate my personal aesthetic from that of our company three07–We all have a very similar sense of style with our own little tweaks that make it unique. I am very girly- I love fun prints, bright colors, full skirts–I believe fashion should be fun and make you smile!
VIP: Who or what inspired you to become a designer?
Melissa: I think I was always driven by a general love of fashion–I actually started out in interior design when I realized that it wasn’t for me. It seemed the more obvious choice was right in front of me–so I switched to apparel design!
VIP: What is it like having a clothing line with your best friends?
Melissa: It is great! We love to bounce ideas off of each other, and we each bring a different perspective to the table when deciding on fabrics and final designs. I consider myself very lucky!
VIP: Even though you were eliminated, what was it like being able to be on the first season of Under the Gunn?
Melissa: It was an unforgettable experience! It was such an honor to be chosen, and I was able to meet so many amazing people–and of course Tim Gunn himself! I cannot say that I ever imagined myself on reality TV, but it turned out to be so much fun!
VIP: What was it like having to create an entire look in just six hours? *gasp* I totally couldn’t do that!
Melissa: So Stressful!! I really like to process everything and think things through when I work; however, there was no time for that– you know going into the competition that there will be time constraints, but it doesn’t really sink in until you are there in the moment!
VIP: The mentors did not like your dot-on-dot creation; however, I LOVED it because it was classy and wearable. Do you think had you made a more dramatic/flashy piece that the mentors would have liked it better?
Melissa: They may have, but I think that I stayed true to myself and really loved how my look turned out on the runway!
VIP: If you could go back and design something totally different, what would you do?
Melissa: I have tried not to over-think the “what if.” I would love to say that I would have sent an elaborate ballgown down the runway or something equally dramatic, but that’s not really me!
“A reminder to everyone to continue to tune in on Thursdays @ 9/8c,” says fashion designer Melissa Grimes. “The remaining designers are so talented- I cannot wait to see what they create!”
To learn more about three07 and the designers behind the clothes, check out the VIP Interview here!