The newest Real Housewife of Beverly Hills spills on joining the show after Lisa Vanderpump's exit and opening her own boutique.
Beverly Hills is getting a dash of southern charm.
Well, The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills is, at least, in the form of Sutton Stracke. The socialite and philanthropist, who hails from Augusta, Georgia, is currently filming the 10th season of the Bravo hit.
"They have been harassing me for years to do this," Sutton quips to ET. "My really good friend Lisa Rinna was urging me, kind of pushing me, telling me, 'It's going to be fun, it's a great group of girls, you’re going to love it and get along with everyone, so just do it.’ So, I did!"
"It’s still new," she adds, confessing that she feels like she's still "awkwardly" getting to know the ladies in the cast.
"It's hard to bust into a group of people, it's like going to first grade and being the new girl in class," she shares. "But everyone has been really nice so far and the whole process has been fun and exciting."
"I am probably going to be the strangest one on the show," she then admits. "I don't do Botox or anything! But, who knows? Next year, when it comes out, I may be like, 'Lord, mercy! We have to get to the plastic surgeon quick.'"
"I can’t be anything but my authentic self," she adds, going on to explain why she finally said yes to joining the show. "I think that the older you get, the more you realize that things don’t come your way all the time and so I thought, 'How can I say no to this? It's a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,' and hopefully, it won't destroy my family or my friends, or I won’t be left alone in my house with my cats. But I think it’s going to be fun, and I'd rather do it and experience the craziness of it than be 80 years old and thinking, 'Wow. I really should've done that show…'"
Sutton isn’t the only new Housewife for season 10. Actress Garcelle Beauvais has also joined the cast, which for the first time does not feature Lisa Vanderpump. She opted to exit the show after season nine, having stopped filming with the women halfway through that season.
"I've never met her," Sutton notes of the Vanderpump Rules star. "I am sure she's lovely, but I am not trying to replace anybody. I would imagine that we have different personalities because I am kind of goofy and weird. But I hope that people are receptive to meeting someone new, and -- I am, I had nothing to do with anything, just leave me out of it, everyone. Mea culpa!"
Like any good Housewife, Sutton is launching a business as she embarks on her reality TV journey. ET caught up with the 48-year-old inside her just-opened West Hollywood boutique, aptly named Sutton. It's inside a cozy 1920s bungalow nestled behind trees and Ivy on North Almont Dr. Sutton designed the location alongside Brittany Carson Johnston and Garry Morris.
"I think what I'm trying to do is reevaluate how we shop,” she says of getting into the retail game. "I've kind of gotten a bit complacent going into normal boutiques, where you see the same thing over and over, and then they go on the sale rack and then you see the next thing over and over and over. So, I wanted to come up with something that is constantly moving. I wanted to combine all the things that I love, which is fashion, art, decor, all in one place."
Born and raised in Georgia, Sutton moved to New York City to pursue her dreams of becoming a dancer in her teens. After realizing she would never make money on stage, Sutton started working behind the scenes as a fundraiser for a dance company. Then, she got married, traveled the world, moved to London and ultimately landed in Los Angeles. She split from her husband, Christian, in 2016, kicking off a new chapter for the soon-to-be reality star. It was around that time that Sutton first purchased the space her store now calls home, though she confesses she’s been toying with the idea for a good decade.
"I have been a stay-at-home mom for a long time, and my daughter’s a senior in high school and I have two other boys, and watching other mothers that stay at home and their children leave, I was feeling their stress and what do you do next?" she recalls. "And I thought, 'I'm gonna do this next,' but I'm gonna go ahead and set it up so that I can actually, really be working when they go off to school. Because I had this great sense of anxiety about being left home alone by myself. Like, what am I gonna do? Well, now I have a new baby and here she is!"
ET got an exclusive tour of the one-of-a-kind space, which is set up like a house with elevated southern accents. Shoppers enter through an oversized "closet," complete with a seating area; then, they can move through the combo foyer/powder room into Sutton's office, a dining room and a butler's pantry. Everything inside the boutique is curated by Sutton -- from an exclusive line of jumpsuits by designer Amber Sakai, to the U.S. debut of French designer Alexis Mabille’s line, bespoke "glove" clutches by Perrin Paris, vintage finds from her world travels and works by artists including Paris Reid, J. Millay, Alejandro Pineiro and Helmut Newton. And, it’s all for sale.
From the fashions to the fixtures (yes, the sconces, chandeliers, custom wallpaper print, tables and chairs), shoppers can purchase almost anything they see in the space, with prices starting at $350. Sutton regards it all as art, with plans to swap out most everything every three months, like a gallery might. In the shop’s window sits a couture gown by August Getty, which model Sara Sampaio sported to the 2019 Met Gala.
"I was meeting with him and his team and I said, 'What if we do August Getty pieces in the window like art?'" Sutton explains. "It's going to change every three months, and they are just going to bring us their beautiful couture pieces to showcase as art, because it is art."
Sutton says her love of high-end fashion kicked into high gear when she turned 40, gifting herself a lifelong dream of going to the couture shows in Europe. She now goes every year, but knows everyday people don’t have that luxury. So, she’s brought a bit of the couture experience to her store. Fashion fans can get demi-couture made by August Getty through Sutton's shop, meaning they can come into the store, see August's designs and order their own, custom-made version of the looks. And, if demi-couture is not in your budget, Sutton still wants you to stop on by. The space is just as much of a exhibit as it is a store.
"We want people to come in and enjoy," she says. "Have a glass of champagne. Enjoy the art, enjoy the clothes."
The Sutton Concept Store is now open at 636 N. Almont Dr. in West Hollywood, Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST and by appointment on Sundays. For the month of October, 15 percent of all sales will benefit breast cancer charities. The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills will return to Bravo in 2020.