‘Real Housewives’ star Shereé Whitfield breaks her silence on critiques of She by Shereé brand launch

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As one of the original cast members of the game-changing Real Housewives of Atlanta, Shereé Whitfield has already cemented her place in reality TV history, but her story isn’t quite done.

Returning yet again for Season 14 of Bravo’s hit series this year, Whitfield continued to make her mark, bringing viewers into her tumultuous love life, shifting friendships and, perhaps most notably, pushing to deliver on the 14-year promise of debuting She by Shereé. In this season’s finale, she finally made good on her promise to put on a fashion show with fashions, opening up her eponymous brand’s website for ordering in conjunction with it airing on TV.

While it was a victorious moment for Whitfield, there were still some hiccups: The website crashed, customers complained about high prices and eagle-eyed fans noticed similarities between some of her offerings and products available at fast-fashion retailer Shein.

For the most recent episode of In The Know’s pop culture interview series, We Should Talk, Whitfield responded to a lot of the critiques of She by Shereé, opened up about the mental hurdles she’s had to overcome over the years as she struggled with the brand, what it was like returning to RHOA again, her thoughts on who should be around next season and more.

Listen to In The Know’s full interview with Real Housewives of Atlanta star Shereé Whitfield below, and keep reading for highlights from the interview:

On accusations that she copied Shein with her She by Shereé designs: I’ve gotten good production management, and they came up with the idea to incorporate some other pieces with my custom pieces that would offer different price points for different people. I’m not designing everything. I don’t design hats and things like that. All I can say is that apparently Shein shops at the same private label. Shame on that private label for selling anything that they sell to Fashion Nova or Shein; you shouldn’t sell to anybody else. This isn’t the first time this has been done, so I don’t understand why people hold me to a different degree than everybody else. Any of these online boutiques, any of the stores you go to and a lot of designers [use] private label. They’re not necessarily designing every garment in their line.

On the Season 14 reunion feeling different from past reunions: When I tell you I’ve never been happy about a reunion going into a reunion, I’ve never been comfortable. But for some reason, with my season, I felt really good about it. I was able to stand in it and be proud of it. In the past, I didn’t feel that. I feel a calm. I wasn’t anxious, I wasn’t nervous. I didn’t have any of that going into the reunion this time, and that is a first for me.

On the mental hurdles she overcame to bring She by Shereé to fruition after 14 years: It was a roller coaster, for sure. Even with all the naysayers, you had people who were happy and people who were hating. It’s a lot! It’s very draining, and it’s very disappointing. I’m not the only one who ever had a dream. I’m not the only one who ever took a while to make something come to fruition. I was just reading that Thomas Edison tried to create these lights, and it took him 3,000 times before he actually got it right. They act like I’m the only one who’s ever had a dream and wanted to create something that took a while. Life happens! I’m not consistently working on this. I get other things that are going on, and then with the negativity, it’s just a lot. … The negativity unfortunately seems to overshadow everything else.

On who she’d like to return to The Real Housewives of Atlanta next season: I think someone could go! I would love to see another OG. I would love to see a Lisa Wu — I would even like to see Kim [Zolciak]. Kim is funny. I don’t know if she would come back. I think if I was there or another OG [was there], I think that she would. … I would definitely support Porsha [Williams] coming back. She has a good story. … One person [Drew Sidora] can leave for sure. She would not be missed at all.

Watch In The Know’s full interview with Real Housewives of Atlanta star Shereé Whitfield below, shop She by Shereé here and tune into RHOA on Sundays at 8 p.m. ET on Bravo:

If you enjoyed this story, check out In The Know’s recent interview with fellow “Real Housewives of Atlanta” star Kenya Moore here!

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