Draya Michele is known for her appearances on VH1’s reality television series Basketball Wives LA, but off camera she has also been working on not one but two clothing lines. Last year, her Mint Swim swimwear brand expanded to include both plus sizes and children, and she’s looking to keep that momentum in 2016.
LA Fan Cultures Examiner conducted an interview with Draya to discuss her ventures into the fashion world and her new outlook on life as she expects a new baby with her fiancee, Dallas Cowboys cornerback Orlando Scandrick.
“[Fashion] was always something I was interested in,” she explained of what brought her into the business. “I started off drawing sketches of woman’s clothing as a teenager and then as I got older I realized I wanted to venture out into swimsuits, and I knew that I needed to move out to California to do that.”
Asked what separates Mint Swim from other celebrity fashion lines, she told us, “My creative vision comes from sexuality, I think, and by overall being a girl and being a woman. I think that it’s important for women to feel sexy in swimwear, so I design my swimwear with that sex appeal in mind.”
“In March, the new collection will be out,” she continued. “I really like to focus on the one-piece [swimsuit] and I think that I’ve kind of reinvented the one-piece. Making the one-piece sexier bikini now. Everyone wanted to wear two-pieces before, and now I think I’ve made it really sexy to wear a one-piece and still feel like you’re really hot at the pool or beach.”
Business isn’t even the biggest happening in Draya’s life. She’s about to be a mother for the second time, and enthused that “Everything is going great. This is actually easier than my first first [pregnancy]. I’m just enjoying the positive attention, and I’m enjoying my baby growing. I love it all.”
“It’s nice to be able to share something so personal with the world and have such positive feedback from it,” she continued. “I have fans that have grown with me for five years now and they’re just as excited about me having a baby as I am, so it’s been great.”
She’s already mastered the balance between motherhood and entrepreneurship. “Since I’ve been pregnant I’ve been making sure that I keep busy with work, just so I don’t get out of the habit of working,” Draya explained. “I bring my baby bump to work with me every day.
“Even after the baby’s born, I have friends and family that can watch [the children] and I can still have my personal time while being a full-time mom. I’m preparing for that.”
In fact, she’s looking to add a third descriptor to her name in the new year. “I have transitioned into acting,” she said, “and March 11 my first movie is coming out in theaters called The Perfect Match. Aside from being a designer, I’d like for actress to be one of the titles you know me by.”
For more on Mint Swim, visit the official website.