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"Little Shop of Gypsies" Is Risky Business

10/08/2012

Thelmas-gypsy-girls-400x300Thelma Madine is the unforgettable, platinum blonde dressmaker from My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding. With her outrageous gowns in high demand in UK and Irish traveler communities, she could barely keep up with the orders. Then, she had a brilliant idea.

Why not thank the clientele that popularized her designs with a totally innovative apprentice-to-employee program? Many gypsy women want to work, but cultural stereotypes make it difficult for them to get jobs. People assume gypsies are unreliable, unpredictable and uneducated. But, Thelma reasoned, if the women had a goal to work toward -- and actual training -- their futures could be quite different.

She set out to recruit 10 talented, interested candidates who would be schooled in every element of dressmaking. The challenge? They'd have to show up. Learn. Get along with their colleagues. Many doubted Thelma -- at times, she even doubted herself. But with her heart and hard-earned money invested in these gypsies, it simply had to work.

Watch Thelma's experiment play out when Little Shop of Gypsies premieres Thursday, Oct. 11 @ 10|9c.

And see a sneak peek of the all-new show below!

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This is the place for the scoop on TLC shows and talent, the latest story we're captivated by, the viral video we just had to share. The new things we're talking about now.
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