Sutton Stracke is crossing her fingers for another season of the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.
Speaking to PEOPLE, the Sutton Concept store owner and RHOBH newcomer says that while her debut on the show was "hard," she thoroughly enjoyed the experience.
"It's quite a roller coaster ride, and I think a lot of the other women think so, too," Stracke says. "It can be terrifying and then exhilarating at times. You get off the ride and you want to go back on it. That's how it feels."
The South Carolina-born queen of couture, who was raised in Georgia before ending up on the West Coast, joined the 10th season of the Bravo franchise as a friend of RHOBH veteran Lisa Rinna.
Over the course of the dramatic season, Stracke, 50, developed friendships with all of her costars — Kyle Richards, Teddi Mellencamp Arroyave, Dorit Kemsley, Erika Girardi, Denise Richards and fellow newbie Garcelle Beauvais — but says she particularly bonded with Kyle.
"I think we're all close, but I speak a lot to Kyle. We have a lot in common and she's funny," she says. "We all text each other and have stayed in touch. It's a true friendship group. It's not fake or phony in that way at all."
Following the show's third reunion episode, news broke that Denise, 49, was leaving the show after two seasons. (The decision came after a tumultuous season for the actress: Brandi Glanville has alleged that the two had affair, which Denise has repeatedly denied.) Weeks later, Mellencamp Arroyave, 39, also announced her exit from the franchise after three seasons. Stracke says she was shocked by both departures.
"I think all of us were sad to hear about Teddi, but she is tenacious. She's a fighter and she's going to land on her feet and do something great," Stracke says. "She's got that little perfect baby Dove to take care of right now and she's got a new house, so I think she's occupied. So she's good. We were sad, but we cheer her on for sure."
Sharing her thoughts on Denise's departure, she says, "I was surprised, but I'm always the one in the dark. I'm sad that she's not coming back. I think she's a special person and has a lot to add."
And while the cast for the 11th season of the series is still uncertain, Stracke says she would love the chance to show more of her true self — ideally with a diamond in hand as an official Housewife.
"I think because I wasn't allowed to film with my children, you didn't get to see the total aspect of my life and how I live. I'm not always dressed up and being miss perfect," she explains. "All of that does come into play when necessary. But I do have a fun aspect of my personality, so I was sad that we didn't get to see that."
Though she felt a little misunderstood by viewers this time around, Stracke — who is celebrating the first anniversary of her West Hollywood boutique — says that she was "happy" that fans got to see a different side to her in the recent RHOBH "Secrets Revealed" episode.
"I was happy to see that my giddy side could be shared. That was fun," Stracke says, adding that she hopes she will be able to share more of that fun-loving side in the upcoming season.
"This is an ongoing process for me … to see more aspects of my life, that would be amazing," she says. "I'd love it."
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