Long before she was one half of newest Bachelor in Paradise power couple: Terek? Daylor? Whatever, Taylor + Derek - Taylor Nolan was the Seattle local turned Bachelor villain on Nick Viall's season. The show paired her off against party girl Corinne Olympios, and several episodes were spent with just the two ladies verbally berating each other as to was smarter, better for Nick, etc. etc.
We cover the Bachelor franchise pretty regularly over here (if you haven't noticed), being an ABC show - so obviously we perk up and pay close attention to anyone locally. So when Taylor got booted off Nick's season, we put in a request to interview her ASAP...and were kind of surprised when she said yes (full interview above).
Now that she's shot to Bachelor stardom as the literal definition of success on the show - she's engaged - we thought we'd share some tidbits that we learned from her WAY before Paradise.
1. She's normal
I know, that's a weird "fun fact" to have. But honestly, it was the biggest thing that shocked us when interviewing her. Her season of the Bachelor had painted her as a condescending, stuck-up woman who came off as thinking she was better than everyone else. In real life Taylor is well-spoken, funny, and doesn't seem to take herself seriously at all.
"Going into the experience, I didn’t look at it like this is going to be a dramatic TV show," she said about Nick's season. "I looked at it as this is going to be one of the craziest experiences ever of me being the most vulnerable I could ever possibly be. And in order to walk away from this happy with myself, I have to be as open, and honest and transparent and authentic as I can possibly be. And I think that what’s hard watching it back is you don’t see all of that. It’s not always black or white. There’s a lot of gray area in there. And then I’m reminded it’s a TV show and there are things that have to line up in order to make the storyline make sense. So I think part of that is disappointing that it’s a one-dimensional character of who I am."
2. Of all people, her stepdad was the one who got her into the Bachelor World
Most of the time we hear about contestants being "pressured" into applying by friends, or colleagues - but it's not often that it's by their parents! Taylor told us it was actually her stepdad who encouraged her to try out for Nick's season.
"My stepdad had just gotten back from a Mariners game and had a few drinks - and the casting commercial came up and they were all like 'Taylor, oh my gosh, you have to do it, you have to do it,'" she said. "They wouldn’t leave me alone about it, like all night! And then I was like, you know it’s kind of the best timing in my life to do something crazy like this. Why not, it’s probably not going to happen, there’s so many people that apply for this. Then once I was able to see it was actually a possibility, I was kind of like - well, it’s in alignment with some of the things I’m focusing on in my life like vulnerability, dating and putting yourself out there in new and different environments, so it just kind of all went from there."
3. She has Bachelor besties
Based on what she's said, and her Instagram accounts - she is incredibly close to Vanessa (who ended up engaged to Nick, but they're no longer together), Danielle M. (who was on Paradise for a short while) and Dominique.
"The first two weeks, I got really close with Vanessa and Danielle M. and just sort of stuck with them and didn’t really put myself out there with the other girls."
4. She doesn't drink.
Like, at all. On Bachelor and Bachelor in Paradise, she never had a drop of alcohol.
"But another piece that will give people insight into my experience is that I actually don’t drink alcohol at all. So I was the only person in the house who was 100 percent sober 100 percent of the time. And there were a lot of situation where girls were really drunk. It’s a stressful environment. Sometimes you’re just bored and a drink is readily available. And, unfortunately it’s how a lot of people in our society cope with stress."
5. Seattle feels like home
We don't know whether or not she and Derek will stay up here for good, but Taylor does love Seattle.
"I hope I’m still in Seattle in the future. Seattle has always felt like home, so I love it here. I’m working on some projects with Runway to Freedom, which happens here in Seattle, a fashion charity event supporting awareness of domestic violence survivors. And just getting involved in more stuff like that both in Seattle and outside. Because now I have this platform, where I can talk about things like Runway to Freedom and other causes that are really important to me. So, I’m looking forward to that in the future and who knows, maybe Paradise, maybe not. I don’t know."
Anyone else so glad she decided that was a YES on Paradise?! Congrats to Taylor and Derek, and we hope to see her around the Emerald City!