Red Hot Gwen

'I do everything from the heart’
ByAhlan! Live ReporterSunday , 21 December 2014
Red Hot Gwen
© 2014 Joseph Llanes

After giving birth to her “miracle” child, singer, songwriter, fashion icon and talent show star-maker Gwen Stefani is back taking care of her other baby – L.A.M.B. The fashion line, which stands for Love Angel Music Baby, has been doing just fine while Gwen has been busy being a pop star and giving birth to Apollo Bowie, her third little boy with rocker husband Gavin Rossdale.

But now she’s back with her latest L.A.M.B collection called New Nomad which, in its wild, happy, colourful designs, perfectly reflect where Gwen is right now.

Exploding back on to the scene in a way she never thought possible following her third child is something the 45-year-old No Doubt beauty is more than grateful for.  Her return as a designer and her first appearance at New York Fashion Week for three years was something she was determined to do, but much of what else is going on in Gwen’s life right now was as unplanned as the baby boy she gave birth to in February.

Replacing  the pregnant Christina Aguilera as a coach on hit talent show The Voice was an offer that came out of the blue, but one that Gwen has  seized with the same enthusiasm she has for all her projects. Gwen now has her own spinning hot-seat alongside Pharrell Williams, Adam Levine, Shakira and Blake Shelton with husband Gavin acting as mentor to her team of wannabes.

Taking her marriage to work is also something Gwen never bargained for but  despite her nerves - not to mention unfounded rumours of a split – Gwen and Gavin have been in perfect harmony on screen. With three kids to look after, a relaunched fashion line and starring role  on TV, you would think Gwen would be looking forward to another break from the limelight. Think again!

The workaholic star is already working on a new solo album and new material with her beloved No Doubt bandmates. Here the Hollaback Girl talks about her comeback, her passion for fashion, becoming a mother again, working with her man and those breakup rumours .

You have just celebrated ten years of L.A.M.B. How have you and your brand changed in that time?

“In lots of ways. I think the biggest evolution for me has just been learning so much along the way and finding how even with the disappointments, some really great things are born out of that. When you have limitations or disappointments you have to be extra creative. I have learned to not get upset about that stuff and really  see those situations as opportunities to make great things and learn what works and what doesn’t work. It’s been a learning process because I’m not trained. I didn’t go to school for this so I’m really  just do everything through feeling and from the heart.

Where did the inspiration for this new collection come from?

I was really just exhausted from writing the last No Doubt album and ready to dive back into designing and to breathe new life into L.A.M.B brand. I didn’t know it would end up being as bright, colourful and graphic as it turned out. I really just wanted to do  something that felt fresh and something I would want to wear every day but still feel comfortable in. But the inspiration really came from all over the place, different cultures, colours and prints. I  think it really reflects who I am at this moment – happy, colourful and wild.

You are successful at whatever you turn your hand to - writing and  performing songs and fashion, too. What is your secret?

I just have a vibe and a strong opinion about what I like and about what is me. I just stick to what I know.

Do you prefer creating music or fashion?

I just love the idea of the process of being creative. Designing is the same thing as writing music - you have nothing and then at the end of the process you have something. For me, fashion is less emotional than music and it’s not such a big drain. With fashion, I get to be creative but it’s not as deep as when I create  music. But I love them both. I guess out of all the artistic things I do, music is the most rewarding because it’s so hard to write songs. It’s so hard to believe it’s going to happen and then, once it does, it’s just addictive.

How do you cope with the downside of fame? Do you get overwhelmed?

What I try really hard to do is to realise that what is real is real. And what is real are the people that are around me that I love  and that love me and I deal with on a daily basis. Everything outside  of that is just fantasy land.

You and Gavin have had to put up with some split rumours earlier this  year. How do you feel about that?

It doesn’t matter. You could have a picture which has nothing  to do with what is going on and then suddenly that sparks a rumour. But that’s all they are - rumours.

And how are your kids?

They are amazing. I love them so much and we have so much fun. I feel really blessed. I can’t imagine life any other way. I’m lucky  to have such a great husband and kids.

How has it been working with Gavin on The Voice?

It’s been great. We’ve had a lot of fun which is great because we  hadn’t really collaborated on anything before other than babies! I was freaking out at first because I didn’t know if it would work. It was weird but it’s really  been great.

How did your coaching role come about?

It really just came out of nowhere. I had just had my baby and wasn’t really thinking of anything other than this miracle of a  little boy when I get the call to say do I want to do The Voice? I was like, ‘Do I?’ I was really pinching myself at how this came into my life at a time when I was least expecting it. It was like the beginning of a whole new chapter for me. Everything feels so exciting and brand new again.

How have you enjoyed working with Pharrell Williams and the other  coaches?

It’s been great. Those guys are crazy which I think comes across  on screen, but then you guys only see the R-rated version of what we are all really like! We have a lot of fun.

How do you juggle it all? Motherhood, fashion, music, TV the whole  thing?

It’s really hard. I’m not going to lie. It’s hard, but I am  living my dream. I love it.

But you always look so good...

If I wasn’t even famous or had any success, I would still wake up and put tons of make-up on and put on a cool outfit. That’s  always been who I’ve been my whole life, so that’s never gonna change. I love fashion. I love getting dressed up.

What is your one makeup tip?

That’s easy! It’s got to be a red lip! One Christmas my grandma  bought me a bunch of different lipstick colours and I tried them all  on. I remember thinking, ‘That red looks good! I’m gonna wear that.’ And I just never stopped. I like the old, vintage Hollywood look.

And what about your top fashion tip?

You just have to be brave. Clothes are an extension of your  personality and your mood on any given day.

What do you think makes a woman sexy?

I feel like there’s kind of room for everyone. We need all the  different varieties. I think sexiness comes from talent and creativity. Not just in women, but humans in general. I find myself attracted to anyone who is passionate and  talented.

A lot of people see you as an inspiration...

It’s crazy. I guess I’m getting used to the idea of being an inspiration to someone. I never saw myself as that person. So when I hear that I’m inspiring, I feel guilty. but I’’m still that same person from high school who happened to get lucky.  I really love my life, I’m lucky!

Who inspires you?

I’ve always loved the whole starlet thing. Marilyn Monroe and Jean Harlow, anyone who had blonde hair! Madonna, she can do anything. Musicals. Julie Andrews was really magic to me. I love old movies. I love the clothes and the stupid stories about making it big and how to marry a millionaire. I love glamour.


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