There are a number of reasons to watch The Voice (the on-point performances, the thrilling drama that inevitably unfolds, and the budding on-screen chemistry between Gwen Stefani and Blake Shelton all come to mind), but for us, it's Stefani's strong sartorial personality that commands our attention. And we have Hollywood power stylists Rob Zangardi and Mariel Haenn to thank—they're the masterminds behind every one of Stefani's looks (they also have stars like Jennifer Lopez, Rachel McAdams, and Cara Delevingne on their roster of A-list clients). Now that season 9 of The Voice has wrapped, we caught up with the duo (whose schedules are insane btw—they're currently tasked with outfitting Lopez for her Las Vegas show) to chat about all things Stefani, but first we had to know: What's she like?
"She's kind of a dream client," Zangardi laughs. "The genius thing about working with Gwen is that she can pull off anything. She has a strong personal style to begin with, which allows us to push the envelope."
Before the season started, they knocked out one giant fitting, during which they locked down about 20 looks, but what neither one of them anticipated was Stefani's shift in mood, which led to surprising last-minute outfit decisions.
"In the past, we've done avant-garde, tomboy-ish edgy looks, but this season, it was a nice surprise when she said, 'I feel like I want to be more feminine,'" Haenn says. "We were used to her loving blazers and drop-crotch pants, but then we had to readjust our way of thinking. We were looking at things that we would normally never look at. We wouldn't be sure about something, but we'd pull it and she'd see it and love it."
The result was a line-up brimming with looks that felt like a marked departure from her usual punk attire, like flirty fringe dresses, ethereal gowns, and printed A-line numbers. "It came out very '60s mod, which wasn't intentionally done, but it happened that way," Haenn continues. "We kept going with it because it was working."
"There were a lot more form-fitted dresses, sexier things she wouldn't normally wear, more cleavage-baring pieces," Zangardi chimes in. "She even told us last night, 'I love that I did something totally new this season, something I've never done before.'"
But of course that's not to say Stefani lost sight of her personal style. Her affinity for prints was still there, as was her signature punk 'tude, which was evident in her love for fishnets (her faves are from Capezio). In the words of Zangardi: "It all still felt Gwen-y." Keep scrolling to see more of Stefani's style evolution from season 9 of The Voice.
1. The Marchesa Gown Used During The "Used to Love You" Performance
"We pulled the Marchesa dress for the AMA performance and creatively it didn’t work out with her screen content. But she loved the dress so much that she had her creative director Sophie Muller create the ambience with the flowers and everything based on that dress. She was so happy. She loved it so much," Haenn says. "She was like, 'I never get to wear girly dresses. I love it.' It was perfect."
2. Floral Applique Dress
"This season, it was a nice surprise when [Gwen Stefani] said, 'I feel like I want to be more feminine,'" Haenn says.
3. Flirty Fringe
"I think every day is a fun moment when she’s getting ready," Haenn says.
"She’s really in the moment when we’re trying on clothes," Zangardi adds. "Even last night, she looked at Mariel and me and she said: 'Can you believe this is our job? I get to try on all these beautiful clothes. This is my life.'"
4. Houndstooth Number
"She loves fashion, she loves to play, she’s willing to experiment. There are the key basics that make up Gwen Stefani—the leopard, the patent leather, the red lip, the houndstooth and plaid, the punk," Zangardi says.
5. The '60s Mod Moment
This season's line-up of outfits "came out very '60s mod, which wasn't intentionally done, but it happened that way," Haenn says. "We kept going with it because it was working."
6. Crisp Layers
"With the girlier looks, we’d put her in a dress but layer it with a button-up shirt underneath," Zangardi says. This season was a new look for her, but "it all still felt Gwen-y."
7. Tom Ford Cut-Outs
Stefani embraced the '60s with a white, cut-out Tom Ford dress and over-the-knee boots. "We had to readjust our way of thinking. It was fun. We were looking at things that we would normally never look at. We wouldn't be sure about something, but we'd pull it and she'd see it and love it."
8. Old Hollywood Glam
"For The Voice, we would have two, sometimes three or four looks a week, and the advantage of that is being able to play around with a lot of different looks, from wardrobe to hair and makeup," Zangardi says. "From the different lengths of her hair to long braids to Old Hollywood hair, it gave us a good opportunity to play the field and experiment with different looks."
9. The Deep Plunge
"I think she’s done so many different types of looks," Haenn says. "She’s super into fashion, and as a musician, she’s always going to keep evolving and try new things."
10. Sparkle and Fishnets
"For her, fishnets adds that punk feeling without being too literal about it. It’s one of those things where everyone has that one thing that they’re consistently doing. For her, it’s fishnets. It's her thing," Haenn says.
11. Sweet and Sexy
"There were a lot more form-fitted dresses, sexier things she wouldn't normally wear, more cleavage-baring pieces," Zangardi says.
12. Mixed-Print Perfection
"This season was interesting," Haenn says. "We would do a big fitting at the beginning, and from there, we’ve been trying on outfits the day of, which never happens. It’s crazy, but it worked. It never got to a point where we got stuck or something didn’t work or she had to wear something she didn’t like or something didn’t fit." Case in point: These flirty mixed-print separates.
13. Little Gold Dress
"TV is always a little different than red carpet. Shine and crystals always look way better under the lights on TV than they would on a red carpet," Zangardi says. "Having that extra oomph on TV always helps."
14. Her Finale Look
"In the past, we've done avant-garde, tomboy-ish edgy looks, but this season, it was a nice surprise when she said, 'I feel like I want to be more feminine,'" Haenn says. "She’s pretty true to herself, she’s into trying new things, which we’re super happy about."