Gwen Interview with Yahoo Shine

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From Yahoo Shine:

For Fashion’s Night Out last Friday night, Gwen Stefani held a pre-launch event for her new Harajuku Lovers Wicked Style fragrances, which she describes as “light, fun, happy, fruity, and sweet.” 100 lucky customers who got there first had the opportunity to buy the scents months in advance and have them autographed by Gwen herself. But I was even luckier. I got to interview Gwen about her new perfumes, her fascination with Japanese culture, how she looks gorgeous on- and off-stage, and her upcoming L.A.M.B. clothing collection. Read on for our exclusive interview!

On how one goes about creating a fragrance
I’ll be on tour spraying everyone like, “which one do you like? Which one do you like?” It’s really difficult, especially when you start to mess with [the scents]. They send you something and you’re like, “well, maybe a little bit more orange.” And then you really don’t know what you want and you’re like, “oh no, maybe I was wrong. Take the orange out. What was I thinking.” It’s such an abstract, weird kind of personal thing.

On her favorite scent
I used to be that kind of girl that wanted to have that one scent and that’s what I smell like. But now being able to have so many different fragrances I can change it up all the time, and I love that. I’ve matured.
I think “Gwen” is my favorite… I love to be able to wear the one that really is me.

On the one not-so-cool thing about having your own scent
I remember doing it when I was pregnant one time—that was hard, I was like, “I can’t smell! Everything smells bad!”

Gwen Stefani signs autographs flanked by her Harajuku girls. Photo: Brian Bedder/Getty Images
On why she’s completely obsessed with Harajuku
My dad actually worked for Yamaha motorcycles my whole life. He would come home [from Japan] with a doll, and the candy, and different little presents from there, so I had that connection real early. When I finally went there with No Doubt it was just like, wow, this is totally where I should be from! I very much related to the whole thing. It’s just so creative, and everybody’s trying to be individual, and unique, and original. I just really loved it and always wanted to go back there.

On how she stays pretty
I take as good care of myself as I can. I eat really good. I work out a lot. Training and drinking water and all the things they say to do. I don’t have any answers or tricks where I can be like, “guess what? If you do this…” If I did I would probably like, I don’t know, sell it.

Me and Gwen! Definitely a Fashion Week highlight. Photo: Brian Bedder/Getty Images
On her beauty routine as a kid
As soon as we got home from school I’d book it to the bathroom in my girl friend’s house and be like, Mary Kay—let’s do it! And we’d have all of our moms’ makeup, and I’d burn her neck with a curling iron.

On why she looks stylish at all times
Since I was able to put any clothes on or make clothes I’ve always loved getting ready. So even if I didn’t have this life I would still get made up before I left the house. That’s just how I am. My husband always says, “we spend all this time getting ready, and then you just want to leave as soon as we get there!” And I do! I’m, like, in and out. I think it’s because I enjoy it. Maybe that’s what people see, it’s not like this forced thing. Of course there are days when I don’t want to put make up on. I just don’t leave house those day. But I do really enjoy the process of getting ready.

On her new Spring 2011 collection, showing later this week
This time it really took a turn, because I wanted to do a Kimono type print, and one of the girls who works with me brought this African print that was supposed to just be scrap. She just found it, it was like, a mistake. And we were like, “Oh my god, we love that!” So then everything kind of went African, and just went into that direction surprisingly last minute. It’s going to be a lot of prints, a lot of color—which is totally opposite of the last couple years.

Why we’re totally jealous of Gwen Stefani
I love my clothes, and I love making clothes. It’s just such a dream

EDIT-BeautyBlitz just posted a similar interview with Gwen:

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It might be a good thing that tomorrow’s L.A.M.B. show at New York Fashion Week isn’t open to the public, because Gwen Stefani really draws a crowd.

The scene outside was absolute mayhem last Friday for the designer/musician/mogul’s appearance at Sephora’s Soho store for Fashion’s Night Out. While Gwen signed bottles of her new Harajuku Lovers fragrance line inside, a screaming crowd at least 10 deep swarmed the entrance, stopping traffic on Broadway. A pack of rabid fans even climbed up store’s window ledges to bang on the glass (Gwen hopped into the window display to return the love). It was crazy!

Before the event, we got a chance to chat with Gwen about her style, her obsession with Japanese culture and, of course, the new fragrances.

On developing the new Harajuku Lovers Wicked Style fragrance line…

The characters’ new styles are inspired by real girls’ outfits in Harajuku, Tokyo and by costumes that Gwen and her backup dancers have worn during performances. For the actual fragrances, “We wanted to keep everything really light and fun and happy – fruity and sweet,” she said.

Gwen explained that her role in the scents’ development was that of an editor: Fragrance company Coty gave her different formulas to smell, and she narrowed down the choices and made suggestions. Her take on playing perfumer? It’s not easy. Fragrance is “such a weird, abstract, personal thing,” she said, but she’s developed an appreciation for the craft. “I used to be the kind of girl who wanted to have that one scent, and that’s what I smell like, but now I like being able to have so many different fragrances and change it up all the time.” She smiled, “I’ve matured.”

No surprise: her favorite Harajuku character is her blonde namesake, G. “I love to be able to wear the one that really is me,” she said.

On her lifelong appreciation for Japanese culture…

Gwen’s fascination with all things Japan goes way back. “My dad worked for Yamaha motorcycles my whole life, so there was always this Japanese connection,” she said. “He would come home with a doll or candy, little presents from there.” Later, when she visited the country on tour with No Doubt, the inspiration really stuck. “I very much related to the [culture] – it was so traditional, yet it was so modern and creative.”

On her influential personal style…

Gwen is majorly glowy in person – at 40, no less – but she claims not to have any real groundbreaking beauty secret. “If I did, I’d probably sell it!” she said. Instead, she makes taking care of herself and her health a priority and credits her magnetic confidence to a genuine love of style. “I think that people see that I enjoy it. It’s not a forced thing,” she said. “Even if I didn’t have this life, I would still get made up before I leave the house. My husband always says, ‘We always spend all this time getting ready and then you want to leave as soon as we get there’ – and I do!”

The Harajuku Lovers Wicked Style fragrance collection launches in October.

– Wendy, Senior Online Editor

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