Cover Girl: Gwen Stefani for ELLE UK Magazine

Posted on August 31, 2012

Oh, the things you can get away with on the cover of a fashion magazine.


Gwen Stefani covers the October 2012 issue of ELLE UK magazine photographed by Matt Irwin in designs by Peter Pilotto and McQ Alexander McQueen.

Peter Pilotto Fall 2012 Collection

McQ Alexander McQueen Fall 2012 Collection


Like taking TWO over-the-top dresses and combining them into ONE. Do NOT try this at home, kittens. Gwen Stefani is a trained professional in dress-wearing, on an enclosed track. Eager amateurs could lose a limb if they attempted this.

Oh, and one other thing, ELLE UK…


Was “INTERNATIONALLY FAMOUS RECORDING STAR” not girly enough to be included?

[Photo Credit:,]

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  • PinkLemon


    • Ligia R. Whitefield

      I don’t think peplums are supposed to start so high? This looks more like a prehistoric breathing

  • Alison McAfee

    gwen is my hero. she is KILLIN’ it. also, I’d be peeved if I was her. she’s got a new album out, and they don’t mention her music career on the cover? isn’t that why she’s there in the first place!?

    • How to Faint

      But she’s a mother and a wife which are the only two worthwhile things a woman can do with her time, aside from looking pretty for her man and society. Let’s not muddy the water with “careers” or “skills” or “talent” or any other such claptrap.

      • Leah Elzinga

         they’re only worthwhile if you can also be in possession of millions of dollars.  Otherwise they’re not worth shit.

  • Trisha26

    Because mothers and wives everywhere dress just like this. All the time.

    • Kiltdntiltd

      While picking up toys off the floor, or driving the kids to little league, or doing the laundry.

    • Kayceed

      Easier to hide the stains.

    • JillSpill

      I’m wearing it right now.

      • Amelia Logan

        I bought the pink.

    • Aaminah Khan

      Someone who’s a mother, entertainer and person might.

      • Leah Elzinga

         those are all one and the same.

    • muzan-e

      I am in fact gently scraping the cheerios off my silk organza right this very minute.

      • DeborahJozayt

        Don’t forget your Tide stain remover for those pesky milk blotches. 

    • mjude

      of course they did :)

    • poggi

       The skirt dusts furniture as you walk by. 

  • charlotte

    Blue is her color! And mother/wife stuff seems to sell better. See also: Paltrow, Gwyneth.

    • out for a walk

      see also: “Mother, entertainer, and person”

  • quiltrx

    I’m thinking more “one or the other, not both.”  Individually they’re pretty cool.  As usual Gwen looks great.

  • Sobaika

    Wow, that’s like an assault on the senses. Visual overload.

    I might like the cover a lot better were it not for the peplum.

    • PinkLemon

       The proportions are offensive.

      • ConnieBV

        And NOT REAL. Her torso would have to be as long as a giraffe’s neck for her knees to naturally fall where they do. Some editor got yelled at for not showing off the skirt enough. Ugh.

    • CozyCat

      I once read that they purposely design garish covers because they’re more likely to break thru all the visual “noise” and get noticed on the newstand (or checkout lane).

  • Jessica TallGirl Freeman

    I dislike the combination of both.  As if one didn’t have enough going on.  She is pulling it off, but its just too much visually for my liking. 

  • StellaZafella

    Even with it being one of the master class…
    This looks like it got caught in the middle of a quick change and returned to the runway in half of the last outfit still in place.

  • Ka T

    I’m going to pay no mind that it’s Gwen on the cover.  I’m just going to critique the shit out of this ensemble.  Both dresses work because the top & bottom halves make sense.  This, on the other hand, does not work even on the “professional on a closed course”. Take look #1.  The top would be a free for all pseudo shrug over fabric chromosomes if it didn’t have the skirt & collar to pull it together.  Look #2 shouldn’t be sold as separates.  Because that brings us to Gwen’s unfortunate pairing.  They should have used one of her designs anyway, since that’s what the byline is trying to sell.

  • pattyw

    What is going on with her arm?

    Anyone else out there remember “garanimals”? It’s like the stylist took a giraffe and paired it with a koala.

    • ballerinawithagun


  • Shawn EH

    They’re so not about her rock/ska side for this cover, for sure! No Doubt need not apply!

  • CatherineRhodes

    Something really Stepford going on there — like the way you’d describe Betty Draper. 

  • MajorBedhead

    I already had a headache. This isn’t helping. 

  • glennethph

    That looks like Gwen’s younger sister.

  • ojosazules

    I don’t think peplums are supposed to start so high? This looks more like a prehistoric breathing apparatus. 
    The only reason this works is all the blue type around her. And it’s Gwen, of course.

  • maggiemaybe


  • Jennifer Ford

    J’adore but definitely should be left to the dress-wearing professionals like internationally-famous recording star and style icon Gwen Fucking Stefani.

  • Ceur

    If I were as fierce as Gwen, ‘wife’ would be far down on my identity list. I could be married, sure, but not A Wife.

    • HomeOfficeGirl

      I know, right? 

    • Alloy Jane

      Then maybe we can conspiracy theorize that the absence of the “international recording artist” descriptor was not only not girly enough for the cover, but a a liiiiitle bit too radical for the 1950s look this is referencing?

      Oh hell, I never read the words inside those magazines as most of them are apt to offend me deeply and I just really don’t enjoy being pissed off by magazines.  Love that cover, even with the hybrid monster dress.  But lets face it, it’s Gwen in all her photoshopped glory that totally makes it.

  • IraKi

    I am in awe.

  • ralish

    I think this is an awesome ensemble for a cover photo. If she wore this in real life I’d criticize the heck out of her, but it looks beautiful. Also !!!! Mother, wife… blech. Freakishly awesome famous recording artist.

  • Judy_S

    I am so glad she’s there to wear that so I don’t have to.

  • formerlyAnon

    Either ensemble is pretty much a look-but-don’t-touch (or wear) exercise in “wearable” art. Mixed together they just fit right in with that overwrought cover layout.

    And, this shot’s not about the celeb model. She just fades right into the wifely background.

  • marilyn

    Headline should have included:  MAY BE COLOR BLIND.  DRESSES LIKE 4 YEAR OLD.

  • MilaXX

    I love the cover look. Only Gwen could pull that off. I’m also digging the new cd.

  • snarkykitten

    women aren’t measured by their career successes, sillies! Women are measured by their figure & baby makin’ skillz

    • Lisa

      Now get back there in the kitchen and make us some pie, Gwen!

  • Pants_are_a_must


    • Lisa

      Oh, god, I am laughing so hard right now!  Thanks for that!

  • another_laura

    Brow masterclass!  I dunno, this strikes me as hilarious.

  • marlie

    Only Gwen could pull this off. She looks “fierce.”

  • Lisa

    I know!  Screw her own achievements – she looks pretty and cranks out young’uns!

    Seriously though – only she could pull this off.  Fierce!

  • Matthew Biehl

    It’s interesting to note that this issue was edited by the winners of the intern contest that Elle had going a little while back. I wonder if one of the winners got to style the cover? If so, they certainly went for broke. I think it works, even if it’s in an “only Gwen Stefani could pull this off on a cover of a magazine” kind of way.

  • Samantha Irene

    I’m surprised – the cover actually makes me want to buy the magazine. And it has nothing to do with any of the words – cause I haven’t even bothered to read them – it purely just how things look together. IT’s been a long time since I’ve felt that… 

  • piecesofconfetti

    She does look great in blue. I’d love to see the inside photos.

  • frannyprof

    The photoshopping! I can’t take it anymore! Her face has zero character on this cover. Zero.

  • guest2visits

    She just looks fantastic, it all works well on her.   And I’m continually hitting ‘Settle Down’.

  • Rebecca J.


  • ccm800

    Get away with? NO. Do it any way okay but that crap looks ridiculous. 

  • How to Faint

    Nice way to make someone with such a distinctive face as Gwen’s look completely generic, Elle UK.

  • PeaceBang

    Thanks for pointing out the “pretty lady make baby!” nonsense. She’s a rock star and incredibly successful business owner, let alone style icon. Pfffft. Love her fashion sense always, and this outfit is fun except for the Zombie Gwen they imposed over her face.

  • Tatiana Jarquin

    Yeah, I don’t think so. At first I was like: “Wow, she looks amazing!” but as I scrolled down I just went: “EWWW”. Those 2 pieces clash way too much in my opinion :S.