(Photos by NBC)
She may have come in runner-up to the silky-smooth Jermaine "please don't make me pick up Alicia Keys' dry cleaning again" Paul on this week's finale of The Voice, but gravel-throated vocalist Juliet Simms was second to none in the style stakes. With a Janis Joplin growl and a flair for fashion that channeled both Florence Welch and Stevie Nicks, Simms' de facto setting was otherworldly, and it showed.
Juliet's enviable mane. (From NBC)
Let us start with her hair, which has gone through more change than former Voice contestant/Santa Monica busker Naia Kete could hope to see in a month. Initially sporting an unassuming ashy shade for her star-making "Oh! Darling" tryout, Simms was swiftly given the Ashlee Simpson blond pop star treatment, before slowly but surely finding her way back to the dark side (with red tips) for the finale. Along the way, there was a flirtation with beach wave, curly frizz and smooth starlet, to name a few. We'd like to see Jermaine Paul follow that performance.
And there were fashion moments aplenty. A Black Swan–like foray into high concept ready-to-wear found Simms pairing a midnight blue sequined chiffon lace-up cocktail dress with a set of black feathered wings. A fiery Basil Soda Couture number lent a phoenix-rising-from-the-flame vibe to her rendition of "Freebird", complete with a hypnotic, geometric pattern and gold ornamentation on the neckline. Then there was that long-sleeve skintight metallic sequined mini, and all those hats, so many wide-brimmed hats.
But our favorite look by far was Simms' floor-length shimmering nude gown (above center) with structured shoulders. It was an ethereal, almost alien counterpoint to her impassioned rendition of James Brown's "It's A Man's Man's Man's World." You just know that if Tilda Swinton has a TV and watches the show on the planet she lives on, she had a serious case of dress envy. On the basis of that alone, Simms is a winner in our book.