''American Idol'' music and style gurus Miles Siggins and Michael Orland discuss Phil's breakout country performance, Melinda's sexy new look, LaKisha's gold boots, and more

By Jessica Shaw
April 24, 2007 at 04:00 AM EDT
Frank Micelotta
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American Idol definitely hit a turning point during country week. With the loss of Sanjaya, a new front-runner in Jordin Sparks, and latecomers to the competition like Phil Stacey, the top six seems to be a whole new show. Luckily, super-stylist Miles Siggins and Idol‘s resident musical genius Michael Orland are around to give us their weekly take on what’s going on behind the scenes.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Miles, I loved seeing Melinda in that sexy strapless top and jeans, perfectly accessorized with her new longer hair.
MILES SIGGINS: It’s been a gradual process. If I had tried to throw that outfit on her the first week she would have freaked out. She put it on and got so much positive feedback — even from her mom. Because the top was strapless she wanted to cover her shoulders because she’s got developed shoulders. So she got a longer wig and it changed her image.

Where did you get the outfit?
They’re True Religion jeans with a Salvage top. Gina wore a few of those tops. They’re more punky and street.

I know you’ll never get LaKisha out of those dresses. But the gold boots? Couldn’t you have done something about those?
I wasn’t crazy about the gold boots but she really wanted to wear them. If it’s what makes her feel the most comfortable, okay. The dress was actually made for her by Tadashi. He’s been doing her dresses for nothing. He’s getting so much exposure but charging nothing.

Do the other contestants get jealous when one scores a custom-made outfit?
No. They all get different things. H&M is very generous. Everything’s for free from there. Blake this week was in Stitches jeans for free; Levi’s are free too.

Even though he’s off the show, let’s talk about Sanjaya’s outfit, which was kind of ruined by the whole Seven Brides for Seven Brothers-bandana look.
Yeah, the whole hair thing again. He wanted to stay countryish. I liked the grey paisley shirt though. It was a modern take on country.

I love that Blake worked the preppy look during country week.
We try to avoid going to the Beverly Center because [Blake] hates it there. He saw that vest in a window right by the studio. So we got it and put it with a great pair of pants.

Phil got raves this week for his performance. Usually he looks like a funeral worker, but he looked really good this week.
Phil is coming into his own. It’s taken a while because he doesn’t wear clothes that well. He’s just used to a uniform. His shirt this week, from Lords on Melrose, was $400. They make all the clothes for every rock band and country artist. It’s one of my favorite stores in Los Angeles. The shirt was fantastic. He stayed comfortable.

I’m still not sold on Chris Richardson’s look, as evidenced by the fact that I don’t even remember what he wore this week.
We found these great cargo pants for him to wear but when we put the outfit together it didn’t quite work. Luckily he had a pair of jeans on hand. He was nervous this week and a bit out of his element. He literally probably tried 15 different combinations of the same outfit. It’s still within that Justin Timberlake kind of vibe. I’d love to see him in a suit — maybe doing a vest and jacket with a shirt and tie. It’s a great look and very English, but it could be misconstrued as Timberlake.

Jordin’s dress, on the other hand, was magnificent.
It’s Nicole Miller and I heard it was sold out the night the show aired.

NEXT PAGE: Phil finds his voice, but will LaKisha ever find her smile?

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