trisha yearwood

Photo: Ruven Afanador

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She may be a sleek size 8, but Trisha Yearwood doesn't quite believe it. "I lost the weight eight months ago, and I still wake up every day and think there's no way my clothes will fit," she says. "I used to try on ten things and just wear whatever was the least offensive. I guess I still have that mental block." Note to Trisha: One flip through these photos confirms that you not only fit into your new clothes, you look pretty damn spectacular in them.

Though the singer has a powerhouse voice (which launched a 22-year music career), she clearly hasn't lost her accessible charm. She brings that down-home vibe to the Food Network show Trisha's Southern Kitchen, cooking alongside friends and family—including her husband of nearly eight years, Garth Brooks. On air, they chat about everything from her clan's "Eat Like Dog" dinners, in which her husband and stepdaughters eat spaghetti without using their hands, to Garth's penchant for photographing his food. "Who does that?" she asks. (She's clearly not on Instagram.)

"I didn't want to do a show where I was standing behind a counter telling people, 'Okay, one stick of butter, one cup of flour...,'" says Trisha, whose cookbooks, Georgia Cooking in an Oklahoma Kitchen and Home Cooking with Trisha Yearwood, feature recipes from her family and friends. "Having loved ones in the kitchen with me is so natural—all we're doing is telling real stories. I'm not a chef, and I think we cook like most people—we make simple dishes and have fun."

But how does Trisha stay slim in the midst of all this deliciousness? A combination of circuit training, lots of Zumba ("My cardio of choice!") and balancing occasional indulgences with sensible eating. "The most important thing I want to get across is that maintaining weight loss is just hard," she says. "It takes a dedication to exercise and eating right most of the time. I'm not saying I don't enjoy the days that I'm not eating chocolate cake." But I do particularly like those days when I am eating chocolate cake.

Mix Master

An embellished purple cardigan isn't the expected topper for a plum sheath, but because the colors are of the same intensity, the look works. Neutral heels keep it grounded.

Dress, Chaps, $90. Cardigan, L'Wren Scott. Blue ring, Tacori. Green stone ring, Kara Ackerman. Bracelet, M.C.L by Matthew Campbell Laurenza. Shoes, Rene Caovilla.