Help Wanted: Pop stars. Must be famous, stylish and have hit records. An interest in fashion and good grooming a plus, but not necessary.


It wouldn't be surprising to see that want ad tacked up on the tents at Olympus Fashion Week in Bryant Park which runs through Friday.


Though the week is ostensibly about the clothes -- as in spring '06 -- more than ever, attention has shifted from what's on the runway to who's sending it down, and the obvious trend is big-name pop stars who are not just wearing the clothes of the moment -- they are designing them.


Perhaps the season's biggest buzz surrounds Gwen Stefani's L.A.M.B. collection (the acronym stands for Love, Angel, Music, Baby). Stefani will present her first ever runway show Friday night at 8 at the Roseland Ballroom, in the same fashion week finale time slot held last season by Jennifer Lopez' Sweetface collection.


Something clubworthy


Besides Stefani and Lopez, other pop-stars-turned-fashion-designers include Sean "Diddy" Combs, who is already established in menswear and has added a woman's line to his empire.


Sean by Sean Combs is a collection of saucy, club-worthy styles at moderate prices (though there are a few pricey items such as a coyote-trimmed leather jacket for $6,000) slated to hit the stores in October.


Instead of a predicted glitzy runway show, Combs opted to market his new line via ads featuring Penelope Cruz and himself dodging the paparazzi.


Until last month, Beyoncé Knowles held a Wednesday evening fashion week slot to show her House of Dereon collection (named for her seamstress grandmother Agnes Dereon), which encompasses sexy dresses and separates with a glitzy vintage flavor as well as sportswear, handbags, shoes, furs and jeans.


She canceled amid rumors of not being ready, though she launched the jeans at a recent trade show. Jessica Simpson has a mass-marketed junior and kids collection of the jeans and poncho variety and recently rolled out a plus-sized line of denim; Madonna has a line of children's wear.


Newest on the fashion scene? Justin Timberlake's 60-piece line of men's and women's denim, T-shirts and outerwear called William Rast and described in Women's Wear Daily by the pop star as "a little bit Tennessee with a little bit of Hollywood." The line will hit stores in early November.


But according to fashion pundits, L.A.M.B. is the one to watch. Launched in 2003, the collection's pretty-meets-gritty sensibility and realistic prices ($100-$300) has won loyal customers and healthy sales.


It has inspired enough retail confidence to showcase in the windows of Bloomingdale's flagship Manhattan store during the last two weeks of September. Says Kal Ruttenstein, the store's senior VP of fashion: "We like Gwen. She's at the top of our list."


Stefani, who as a pop icon has made distinctive fashion statements on red carpets and stages, is girlishly delighted by the compliment.


"It's the weirdest thing, but I feel like in the fashion world, which I know nothing about, they're sort of rooting for me. I feel I've sort of cut in line, like I should have gone to fashion school, and I couldn't have done this without doing what I do," she says, referring to her celebrity, "but I'm feeling the love for some reason."


And maybe that's why she is suddenly ready for her fashion close-up. "Nobody told me it was time to have a show. I was like, 'I'm doing a show in September' -- it just felt like the right time."


Just a couple of weeks before show time, No Doubt's lead singer, 35, is up to her eyeballs.


Preparing for her first national solo tour a month after fashion week and finishing a solo album due out in January, marketing her secondary line -- a zippy, young collection inspired by Japanese pop culture called Harajuku Lovers -- Stefani has of yet, only seen a couple of pieces from her spring L.A.M.B. collection.


"It's bizarre, like it's so exciting on paper or in your head, and then you see the fabric and you're like "that looks so incredible, or what in the flip is that?"