Cover Girl: Octavia Spencer for ELLE Magazine

Posted on October 09, 2012

Miss Octavia looks sexy and adorable on the cover of ELLE and we have nothing to add to that.

Octavia Spencer covers the November 2012 issue of ELLE Magazine photographed by Thomas Whiteside.

How freaking cute is that smile?

“Early on I had to stand up to a producer – I won’t say who, but he is famous, famous. He dressed me down in a crowded office. I told him right there in front of a hundred people, ‘You don’t know me well enough to use that tone,’ ” she says of standing up for herself. “And then I ran to the bathroom and cried like a baby. But he never addressed me that way again. And he is known as a yeller.”

Tadashi Shoji Bateau Neck Shutter Pleated Sheath Dress


That Tadashi Shoji sure does know how to dress the non-size-twos of the world, doesn’t he?

[Photo Credit:,]

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  • Jessica TallGirl Freeman

    Dear God, how much hair is on that cover?  I feel like I can barely see her face. 

    • Vivi N

      Huh? Her face is more than visible. 

    • HomeOfficeGirl

      I kinda love all that hair – esp. for her.  She looks especially good glam’ed up a bit.

      • mshesterp

         Ooh, I just want to touch her hair.  It looks so fluffy and fun.  I think she looks fantastic.

        • Andrea B

           …. a bit of friendly advice? NEVER say that to/about a black woman that you do not have a personal relationship with! You probably didn’t mean it in a bad way, but that is seriously a hot button issue with many of us, and you will most likely NOT get a good reaction.

    • Jessica TallGirl Freeman

      I think that maybe it’s just that the hair goes from the left to the right of the page, plus with the black dress its a lot of black.  It’s not that I don’t think she looks lovely because she does.  Just the typical treatment for our plus size gals…big hair, tight shot of the face. 

      • kschwarting

        Didn’t Adele get the same treatment?

        • kimmeister

          Yes – she gets the mega closeups where you can’t even see her hair, just her facial features.

      • Rebecca

        So true!

        But baby steps? At least we’re getting plus/normal sized women on the covers of magazines! I have hope that there will be a full-on, no prisoners, badass cover of Octavia, or Gabrielle, or any of our other normal-sized ladies any day now. :)

        • Elizabeth

          Actually … this is the cover that went out to subscribers. The newsstand cover features Sarah Jessica Parker in a curve-hugging white cut-out dress. Very sad, because Octavia is a lovely woman, and based on this photo, I’m sure there were some stunners (and probably one that might show more of her body and not just a close-up of her face). It’s too bad that anybody who isn’t little gets the “face close-up,” as though the editors are trying to erase their bodies. (Think Adele, etc. … just big faces floating around without bodies).  And sad that a beautiful woman of color doesn’t get featured on the newsstand edition.

          • Rebecca

             WHAT. Oh, that’s just all kinds of stupid. >:(

          • charlotte

             That’s too bad. Besides I think Octavia is way prettier than SJP.

          • l_c_ann


          • SapphoPoet


          • How to Faint

            The only good thing about this being a subscriber cover is that it’s not covered with all the bullshit blurbs that are on a newsstand edition.

            That said, there is no way in hell this isn’t worthy of the newsstand. Screw you, Elle. >:(

  • Vivi N

    I heart me some Tadashi Shoji and I can not wait to add one or two of his dresses in my closet. *fingers crossed*

    • MilaXX

       I’ve been pricing them. If you are the type to splurge on one big ticket item a year, his dresses are in the $300 range. I’m gonna start stalking his stuff to see what prices are like when there are sales.

      • Patricia Groves Dobrowski

        That’s actually not bad, for a dress I’d wear the hell out of.

        • Kayceed

          I see Nordstrom’s has it in navy for $155.

      • RocknRollmom

        You can find some good sales on Tadashi.  I once snagged one for $70.  I currently own about 4–two bought full price for very very special occasions and two on sale.  I am not a two but not a plus (any more!) but still curvy.  That man does wonders.  The red long, one shoulder I wore last year made me feel like a million bucks and got rave reviews.  I adore him. 

        • MilaXX

           Bet you looked gorgeous in that.

        • DeborahJozayt

          Grats on getting to the curvy you want to be!

      • queencee

        This exact dress is $155.90 right now at Nordstrom’s….sooooo tempting! oops. only in Navy. The black is $328.

      • AnaRoW

        I bought one of his gowns at Loehmann’s for $75 some years ago, regularly $350.00.  I still love it although I rarely have occasion to wear it. Came in a size 16 too.

        • MilaXX

           great news! I’ll keep an eye out at the discount stores.

          • Suzie Vazquez

            Vintage Tadashi is also q good option. I’ve been known to list it on ebay. I love Tadashi!

      • Vivi N

        Oh, I know the prices already. I (stalk) check his site almost weekly. lolol. I was hoping to get a dress by my birthday (which less than 2 weeks) but that may not happen. So, I’m looking towards December. 

        There are some dresses that are currently on sale but, unfortunately, none are in my size.

        • MilaXX

          I just started stalking. Glad I’m not the only one who does that.

    • Sarah Thomas

      I have been debating wearing his stuff at my wedding. The only issue is I’m a little person, and the drop waists of his I love might not work so well if I needed to not have them around my hips.

      • Isabel

        Get thee to a tailor

  • foodycatAlicia

    Gorgeous! That is how JBF hair should look.

  • HomeOfficeGirl

    Cute!!  Her smile is making it for sure!

  • DinaSews

    Does Tadashi Shoji make streetwear?  Would love to see his take on plus size dressing.  Octavia looks amazing

  • IAmJ

    I could have sworn this was a picture of Sarah Hyland when I saw the thumbnail. Octavia looks beautiful here!

    • SewingSiren

      I have been saying those two look alike for a long time. I desperately want them to be in a movie together. 

    • NatalieD28

      Oh my gosh! THAT’S who Sarah Hyland reminds me of! A little Octavia! Both are just gorgeous with those big eyes and the lovely face shape. Ugh. I can’t take all the pretty haha! But thank you for finally putting that nagging thought out of my head of who she looks like!!

  • Le_Sigh

     How adorably Audrey is that smile?  Luv huh!

  • charlotte

    This is why I always think of her when I see a Tadashi Shoji dress.

  • Rand Ortega

    Ow! How delicious is Miss Octavia! Work that come hither, gurl!

  • marlie

    I just love Octavia! That is a fantastic smile, and I bet the dress looks SLAMMIN on her. 

  • MilaXX

    She looks positively beautiful. I really hope stylist start paying more attention to Tadashi Shoji. his stuff is great for every figure and relatively affordable.

  • SewingSiren

    Great actress. Great dress.

  • Sobaika


    I wish she’d been on the actual cover rather than just one of the subscriber editions though.

  • megohd

    she looks gorgeous, and happy. A bit of a change of pace, in terms of her looking more playful than on the red carpet. 

    I like the pose—lots of face and hair, just a hint of dress. But it makes me think of a section from Tina Fey’s Bossypants, where she talks about stylists and assistants squeezing non-sample size women into sample size dresses, and how the photos are manipulated to avoid the extra measures employed to get the dress on the woman. Octavia’s dress may not be fastened in this one!

    But who the hell cares—she is beautiful.

    • MilaXX

       On Tadashi’s website that dress goes up to an 18. I say she’s in it.

      • megohd

        Right, but I’d guess that the sample size available at the shoot is more likely to be a much smaller size.

  • Tanya Wade

    It is official: I must have that dress. Money will be saved. 

    • Isabel

      I will join you!

  • ballerinawithagun

    The knit fabrics that Tadashi Shoji uses are fabulous, double knits. Never see-through or clingy, they can actually be tailored to the body so they are flattering not tacky. The horizontal sheer stripes on the upper bodice break up the chest area so that the bust isn’t as overwhelming. She is a gorgeous women and the dress is perfect for her!

  • alyce1213

    She’s giving a lot of gamine here, which is adorable on her.

  • YousmelllikeAnnaWintour

    She looks adorable!!!  (Especially love the hair and eye makeup.)

  • Pants_are_a_must

    Okay. She just sold me on that dress.

  • RL McGruder

    Fun and sexy come-hither look.

    Plus, my money’s on Weinstein.

    • AR16

       I was thinking Joel Silver but Weinstein’s a possibility.

  • Anathema_Device

    Love it. She looks so pretty on the cover! I saw her on an old episode of The Big Bang Theory the other day and marveled at how her career has progressed over the past few years. (She played a DMV clerk not taking any of Sheldon’s crap.)

    • MilaXX

       She’s actually been around for quite some time.

      • Anathema_Device

        Yeah, I realize that. But it hit home seeing her in a bit part sitcom in 2008 or so, just a few years before winning an Oscar! So cool. Such a lesson in plugging away.

  • Veronika Kaufmann

    Love her. The fabulous ivory gown she wore to the Oscars was Tadashi Shoji. She wears his gowns well.

  • Liana Brooks

    I love Tadashi dresses. She looks  gorgeous here.

  • MajorBedhead

    Adorable. Very 60s Detroit Girl Group look. 

    • Cathy S

       Yes, that’s the vibe I got. 60s girl group. It’s fabulous.

  • Judy_J

    Love her.

  • Introspective

    Girl is having a WERQ moment. So loving this.

  • LondonMarriott


  • MissMariRose

    That Tadashi Shoji sure does know how to dress the non-size-twos of the world, doesn’t he?

    I wish he would teach the rest of the fashion industry.

    • MilaXX

       David Meister ain’t too shabby either. I’m beginning to suspect they exist. But don’t get a lot of play. There’s also a designer that works with Iggi who makes nice dresses for plus size gals.

  • Meg0GayGuys6

    Is this the same dress that Christina Hendricks wore?

    Anyways, Octavia looks fab!

    • MilaXX

       I think so.  I was pricing the fit and flare dress for myself

  • ojosazules

    Super fabulous. Cute cute cute.

  • PinkLemon


  • Srw27

    Luv huh!!

  • LesYeuxHiboux

    She looks absolutely adorable! The dress is striking and she’s rocking the hair, glad it’s not a “cropped to nothing but the face” shot. Love it when the lushly figured ladies get a flattering dress that still has a fashionable edge. I want Octavia to be my friend..what a cool name. 

  • Ros Clarke

     Every PR contestant should be made to study his stuff. Especially Ven.

  • Rebecca

    I. DIE.

    She is so adorable!

  • NatalieD28

    On my list of Irrational Celebrity Loves, she is tops. I don’t think I’ve ever seen her work (for shame, I know) but she just seems like the person you want to hang with after work and that she would be the one to cheer you up during the bad times. Also, THAT DRESS on her is just spectacular! It is hers, the end. She makes it sing like I believe no other could!! Fabulous. The hair, the dress, the smile, those gorgeous eyes…I’ll just sit in my corner and be envious, thanks!

  • Julie Parr

    I’ve never been a size 2, just bought my first Tadashi Shoji dress and am here to say that is the best-looking dress I’ve worn in years. SO GRATEFUL to TS. Wish more designers would dress bigger women. 

    • Kate4queen

      Good for you. I practically buy nothing else these days except Tadashi Shoji. :)

  • Judih1

    Elle kinda overdid it on the hair. I guess it is okay to show PLUS SIZE hair, but not a PLUS SIZE body shot. But since it is rare for Elle to have a plus size OR a women of color on their cover, they get big props from me!

  • poggi

    She looks beautiful.  I love her!

  • EEKstl

    Luv. Huh.  She looks stunning.  Did I mention that I Luv. Huh.?

  • Katrina Bassett

    Britney Spears wore what looked like a dress from this line during this fall’s X Factor auditions and it looked as good on her as it did on Christina Hendricks and Octavia Spencer. This look is way better on all of them than the model.

  • NJPaganelli

    I love this cover because of her but also because it isn’t covered in a ton words. Much more chic without hot-pink, all caps type across it.

  • Hetha Innis

    She’s so adorable I can’t even deal. No one wears Tadashi Shoji the way she does. 

  • MilaXX

    I may have shared this before. Years ago I went to a trunk show he had in the King of Prussia mall. Tadashi was there. He’s a small  guy, probably 5’7″. There was a young man there who’s goal it was to be a designer. Tadashi signed sketches for everyone there and then spent time talking and I’m assuming, giving advice to the young guy. I was impressed by his kindness. Now I’m impressed by how well he dresses curvy gals.

  • Ass Kicking Adviser

    What a fabulous cover. That smile and those eyes and that sex-kitten hair. wowie!

  • kikisayshi

    I’m so glad they didn’t airbrush her size out of the photo. She is stunning.

  • crash1212

    LOVE THIS DRESS and she looks totally FAB on that cover. Girl can smile. Also, I’m going to take her lead…I love the way she handled that asshat producer. I’m totally swiping that line.

  • Eva_baby

    This is a gorgeous cover.  It would prompt me to buy this magazine if I saw it on the newsstand.  Unfortunately, we won’t see this one on the newsstands.  Too bad.

  • YourBaloneyDontGotNoSecondName

    She looks adorable!  If you go to Tadashi Shoji’s site, you will see that she is pretty much his muse.  How awesome is that?

  • Nobody Q

    Is it just me or does she look kind of like Marillon Cotillard from that angle?

  • GTrain

    She looks fantastic. Great cover!

  • guest2visits

    That is one cute dress and an adorable cover.

  • Lisa

    She looks amazing!  Can’t wait till this issue shows up in my mailbox!

  • butterflysunita

    What a fabulous cover–love Octavia Spencer.  

  • unbornfawn

    Love this cover! Love her smile!

  • Lisa Dugan

    Marlo Thomas!  She looks great.

  • ccm800

    Now THAT is a damn WERQ (albeit on a cover) I mean she looks AMAZING! Its dramatic and sexy and inviting. I love this face! I love this PHOTO! 

  • PeaceBang

    Do not like. I hate the way they have her contorted so that she looks like she has no neck and is being eaten alive by her own hair.

  • TieDye64

    Cute as freaking hell.

  • Carlos Abreu

    we can only see her face… what’s here to judge??? her skin tone… yeah she’s black… HELLLLLLLLLLO

  • MaryMitch

    Beautiful picture. I’d like to see her whole body in the dress before I make a decision on how it looks on a non-size 2, though.

  •!/Space_Kitty Space Kitty

    I love her, and she looks spectacular here.  Wish they’d let us see more of the dress on the cover.

  • Susan Velazquez

    i love her smile it’s such a coy smirk