IN or OUT: Kate Mara in Dolce&Gabbana

Posted on January 31, 2013

This dress has multiple personality disorder. Or maybe it’s just insecure and doesn’t know who it wants to be.


Kate Mara attends ‘House of Cards’ Netflix TV Series New York City Premiere in a Dolce&Gabbana dress paired with a Judith Leiber clutch and Brian Atwood sandals.

Dolce&Gabbana Fall 2012 Collection/Model: Xiao Wen Ju

Judith Leiber Tatiana Crystal Bow Clutch

Whatever the reason, this is something like 4 dresses mashed up into one. Not quite a Frankendress, since they tend to look like multiple dresses stitched together; this just looks like multiple dresses layered one on top of the other.

And yet, we don’t quite hate it. Well, there’s the hem; we definitely hate that. But the rest of it doesn’t bug us like we would have expected. She’s pulling it off, for the most part. Shape-wise, it’s flattering as hell, and she zhuzhed it up with some retro shoes and a perfectly polished face. Definitely not an easy look to pull off, but considering how far from terrible she looks, we’re gonna have to say she’s IN on this one.



Vote Now!


IN! Granny CHIC.


OUT! Granny has senile dementia.



Nicole Kidman was voted OUT, but just barely. Apparently, that was a controversial dress, considering how much fierce debate it inspired.



[Photo Credit: Marco Sagliocco/,,]

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  • I *really* do not like those floating hem/neckline/sleeve-ending things. They distract the eye too much. Despite those annoyances, she’s really pulling this off due to the styling, so IN.

    • kimmeister

      They’re very “French maid costume.”

  • If movie star women don’t wear granny panty dresses, is there any chance that actual real women will wear them?  Who is the market for dresses that show of your enormous panties?  Not being Straighter Than Thou, I couldn’t say, but are straight guys into the whole granny panty thing?  Who finds this attractive? 

    OK, I’ll take my meds and calmdown.

    • ChiKat67

      Apparently straight guys are into a TON of stuff that most sane women find stupid/offensive, including yoga pants as everyday wear, tights/leggings as pants and ass-grazing bandage dresses with hooker heels, so I’m sure the visible granny panties are a complete turn on.

      That said, the guys I normally see with women dressed as described above are generally wearing ripped jeans, gym shoes/flip flops & wool caps (no matter what the temperature) so take all of the above with a grain of salt.

      • drdarke

        As a straight guy, @ChiKat67:disqus – no, we’re not into visible granny panties.

        I figured those were some kind of joke….

    • It isn’t just you. My husband would be scandalized if I tried to wear the runway version out of the house. (Not that I ever would.) And if I tried to wear it IN the house, he’d want to know why I couldn’t wear a much tinier pair of underwear underneath.

      • ballerinawithagun

        I think we’re married to the same man…

        I have to give it an IN.

  • ChiKat67

    OUT, hate the hem within a hem and all the lace details.  

  • Sobaika

    I hate the lace trimming, but other than that I quite like it. It’s fun and different, and a difficult dress to pull off.

  • Vickiefantastico

    Oh my, I have to respectfully disagree. If she tore off those ridiculous ruffles, maybe we could talk. As it stands, it’s a big ol’ out for me.

    • judybrowni

      yup, OUT FOR THE RUFFLES. The rest of the dress gets lost, when the eye goes to the granny nightgown ruffles 

      Were it me, given that otherwise fabulous dress to wear, I would have taken my nail scissors to the heinous ruffles.

      And trimmed the illusion netting back to the lace — who’s to say that frayed illusion netting isn’t what the designer intended, it’s certainly no more random than granny ruffles.

  • Annabelle Archer

    I feel like there was a seamstress in a room somewhere going, “If I could just find *one* more thing to sew onto this dress, it will perfect!”  

    Again, her make up is beautiful, but even with Granny Chic being on trend, I have to go with an OUT.

    • I feel like there was a seamstress in a room somewhere going, “If I
      could just find *one* more thing to sew onto this dress, it will

      And that person will be on Project Runway next season.

      • MoHub

         That person was already on PR—twice. His name is Kayne Gillaspie.

        • MikeW_Vegas

          and his evil twin Josh aka Clinque Counter

      • decormaven

        All it is missing is rick rack

        • dress_up_doll

          Love a good rick-rack reference.

  • butterflysunita

    OUT.  Whenever celebrities take these sheer dresses and put a lining or slip underneath it looks weird.  I’m glad she didn’t wear the dress without a slip, but that multilayer look is just too strange.  

  • Tatiana Luján

    I wishe she would grab some scissors and cut the white fringe. Then, I would like this dress.

    • YES. On the runway version, not that I’m in love with granny panties exactly, the sheerness doesn’t look quite so weird as when there’s just this little strip of it at the bottom with the white trim.

      It’s not awful, but I can’t give it an in.

  • Jangle57

    I mostly like it – if you could just edit out the hemline, I would totally like it.  Well and maybe remove the ruffles from the sleeves while you’re at it.  But still, will give her an IN

    • Alyssa

      I agree. Mostly because she’s well accessorized, the dress fits, and her makeup is stellar. That’s why she’s IN for me.

  • Hm… In! Except for the shoes. Don’t like them at all. Don’t even get me started on the black nails. The rest she surprisingly pulls off I think, although I have to agree about that hem. Atrocious!

  • B_C_J

    Too much going on in this dress!! Just about every embellishment available was thrown/sewn onto it. Less is definitely more.  Get rid of the lace at the neck, sleeves and hem.  Snip off the pearl carbuncles and lets revisit this outfit.
    The make up and the clutch are lovely.

  • Carly Warnock

    it looks like it’s molding. out.

  • j_anson

    I think I’m having the same reaction. I don’t like it in theory, and yet, the way it hits my eye overall is positive. So IN.

  • MilaXX

    OUT – I would have given it a pass, but that sheer bit at the bottom was a deal breaker for me.

  • sablehunter

    I was expecting to zoom in and see some macaroni glued to the dress.  It’s so crazy it’s awesome, even the ridiculous lace hem/collar.  Beautiful makeup and face.  Definite IN for me.

  • Pants_are_a_must

    It’s D&G by way of Uncle Karl, but somehow it’s not making my eyeballs feel like they’ve been inserted the wrong way. I think it’s mostly due to Mara being able to pull it off, to be honest.

    • YousmelllikeAnnaWintour

      I just wish D&G would stop it with all the crappy lace dresses already.  OUT.

  • afabulous50


  • eowyn_of_rohan

    IN.  She’s wearing the dress, it’s not wearing her.  And that’s a big step forward for Miss Mara.

  • pdxmcollie

    I’ll give it a whispered IN. I hated the hem on the runway version and Kate’s is even worse. Part of this is a result of adding the liner (thankfully) but it also looks like there is a couple inches of sheer fabric added to the hem that causes the white ruffle to really look like it’s floating in space.

  • It’s those stupid white lace ruffled edges that make it look like some glue gun project by a demented crafter. I’m going with out on this one.

  • Ms_Flyover

    Does she have a rare genetic disease that makes her incapable of smiling?  Out.

  • Drew Macaulay

    Out.  The collar and cuffs say maid, the “pearls” look like sickness, the combined effect is a maid is covered in pretty pretty pustules.  

    • BrooklynBomber

      Should’ve read yours before posting mine!

  • Out for the lace ruffles. I like the lace, I can live with the pearls (although I think silver lace doesn’t need them) but those ruffles are an embellishment too far.

  • Introspective

    feels like there was a good idea in the pewter lace, but the granny panties and the oversized pearls randomly placed makes this thing look messy.

    the frilly trim, however, is what sends this look off the cliff. 


  • Airkisses

    Don’t like the frills, and those are some of the most hideous shoes I’ve seen in a while. OUT.

  • Stubenville

    [Michael Kors voice] Hoochie mama – out.

  • Looks better on her than on the runway. Looks kinda great, really. IN. 

  • BrooklynBomber

    This dress has multiple personality disorder. Or maybe it’s just insecure and doesn’t know who it wants to be.

    Plus, it’s broken out in boils, poor thing.

  • OrigamiRose

    IN.  What you said 🙂

  • nnbb

    Out. Hid.E.Us.

  • In_Stitches

    my contrarian-itis is flaring up…I’m having a difficult moment.  I’ve vehemently defended her last attempts against general indifference as her looks have been simple, flattering shapes and her head is always pretty flawlessly turned out.  Now Tlo gives her some slack and I’m baring my teeth, ready to tear the look apart.  I think I have a problem…

  • IN: I didn’t quite like this dress until I saw her wearing it, it’s not really something that would look good on everyone.. However , I agree on the hem, it makes her look like a plastic doll, as if she was..packed!

  • SewingSiren

    I love granny chic. So IN. + It looks 1 million times better with a proper granny lining.

  • is it Frankendress thursday today?! OUT! I hate the arm ruffles and the hem, otherwise it would be a great dress.

    • Introspective

      sounds like a fab happy hour theme. “frankendress thursdays”: the more schizo the outfit the less you pay for the drink!!

      as it stands we need drinks to absorb all the fug that people have been sporting in todays photos.

  • fiestyfashionfem

    Those bubble baubles on the arms reminds me of that character in Dune with the bubbly boils – ewwww.  Just ewww. Forgot to say – OUT

  • IN: I didn’t quite like this dress until I saw her wearing it, it wouldn’t really look good on everyone! However , I agree on the hem, it makes her look like a plastic doll, as she was..packed!

  • kschwarting

    There’s a lot going on with the dress, but I agree that she’s pulling it off.  On the other hand, I hate those bloody clodhoppery platform shoes.

  • Violina23

    OUT. Looks like my 3 year old got a hold of some cotton balls and a glue gun

  • RebeccaKW

    In.  I don’t like the lacy collar/hem/cuffs.  I like the pearls sewn on it.  I like the color and don’t mind the lace.  I really don’t like the shoes.  But overall, I do think she’s pulling it off.  And this is not something expected, so it gets points for that.

  • RedRaven617

    Out. :::wrinkling nose::::

  • OUT. Member of the wedding party dress with too long slip worn on the outside.  And someone, a future sister in law perhaps, tried to dress it up by glueing on big plastic pearls. Ore maybe they are pustules.  eeww.

  • alyce1213

    OUT! So out. I can’t even begin to understand what’s going on with this dress.
    It really is 4 dresses piled up on top of each other, and each of them is bad.
    Ruffled sleeves, neck and hem?  Big pearl balls?  Silver lace?  Illusion?  What’s going on underneath — black lining straps AND bra straps?
    What a friggin’ mess.

  • Imasewsure

    I’m going to go IN on this one but only because I’m totally ignoring all of the horrible white crap and netting they through on top of a perfectly good busy metallic dress. Still works overall but just barely.

  • In, it’s a great look!

  • And bitches: Gaultier was fuckin right, OK?

  • Elizabeth Silverstein

    IN. I kind of love Kate Mara and she is pulling this off despite some weirdness. Her makeup is always perfect. 

  • The dress may not know who it is but the clutch does – MINE!  That dress is at least one frou too far.

  • formerlyAnon


    It’s a silly dress, but it’s a flattering silly dress and she did us all a solid and wore a slip of the correct length (or had it lined).

    I wish she’d done more with her hair, not just slicked it all back. Just because you have the bone structure to get away with slicked-flat-to-the-head hair, doesn’t mean you can’t do something prettier.

  • Lisa Dugan

    I tried really hard on this one but it’s an out.  The trimmings ruined it.  She looks lovely however.

  • Monkey Toe

    Remove the neck, hem and elbow ruffles and you might have something.

  • Elizabetta1022

    In. Judy Jetson all grown up. 

  • OUT. Doilies. Ew. 

  • I’m going to have to agree with everything you boys said. I can’t explain why, but she’s pulling off the odd little dress. IN.

  • E. D.

    OUT.  Get rid of the floating white lace things and it at least wouldn’t suck.

  • OUT. Can’t get my eyes away from the floating frill, and hiddy satin klunkers.

  • OUT!  This is horrid – shoes to neckline.

  • mjude

    i am going with IN

  • This is one that would have looked great w/Zooey’s black opaque tights!  It’s all over the place but she looks good…IN!!!

  • In, because I thought the dress is quirky and cute (at least until I scrolled down to the hem) and because I love her for adding a real lining.

  • altalinda

    A little monchromatic, but nevertheless IN.

  • MoHub

    Why is it that every time I see Kate Mara’s name, I think of Kate O’Mara, who played the Rani on classic Doctor Who and Patsy’s sister Jackie on AbFab?

  • i’m going to say in, because it seems like it shouldn’t work, yet she is managing it. is she related to rooney mara?

    • alyce1213

      Multi-millionaire sisters.

  • Snailstsichr

    I dressed up as the poisoner Lucretia Borgia for a party once and sewed giant pearls all over my bodice.  I at least had the sense to not plaster white, dime-store-looking lace all over the hem/neckline/sleeve-endings.
    I am pleased she had it lined, but that doesn’t make up for the overarching terrible-ness. Oh so OUT! (Though, for nostalgia’s sake,  I might have given it an IN if she had worn a gigantic poison ring.)

  • lrober03

    I like it from further away because I think that some of the offending details tend to blur together.  The close we get, the more I find to dislike  

    • l_c_ann

      OUT because I found the more I looked, the worse it looked, as you said so well.

    • Yep. Also, what did Xiao Wen Ju do to piss off that photographer?

  • Lilak

    I don’t mind the pearly barnacles … It’s the white lace trim that’s troubling me: it suggests those little mesh tents that keep flies off your picnic table potato salad.

    Can’t give her an IN – but the dress is otherwise so decent I can’t give her an OUT either.  How about one of those 3-star Netflix ratings – will that do?

  • Richard Harper

    I’d buy it all but for the hem.  Plus her makeup is a bit monochromatic for me.

  • I just hate this dress. Hate it. But she does look great and against all odds, she’s pulling it off. Still. That collar. That hem. It’s too much.


  • Louise Bryan


  • That SHEER DUST RUFFLE. WHY. Line it all the way to the hem or chop off the extra crap. This just looks half assed. I feel weird calling it out just for the hem, when, if I cover it up, it all works like gangbusters for me, but I think I just hate the sheer+lace trim at the neck, sleeves, and hem in general. Out. 

  • IN.  I see where the designer was going with the sheer hem, sleeves, and neck ruffle, and though I don’t love them, only a (at least) Master’s Level dress-wearer or higher could pull it off, and she is.  Love the shoes, especially the color.  

  • decormaven

    Out, sadly. On the runway, I can get behind the almost see-through look. But here, I just see black underslip, and that takes away from the design’s original intent. In the plus column, though, that’s a gorgeous clutch and her MUA did a nice job.

  • Kathy_Marlow

    In…for the reasons TLo states 

  • I think a different slip may have helped. The hem looks much better on the model’s nude legs though obviously no one should so up to a party actually nude. 😉

  • Something an Italian widow would wear – in a porno fantasy

  • marilyn

    Out.  It is a Frankendress

  • crash1212

    IN. If for no other reason than she chose to line it.

  • BigWhiteGrannyPanties

    that looks like lace off an old piece of bric a brac lampshade

  • I’ll give her an IN because she doesn’t look like the damn fool I would trying to pull this off. And for not going the granny panty route.  But I really have to wonder how to successful style a dress like this?

  • kelsita421

    Out. It’s like they just threw ruffles and beads at it and saw was stuck. Not good.

  • Why do I like it so much on the runway but not on her?

  • MissFern

    I wish someone had taken off those lace ruffles.  I can’t do it.

  • subwaycars

    Hate the hem, but I actually quite like the rest of the dress. Plus, I love Kate too much, so IN.

  • H2olovngrl

    I feel like she is always trying to go against her natural warm coloring.

  • MsBusy

    Out. The ruffles look like they’re from a tired old nightgown. Without them, it might have a chance…

  • libraangel

    OMG! OUT! Thrift shop, but NOT thrift shop chic! that lace!!! I can’t stand it! Don’t like the shoes either, and don’t agree with you about it being flattering. Gunny sack, legs holding pee in!

  • karena10

    Out.  Its just too many layers and too fussy.  I like the clutch though.

  • ojosazules

    Rather strange, but in.

  • I keep thinking a black pencil skirt with the top would look good.  Or even pants.  During the scroll down I expected (or hoped for) something else.  It’s just too much in one dress.   But I do love the bead work.  Really beautiful bead work always makes me think wistfully of Laura.

  • jw_ny


    I almost like the dress, but hate all the white ruffle trim so much that I have no choice but to give her an out.  Her hair bugs me too…mostly it’s the part.  

  • Aurumgirl

    I can’t see past Granny, for so many reasons, including the main one:  D and G’s entire collection is about little old ladies.  

  • carolynmo

    Nope. There’s just too much there for me, and I’m not even a ‘less is more’ kind of gal.

  • DaveUWSNYC

    French maid 2300 AD

  • Zippypie

    OUT for sure.  This is like a PR challenge – “Doilies Gone Wild”.  And why the hell did she put black foundation garments under it, which only accentuate…the black foundation garments?

  • Trisha26

    Out. It looks like a combo of French Maid/Lady of the House. (At least she didn’t wear the bathing suit-onesie underneath.)

  • another_laura

    It’s the lace trim.  blech.  Get rid of that and I might be persuaded to give this an in.  silvery with pearls?  I could dig that.  But the lace edges are barftastic.

  • In. While agree with my gay daddies on the hem, the pearls sewn into it make it something other than “just another lace dress” and it’s very flattering on her. Granny Chic indeed!
    Also, that clutch is ADORABLE.

  • Vlasta Bubinka

    silver lacy crap
    much beading and floaty frills
    Christmas ornament

  • I dig the eccentric grandma’s closet look. IN.

  • melanie0866

    OUT.  Too much going on.

  • chitowndg

    OUT because it could be fixed so easily by either removing the net and white trim at the hem, or, at minimum, taking the netting up 2.5  inches.

  • MaryanneGirl

    Baubles? Floating hem? Little ruffles on the sleeves? Hate. Out.

  • DTLAFamilies

    White nightgown lace trim kills it. FUORI.

  • IN. It’s interesting and she looks great in it.

  • IN.

  • ThaliaMenninger

    I would be okay with the dress if it stopped with the zigzags and before that last sheer overlay. Hate the shoes, though. OUT.

  • Pennymac

    Out on the sleeve ruffles alone. And the baubles on top of the metallic lace? No.

  • demidaemon

    I am going to say OUT on this one. Besides the Chloe Sevigny dress problem, I think it is way overembellished. I think her make-up is a bit too heavy (especially on the eye) as well.

  • OUT – I really, REALLY dislike this dress.

  • Call me Bee

    That dress would be so much better without the white frippery.  She is wearing it very well, but oh those shoes!!  Yuck.    OUT.

  • unbornfawn

    There are so many reasons not to like this dress. On the plus side it is really flattering her curves. The hair and make-up are a little flat and for some reason I’d love to see a big red ring for the tinniest pop of color. I’m giving her an IN for pulling off this weird dress.

  • neofashionista


  • Out. Uli’s Mystic Winter collection makes this look like a rag.

  • Love the top but hate the hem. At least it’s not like the runway granny panties though. Ew.

  • aristida_girl

    OUT… I actually like the dress but for some reason really hate the shoes with it, and think they bring the whole look down to a level I cannot forgive… still, love her makeup here and think the rest of the styling was good…

  • pookiesmom

    She’s so pretty but that dress is atrocious.

  • LambeeBaby

    Out. Her dress wants to be a lint roller

  • Monabel

    Gorgeous, and the hem works, this time.

  • Jecca2244

    i’ll give her an IN just because the poor girl will always be Rooney Mara’s sister

  • trisker

    Out. way too much goin’ on.

  • harleydear

    In. It’s visually interesting, different, and chic.

  • barbarienne

    Somebody let the five-year-old near the design program again. This is the sort of crap I used to make up with that Fashion Plates toy.

    Are you kidding me? How is there debate about this? A big giant OUT, carved into a cliff side and painted with glow in the dark paint as a warning.

  • Oh, I love you guys shrink the dress.

  • The dress is interesting enough and very pretty, but THOSE SHOES. Gah, I hate them. But she’s still anyway, at least from the ankles up. 

  • bailey debruynkops


  • RzYoung

    Just about IN from me. I quite like the floating collar and hems

  • Mia

    I hate it-although it’s interestingly grotesque as an art piece. It’s the hem, the sleeves, the slip. The runway version is pretty but just in that artful way I mentioned…the styling in the runway version is spot-on and makes the look.

  • I like the dress quite a bit–it has a bit of a Blade Runner feel to it.  Don’t like the shoes with it, though–they are too trendy and of the moment to go with a dress that is definitely not paying much attention to trends.  All that is to say, IN.

  • I spent far too much time pondering my vote on this but I’m ready to throw my hat in the ring: IN, but by a squeaker.  That extra layer of net and applique below the lace at the hem is a pure sin, but the rest of the dress is surprisingly unobjectionable.  I would kill for that Leiber clutch.  Don’t like the hair very much, and I hate her pouting posturing, but all that doesn’t add up to a no vote, either.  So…..IN, but unenthusiastically.

  • TSkot

    IN, but the hem is unfortunate.

  • I just love her face.  Always have since I first saw her on Jack and Bobby.  I think it’s just so interesting.  And her makeup has looked amazing lately.

  • kmk05

    …IN! It’s so overly busy but, for some reason, it works. I would have rather she had worn non-satin shoes, but OH WELL. Make-up and hair are perfect for the dress, and she looks fresh and glowing.

  • guest2visits

    The dress is odd; but she’s making it work nicely, much better than the models version.

  • mhlmh

    out. definitely out. I don’t really see it. I’ll take the clutch, though. just leave that behind on your way out. 

  • In! Granny fabulous!

  • librarygrrl64

    OUT. But you know what is driving me OCD crazy? That one little piece of hair that should have gone over to the right side of her part.

  • girliecue

    This dress looks like a PR challenge has the designers incorporate four current fashion tends into one outfit. In an hour. Way too much room for things to go wrong. Kate looks like she’s daring you to comment on her dress.

  • ccm800

    IN! Andsurprised that I think so. She looks good here! She is shinier than her quite shiny dress – but ya know.

  • In.

  • Renaissance_Man_ATL

    IN!  Lovely and chic, even with that hem.

  • In, even though I also hate the hem. She looks just lovely.