Helen Mirren in Jenny Packham at the “Red 2” Premiere

Posted on July 23, 2013

Queen Helen clearly read our off-hand comment yesterday that the hand fan is a lost art, raised one eyebrow, flicked hers open, and said, “Oh really, boys?”


Helen Mirren attends the European Premiere of ‘Red 2’ at Empire Leicester Square in London in a Jenny Packham beaded dress paired with nude pumps.

Jenny Packham Fall 2013 Collection

We have to admit, when we saw the little thumbnails we thought, “Oh God, is she in another Dolce & Gabbana lace dress? Because those things are terribly aging on her.” Well DAMN. Shut our mouths. Her body looks freaking fabulous here.

But y’know, our point still stands. She should stay away from D&G because she never looks as hot in their clothes as she does in this dress. D&G are just way too youth-oriented, making clothes that play off of old Sicilian cultural tropes. You can put a 22-year-old model in widow’s weeds and have it look dramatic and gorgeous. You put the same dress on an actress in her late ’60s and the effect is decidedly less ironic.

Everything about this works; the color, the shape, the neckline, the beading, even the hem length. That’s probably more jewelry than we would have recommended for the look, but it’s kind of refreshing to say so, since most actresses seem to be allergic to free jewelry lately. The matching necklace, earrings and bracelet all come off a little flashy for our tastes, but Queen Helen always was pretty good at making flashy look chic.

The shoes are just okay. She looks like she’s shoved into them.

[Photo Credit: INFphoto.com, style.com]

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  • Chuck Barthelme

    I may be perhaps the only one, but I really wish she’d go back to silvery locks. She looks fab as a silver fox. But she looks pretty awesome here, I agree.

  • PlethoraofBooks

    It’s an almost WERQ. Not quite there, but pretty close. The fan alone makes me want to give it to her, but too much jewelry is what holds it back. And Queen Helen? No more D and G please!

  • Little_Olive

    Well, is this isn’t Queen Helen of Fuckingfantastica I don’t know who is.

    • drdarke

      That’s Tsarina Helen of Fuckingfantastica to us, @Little Olive!

  • Heather

    DAYUM girl.

  • Patrick Cleary

    I totally want to be Helen Mirren when I grow up.

    • Heather

      I want to be Helen Mirren now! 🙂

    • Rhonda Shore

      I saw a photo of her in a bikini, a recent shot, and her body is really amazing (abs!!!) and inspirational to mere mortals, such as myself…Love this dress!

    • MoHub

      I’ve only got a few more years, but I doubt I’ll achieve the goal.

      • Little_Olive

        The thing is, it should be (or at least seems) easier than they have made us believe! 1) She HAS wrinkles; her face doesn’t look like she rode a motorbike to the event really fast; 2) Ass or face, she chose face -while keeping a healthy figure.
        Aging gracefully rocks.
        I say we can.

  • PastryGoddess

    I am such a sucker for major jewelry. Queen Helen looks amazing

  • jen_vasm

    Love this. And ever since her QE2 stint, seeing her dripping with jewels does not bother me.

  • Maybe she was feeling especially flashy and festive because of all the baby hoopla? Either, way she looks (mostly) spectacular.

  • Introspective

    BITCH WERQ!!!!!!!!

    jesus if you can promise that my 60s will look half as good on me as they do on this woman, I would actually go to church more often…

  • Laura V Rizzo

    and unlike Henry Cavill she clearly ties in to her movie through colour.

    • kimmeister

      I wonder if she wore red to the first Red movie premiere?

  • SugarSnap108

    Bless her fabulous, fan-wielding soul! The shoes make me sad, and I agree there’s too much jewelry. But dayum, her body looks slammin.

  • MaggieMae

    I want to be her when I grow up.

  • Tatiana Luján

    Tilda, Cate and Helen in a row, thanks Tlo!

    • Kayceed

      It’s like a trifecta of fabulousness.
      An epistle from TLO to the Bitter Kittens. In the name of Tilda, Cate and Helen, Amen.

      • PeaceBang

        I am so going to use this in church. Love, Rev. PeaceBang (Unitarian, so we can be creative with the Trinity, as long as we’re clear that we’re kidding and not being disrespectful).

  • Danielle L

    WERQ for the fan alone.

  • desi_girl

    I was going to say the matching necklace and earrings remind me of guests at an Indian wedding and then you kind of said it for me (in different words). Lol!

  • Silly Grrl


    • maggiemaybe


  • Cathy S

    Oh Queen Helen. I love you so.

  • Lisa M. (ReVoir) Kramp

    Hot damn! You rock, Queen Helen.

  • teensmom99

    re feet shoved in shoes: sometimes, when it’s hot, you get that kind of look with high heels (especially if you are a real person i.e. nonceleb) and that might explain all those times she went for tights. And no, I don’t actually think Queen Helen is a real person.

  • Just Me

    If Queen Helen had her Aide pull out the jewels given to her long ago by a “Shah who shall remain nameless”, who are we to quibble? This is after all, the woman who made us happy to bow down to stripper heels. And the fan is a boss move.

  • MilaXX

    I’d have removed the necklace and kept the earrings. The shoes are just boring silly putty shoes. They are just okay. Not my first choice but they look better than the heavy black pumps ladycelebs have been wearing lately.

  • As ever, I am bowing down.

  • This whole collection is getting as over exposed as that checked LV collection of last year.

    • decormaven

      Shhh, or someone will trot out one of those checked numbers tout de suite.

    • Little_Olive

      … But I’ll take it over the D&G lacevaganza any day.

  • GorgeousThings

    Oh damn, I left my hand fan at home. I was going to bring it to fan myself with when I have dinner with you tonight! 🙂

    I bow to Queen Helen’s fabulosity.

    • Fordzo

      You can get really chic, little wooden fans at Pier One right now for $1.99. I bought a bunch of them and I’ve been whipping them out everywhere these past couple of weeks. I don’t know about where you are, but it’s been freaking hot here.

      • decormaven

        I use my grandmother’s fan. It’s a godsend at outdoor events.

  • HobbitGirl

    It’s been ridiculously hot over here, so I’m glad to see a star have the entirely reasonable accessory of a hand-fan.

  • julnyes

    I love her little smile of fabulousity. She is fierce and she absolutely knows it.

  • Catiline

    Effing amazing. I bow.

  • julnyes

    Hand fans are really a necessity this summer. I swear people were giving me sweaty death glares of envy when I broke mine out on the subway platform. It was still a sweat box, but at least I had a personal breeze to make it a little better.

  • Nikko Viquiera

    This.is.a.WERQ. Only someone as queenly as her could have the balls (or the ovaries) to carry around a handfan! All she needs now is someone to feed her grapes and carry her around .

    • Qitkat

      Anna Wintour knows people 😉

      • Nikko Viquiera

        hahaha! I don’t think Ms. Wintour enjoys sharing servants 😛

  • alyce1213

    Her body looks gorgeous in it, but I don’t think the dress itself is that special. It’s kind of sexy MOB.

    I love the fan, the other accessories not. The jewels are exquisite, but not for this; they need an unjeweled, starker dress or a much grander gown

  • filmcricket

    Damn she looks good. Love everything except the hem length & the shoes, and even those are minor quibbles. The jewels might be more appropriate for an evening event, but I can’t fault the queen for loving her sparkles, and rubies don’t get deployed often enough, IMO.

  • She’s gorgeous.

  • Shawn EH

    Sparkly! I wouldn’t know which piece of jewelry to lose, they’re all so nice, I can see why she’s just dripping with them.

  • Kathy_Marlow

    I probably would have left off the necklace. I really DO want to be her when I “grow up”

  • TaurusKW

    Personally, I love that she’s dripping with jewels!

  • stubbornthoughts

    This is basically WERQ material for me. That dress looks like it was made for her.

    Queen Helen is seriously a huge motivation. I badly want to age as beautifully and gracefully as she continues to do so.

  • Fordzo

    She’s rocking a parure, just like the Queen she is.

    • Adriana_Paula

      Thank you for teaching me a new word!

      • Fordzo

        My pleasure, mon petit. Now go forth and dazzle someone with your new vocabulary. Tomorrow I’ll be focusing on dirty words.

  • kbshee

    Gorgeous, gorgeous dress. Does she have an X tattoo on her hand?

    • kbshee

      Replying to myself, how pathetic, but googled and yes, x tat on the hand.

      • Fordzo

        This is what she has to say about her tattoo now, “I decided to get a tattoo because it was the most shocking thing I could think of doing… Now I’m utterly disgusted and shocked because it’s become completely mainstream, which is unacceptable to me.” She summed up my feelings about my tattoos precisely. I don’t regret getting them, but I regret that every sorority sister on earth has one.

  • All this beading should be beautiful, but the dress looks on the junky side to me. She’s beautiful, but this dress–for some reason–doesn’t flatter her as much as others she has worn recently.

  • nannypoo

    I wish we all used fans, and parasols too. Practical and elegant. I’m waiting for someone else to go first.

    • alyce1213

      I’m seeing more and more parasols (or light colored umbrellas) on the streets. I’m fair and I’ve used one on occasion, when I know I’m in for some hours in the sun. It takes up an arm, but it saves the skin, and it may be a little cooler.

  • pookiesmom

    Damn, she’s gorgeous.

  • Diego!


  • Qitkat

    Perfection from the ankles up. We shall not speak of the nude toe cram.

  • SewingSiren

    I always like her in the Dolce.But this one is fabulous too. Plus a fan as an accessory , how elegant.

  • Jennifer Peters-Ahnberg

    NOTHING in the world would make me happier than knowing Helen Mirren is a Bitter Kitten. Talk about a blogasm.

  • bertkeeter

    LUV her! Style and incerdible talent…Not loving the “pearlized” pump…

  • Lilithcat

    I often carry a folding fan around in the summer. You never know when you’ll need it!

  • NYCGlamourpuss

    You’re right on this one. I’ve seen her in stuff that just looks wonderful on her and isn’t nearly as aging. This dress looks wonderfully dramatic on the model, but very aging on Helen. And hey, I get it – I’ll be 50 in a few months, I totally get it. There are certain things that we ladies of a certain age shouldn’t wear. We’re not completely locked out, fashion-wise, but there are a few things that we should just say nope to.

  • maggiemaybe

    Fabulous. I think the fan makes the whole ensemble.

  • Jacqueline Wessel

    She does look fabulous here, but the color makes it seem a little too holiday. I, however, am a jewelry lover, so I think all that matchy jewelry is the best. You bring back jewelry adornment, Queen Helen, and I will be forever grateful.

  • BookJunkie315

    Bow down before the Queen, bitches.

  • decormaven

    Frankly, I’m glad she’s sporting heavy jewelry. The past few days, there have been precious little baubles to admire.

  • I am genuflecting at the altar. Youch, my poor knees.

  • kimmeister

    The color and shape are rocking on her. However, I have never liked beading in a squiggly pattern. Looks like brains or worm tracks or something. Also, shoes that I could wear to the office don’t belong at a movie premiere.

  • Tonia682

    I love this broad!!!

  • Janet B

    (The shoes are bugging me so much)

  • another_laura

    No such thing as too much jewelry when it’s diamonds and rubies, kittens. Gimme!

  • Imasewsure

    Love her love the dress but not the shoes. QH of F!!

  • Ashleigh

    Is that a prison tat?

  • Trisha26

    Hate the boring shoes, otherwise LOVE!

  • housefulofboys

    Doesn’t it seem like she is looking right at you in those pics with the fan as if to say, “TLo, you see what I’m doing here?” What a fantastic, gorgeous color on her, love it! And her figure looks amazing. The shoes are appalling but everyone seems to be wearing them so I’ll let that go.

    I’ve seen pics of her at several events recently and I still can’t tell if her hair is cut short or if she has it put up in the back, can anyone clarify?

  • d4divine

    That old rule, take one piece off as you’re walking out the door…Helen should have removed that necklace. Other than that, she is flawless as usual.

  • largishbearishAtlish

    Wow, nailed.it.down! She looks (so much) better than the model. The fit is perfect, and a hand fan? really? and pulling it off with out looking….silly? Bow down…

  • I. am. gagging.

    Perfection, the fan more than makes up for the less than inspiring shoes.

  • Pennymac

    Bowing down.

    The amount of fabulosity allows her to wear any damn shoes she wants. Her shoe bank account is still in the positive from those bitchin’ stripper heels the other day!

  • Terry

    Any actress thinking about plastic surgery should be shown a photo of this beautiful woman.

  • Michelle Wilson


  • Do you think the Queen borrowed those shoes from Cate Blanchett? (See “Blue Jasmine” premiere pic from earlier.) Someone get these stunners some less ill-fiting footwear, stat!

  • e jerry powell

    Miss Thing is Working a Fan.


  • Lady Orwellian

    Not my favorite hem length on her, but that is such a fabulous dress I regret the first part of my sentence now.

  • formerlyAnon

    She’s certainly looking good. I particularly like her hair and I LOVE that necklace. Sadly, the matching earrings not so much.

  • demidaemon

    I’m surprised by this fact alone: NO TIGHTS!

  • Anniebet

    I was making little squeals of glee as I scrolled down.. then I got to the lower legs and shoes. Knees up, she’s pretty fabulous. Love the fan.

  • macwell

    I don’t care of she looks a little aged in some outfits – she’s Helen Mirren! Bow down b****as! 😉

  • The shoes are pulling focus. You guys are being nice. Everything else…it’s what I want to be when I grow up.

  • quiltrx

    Wow, she looks incredible!

  • PeaceBang

    Good lord, the woman is perfection.

  • SignLadyB

    I do agree on the hem length–could be just a skosh shorter. Otherwise–my idol.

  • guest2visits

    Looking beautiful; I love this length and the slightly shorter length on the model too.

  • marlie

    Everything except the shoes is *perfect.* Including the fan. LOVE. HER.

  • The mothereffing Queen. Yes.

  • Contralto


  • Gatto Nero

    The shoes and bag are a little bland, but she’s never less than fabulous.