WERQ: Adele in Stella McCartney Receives MBE at Investiture Ceremony

Posted on December 20, 2013

We sense that the bitterest of our Bitter Kittens are going to have a hard time coming to terms with the fact that BK-UNapproved Stella McCartney made Adele look pretty damn gorgeous.


Adele is honored with the MBE (Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire) by the Prince of Wales during a Buckingham Palace investiture ceremony in London in Stella McCartney.

Granted, it’s about as simple as a dress can get, but it fits her like a glove and the fabric is absolutely stunning. It’s the best dress we’ve ever seen her in.

Could’ve done without the unraveling shower puff on her head, but the pretty-but-obnoxious hairpin somehow seems perfect. That’s a gorgeous nail color, but we’re thinking it’s a bit too matchy for our tastes. Like the hairpin, the slightly obnoxious nail art seems just right. Not that we’re saying Adele’s obnoxious, just that she’s letting the exuberant part of her personality show while still maintaining the sense of decorum required for the event.

WERQ that Most Excellent shit, girl.


[Photo Credit: John Stillwell/Getty Images]

Please review our Community Guidelines before posting a comment. Thank you!

  • annabelle archer

    WERQ!! What a delightful way to start a Friday.

    • tereliz

      Isn’t that length on her just perfect? I’ve always admired her ladylike-with-a-hint-of-funk style, so like her attitude. Great color, fun styling, beautiful smile. WERQs for me!

      • Violina23

        Love the makeup too, especially the lip color and the eyes.

      • Introspective

        perfect sartorial manifestation of the cheeky brit that she is. luv huh. and surprisingly, love the dress, stella or not.

        • tereliz

          I think the dress is Oscar stella Renta. πŸ˜‰

      • I am just so glad she did not default to her regular black – and in particular black lace. This is a great colour for her and she should get one of this exact cut dress in every colour and fabric available on the planet. Especially in blues and greens which clearly suit her.

        When I saw it I thought this is the most gorgeous she has ever looked, even with the weird shower loofah thing. I was hoping TLo would agree. πŸ™‚

        The only one thing I would add to the outfit in future outings would be a Michelle Obama style belt at the place where the top and skirt meet, preferably sparkly belts if the fabric is plain. If she had done a plain belt with this one it would have sent this outfit so far into the stratosphere we may not even have been able to see it from our universe.

        See what I did there, Adele? Your future wardrobe, solved. πŸ™‚

    • EveEve

      May I gush too? This is destined to be an iconic look for Adele. She looks head-to-toe perfect for a British diva. Stella is like that blind squirrel who finds a nut every once in awhile. .

      • demidaemon

        A very apropos description of Miss McCartney indeed.

  • Actually, I am bitter that this CHILD already has an MBE. I mean fuck.

    Fab dress though, even if it isn’t silk.

    • Chickadeep

      Very talented and tax revenue-generating child has an MBE. πŸ™‚

      • But where does she go from here? She’ll be a Dame by 35!

        • Chickadeep

          Early Damehood didn’t hurt Margot Fonteyn or Kiri Te Kanawa’s careers. πŸ™‚ I expect Kate Winslet might be an early one too.

        • Ginny Ellsworth

          Ain’t nothing like a Dame!

        • Glam Dixie

          Is it bad that I have no idea what y’all are talking about? What does an MBE mean, I know what it stands for but that doesn’t exactly help.

          • They are honours handed out by the Queen – M.B.E is the lowest, Dame or Knight of the British Empire is the highest. So you get a medal and to shake hands with the Queen (although I think Charles did this round) and to use the letters after your name. I thought they were allocated at the Queen’s birthday and New Years, but the season must have extended.

    • Taurwen

      She’s the same age as The Beatles were when they received their MBEs.

      • That doesn’t make me feel any better about the waste of my life so far.

    • fashion4ever

      I can’t believe that this CHILD also has a CHILD!

  • NMMagpie

    Stunning. Can’t even hate on the hairnet.

  • cmb92191

    She looks beautiful. I only wish I could look that great.

  • thecitysleeps

    Holy goddamn I need this complete outfit like air. You rock it, Adele, gurl.

  • Diego!

    Stunning and gorgeous! I loved it! WERQ indeed! I love her crown nails LOL πŸ˜›

    • Isabel

      A Stella McC dress? I didn’t know that. Brava for the tailoring. I loved the fabric and color. Stella needs to go that way; she would make more money.

      I saw a picture of Adele after she received the award. She was running & giggling. Very unBrit but adorable.

      I don’t mind the nail crown but how painful will it be to take off? Do you wait for the glue to soften? Will the nail bed come off?

      • marlie

        Re: the nail art…. you usually soak your nails in remover for a bit, and the polish softens and it’s easy to remove the embellishments.

        And for real – her giggling like a little girl was the best thing about seeing her receive the award.

      • Just saw a picture of the “original” dress over at the Fuggirls. It looks NOTHING like this. I think Adele must have been very specific about what she wanted to wear.

        • Isabel

          Stella Dear, read what we’re saying. We love the modified version. The original – I wouldn’t even let anyone wear it.

        • RL McGruder

          Genuine question: does it really even count as Stella McCartney when it’s just a flat out different dress? Is it because Stella designed/bought the fabric?

          ETA: maybe I meant that I don’t think it’s a modified dress, maybe just a different dress.

          • I assume it actually came from her studio and she had something to do with the design of this one too. But yeah, saying it was altered from the look book when there is NOTHING other than the fabric and the not-pantsness of it that is the same is weird.

          • Denise Alden

            I guess I assumed this was a custom dress, because since when does Stella McCartney (or anyone else except Tadashi Shoji) design for women who wear above a size 8?

        • tereliz

          It’s not Stella anymore, it’s Oscar. In Stella’s fabric.

        • marlie

          So Adele’s dress is a Stella, but not really. Heh, no wonder we all like it.

        • sojourneryouth

          Has to be custom, because nothing about the silhouette is at all similar, and it actually flatters Adele’s body and coloring. LOVE the richness and tapetry-like print on the fabric and all its deep blues and greens. The original version suffers from most of the symptoms of Stella-itis with it’s weird proportions and unflattering silhouette. There is always a wtf element in Stella’s abominations, and in this case it was those awful Dumbo sleeves. My girl looks amazing, but my Stella hate still has a steady breeze across the embers.

          • demidaemon

            Just because the client was smart and asked for the modified better version does not dull my hate of the Stella. It just proves my love for Adele and her intelligence and reproves why Stella needs a new career, stat.

        • demidaemon

          I am so not surprised.

  • Ms. Schmidt

    Simplicity is often beautiful.

  • teensmom99

    To help he bk’s with heir cognitive dissonance-usually Srella’s tailoring is sloppy-this has been tailored to perfection,

  • Anna_Cecilia

    You know when a band/singer you typically can’t stand comes out with a song you actually like and you begrudgingly admit to not hating it? This is the dress equivalent. That dress is so well-suited to her personal style and personality.

    The loofah-headband definitely needs the brooch in order to just barely qualify as a “fascinator.”

    • Evan

      I refuse to believe Stella designed this. Maybe it was a ghost designer?

      • Anna_Cecilia

        I also thought the same, perhaps a much more talented intern/underling.

  • jilly_d

    That fabric is fucking stunning, and GOD BLESS HER for not wearing black YET AGAIN!! You werq that crown jewel nail, girl. SNAPS

  • jewel tones are her absolute bestie. And I agree that that tormented breakfast pastry on her head must GO.

  • Tanya Wade

    I read something in a book many years ago that has stayed with me: “Simplicity is the key note.” This dress is the definition. I have never seen her look better.

  • Silly Grrl

    That dress. I NEED IT.

  • Aidan B

    WERQ it, girl!! Saw her in this yesterday and wondered what the uncles would think of it. Glad you agree with me that she looks goddamn fabulous!

    • Chickadeep

      That was the very first thing I thought of when I saw it. The dress (which looks ever-so-slightly stiff in photos) actually moves and flatters her like crazy in video. so there’s that. She looks divine.

  • Ros

    I’m pretty sure hats are required for this event, but I agree that wasn’t the best choice of hat. Great dress, though.

    • Not required – PJ Harvey didn’t wear one – but mostly the done thing.

  • Claudia Berry

    An MBE already? Um, okay. LOVE the nails, though!

  • Josefina Madariaga SuΓ‘rez

    Thank God a young star who’s not afraid of sheer hose.

  • In_Stitches

    I think the hairnet is there to disguise how badly matched that Pomeranian they bobby-pinned to the back of her head is to her real hair. And what is this, a project runway one day challenge? Couldn’t even match the pattern Stella. I kid; both Adele, and the dress, are fabulous.

  • I want an MBE! I’m hoping Her Majesty will put me on the New Year’s Honours List for Services to Blog Commentary.

    One shall now sit by the postal receptical whilst waiting for the Palace invite to arrive.


    • formerlyAnon


    • YourBaloneyDontGotNoSecondName

      I will have you over for tea, dearest. OK, Tea-quila.

  • BeeBeauNYC

    Stella should stick to simpler designs like this one – it’s the first Stella outfit I think I’ve ever liked. Adele looks great, despite the nail art.

  • Angela_the_Librarian

    Love it from head to toe (especially the crowns on her nails!)

  • marlie

    I was hoping that you guys would profile this when I first saw the pictures a couple of days ago. I think Adele looks absolutely STUNNING. I was amazed that it’s Stella McCartney, too, but she did a fabulous job with Miss Adele here.

  • Kayceed

    Love the dress, love the color, love the goofy nail art and LOVE the brooch in the hair. It is one of my favorite party tricks, alas my brooches are mere rhinestone…

  • carnush

    LOVE. Royalty- (and season-) appropriate yet chic and flattering. Well done, lady.

  • Fred Vaughn

    Made me smile, as work looms.

    • sagecreek

      It’s the Friday before Christmas. Unless you are a heart surgeon or a firefighter, I hope you can find some excuse to slough off today πŸ™‚

      • Ginger Thomas

        or you work retail…

        • Sarah

          Or for the government (me, I get Wednesday, and that’s it). Or for a restaurant (my fella, he gets nothing, just Wednesday night)

          • formerlyAnon

            Boo hiss. I’m state, but higher ed, and we get Tues, Wed., Thurs. (Of course, we also work some of the Monday holidays the feds get off, but I’m psyched.) Haven’t had 7 out of 9 days off in a while. And I may just go nuts and use leave for next Friday. Clean house. Do projects. Clear weeds out of the yard. Catch up on academic reading. OR, more likely, eat crap and watch British mystery series on Netflix and drink with friends. But I cling with no real fervor to my aspirations. For the moment.

          • Sarah

            Oh, I’m taking leave. Bullshiz, I say. I’m only working Monday. But if I wasn’t salaried and possessed of plenty of leave hours, I’d be in on Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday. And the mister, well, he hates Xmas. I’ve been working on this for a few years now, because I grew up with Mrs. Santa Claus for a mom, but he hasn’t come around yet. So I suspect that even though he SAYS he has to work, he might not even. He’s probably taking other peoples’ shifts so he can avoid family gatherings. I love the man, but LORDY he is stubborn about certain things.

          • formerlyAnon

            If y’all have kids he will come in handy when you have to pare down family expectations to what you actually want to do/can handle. He no doubt has such a rep that no one will argue much when you blame the strange desire to have a manageable family Christmas all on him. And I imagine it’s within your power to bring him to associate some things he likes with Christmas. πŸ˜‰

        • formerlyAnon

          Ahhh. Retail work. Pobrecita.

  • Miranda

    She looks GREAT!

  • Sarah

    Dress is gorgeous! I can’t forgive the hairnet though. Brooch, yes, lunchlady net, no.

  • Richard Banger

    I wonder if she freaks out the way christina hendricks does if someone calls her “full figure”

  • sagecreek

    Even a blind squirrel, etc πŸ™‚

    But yes, a WERQ indeed.

  • tallgirl1204

    I’m thinking that, like Oprah, Adele may have learned the value of having one’s clothes made exactly, perfectly, specifically for oneself.

    • formerlyAnon

      Gosh, one hopes. I mean, what else is money for – especially if one is photographed and video’d constantly.

    • marlie

      And if Oprah and Adele (and Octavia Spencer) can figure it out, other curvy ladystars like Christina Hendricks and Melissa McCarthy have absolutely zero excuse.

  • Pennymac

    I’ll grudgingly give it to Stella on this one. That fascinator reminds me of the netting bag my oranges and onions come in at the grocery store.

    “Dear Santa,
    All I want for Christmas is an MBE. Can Wills and Kate be at the palace when I receive it? I swear, I’ve been “mostly good” all year.”

    • formerlyAnon

      You think like I do! If there is an afterlife, I’ve always felt that “mostly good” had better count!

  • Jennifer Peters-Ahnberg

    NICE. Finally, a Stella design I can covet for my own. She did an excellent job with Ms. Adele. Not a pairing I would have envisioned, but good for both of them, I think.

  • ashtangajunkie

    That fabric is GORGEOUS. Perfectly fitted and she looks lovely.

  • knockknockknockpenny

    WERQ WERQ WERQ! She has a crown on her nails too for the occasion. Bitch is killing it here. Where has she been hiding???

  • snarkykitten

    Stella making a dress that isn’t overwrought & hideous? And it works on a lady who isn’t a size -00?? It’s a Christmas miracle!

  • bitchybitchybitchy

    I’m willing to conced that sometimes Stella can get it right-and this is one of those times. Love the nail color and nail art, and love Adele’s comfortableness with herself-you WERQ that exuberant stuff, girl!

    • YousmelllikeAnnaWintour

      I think Stella gets it right once in a while. I mean, heck, even a broken clock is right twice a day, right?

      • bitchybitchybitchy

        You got it, sister!

        Now back to the Chezbitchy baking project….

  • NYCGlamourpuss

    Love the dress, and who would have guessed that Stella would get it right? But that little hat thingy – noooo… I realize all the best dressed British ladies wear a hat to a special event, so it’s not that. It’s just so aging on her.

  • clevergirl70

    I think the reason it looks so good is that it doesn’t look like anything I’ve ever seen Stella McC make (though admittedly I have not bothered to become familiar with her entire oevre. One mustn’t.). So no dissonance for me.

  • WendyD

    LOVE. IT. ALL.

  • SusiesSister

    I love it all. Her skin is so beautiful.

  • Janet B

    WERQ that exuberant decorum.

    Surprised that such an ‘understated’ dress came from Stella McCartney

  • NBG

    Charming and perfect for the event.

  • Glam Dixie

    Re Stella McCartney, around here we say “Even a blind hog finds a truffle every now and then.” Adele looks lovely.

  • Victoria Anzalone

    Gorgeous fabric!

  • Nonmercisansfacon

    Drop dead fabulous! WERQ that smile girl. But what is going on with the hair Adele?

  • fananafanafophalec

    YAAAAASS those NAILS THO!!! Gorgeous and hilariously kitsch. Not sure quite sure why the makeup artist decided to use their blush as eyeshadow (can you not afford a decent eyeshadow Adele), and I think they made some questionable contouring decisions, but it’s still lovely all around.

  • lifeisastory

    She looks beautiful. Is it me, or are are feet disproportionately small?

  • Nazzzy


  • cocohall

    Good for her. She looks herself, yet also venue appropriate. And what a specific venue this is. These photos will follow her forever. I think she chose a silhouette and head piece that are slightly anachronistic, knowing that wearing something very fashion “now” would look dated down the road. This look has the benefit of not screaming December 2013. It does say “I’m a very classy lady.” Except perhaps the nail art. Which says FUCK-ALL! I’ve got an MBE! Giggle fit ensues!

  • formerlyAnon

    Her nail art cracks me up (the little crowns, hee!). I’m always kind of glad when Stella works for someone – I’d hate to think women have been spending money on her stuff for all these years just to look awkward. It’s nice to think SOME of ’em looked nice. It’s not like her clothes are cheap.

  • ojosazules

    That is sooo her dress. Beautiful.

  • SewingSiren

    Werq indeed. Love it all. But would have preferred the Russian veiling to have a hat attached to it.

  • Melanie

    that fabric is to die. & the hairpin complements it perfectly. i love that her nail art winks/pays tribute to the whole occasion πŸ˜€

  • Jacqueline Wessel

    That is some beautiful fabric in beautiful colors. Adele looks wonderful here, even with that silly hair net.

  • Dan_In_NYC

    Her nail has a fucking crown on it. How brilliant is that!! I love her, and she looks great. That hat/headpiece isn’t my favorite, but I can concede it would be a pretty boring look without it. Get it, Miss Thang!!!

  • YousmelllikeAnnaWintour

    She looks awesome! πŸ™‚

  • ajw93

    Dress? ACE. Hair? Nice! Hat? NOPE. Nails? Twee. Makeup? OK. On balance I actually think the hat is so bad that it makes the rest of the outfit irrelevant.

  • Michelle Wilson

    Gorgeous from head to toe and I’ve always said she should trade out her black for sapphire blue. Perfection.

  • Ashleigh

    she’s so bloody cute in this!!! 100% agree, but don’t mind the matchy nails; it’s very British to me…

  • poggi

    I feel like the nails and hairpin give her a youthful feel that she can and should do! The dress is pretty on her and the print is great! I feel like when you are of certain stature you can wear a big print that might overwhelm someone who is more petite so yes, good job Adele and Stella!

  • bertkeeter

    Wow…now the MBE comes with “nail jewels”! LUV HER!

  • mjude

    a bow down & WERQ indeed

  • traceyishere

    The hair net is tradition at these events and could have been much worse.

  • stubbornthoughts

    THIS is your silhouette, lady! Best her makeup has ever looked, too.

  • BitterOldQueen

    Just perfect for her.

  • MilaXX

    Agreed on all counts. The fabric is doing most of the heavy lifting, but Stella showed a lot of restraint here so because the dress is not overdesigned within an inch of it’s life. I’lll even give the netting a pass since she’s a Buckingham palace. She looks great.

  • Trickytrisha

    Somewhere in the wilds of Great Britain, fashion designer Stella McCartney is recuperating from the strain of being required, no… forced… to design a normal, absolutely lovely dress for world famous singer Adele (who, btw, looks blooming gorgeous).

  • mommyca

    She looks divine! The dress is gorgeous! and I usually don’t like nail art, but this one is just perfect.

  • GinnyThePainter

    It’s still weird to see the name “Stella McCartney” and WERQ in the same sentence.

    • boweryboy

      I can’t reconcile the two.

      • Evan

        Me neither. In my head, Stella had a ghost designer do this for her.

  • ballerinawithagun

    A divine beauty! Love that fabric.

  • I just love that she is wearing sheer hose. They make everyone’s legs look better, and every fancy dress fancier. Much more elegant than lady stars slathering their legs in makeup and shimmer. Simpler too!

    Sisters, join me, Adele and your mom in the hosiery department! There is a lot more than fishnets and opaque tights on offer!

  • random_poster

    Gorgeous! WERQ, indeed!

  • I might have taken that brooch/hair pin off the hair and put it on the dress. Left shoulder, of course, just as the Queen always wears her brooches on the left shoulder. Or, I might have used it as the “buckle” for a slim belt at the waist. It just seems misplaced where it is now, yet too wonderful to omit entirely.

    • I agree – the hair pin as a belt buckle on a slim black velvet belt would have made this complete perfection.. πŸ™‚

  • boweryboy

    She looks great, but I will attribute that more to the fact she’s a gorgeous woman and less to the fact that my foe Stella had anything to do with it.

  • The nails actually made me squee a bit and I don’t get all that excited about nails. And whoever did the fit on that dress should be on her permanent staff. Gorgeous.

  • Tracy_Flick

    I love it. LOVE the national pride. She looks gorgeous.

  • Matthew Davie

    Fitted and tailored to a T. Yet still irreverent and fun and totally HER. The nail art made me giggle. Awesome.

  • Synnamin

    that dress… GIMME

  • melanie0866

    I think the nail art is witty and appropriate, as is the tiny little veil.

  • KT

    Love it! Also I don’t understand the Stella McCartney prejudice. Yes, she’s made some ugly shit, but let’s judge on a case-by-case basis, as we should with most things…

    • demidaemon

      When one thing out of a hundred is good, should there be no prejudice?

  • MoHub

    Guys! You have to put up the runway version, which is more typically ugly Stella. Adele’s version is very different and a major improvement.

  • lalahartma


  • Judy_J

    That fabric is absolutely-frickkin’ gorgeous! It really makes the dress sing.

  • sweetlilvoice

    Love it, nail art is adorable and funny. I normally hate Stella McCartney but this looks amazing. Seriously.

  • Zaftiguana

    Oof. I love the fabric and the simplicity and the commitment to good fit, but the neckline isn’t working for me. It doesn’t need to be plunging or anything, but a boatneck would have been lovely, or a demure V. Crew neck is just hardly ever the most fabulous choice for us voluptuous bitches.

  • HobbitGirl

    That is the perfect silhouette for her. Jealous of how well that waist hits on her.

  • Kate4queen

    I believe you have to wear something on your head when you go to this ceremony, it’s a tradition, I like this frou frou letty thing. πŸ™‚

  • Sabin

    I really, really want that dress. Sucker for anything peacock, and this one is actually a nice silhouette. Needs a belt though.

  • Flawless, given the person and the occasion.

  • D J H

    Re: Stella McCartney: Even a stopped clock is right twice a day.

  • Shawn EH

    Crown Royal nails, girl is serving!

  • LeelaST

    She’s just lovely!

  • demidaemon

    She looks amazing. Adele must have used the Rupaul adage when ordering this dress: “Stella, don’t f*** it up!” And, somehow, amazingly, Stella succeeded. WERQ it, Adele!

  • kaycem

    love everything from the neck up and the nails (her signature “thing”). not crazy about anything else.

  • MyFavoriteColorIsGlitter

    Positively Stunning!

  • unbornfawn

    WERQ and Stella McCartney in the same sentence. I’m ready for the apocalypse. But Damn Adele looks fabulous! Love her.

  • Sweetvegan

    Unlike many BKs, I’m a Stella fan! But even I have to say, Stella didn’t make Adele look gorgeous. Adele made Adele look gorgeous. Stella then put a gorgeous dress on her. And is that hemline just slightly longer in the back? Gives the silhouette a nice update.

    • Melvis Velour

      You nailed it, this one is ALL about Adele! Congrats on that MBE…hope it leads higher up the food chain for honours

  • rebeccaNYC

    She really DOES look lovely, and I like everything except the fake nails. I love the nail color and the nail art, but those fake plastic nails are just ugly. Now, on to the dress….which is a beautiful shape for her, perfect color, perfect fabric but the fit is too tight. The stress on the elbow is severe as she is bending her arm and the dent on her back at her bra line shows how tight this dress is. These are such fixable things on such a simple (we’re talking first dress in home ec class) design that it’s a shame.

  • imakeart

    Love the color. So rare to see her in something other than black.

  • lrhoff

    Well deserved, she is an inspiration!

  • Joanne Abrams

    WERQ! She looks fabulous

  • PeaceBang

    TOO much fun. The frock is perfect and when she’s through with it, she can send it to me. I need something to motivate me to actually leave the house on New Year’s Eve.

  • Gatto Nero

    Don’t like the nails and the headgear, but the dress is great on her. And I generally can’t stomach Stella. Good for Adele.

  • quiltrx

    I refuse to give the Stella credit for this…it’s ALL the print! She looks fantastic.

  • suzq

    <–This bitter kitten has nothing but snaps for Stella and Adele. Well done! Patsy and Edina are crying tears of unbridled British pride.

  • Stacey Smith

    I’m all for nail art but I can’t help think that’s tacky.

    Also props for the shower puff comment, going to keep that in my Bitter Kitten Bitch File for future sniping this New Years Eve

  • Joyce VG

    Most excellent indeed! My jaw dropped when I saw that this dress was Stella McCartney. Adele looks very happy and beautiful.