Cate Blanchett in Alexander McQueen at the 2014 BAFTA Awards

Posted on February 18, 2014

Let us start the day with a prayer. Please open your prayer books to the page marked “Fierce as fuck.”



Cate Blanchett attends the 2014 BAFTA Awards in London in an Alexander McQueen dress accessorized with Chopard jewelry.

Alexander McQueen Pre-Fall 2014 Collection


It’s a teeny bit too tight on her, but other than that, this is a look worth bowing down to. We love the change in the neckline and the addition of sleeves. It’s a much more interesting dress this way. It’s also a dress that cries out for a necklace or pendant, which doesn’t always mean much with the red carpet crowd, who tend to follow the trend not to wear anything on or near the chest. Thank God Cate’s not a trend whore, because that pendant is CRAZY-FABULOUS. If we gave out prizes for accessories, that would win JEWELRY PIECE OF THE YEAR.

That really should be a prize. You should say it out loud the next time you put your favorite earrings on.

We do think the face and hair are just okay. We get why she wouldn’t want to take the focus away from that pendant, but there’s a disconnect between the breezy, clean head and the Liz-Taylor-level diamondry.



[Photo Credit:, Landmark/,]

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  • I’m glad about the sleeves and change of neckline, but she could have kept the cut-outs. No, I never thought I’d say that either. Gorgeous necklace, and displaying it on plain black satin is the best thing for £eleventysquillion worth of diamonds.

    • Stefanie Argudo Mackenzie

      Gorgeous. Agree that she could have used more hair and makeup.

    • Vanessa

      Funny–I was just thinking that obviously “serious” Oscar contenders do not wear cutouts….

      • It’s possible that mother’s of three don’t wear cutouts! Although I suspect this is more to do with the PSH mourning than that.

      • Cheryl

        One word: Cher. Oh, you said serious…

        • StellaZafella

          Cher deserved her Oscar nod(s), in my opinion…but I also loved the fact that she refused to take it all TOO seriously. She did what many expected of her, and we’re still referring to it 20 years later.

    • demidaemon

      Mmmmm, I disagree. I hated those cutouts and I’m so glad they are gone. If she could have done it without the obvious boob dart, this could have been much better though.

    • Sara Brams-Miller

      For sure. If there is anyone that could rock the cutouts and the low neckline, it’d be here. She still looks freaking fantastic.

  • Tatiana Luján

    I like everything, including the hair, except the makeup, which looks as if she’d done it while driving her car, on a traffic light stop.

  • Ginger

    If I looked that fabulous in black satin, then I’d wear nothing but. If I were to try to emulate anybody’s style, it would be hers.

  • shirab

    I really wish it fit better. Cate should never be asked to wear something that pulls and wrinkles over the waist and hips.

  • Kent Roby

    Jewelry of the year, for sure. I love how it works with the flower design at the hips, without being overly matchy (like on the model). It’s hard to imagine this jewelry ever being worn again with anything else; it’s that perfect here.

  • Sarah

    Omagawd, that pendant! It looks like she kept it from Galadriel’s wardrobe! In the best way possible, of course. She is frikkin’ amazing. LOVE IT.

    • Josefina Madariaga Suárez

      My first thought about the pendant was “elvish”, which is a huge compliment.

      Oh, Diva Magnifica.

    • leahpapa

      I also got Neverending Story realness from that piece – which is a HUGE compliment.

      • bitchybitchybitchy

        You’re referring to the Orin(Oren-not sure of spelling), no doubt.

        • leahpapa

          Yes! Though I have no idea of the spelling. I saw that pendant and it immediately transported me back to a mid-eighties sleepover, my Dorothy Hamill/Pete Rose haircut, and a whole lotta Henson Creature Shop sidekicks. Also when that poor horse dies in the mud swamp and I cried for a week…and that creepy dark wolf thing that gave me nightmares…never mind, that movie was terrifying.

          • bitchybitchybitchy

            I remember that horse, and the G’mork(creepy dark wolf). I have very fond memories of that movie.

          • demidaemon

            This inspires me even more to go back and rewatch it, as I finally got it and the 2nd movie on DVD last year.

          • julnyes

            Atreyu’s horse Artax. God that breaks my heart every time I see it despite the upbeat conclusion to their story.

  • Golfkat

    Is there some pilling on the dress by her breast, or is it just a trick the light plays on the satin? Because yikes if it isn’t.

    • MissMariRose

      That’s what I was wondering. I think it’s just a problem with the photo, not the dress itself.

      • lizajane1776

        I was wondering the same thing, but it is more than one photo from that angle. From the other direction it looks fine. But it looks like the fabric was pulled so tight that it was being pulled apart. (Trust me, I’m fat. I know from fabric pulling.)

    • marlie

      I think it’s something on the fabric. I don’t think it’s pulling or pilling, but I can’t think of what else it might be.

      • Somebody else’s body shimmer from a side-hug.

        • marlie

          That’s why body shimmer is the work of the devil.

  • carnush

    I wish she had worn the neck piece shown on the model.

    • Kent Roby

      I assume that Lupita is wearing that necklace right now with a t and faded jeans while ordering a latte at Starbucks.

  • deelup

    She looks fantastic. And after seeing The Monuments Men over the weekend, this look gives me positive feelings towards her again. Thank goodness. Might also put on Blue Jasmine this afternoon to further erase the Clooney mess.

    • Beardslee

      Yeah, she was the best part of that disappointing movie.

      • deelup

        Her accent was horrendous, which surprised me.

    • kimmeister

      We were supposed to see Monuments Men (because my hubby wanted to, not me) but misread the movie times and ended up not going. I’m glad to hear I didn’t miss much.

    • fursa_saida

      I have gotten two separate lectures from each of my parents about how much they hated Monuments Men and why I should never see it. (I wasn’t planning to, but I appreciate their concern.)

      • makeityourself

        Watch “The Train” with Burt Lancaster. A much superior movie in every way that deals with similar subject matter.

      • AnneElliot

        Big fat meh. It’s like George Clooney was trying to redo “Ocean’s Eleven” but with a much more serious subject, and it just didn’t work. Plus the script isn’t that good, and he got kind of preachy in parts. Wish I’d gone to see “August” Osage County” instead.

        • bitchybitchybitchy

          I’d vote for August: Osage County over Monuments Men. It’s dark, and dreadfully sad in the depiction of a family nearly undone by a horribly angry mother, but Meryl is Meryl and acts up a storm. I saw it on the recommendation of my sister and one of her daughters,and am glad I did.

        • I’ve only seen a couple of snippets of Monuments Men, but even from that I thought he was playing Lt Danny Ocean.

  • kmc1138

    There is no five-word combination that makes me happier than “Cate Blanchett in Alexander McQueen.”

  • Charles

    This isn’t just a “be me” look, it’s an “eat shit” kind of look. LUV HUH.

  • MissMariRose

    This dress is absolutely gorgeous. I’m not 100% on board with the sleeve length, but Cate sells it. Oh, and that clutch! Want.
    Plus, she gave a good acceptance speech for her BAFTA, dedicating it to PSH. It looks like she’s on her way to winning the Oscar, but I wish it was for something other than a Woody Allen movie. [*cough* robbed for Elizabeth *cough*]

    • Kent Roby

      That will forever the biggest Oscar flub: there was never a more Oscar-worthy performance than her tour de force in Elizabeth, and to be beat by Gwennie for her Shakespearean rom-com, ugh.

      • demidaemon

        I have sworn never to watch that dreck for multiple reasons. Gwennie is probably low on the list, for once.

      • bitchybitchybitchy

        Dont hit me,but I love “Shakespeare in Love”-it’s Tom Stoppard, a fine cast (including my next husband, Colin Firth), and the recreation of Romeo and Juliet just completely seduced me. I don’t even begrudge Gwyneth her Oscar.

        That said, Cate was absolutely magnificent as the young Elizabeth;the film was gorgeous to look at, but after seeing it I had to dig out the biography of Elizabeth I that was assigned for my Tudor England history course in college to wash the taste of the completely fucked up history in that film.

        • Kent Roby

          I actually liked SIL for the light rom-com fluff that it is; I just completely disagreed with it being considered for some of its Oscar noms/wins, and felt that Cate was completely robbed in the Best Actress category. I thought Gwennie was perfectly acceptable in the movie; I actually liked her better in Sliding Doors.

        • conniemd

          I loved Shakespeare in Love. Remember it had the maaarvelous Judy Dench as well. It was simply an enjoyable frothy movie to watch and my friend and I adopted “It’s a mystery” as a response to dumb questions.

    • ovarB

      “I may be a woman, Sir William, but if I choose I have the heart of a man! I am my father’s daughter. I am not afraid of anything.”

      Gawd I loved that movie and the amazing tour de force transformation from hidden away maiden to bow the “f” down Queen!!

    • bitchybitchybitchy

      As far as I’m concerned, there is one reason to see Blue Jasmine, and that is Cate’s performance-she inhabited that role so thoroughly.
      There was an article in the NYT(last Thursday, I think) about her thinking on Jasmine.

      • decormaven

        I vacillate on Woody Allen’s films – I love his work, get distracted by the noise around his personal life, then tell myself to refocus again on the art itself. I’m so glad I saw Blue Jasmine. Cate was amazing in the role- it was acting at its best.

        • bitchybitchybitchy

          That scene at the end when Jasmine is sitting on the bench and muttering to herself….chilling.

        • bitchybitchybitchy

          I’m also trying to separate Allen’s personal life from his films. Jasmine was a terrific role, and Cate did it justice and then some.

      • AnneElliot

        Not just Cate Blanchett — all the actors were just wonderful! Sally Hawkins was great, plus all the supporting performers were excellent — Louis CK, Alec Baldwin, Bobby Cannavale, Peter Sarsgaard — and Andrew Dice Clay!! They’re ALL great.

        • bitchybitchybitchy

          You’re right-the entire cast was spot on. I loved Peter Sarsgaard as that breezy, entitled type who would have been exactly who Jasmine would have latched onto.

      • AnneElliot

        I’m trying to “like” this comment but every time I do it shows up as -1, I don’t know why.

    • kimmeister

      The clutch is awesome, but it gets lost when she holds it up against the flower that is the exact same color.

  • StellaZafella

    The two dresses are only related at the floral motif…but that’s a perfect example of a star getting what she knows will work for her without compromising the designer. The dress on the model is not for Cate…the dress on Cate is the dress for Cate…and it’s still McQueen. Luv the pendant…luv!

  • Alyssa

    That pendant is amazing!!! Love the dress…wish for different hair/makeup.

  • Jessica Freeman

    That necklace deserves its own round of applause. I love that she altered the original to something more tasteful. Her face is incredible, as always.

  • d4divine

    That necklace….I bow

  • ovarB

    The only thing that could upstage this moment is if the birds starting chirping “God Save the Queen” and when I say Queen…I mean Queen Cate!!

  • Aurumgirl

    Great dress, especially in the way she’s had it re-designed to suit her. But the poor fit and the ghastly wrinkling make all that work a loss. I’m glad she said no to the cut outs–I’m thinking the wrinkling and puckering they’d have caused would have looked that much worse. The Fug Girls are right: nobody looks good in satin.

  • M_E_S

    I want that pendant immediately.

    I also LOVE that she’s making those sleeves work. No mere mortal can pull that off. She is only confirming my theory that she is actually Galadriel.

  • ashtangajunkie

    Her face is magnificent and that pendant is to die for. It’s a shame how starved for diamonds the red carpet can be.

  • KinoEye

    OK. I’m staging a raid to take that incredible Chopard, in addition to the Venus flytrap ring Tilda wore the other week. One can never have enough nature-themed jewelry. And unfortunately, it’s likely we probably won’t see those pieces again anytime soon. They deserve a good home where they are gazed upon and admired every day of the year. Worshiped, even, as I worship Cate “All Shall Love Me and Despair” Blanchett. She should consider adding that to her name.

    • Sarah

      “One can never have enough nature-themed jewelry” – Hell Yes. In fact, I don’t think I have any that isn’t. Little diamond birds eating more diamonds in a diamond nest is now on my list, though.

      • kimmeister

        Previously, I only had a gecko pin, butterfly earrings, frog pendant, and pearl grape bunch earrings/pendant (I’m not counting florals). In the last year, I have added: diamond kitty pendant (anniversary gift), leopard ring, zebra bracelet, parrot earrings, and owl ring and earrings (not the same owl though). I feel like I could use some leafy motifs though.

        • Sarah

          I have a lot more leaves/branches than actual animals, but I will cop to an elephant pin, panda earrings, frog ring, bee hairclips, and a necklace sporting a branch with a little bird on it. A bird that is sadly not diamond encrusted. He is ashamed of his sterling-silver self and wants to hang out with Emma’s birds. Mayhap I can bedazzle him…

          • demidaemon

            I purchased some pretty cool fox and wolf earrings for my mother this past Christmas, and the year before I found her some awesome owl themed jewelry (her current obsession is owls).

          • KinoEye

            I’ve got an owl necklace, and wish I had more owls. Fox and wolf earrings sound badass too! On a related note, I saw an article somewhere about how to throw an owl-themed baby shower. I laughed, because nothing says “expectant mother” like predatory birds who hack up balls of bones and fur on the reg.

          • bitchybitchybitchy

            I have a collection of bird-themed earrings-they’re all inexpensive, but they represent my love for birds and symbolize the various birding trips that I’ve done.
            Seeing this necklace makes me wish that I could justify some more expensive pieces.

          • demidaemon

            Perhaps it was a method of sympathy for what all mothers eventually go through, especially with trouble children. *shrugs*

    • Have a look at the rest of the Animal World collection on the Chopard site. There’s a butterfly bracelet that is calling my name.

    • MilaXX

      I’ll come with.

      • bitchybitchybitchy

        Me three. Wouldn’t it be lovely to have a life where we could wake up, have the butler bring coffee/tea while we lounged and fondled the jewelry?

  • princessricky

    a bold red lip would have been the red icing on top of this fierce as fuck cake

  • Danielle

    And the angels sang!

  • Rhonda Shore

    She never looks bad, but i’m not wild about gigantic appliques, floral or otherwise, in general.

  • cocohall

    I hope she is wearing comfy shoes, because that is the definition of a “stand-up dress” if ever there was one. It looks like it would be difficult to breath, much less sit in it. I know I’m playing for the small-sided team on this one, but I’m not loving those giant floral muppet hands that appearing to trying to feel her up. Still she manages to look regal, even when being accosted by flowers.

  • mjude

    bowing the fuck down.

  • jw_ny

    Yes to the necklace…yes to necklaces in general. They really should be deployed more often. Cate’s is fab! 🙂

    Also, that is a perfect shade of lipstick for her…should be her “go to”.

  • Beardslee

    Here is a good example of why it’s prudent to deploy armor plating underneath such an unforgiving dress. She looks immaculate – but then, Emma looked quite human without it, which is why we love her so.

  • MaggieMae

    The necklace is ugly-cool. I don’t really like it, but I have to admit it looks perfect with the dress.

  • boweryboy

    And thank thee Lord for the omission of cutouts.

    • bitchybitchybitchy

      Thank you a thousand times, and then a thousand more. So often cutouts are much less interesting or flattering than the designer thinks.

  • SewingSiren

    Much more elegant than the original.

  • MilaXX

    I agree the dress is a skoosh too tight, but she is forgiven because she de-hoochified it from the original. I love that look and would cute someone for that pendant.

  • bitchybitchybitchy

    I too love the addition of sleeves, and changing the neckline. When we were watching the BAFTAs as soon as I saw Cate my thought was “what will TLo say about the necklace? For what it’s worth, I love that necklace, and only regret that my life is not fabulous enought to warrant cutting someone to own it.

  • HeatherMcIlrath

    absolutely the epitome of chic, however, the yoga hair makes me weep and i wish the clutch contrasted more with the dress. it gets lost completely and covers up the metallic embellishment. maybe thats why it’s only pictured once…hmmm…mysterious!

  • marlie

    THAT CLUTCH. Yes it’s a skosh too tight, and this is crying out for a bolder lip color, but Cate looks gorgeous in this dress. And that necklace is KILLA. And I LOVE Cate’s version so much better than the runway one. Sometimes simple-chic is all that’s needed.

  • ballerinawithagun

    Anyone know if the flowers are embroidered or hand painted? Lovely.

  • Cheryl

    Please give me that necklace. Thank you.

  • B_C_J

    She looks lovely. The only change I would have made would have been to wear the pendant as a brooch. I am sure it’s heavy & as a pendant it’s going to bang against her chest all night long.

  • Jacqueline Wessel

    I don’t really like the dress with it’s giant flowers, but that necklace redeems the whole look for me.

  • CommentsByKatie

    I like the original better, and it’s too tight. It’s kind of a miss for me, actually.

  • Gatto Nero

    Oh yes oh yes oh yes.

  • SugarSnap108

    I am genuflecting for that necklace alone. The fit isn’t perfect, but I love this look. And, at the risk of being chased with torches and pitchforks, I’ve found Cate’s style a bit disappointing of late — so I’m very happy right now (which is obviously her agenda).

    • demidaemon

      I agree that this is a return to form for Cate. I. too, have not loved some of her recent sartorial choices.

  • Gatto Nero

    And her speech (she dedicated the award to Philip Seymour Hoffman) was wonderful, too.

  • unbornfawn

    Glad she rejected all those cut outs. But why oh why couldn’t they get the fit right? The necklace is fabulous and it warms the cockles of of my heart to see good accessories on the Red Carpet. The hair and makeup need to go up a notch.

  • samo_samo

    I think the hair and pendant are in sync. I love, love, love the necklace.. While it is frosty with diamonds, it has a certain whimsy to it that work with her hair.

  • OffToSeeHim

    But, how can that be “Cate Blanchett in Alexander McQueen” when it’s nothing like the dress that actually went down the runway? I see that the fabric in the skirt is the same, but otherwise she looks like that time Gwenyth Paltrow threw on a Gap t-shirt and went to the Oscars. I think, if you’re going to wear the dress, then wear the dress. Otherwise find another designer whose dress you *do* like. But I think she robbed that dress of everything that was interesting about it except the fabric.

    • boweryboy

      But this is nothing new. Ladystars wear altered versions of runway dresses all the time. Sometimes the version the ladystar is wearing is the ready-to-wear interpretation of the runway dress. See: all of the Prada bejeweled face dresses featured lately.

      It’s still a McQueen, just not the version presented on the runway. I think the alterations made it a much more interesting and palatable.

  • YES! My favourite getup on her in a long time. Love it. Love the dress, the face, and the jewels. That necklace pendant is giving me life.

  • Aidan B

    Love love love amen.

  • Akemi


  • kimmeister

    The modifications make it so much more chinoiserie. Love it.

  • Redefines statement piece. Impeccable.

  • Sophie

    Sorry, I don’t actually like the necklace… I find the chain too thick and the pendant itself bugs me somehow. Though I do agree that she needed a pendant with this (beautiful) dress.

  • RescueMe23

    Perfection. And, I love her even more after seeing her interviewed on 60 Minutes this past Sunday.

  • demidaemon

    Oh, Cate, thank you for the modifications. Much better dress. If she had just amped up the head styling, this could have been a WERQ. Hell, it should have been anyways because of wearing some AWESOME jewelry for once.

  • Lisa M. (ReVoir) Kramp

    “Jewelry Piece of the Year”. I can get behind that movement!

  • bertkeeter

    Gorgeous gown…loose the necklace!

  • formerlyAnon

    Contrarian today. I love her head here, love it so much that I will refuse to admit that it might be improved upon for the purposes of the ensemble.

    When your head says “statue of the goddess: pure and stern, unexpectedly kind” why the hell would you modify it for purposes of dress?

  • John11581

    She continues to kick ass and take names this awards season. I know that all of these actresses have the benefit (or, in some cases, the detriment) of stylists to help them with their red carpet looks, but I’d like to think (based on nothing more than how awesome she is in all of the interviews I’ve seen throughout her career) that Cate does Cate. Maybe I’m naïve, but I kind of put her in the same category as Tilda Swinton. Both just seem so comfortable and confident with who they are that they manage to look amazing owning their very rare missteps. Confidence is the best accessory.

    • bitchybitchybitchy

      The article in the Vanity Fair Hollywood issue about stylists names Cate’s stylist-in fact,the same stylist does Cate, Sandra Bullock and one other actress, all of whom are up for the Best Actress Oscar.

      • John11581

        Thanks for the info. I’d never have guessed that they shared the same stylist; but then I guess that’s really what the job is all about. The only thing I really know about styling is what I see on The Rachel Zoe Show on Bravo and I don’t really see her style such diverse clients with such dissimilar looks and styles. Very interesting.

  • Fred Vaughn

    She knows her levels, and (more often than not) ROCKS THEM. That pendant is SOOOO…

  • DeTrop

    Love that pendent. Love her hair.

  • LaSylphide

    Is that pendant ALL diamonds? Love it but not with that dress; for me it competes too much with the flowers on the skirt.

  • Julaine Haraden Morley

    It occurs to me that the crazy-fabulous pendant would be more effective closer to the dress neckline, and that her earrings might be ever-so-slightly more fabulous. And with hair a bit more “organized,” I am indeed bowing down.

  • quiltrx

    So I gasped at that pendant, before I even saw what the Uncles had to say. It’s incredible! So glad Cate bucked the “safe” group and wore it.
    Her face looks fabulous, and I love her hair…BUT I agree the hair could be a little fancier given the rest of the look.

  • Diego!

    Attagirl. I don’t like hair and make up here but she is delivering. I wish I could wear anything and look great as she does!

  • Clash D

    She looks amazing. I’m glad she decided to cover up a bit more – it’s far more elegant on her person and especially to highlight that magnificent pendant.

  • DebbieLovesShoes

    I think it’s WAY sexier to have it adjusted like she did… it like it here SO much better than on the model.