Fug or Fab: Cate Blanchett


Having a movie come out during your break between awards shows is VERY awkward timing for anyone who’d prefer to go home and sleep in her skin-enriching cryogenic tube for a month.

At first I thought maybe I’d give this outfit to her, but by the end I’d changed my mind and I have divorced it so that I can move on with my life and find happiness someplace else. Let’s see if you agree.

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[Photos: Getty]

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Comments (44):

  1. ohsohappy

    The piping at the cuffs, neck and “V”-line are the problem. With a softer neckline and cuffs, and that line gone, this would have been okay, but only marginally.

  2. mattiesmom

    I liked it until I saw the back. She, however is as beautiful as always.

  3.  TaraMisu

    No. The front is not good, but then the back is even worse. No.

    “vaginal equator” :D :D :D :D :D

  4.  Anita

    The piping and the back are awful. Had it been a nicely tailored dress it would have been OK, but…what exactly are those white things with black centers all over it? I zoomed in and they almost look like stacks of buttons — there’s quite a bit of dimension there. How does one comfortably sit on what must feel like a pile of pebbles?

  5. qwertygirl

    I think if you take away the piping/peplum and make the back plain, I might like this. Does it look like it’s decorated with thumbtacks? Yeah, but I love me some Staples so I can get on board with office-supplies-as-adornment. I mean, it’s not like she accessorized with Post It Notes. The line has to be drawn somewhere (and preferably not up her back, as in this case).

  6.  Rowynn

    Yep. My admiration for her was helping me to like this, until that shot from the back, but having seen that, I’m out as well. I will never understand why designers take a garment that can be anywhere on the spectrum from “okay” to “awesome,” and add some wacko detail that makes it look absolutely lame.

  7. SKS

    This dress is just unfortunate. It’s like every single angle shows a different thing about the dress that, when taken together, makes it look dowdy and unflattering.

    It makes sense that she’s dressing conservatively under the circumstances, but fashion chain mail is weird to me.

  8. Samantha

    Yeah, the back killed it for me. I voted Leave It, even though I believe whole-heartedly in Carte Blanchett.

    • LoriK

      I don’t think the front looks all that great on her either, but yeah the back is a seious problem. What in the world is going on with that thing? It looks like the top didn’t fit and they had to slap in a peice of fabric to expand it. Clearly that can’t be true, so what were they thinking?

  9. Sandra

    It’s amazing that somebody managed to make her look so dumpy, frumpy, and stumpy.

  10. LT


  11.  nobody much

    +1 to the leave its – I was all set to click like, since the piping and belt didn’t bother me. Until she turned around. Definitely a ‘turn around fug’

    • Maria L.

      It’s a Jekyll/Hyde dress. A little odd, but inoffensive in the front but pretty darn ugly from the back.

    • HelenBackAgain

      “Turn around fug” needs to be a thing!

  12. Linda

    This looks like a shorter version of one of those dresses Sissy Spacek wore in “Coal Miner’s Daughter”.

  13. KatB

    This could have been very cool but it’s too much….sometimes it is better to pick just one accent; belt or piping-2 kinds! or peplum or slit. Not all at once

  14.  Looly

    She had me until she turned around.

    At least it’s seasonally appropriate?

  15. Lynne

    I never thought I’d say this but I’m growing a bit weary of Cate Blanchett. She could do with a vacation and I hope — post Oscars — that she takes one. I’m also not feeling the dress but the shoes I’ll take. Basic but a great shape.

    • marylou bethune

      She has had a terrible week what with Phillip Seymour Hoffman’s sad death and the Dylan Farrow letter. She looks tired as well she should.

      • Cas

        That’s what I kept thinking while reading Dylan’s letter. Poor Cate Blanchett. Is she sleeping well? Will she win her (2nd) Oscar? Her dress is pretty. All of these are such pressing concerns. Yes, that’s sarcastic.

  16.  Mair Mair

    I really like the fabric. On an entirely different dress.

  17. Cat

    I think we could unfug this. First of all, hidden slit– be gone! Secondly, shorten the peplum top and shorten the skirt and we’d be in business. Alternatively, getting rid of the actual skirt and making the top longer so it’s a belted dress (does that make sense?) would work too. And lastly, all that crazy stuff on the back needs to go, because I mostly like this from the front.

  18. Donna J

    I liked it when I saw it from just the shoulders up, thinking it had a bit of an Anne Shirley vibe. However, seeing the length and all the other stuff, it’s vibe is definitely more Princess Di in her early, awkward ’80s-fashion phase.

  19.  Mina

    Her dress is staring at me! Like a thousand little googly eyes are all over it. Also, it needs a pop of color. The shoes? The belt? The piping?

  20. BrownEyedBetty

    It has a late 80s-early 90s Vibe to it complete with shoes.
    Are those grommets or sequins on the fabric?

  21. Ailatan

    I would like to see a detail of her shoes, which at least, seem interesting.

    • HelenBackAgain

      The shoes are gorgeous. Elegantly shaped, with that sexy zipper touch, and a downright punky V-shaped zipper tab. Beautiful, and unusual.

  22. HelenBackAgain

    If the whole thing continued looking the way it looks in the first frontal view, I would love it.

    Unfortunately, it does not do that.

  23. maggie

    I don’t love the dress. But I saw a picture of her yesterday delivering boatloads of toys to PSH’s kids, so my guess is that she’s sort of in mourning. That might explain the somberness of this look, if not quite the weird back. I’m going to give her a pass.

  24. daphne

    .. what I love about La Cate on the red carpet, so to speak, (i.e. when ‘modeling’ rather than doing her real job, acting!) is that she carries herself the identical way, whether she’s dressed in something undeniably gorgeous or Way Out There.. and everything in between ! the poise. the regal assurance. the grace. the face ! Conviction rules !

    ok. rant-y gushing over.

    I’ll give her the benefit of the doubt. again. (spiderweb of lies at a Blue Jasmine premiere..)

    maybe she needed to wear ARMOR for the Woody Allen scandal/ugliness that has drawn some actors into its vortex.

    this is extremely pretty for armor ! !! but yeah. not my fave–

  25. Cristina

    Carte Blanchett, man.

  26. TonyG

    I liked it until I saw the back.

  27. Melissa

    Laura Ingalls Wilder with a bedazzle gun.

  28. tigers4us

    The more I saw of it, the more I disliked it. But her head looks great!

  29. Katy

    If the vagina piping is an equator, that means she’s got the Tropic of Cancer around her waist. Which cannot be a good idea.

  30. Jules

    This looks like she came in costume as a strict boarding school dorm mistress whom all the kids secretly think moonlights as a stripper on weekends.

  31. MegoPachego

    I saw a shot of this on a different website that was cut off just below the belt and I imagined it with kind of a floaty skirt to at or just above the knee. I thought that shape and length would be a fun contrast to the grommet laden fabric. But nooooooo … It had to be this.

    I still think she looks fabulous, especially given the circumstances of the week and I sort of wonder if she saw the material, thought it looked interesting, put it on, said “Ugh. What the hell,” and trecked on with her day. I give her points for this. (I feel like I had to say it because there was no in between option).

  32. Sajorina

    Why does it have to be black or white? All or nothing? I don’t love it, but I don’t hate it… I just LIKE IT! The shoes are cool and her face & hair are fabulous!

  33. Andrew

    She may be the new spokesperson for Indonesian rule in West Papua but does she have to dress in a bag? To me it looks like a 1930s custom for a middle aged person…