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In or Out: Tilda Swinton

Tilda Swinton attends the "Up" Premiere at the Palais De Festival during the 62nd International Cannes Film Festival in Haider Ackerman.

Haider Ackerman Fall 2009 Collection

Even when she gets it wrong, she does it so much better than anyone else. Let's start with what we like: the silhouette. She's long and lean and broad-shouldered and this outfit does everything to accentuate that. The color. Quite often, she goes for frosty whites or metallics to play off her natural paleness, but it's nice to see her in such a rich tone. This concludes the "what she got right" portion of our program.

Here's what she got wrong: The color. While we love it, we don't love so much of it. We're gonna get mighty pissed off if Michelle Obama starts a trend where every piece of an outfit is the exact same color. We can't stand that. Next, the layering. She looks so good when she goes sleek. She looks like she's wearing at least one piece too many above her waist. It looks a tad sloppy. The hair and makeup. We usually applaud her minimalist approach to both, but it's so minimal here it looks to be nonexistent. Her face needs a little contouring, otherwise it looks pancake flat. And we are SO not loving the Moe Howard-esque 'do on her.


[Photo: Getty Images/]

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OUT! Agree with TLo, too much of one color. Also, I do not like the fit-above the waist looks too small and the skirt looks too big.


Not perfect by any means but I will call her "IN" for the simple reason that even when she goes wrong, she still looks a hell of a lot better than most of the frights that show up on the red carpet.

I say IN. The one color look is good on her. And she's being true to her Swintonness by boldly playing with that color, knowing everyone will talk. She chose well and we're talking.

It's actually a beautiful color on her, in those layers. Only she could pull it off.

The hair, well, I'd have loved to see something different but she failed to call and consult me.

I say she's definitely IN.

I love her unabashedly and I like the hair, (lack of) make-up, and the alterations to the dress.

The thing I don't understand is so many of these stars dressing against the season. Back in Feb. we saw so many wearing Spring dresses to the Academy Awards and here's Tilda wearing a Fall dress in May in Cannes.

When I saw the heading "In or Out: Tilda Swinton" I immediately thought "Awright! Here we go! What crazy thing is she wearing?"

But when I saw the photos I wasn't put off by the layering or the color, but by the "plain-ness" of it all. It's a fine gown, but an unusually subtle choice for Tilda.

You're up early this morning! I agree. OUT. It's the hair that does it for me. I just don't get it. Love the color of the dress on her.

Out. The color is wrong for her - she's not one who can wear autumnal colors, and should stick to bright, Spring-y cool tones.

I didn't have a problem with the makeup except for failure to fully highlight her eyebrows. Also, not loving the hair very much.

Gotta hand it to her, though. She's a true original.

Yes, the hair could be better this time; but I find short hair so much more modern & light than the heavy hairy drapery that most actresses sport, that I gotta forgive her.

I disagree, I think she looks fresh and cool. That color is AMAZING on her, so I don't mind the overload at all.

Regarding her makeup, or lack thereof- one's tempted to say, "Tilda! Draw on some eyebrows, or maybe even some lips, for chrissakes! You've beautiful bone structure, show it off, Lassie!"

But, ya know? I find something very appealing about the blank canvas look-- her beauty's actually amplified when "unfinished" by dramatic makeup.

She has the bone structure and the height and manages to mess things up 90% of the time unless she's posing for a fashion magazine, which means someone else is dressing her. With everything going for her biologically, there's no excuse for her to be wrong so much of the time.

My initial reaction was "IN", and I'm sticking by it. Yes, there does appear to be one piece too many on top, and I'm not crazy about the hair. However, all total I think she looks great. She's rocking that color.

She looks a little schlumpy. Tilda, stand up straight!!

Altho I'm not crazy about the jacket, overall I love the look, and the color is fabulous and different, but that's her. IN.

a third laura

IN for me, despite your excellent observations, because she still looks every inch the glamazon actress, rather than a tart or a blonde-bot or other typical H-wood people.

Also, how endearing is that last photo where she has unbent her beautifully tall frame to chat up/smooch Agnes??

Hate it.

Looks like pieces of clothing that I could've pulled from my mother's closet...

back in 1979.

Geez Louise, how tall is this broad?

She looks like 8 feet! LOL!

Is "broad-shouldered" really an attribute most women want to accentuate?

A say in! I love the color against her skin, it's so dramatic!

In... she somehow manages to pull off looks that would look hideous on almost anyone, but not her.

Anon 9:22
Is "broad-shouldered" really an attribute most women want to accentuate?When you've got it, flaunt it. There's nothing wrong with a Glamazon, and Tilda Swinton is their queen.

In, because she always looks like a fabulous Disney Villainess even in that matronly jacket.

I like the hair...


I agree that there is a tad too much layering with this look, but I love the color on her.

I would still give Tilda an IN..she is so striking she can still carry this off.

The designer: very nice assortment. Tilda could have gone for the one on the far right with better effect (same color value). Color heavenly on her, but had to lose the jacket. It killed the outfit. Pointless. Liked the "Mo" hair, works for her forhead and cheekbones. Makeup just fine, if minimalist. So great not to see the clown face.

She does such bizare looks this one is a counterpoint but overdone. Something showing her actual figure more would have been a better bet.

I don't love the layering, but I say she's IN - of course I always say she's in - she's TILDA!

a little boring for ms swinton, no?

i agree with the layering being overdone--maybe if she lost the jacket it would look better. i wish she had just a bit of contrast--one piece of jewelry, a clutch in a different color, anything. also is the dress on the model made of a different fabric? could be the lighting, but tilda's dress looks less shiny/soft/supple somehow.

hate the hair, but have to give her an IN, just because she looks very statuesque, and i like the color on her.

IN. The color looks fabulous on her and I am willing to forgive the layering. Doesn't it seem a bit unfair to criticize her hair and make-up when that is ALWAYS how she does her hair a make-up? Kind of takes some of the fun out of it.

I think she looks fabulous - that color is great on her!

Love the color. Hate the sweater. IN (I'm in a good mood this morning).

Scary. Therefore OUT!

While I think she's a great actress, she definitely does nothing to enhance her appearance - bad haircut, bad makeup.


Typically I agree with you fellas, but this time, I'm all over Tilda's outfit, hair makeup, everything.

Perhaps it's because I so typically look at her photos and say 'whiskey tango foxtrot is this nutter wearing?'... so I'm just used to having a negative reaction to her, but this is so nice!

The colour looks great! Her makeup looks great!

It's a big big big IN for me.

I don't think I would In or Out this outfit. It is just kind of boring which is so not what we are used to seeing Swinton do. It is very mother-of-the-bride.

I like the pieces separately but to together. I also hate the back of the jacket.

SWINTON can never actually be out. She can just be in a different circle of her own describing. She's the Chuck Norris of fashion.

That said, that jacket looks like she borrowed it b/c she was cold.

Exactly, sixgables. Tilda Swinton is not of this world. Our earth-bound fashion standards do not apply to her.

For that reason, she is an eternal IN.

sixgables said: "SWINTON can never actually be out. She can just be in a different circle of her own describing."

Amen to that!

Sorry, TLo, but you got this one wrong. IN IN IN!

Just compare these photos to the pictures of those idiot starlets in their overly made-up faces, tortured hair, and clothes and jewelry that make them look like they were trying on stuff from their mothers' closets.

Tilda is fabulous!

"She is the Chuck Norris of fashion."


I think she looks like a goddess. So striking and different.

IN, chickadees!

I agree with lots of what you say, TLo, but I love the color. she needed some (note SOME, not A TON OF) mascara and lip color.

I'm giving her an IN.

This is disturbingly "plain" for Tilda. I love her because she's ballsy and takes risk, and gives a big middle finger to the people who dont know shi* about fashion and in my eyes she does no wrong it's like I birthed her. So she's IN!

Forgive me if this is nitpickey, but Swinton's hairdo is so not Moe. I grew up with brothers who were obsessed with the Three Stooges, partly for inspiration on creative ways to harass me, I think. Then I ended up marrying a man who has many fine qualities, but thinks Moe Larry and Curly are comic geniuses. Moe is all about the bowl cut, with thick bangs. NEVER showed his forehead.
Swinton's hair is more like a blond version of SNL's Butabi brothers (Oh Baby Don't Hurt Me...). I think it's good with the outfit, adds to the faintly 80s inverted triangle vibe.

A qualified In!

She's dressed for fall in the spring. I wish she was wearing something with a lighter feel.

Agree so much!
The color is amazing on her, but head-to-toe is just blah.
I don't know why in the world someone long and lean like her would pile so many layers on like that. She's got nothing to hide.

I love everything about it and her, especially how she doesn't give a hoot for what anyone thinks of her style. That's exactly what makes her "IN" every single time.

I think it's been cold at Cannes this year.

Fellow Tilda minions, here's a fabulous interview with her:“i’m-freak”


Whoops! Sorry. Wrong blog.

I say it's teetering on IN just because of the rich color of the outfit. The overall look comes off a little Bea Arthur but in a good way but I've not had enough coffee this morning to be able to express why it's a good thing on her.

OF COURSE she's in. She's Tilda.

Color and silhouette are perfect. Why mess it up with makeup, jewelry, a "clutch in a contrasting color," (blech), hair extensions, a fake tan, botox or anything else she might to add? This woman is as unconventional as Katharine Hepburn was in her day. Just enjoy it.

PS - her hair might be Shemp-like from the side, but that is no Moe-do.

In, unfairly, because on almost anyone else it would be out. But I adore that color, and I don't know of too many women with the frame to wear that outfit without being swamped, overwhelmed and dominated by it.

The hair does nothing for her, but if she had it colored a russet brown, it would have been perfect.

she is an other-worldly delight! see her tower above mere mortals, like that one lady! i love her hair, and i love how she worked the outfit, even if it does look like two jackets at once-BAH! she is swinton!


she is an other-worldly delight! see her tower above mere mortals, like that one lady! i love her hair, and i love how she worked the outfit, even if it does look like two jackets at once-BAH! she is swinton!


OUT! A little matronly, I thought. I want to see her in stuff like the Lacroix she wore.

You guys missed the point: the movie is UP, her hair is UP. :-D

Oh dear, this outfit looks as if she's tipping her cap to the late great Bea Arthur. I could just see this outfit perfectly on Golden Girls. Monotone, long, drapey, and full coverage.


IN, damned it, IN.

The colour looks fabulous on her and I don't care if all the pieces are the same.

The pieces doesn't change the silhouette of the look and we wouldn't be having this discussion if the outfit was a one-piece or one-piece with frou-frou covering just as much skin.

Sorry boys, IN!

I actually like the all-one-color look. It focuses the attention on shape and texture, so it becomes like sculpture, kinda sorta. But honestly, I think Tilda is always IN just because she's always interesting.

My stars, a bolero jacket!!?!? Is it a must-have?

Overall, I like it, but I think if she'd left off the jacket it would have been long, lean, and fabulous. Being all one color isn't much different from having a suit on or a ball gown.

I agree that she always goes sans makeup, but I think the hair is different.

Broad shoulders are so much more attractive than narrow or round shoulders, IMO.

If I'm not mistaken, the jacket's sleeves are "skootched" up in the runway pictures.

I agree about the one piece too many, but I don't mind the hai/makeup. Besides it's Tilda, she so OUT she's IN
mild "IN" for me

OUT. Definitely not her best. Not edgy enough.

Tilda Swinton is always IN. She is fabulous.

Very late to the party, but I just had to chime in and say that sixgables' designation of SWINTON (as the Fug Girls say) as "The Chuck Norris of fashion" is absolutely perfect. She is, indeed, a force unto herself.

That said... IN, but would've been even more so if she had lost that jacket/cardigan/bolero thing. One piece too many... the gorgeous color and contoured fit won me over, though. Lately SWINTON has been appearing in shapeless beige sheaths, so this one is a relief.

I don't agree that she's not wearing any makeup--it's definitely there but she can't wear the spackled make-up we see on other starlets because she's very pale. With some light, natural coloured pink gloss and mascara, her features really are accentuated enough--and against that rich red tone of the dress (it does enough to make her eyes very green) any obvious shadow would make her look clown-like.

She actually knows her own features, and knows what makes them look best.

And yes, the dress would look a great deal better on her if it didn't have that jacket as a shield.

IN, after all.

I like the colour on her and I love the minimalistic approach to hair and makeup. I agree that it's maybe one layer too much but other than that, it's perfect.
To be honest, I would be very disappointed if she suddenly started wearing make up like everybody else.

You people who say she's OUT just don't get it! Tilda Swinton does not give hoot what people say about her or what she's wearing. She's a brillant actress who can recreate herself over and over again. Could she be a fashion icon if she chose? She's played much harder roles. She dresses to please herself and that makes her SOOOO IN!

"Anonymous said...

"Tilda Swinton does not give hoot what people say about her or what she's wearing."

She might not "give hoot what people say about her" but her approach to fashion, her I don't care for ball gowns, I'm going to wear something edgy is just as calculated as any other look on the red carpet.

"She's a brillant actress who can recreate herself over and over again. Could she be a fashion icon if she chose? She's played much harder roles. She dresses to please herself and that makes her SOOOO IN!"

So her outfit is IN because she's a brilliant actress?

I guess that goes hand-in-hand with "she's definitely IN, she's pregnant".

Are you kidding me, she's looks fantastic!

IN, without question!

Isabella, what was so hard to understand about the sentence "She dresses to please herself and that makes her SOOOO IN!"

Your snark needs work, dear.

My first thought when i saw her is "WHYYYYY must she intentionally make herself look manly!"

The pancake white make-up, the haircut which would look more appropriate on a Happy Days grease monkey, the lack of any lipstick or gloss AT ALL!

Why do you turn me into my mother, Tilda!?!!? I hear her voice coming through me to berate you for this brazen eschewing of your femininity & gorgeousness...I mean really, the woman is stunningly beautiful...but only when she's in character apparently! Burn After Reading. Movie sucked, she looked FABULOUS!

Oh, yeah and the gown...TO DIE. I say she's IN...but she makes me so mad with that puss of hers!

Out?! The only way the SWINTON could be out is by being conventional.

she looks a little like Conan O'Brien.

but.. I say IN.

Is she a giant?


I like the change from her usual pale tones and she is TILDA SWINTON and therefore inviolate.

OUT! Hate it. Dress is ugly. Colour of dress is hideous. Too much fabric, cut poorly. Hair cut is not flattering at all. Face it the woman is ugly.

BALMAIN for women

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