Meryl Streep Covers Vogue for First Time

meryl streep covers american vogue for first time
Photo: Annie Leibovitz/Vogue
Meryl Streep on the January cover of Vogue

A stunning Oscar winner, a steely color palette, and crashing waves ... you'd be forgiven in confusing Vogue's January cover (starring none other than Meryl Streep, as shot by Annie Leibovitz) for its December issue fronted by a similarly sea-faring Charlize Theron (also photographed by Leibovitz).

But never mind all that. Far more important is that this marks the 62-year-old Streep's first ever American Vogue cover, making her, she jokes, "probably the oldest person ever to be on the cover of Vogue," which appears to be true.

Flashing a bit of cleavage in a silvery gray Donna Karan button-down paired with a matching skirt for the cover, Streep models a black Michael Kors shirtdress and olive green Vince V-neck top with Lauren by Ralph Lauren pants for the accompanying fashion spread, which sees the politically active star strolling through a farm and meeting with her fellow campaigners for a National Women's History Museum (perhaps you've heard of Maya Angelou and former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright?).

meryl streep vogue cover

Photo: Annie Leibovitz/Vogue

On the rocks: Streep goes seaside for Vogue.

The star also opens up to writer Vicki Woods about her latest role, former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, aka the Iron Lady.

"Here’s what really surprised me: From the moment the day started until it was three, four in the morning, she just never, ever stopped, and she worked so hard and relentlessly to be able to be in that position where what she said was the course the nation took," Streep says of Thatcher. 

"It was really extraordinary, her tirelessness, sheer stamina. When I say that, I really mean it, because I work hard, I know what working hard is and I know what staying up late is, and you can do it for a certain time. But to do it for eleven years? And out of power, to keep on with it, into the sunset? Superhuman.”

And though Streep too could be described as "superhuman," she says turning 40 saw a major dip in the juicy roles she's known for.

“I remember turning to my husband and saying, ‘Well, what should we do? Because it’s over,’” Streep reveals, recalling being offered three roles as witches.

“Once women passed childbearing age they could only be seen as grotesque on some level.”

Nothing like a Vogue cover to prove that wrong.

For more Meryl, visit Vogue online and pick up the January issue, on sale December 20.