Happy Holidays, friends! With the holiday season often comes a bigger and fancier than normal social schedule and lots of fun shopping ( if my husband is reading this, what I mean is “chances to rewear things you already have in your closet multiple times fun!”)
Like I said during the Great Cocktail Dress Search, dress-up occasions for women are a real tightrope act. While I feel like men can wear their normal hair, face, khakis and a button-up to 90% of life’s occasions, its a lot more nuanced for women. Which is my defense of why I need that “please hide packages from husband” doormat. Society pressure is TOTALLY the only reason I shop, guys.
Anyway, if you need some holiday party style inspiration that won’t make you look 16 or 116, I have a few looks below with increasing levels of dressiness to help inspire your holiday looks this season. I linked to any pieces that were still available!
Look #1: Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree
I love so many things about this look — I think you could swing it for a casual office party or holiday get-together while still looking extra. I like that this sweater looks like it was made of actual tinsel – that was a huge selling point for me, lol. I paired it with green pants, but there’s a lot going on from a color-story perspective, and you could definitely mix it up with red, pink or denim. I was desperate to pair it with a floaty tulle skirt as it was pictured in-store, but it made me look exactly like a Spicette Holiday Gumdrop so the skirt ended up being a hard pass. But finding a way to incorporate more floaty tulle skirts into my wardrobe is on the 2020 resolutions list for sure. (“Oh, what are your resolutions for the new year? Get fit? Start a new hobby?” “Nope, Imma wear more tulle. Like A LOT more tulle.” Hehe)
Look #2: A Snazzy Holiday
My sister and I were laughing because so many stores have been promoting “sexy holidays”. Totally fine if that’s your jam, but what about those of us that just want a “pretty and nice” holiday or “dressed warmly but still cute” holiday? Let’s get some of those looks in the mix too!
I have been wearing this velvet blazer all around town already this year and I just feel like a million dollars. This is a great look for a more professional occasion that still allows for some flair, or if you want a holiday look that you’re not freezing in. I wear an XL almost always, but ended up with a L in this blazer so I would suggest sizing down here. It has great stretch, looks polished enough for the office, but fun enough for a party. Or do the elusive “day to night” look. The sky is the limit!
Look #3 Let’s Get Fancy
I went ’round and ’round and ’round on this one before ordering it. The animal print trend is burning super hot this year and I am so here for it, but most trends that skyrocket up (gauchos, boot cuffs, I’m lookin’ at you) sometimes flare out just as quickly. But I could not stop thinking about it and just went for it. I love the navy/gold shimmery pattern and that it has pockets and it’s a decent length. That being said, 90% of my formal occasions are work-related and there’s just no hiding what’s going on up top — I would describe this neckline as “wild and out”.
Plus this dress does not have one ounce of stretch in it and getting it on involved zipping it halfway, doing the shrimp arms thing to get it over my head and then calling in my husband for reinforcements to finish zipping it up. So to say that it was a “pretty involved” process is an understatement. This is a 14 and it doesn’t come in a 16, so I’m glad I tried it, but I can’t have a dress that takes longer to get on than my whole getting ready routine. If you love it, I would suggest sizing up!
Dress, Macy’s and Shoes, Nordstrom
Look #4 A Swing and a Miss
Okay, so this dress seemingly would check all of the flattering boxes — black, faux wrap, v-neck. So why do I look like a nun on the way to a fancy occasion?!? Like I feel like an extra from the movie Sister Act when the nuns have to go to Vegas to rescue Whoopi Goldberg. So great if you are looking for a really modest holiday look, but this one is not vibing for me at all.
Dress, Macy’s, Shoes, DSW
Look #5 Straight Outta a Hallmark Movie
I am sorry to say it now, but I took one look at this dress IRL and almost returned it without even trying it on. I was still feeling low from the nun-vibe from the dress above and high necklines aren’t always the most flattering on me. Let me just say how incredibly glad I am that I put this on. This dress makes me feel like I just stepped right out of my own Hallmark Christmas movie. Like I’m a young (ish, hehe) Manhattan ad exec/interior designer/writer that is forced to move to a small town in Montana where I inevitably fall for the local rancher/firefighter/mayor. This is totally the dress I’d be wearing when we have our inevitable ice-skating in the snow under the stars scene. This dress feels amazing on, has a perfect sleeve and hem length to wear to work or for fun. Only downside is no pockets, but I don’t even care.
Dress, Macy’s, Shoes, Nordstrom
So for all of these looks, I did a fairly basic bun for the hair portion of the show, but my sister is a talented hairdresser who bails me out with hair help for all my fancy events. I usually warm her up by sending pictures of hairdos to her from Pinterest and asking if she thinks I can “easily whip this up” until she says “for Pete’s sake, just let me do it for you!” Kinda like when I want my husband to do a repair so I pretend to watch a video about in on YouTube and then ask where we keep the power tools. Don’t hang around with me guys, I’m the worst. But I hope to be back with some easy holiday hair tutorials if my sister takes pity on me and I am excited to debut some of these holiday looks this season!
Any other great holiday looks I missed? Let me know in the comments!