Well, we made it! We covered ideas for how to festively dress for your casual holiday party. Then we covered dressing for fancy parties. And now, the ever looming work party attire – the most dangerous of fashion dilemmas.
First, it’s hard to make one set of recommendations because your work Christmas party may land over lunch during the work week or be held at a four star hotel featuring a band and sit down dinner (or every iteration in between). However, regardless of the type of party, it can be fun to embrace the season with your fashion on the day of your party. That’s why you can incorporate tips from both of the prior two types of party when considering what to wear for your event.
Second, it’s far easier to lay down a set of ground rules for pitfalls to avoid when dressing for your office party (um, it’s frank, so hold on):
1. Do not be too revealing. This is not date night. This a way to network within your office and relax with work colleagues. One of the quickest way to blemish your office reputation is by showing up wearing a low cut blouse, a mini skirt, or a painted on dress. I love to dress in a feminine way but not one that sexualizes me and takes away from my professional standing.
2. Do not dress inappropriately. You can tell from the type of event what the attire will be. If you are unclear, then ask a co-worker who has been there longer or the event organizers. Don’t show up for an after work cocktail reception in a cocktail dress if everyone else has come in business attire.
3. Do not play the ugly Christmas sweater game (unless it’s an ugly sweater party!). There are so many ways to incorporate fun festive elements into your wardrobe without donning a blinking Christmas light necklace and Santa shirt. Find subtle ways to festivize (see, there it is!) your office party look without making yourself seem immature with childlike fashion.
(And even though this is FASHION Fridays, don’t drink too much at your office party. Y’all, it’s so important to preserve and enhance your professional reputation and these parties are often the blight on someone’s otherwise lovely career. Don’t be the person puking on your bosses shoes. And yes, I’ve seen that happen.)
Here are a few ways to step up your office party look:
1. Don’t forget your bottoms. We so often focus on the top half of our outfit that we forget all the ways to bring holiday luxury into an outfit. One of my favorite ways is well fitting velvet pants. You can do the traditional black and pair it with a deep red satin blouse and heels or you could pick up one of these gorgeous velvet colors in evergreen or berry (and they are having a sale today, I just got my pair in evergreen and they are really pretty):
One other way is to find bottoms with depth and subtle print. I love damask in this gray and black patterned skirt which I selected for our Christmas photo shoot – or you can find something with lace or other accent.
2. Get a mani/pedi. I never have the budget or time to get a mani/pedi anymore but I got one yesterday for several upcoming parties and events I have. I did a silver gray on my nails which is so lovely but subtle and a deep crimson with gold glitter on my toes. I realize you girls up north will be in boots and no one will see your feet (so stick to manicures), but us southern girls will be able to wear our peep toe heels out to the party.
3. Wear some sparkle and shimmer. There’s lots of fun ways to do this but the easiest is sparkling earrings or bracelets that you would normally skip as too dressy for a work event. A holiday party is a perfect time to add some. You can also add a shimmery green satin blouse under your outfit or don a eye-catching silver wrap to top off an outfit.
Both of these looks from White House Black Market are great options for a dressier party:
But just as simple are these silver items, also WHBM, that you can grab and go:
Most of all, Have Fun!!! (And send pictures!)