4 Holiday Party Looks, 0 Dresses
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4 Holiday Party Looks, 0 Dresses

Jun 02, 2023


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Ditch the traditional frock in favor of, say, a high-voltage jumpsuit or a sparkly shorts suit.

By Natalie Matthews Butcher

You’re invited to a holiday party; you reach for a cocktail dress. We get it. There’s nothing wrong with wearing a festive little frock to all of your December parties, but may we suggest a different sartorial strategy this season? Ditch the dress in favor of jumpsuits and separates that will set you apart in a room crowded with sheaths and shifts. Here, holiday looks that will keep you perfectly dressed though there’s nary a dress in sight.

You may not be the only one at the party in a jumpsuit, but you’ll be especially memorable if you pick one in a high-voltage color or fabric. Head-to-toe sequins, anyone?

Clockwise from top left: Alice + Olivia sequin jumpsuit, $521 (on sale) at neimanmarcus.com; J. Crew velvet jumpsuit with cropped legs, $105 (on sale) at net-a-porter.com; Norma Kamali metallic lamé jumpsuit with kimono sleeves, $243 at matchesfashion.com; Black Halo sequin jumpsuit, $596 (on sale) at neimanmarcus.com.

Swap your nine-to-five suit for one that’s decidedly more five-to-nine, thanks to allover lace, velvet or, better yet, crushed velvet. If you’re feeling adventurous, consider a sparkly shorts suit. (Layer sheer tights underneath for a more wintry vibe.)

Clockwise from top left: Topshop crinkle velvet suit, $170 at us.topshop.com; Zara blazer and shorts with sequin appliqué, $158.90 at zara.com; Reclaimed Vintage velvet tuxedo, $140 at asos.com; Topshop suit with contrast chevron stitching, $215 at us.topshop.com.

Pair two contrasting textures for one very cool look by topping a sequin or fringe skirt with a cashmere or mohair sweater. We’re partial to skirts in less common colors, like this sea-foam green or yellow-purple-black fringe mix.

Clockwise from top left: Romance Was Born fringe skirt, $592 at farfetch.com; Topshop sequin midi-skirt, $130 at us.topshop.com; Everlane cropped cashmere sweater, $100 at everlane.com; Phillip Lim cropped wool-blend turtleneck, $550 at net-a-porter.com.

The so-called going-out top really is back and better than ever. Pick one that’s over the top in the best way possible, with perhaps exaggerated asymmetry or metallic puffed sleeves.

Clockwise from top left: Marques’Almeida brocade top with pleated sleeves, $402.50 (on sale) at shopbop.com; Self-Portrait pleated viscose satin top with scalloped lace, $332 at self-portrait-studio.com; Johanna Ortiz asymmetrical cotton-blend top, $1,350 at modaoperandi.com; Tory Sport cropped flare pants, $185 at toryburch.com.