Holiday Style 9 Holiday Party Outfits That Aren't a Sea of Tinsel The After-Dark Issue
Blue long sleeve mini dress, silver rhinestone handbag, and white platform boots.

9 Holiday Party Outfits That Aren't a Sea of Tinsel

Holiday parties are supposed to be fun, but somehow the pressure of what to wear makes you want to RSVP “no” to everything. If you’re going to buy something for the parties, you’re likely going to wear it once because a sparkly tutu and gigantic stilettos aren’t the most versatile pieces.

Festive dressing doesn’t have to be so literal though; a fun outfit you feel cool in is as celebratory as it gets. And accessories are always your friend when trying to add extra oomph to an outfit. Think of your everyday outfit and just pump it up: Opt for printed jeans instead of blue, a satin blouse instead of cotton, a chunky necklace instead of a simple chain, and, of course, the funnest shoes (that are still walkable). Below are nine outfits to illustrate that holiday dressing can be so much more than just sparkles and a Santa hat or New Year’s Eve crown.

Everyday Ingredients

Striped pants outfit collage

Design by Tiana Crispino

A favorite outfit that always feels put together is a blazer and jeans, so here I am with exactly that but with a shot of espresso. These BruceGlen rainbow-striped jeans are the epitome of party pants. Pair a tuxedo blazer (or any blazer!) with a lacy bra or tank peeking out and some metallic shoes for a go-to party outfit.

Stirrups to a Soirée?

Stirrups outfit collage

Design by Tiana Crispino

I am the biggest advocate of stirrups. My favorite ones are Splits59’s River High Waist Airweight Stirrup ($124), which are velvety soft and incredibly stretchy without that spandex sheen. Wear them with a belted statement blazer—I like the festive touch of the plaid asymmetrical one from The Marcon Court Project. The belt can even be a long chain necklace fastened to the right length. Add some sparkly heels to lock in the holiday vibe. You can try wearing the stirrup on the outside if you’re comfortable—it makes the heeled shoes feel more secure, plus it’s a cool look. Lastly, because this outfit is kind of on the casual side, add a bold red lip.

Printed Pants Pair Well With Bubbly

Printed pants outfit collage

Design by Tiana Crispino

If you’re eyeing a pair of printed pants, now is a great time to get them. Wear a pair of printed casual pants with a party top and accessories—but ones you could easily wear outside of a holiday party—to make you look festive but not cheesy.

An Outfit Crafted Around Your Favorite Bottoms

Leather pants outfit collage

Design by Tiana Crispino

If you have a pair of pants you feel amazing in—might that be jeans or trousers—structure your look around them. Pair these Hanifa statement pants with a black corset top and some coordinating boots. It’s so easy, but you’ll feel great in it.

Work Trousers as Party Trousers

Wool trousers outfit collage

Design by Tiana Crispino

Say hello to this day-to-night look! Wear a pair of tailored pants with a sequined or sparkly top and cool shoes. I chose clogs because heels would have felt too “workwear” with the pants, and the clogs keep the outfit more modern. Finally, add a bold bag of choice.

A Party Dress You Really Love

Blue mini dress outfit collage

Design by Tiana Crispino

Just because I’m resistant to throw tinsel all over my body doesn’t mean I’m anti–party dress. I actually love them, and a minidress like the Mara Dress ($285) from Tyler McGillivary will have a life past the party. Think worn with an oversize denim jacket and sneakers on weekends. For this occasion, I paired the dress with tall white boots (really any tall leather boots will do) because pumps would be too “’80s female protagonist” for me. Add a modern mixed-metal necklace and vintage chain-link bag (there are a ton on Etsy).

Satin, Not Sparkle

Satin pants outfit collage

Design by Tiana Crispino

Satin is a way to be festive without dousing yourself in sequins. I love the Satin Slit Trouser in Navy ($325) from Kk Co., Inc. paired with a bold, glittering, semi-sexy top, a pair of strappy platforms, and a colorful statement necklace.

A Kilt for Kristmas

Blue kilt outfit collage

Design by Tiana Crispino

I’m so sorry for Kardashianizing the holiday’s name, but that heading wrote itself. When I think of a holiday party, my brain reluctantly goes to plaid, like with a more modern-style kilt. There are also a slew of great ones on Etsy. I’d pair the skirt with a tee in subtly festive colors plus several bracelets, a pair of chunky Mary Janes for coolness, and a brightly colored mini bag.

Here to Party

Silver shorts outfit collage

Design by Tiana Crispino

If there’s a chance you love hotpants as much as I do, perhaps you’ll be swayed by the High-Cut Cheeky Short in Silver ($160) from Char Workroom. Worn with a classic, boxy tonal heather gray cashmere mock neck sweater, you’ll be fun on the bottom but fully sophisticated on top. I paired the gray top half with some super-opaque tights (I love the ones from Hue), ladylike black pumps (you could also do black velvet Mary Janes), and a baroque pearl necklace with a punch of holiday color.

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