Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Christmas Wrap-Up: Holidaywear

This time of year, we're spending a lot of money. And while we all want something for ourselves (Like a brand new holiday outfit!), we're usually trying to figure out how much we can spend on gifts for our friends and family.

So a brand new party dress is probably the last item on your list of things to buy, but that doesn't mean you can't look amazing this Christmas.

After reading an article that listed a party dress as something to scratch from your shopping list, I subconsciously made it my goal to figure out how to get a new holiday look on a budget. It didn't start so well--I found a beautiful red lace dress at a department store in the mall a few days later, full price. After leaving it behind, I came up with a few things and eventually found what I was looking for, over $100 less.

Start in your closet

I love timeless pieces, those articles of clothing you can wear year after year. Basics like sweaters, button-downs and simple skirts can be resurrected time and time again. The same can go for dresses in classic shapes and basic colors. I have a black t-shirt dress that I've worn the past several years, adding scarves, belts and sweater tights to switch (and dress) it up.

A black t-shirt dress like this one by Mossimo is easily converted with accessories.
So before you head to the store, check your closet for something you can dress up with a sparkly belt or new jewelry. Repurposing something you already own will save your wallet, and make you feel proud of your fashion skills.

Shop the sale racks

I found my new holiday dress on a sale rack in the juniors department of Dillard's. The great thing is that it was probably a summer/fall dress, thus on the way out, but because of the color and fabric, totally convertible to winter.

When you're shopping the sale racks for winter dresses, look for darker solid colors or color-blocked dresses. Animal print is also very in, especially leopard, but avoid summery floral prints. You'll also want to look for heavier fabrics, or those that have the appearance of being heavy (usually with more shape and less flowy movement). Just remember that with the right pairings, you can make something intended for summer or fall ready for winter.
This emerald lace dress can be holiday party-worthy with a few additions.

The key to making any of the above options work is accessorizing. The right accessories can help your dress make the transition into the holiday scene. Think patent leather or sparkly belts, chunky jewelry and a coordinating clutch. Don't be afraid to go big on pieces you would normally keep small.
H&M rhinestone ring.

Patent leather belt from Lauren by Ralph Lauren.

Don't forget your hands and face

After you put your outfit together, top it all off with party-worthy makeup and nail polish. Don't be afraid to go darker with your shadow and create a smokey eye. (I really like Sephora's eyeshadow with micro glitter.) Finish everything off with a coat of gorgeous and totally in glitter nail polish.

Sephora Collection eyeshadow in Espresso Shot.

e.l.f. Essential Glitter Nail Polish in Golden Goddess, with a taupe base coat.

Find it Online Guide 
e.l.f. Essential Glitter Nail Polish

As a side note: I've been thinking about eliminating the "Style Editor" blog (not like I've really been updating it anyway), and putting my periodic fashion/beauty posts on this blog. My original intent was to not clog this blog up with those types of posts, for those who aren't interested. So I made a separate space where they could live and be discovered by those who are interested. BUT since I'm not blogging that much about style subjects, I was thinking it wouldn't hurt to bring them over here. Any thoughts on that? I suppose anyone who really hates these types of posts could just skip them to begin with.

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