What to Wear to Holiday Parties: A Few Ideas

Have you been invited to a couple of holiday parties this year? Or, are you hosting one of your own?

We received an invite to a Christmas party for my husband’s work. My first thought was, “Great, I’d love to go.”

My second thought was, “Oh, no, what do I wear?”

So…I put a few outfits together, along with their prices, to give you some ideas of what you can wear to a party (or two) this holiday season.

With the exception of the first outfit, everything came from my closet. You’ll notice that my clothes are rather plain, but my accessories are anything but.

If nothing you already own looks like this, see if you can troll the clearance racks or at the very least beg to borrow an item from a stylish friend.

Hope these outfits inspire you to take a look at your own closet with a fresh set of eyes.

Outfit #1:  Office chic

I started with a plain gray tailored dress. It’s a Worthington from JC Penney and it was $23.99.

Then to dress it up, I added black peep toe pumps from Goodwill, $3; a snake print clutch from Steinmart, $7 and a necklace on clearance from JC Penney, $12.

Total cost: $46. However, I purchased the dress and the necklace with the birthday money I received from my dad. Thanks, Dad!

Since the dress is made out of suiting material, it would be perfect to wear to an office party.

Outfit #2: A Little Bit Funky

Here is a dark gray knit dress, which I found at Goodwill for $6.

I added a triple strand of large gray pearls from JC Penney, $5, and a magnetic flower pin from Steinmart, $15. (The pin also looks cute on a plain handbag).

Then I added gray tights, some red floral peep toe shoes from TJ Maxx, $5 on deep clearance, and a clutch from Goodwill scored for just $1.50.

The red shoes really add a bit of whimsy to the outfit and make the pearls less serious. 

This would be perfect for a dinner date with your girlfriends. Total cost: $32.50.

Outfit #3: Putting on the Glitz

Lest you think I only wear gray and black clothing items…I do like some color. I would pair this red sparkly tank from Target, $15 with a pair of well-fitting Nine West black pants from a thrift store, $4.

For accessories, I would carry this evening bag with feathers from Target several years ago, $15, with a pair of  fancy black pumps from Goodwill, $6 and a red cocktail ring from Kohl’s, $3.

The only other thing this outfit needs is a swipe of red lipstick. I would wear this out for dinner with my hubby. Total $43.

Outfit #4: Satiny Sweet

Start with a black satin blouse with flutter sleeves (free) and pair it a basic gray skirt from SJP’s Bitten line, $18.

I added a pair of burgundy T-strap heels I found at Famous Footwear for $9 on clearance, a sparkly evening bag from Target (a valentine’s day gift from Tom a number of years ago), $15, and a ring from Walmart, $3, I think.

I wore this to a Christmas concert at our church two years ago. Total cost: $45.

Outfit #5: The LBD

No Christmas party attire would be complete without including the LBD: Little Black Dress. (This is one of those items that doesn’t look good on the hanger, but is much more flattering on an actual body, especially because of the shaping at the waist).

I bought this for $10 at Kohl’s (from the ELLE line). It originally came with a belt, but I think I accidentally left it behind as I scurried out of the store with glee for getting such a great deal!

I added a vintage pin I bought at a thrift store for $12. (If you look closely, you’ll see that it’s the same one I use for my avatar – I think that is what they are called).

With a dress this sophisticated, I wanted to add a little bit of fun. Enter the same feather evening bag from Target (see outfit #3) with a pair of snakeskin peep toe pumps. The heels were a splurge for me at $29, but I love them and have gotten a lot of use out of them in the last five years. Total cost: $66.

I would wear this out on a date for dinner and a show with my hubby.

So there you have it. A handful of ideas of what you can wear to any of the Christmas festivities you’ve been invited to.

If any of these ideas have inspired you, please leave me a comment!

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Published in: on December 6, 2010 at 8:00 am  Comments (3)  
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3 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. […] What to wear to holiday parties […]

  2. You must have an amazing wardrobe! I love all these outfits! I haven’t spent alot of time in the thrift stores, but what time I have spent, I NEVER find any deals like the ones you mentioned. Or clearance for that matter. I think the problem is that I have bought for the kids so much that I don’t know how to shop for myself. I’ve become very ‘casual’ in my dress anymore. It would be nice to learn to accessorize a little more!

    I love your blog by the way..been working my way through your past posts. 🙂

    • Wow, thank you for your kind words! Thrifting is so hit or miss. Sometimes I’ll go into a store and find nothing, then other times, I find a couple of things. Since I started homeschooling, I can’t shop a lot (which is a good thing). But I do try to go to Goodwill the last Saturday of the month as almost everything in the store is half off. If you ever want to go with me, just let me know…..!


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