The holiday season is upon us and this can only mean one thing — parties, parties, parties. Unfortunately, they’re not the kinds of parties you have in mind. These could include family, work or even intimate gatherings with friends. Regardless of the type, each party has it’s own dress code and expectations that follow.

For those who love shopping, putting together an outfit is half the fun. But when it comes to holiday parties, it can be a hassle. You have to make sure you put together just the right combination of styles for that particular event.

In order to avoid being the worst-dressed at this year’s holiday shindig, here are some pointers to help get you through the night stylish and chic.

Tight is not always right

You know the style — the tight, usually strapless, dress that looks good on approximately 3 percent of females and only in darkly lit clubs.

A rule to remember when picking out a fancy dress: if it can pass as Spanx, it’s too tight. This will make a statement; however it won’t make the statement you’re hoping for. It will show people you got sidetracked on your way to the club and wound up at this party.

Instead, if you want to look presentable but still show off your curves, there are many styles you can go with. Peplums, clinched waistlines and belted styles paired with a sweater or blazer will show you mean business. 

Watch that neckline

You are looking through your closet for something to wear to the upcoming party, when you come across your old homecoming/ party dress from high school. In other words, it’s way too tight to be worn in public — ever again.

Yes, you know if you look past the trashy tightness, you can convince yourself it looks great. But do yourself, and everyone else at that party, a favor and opt for a slightly higher neckline — and standards.

Instead, choose dresses or blouses with fun necklines, sweetheart or rounded ones as well. Choose outfits with features, such as beading or other elements that catch the eye. There are many other ways to wow party-goers. 

All the colors of the rainbow…or not

When choosing a color scheme for your wardrobe, go dark. You don’t want to be the one who shows up at the wintertime party in white or a brighter color.

You don’t necessarily have to wear black; there are other colors that can work. Maroons, any shade of red, darker blues and greens can give your outfit a wintry, calm feel.

Many people think you need color in your outfit in order to make a statement, when this is simply not the case. Necklaces, cardigans and bedazzled items of clothing can provide the same dramatic effect in a more tasteful way.

Don’t be afraid of the theme

You get the invitation to a holiday party and you discover the theme is ugly sweaters. The only downside, however, is you hate themed parties — you think they are childish.

Not to be harsh, but this is a Scrooge mindset. Themed parties are fun; they get you in the spirit of the season.

One major faux pas at holiday parties is to not be too cool for the theme. Don’t think you can show up in whatever clothing you desire, under dress and look cool. Let me clue you in on something, you won’t look cool. You will wind up looking like the Grinch who can’t enjoy the holidays.

Each gathering you attend this season asks for a different look. This is what holiday parties are for — to make awkward conversation, see friends you haven’t seen for awhile and embody the holiday spirit with your stylish outfit.

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