I do a lot of casual entertaining all year-round, but I especially enjoy having friends and family over during the holidays. Of course, that always begs the question… what to wear?
When I’m the hostess, I want my outfit to be comfortable but festive. This generally isn’t a time for layering because I don’t need the extra warmth, and I don’t want to wear anything that’s bulky or cumbersome when I’m working around the kitchen or serving drinks.
Instead, I like to wear a festive top that can stand on its own, and I usually wear it with a favorite pair of jeans and shoes that are comfortable enough to stand in all night but still look a little bit special.
This shine stripe sweater from Macy’s is exactly what I’m talking about. It’s comfortable and not scratchy at all; the inside actually has a brushed sweater-like finish, but the sparkle in the stripes speaks to the holidays.
So many festive tops are low-cut or sleeveless, but this crewneck sweater is comfortable and warm and modest. There’s also no wool content, which is great news for those who are sensitive.
This is a great top for Christmas or other winter holiday events, even New Year’s Eve.It also comes in red, ivory, and grey, and it’s currently on sale for $29.99! You seriously can’t beat that.
These jeans are the full length style, with a 30″ inseam, but they also come in a short length, and they carry plus sizes as well. These are a really good classic black jean, and the material is soft and comfortable. I sized up to the 29, as I typically do in Levi’s, but I think I could actually wear the 28 in these.
When my gatherings are more casual, I usually opt for blue jeans and flats with a cozy sweater that has some extra detail, like this Free People Cotton San Vicente Pullover.
I love the neckline, the exposed seams, and the modern cropped length. I chose the Birch Bark color for this sweater because it seemed a little more holiday appropriate than the Cherry Peach Combo, but the Silver Sapphire would be nice as well.
This sweater is 100% cotton, so again, nice for those who can’t wear wool. It runs true to size, although you could size up for the length and a little more slouch.
And these are the same Levi’s 311 jeans as the black ones above, but the Hawaii Ocean wash. It’s a versatile mid-indigo wash with ripped knees for texture and a little toughness.
I actually cut these off to be more of an ankle length, which is what I prefer for a casual look like this one, especially with the mules. Once they’re washed, the hem will fray and look more natural.
This is the type of outfit I often wear on Christmas Day or for getting together with close friends during the holidays, and then I can keep wearing it all winter long. If I wanted to dress it up a bit more, I could add statement earrings and a pair of rhinestone embellished flats.
Macy’s has already started their Black Friday Early Access, so the prices on all the items featured in this post are at an all-time low. In addition to festive holiday attire, they carry lots clothing gifts for the people on your list. C has this coat and this cashmere turtleneck on her wish list.
And speaking of home entertaining, I love the Macy’s housewares department and their selection of holiday dishes and linens. I started collecting the Spode Christmas Tree dishes when I was newly married, and I add a few pieces every season when it goes on sale at Macy’s. I have the older mugs that are only 8 oz (the ones I’m holding in this post) so I just ordered this stackable set of 14 oz mugs. And my mom collects the Lenox Winter Greetings set, which is a little more formal. Both have lots of pieces that make lovely gifts.
Here’s a roundup of more holiday gift ideas for the home from Macy’s.
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photos: Alison Cornell