Hello, friends. Happy Monday! Last Friday night, my husband and I attended his annual company holiday party at a local hotel/conference center type of venue. The dress code always says “business casual (no jeans)” but you see a little bit of everything, and I always take the opportunity to get dolled up. This is what I wore this year.
I’m a huge fan of a cocktail dress for a holiday party. I know you can often get away with black pants and a festive top, but I so rarely have an opportunity to really get glammed up that I like to take this opportunity to do so.
For those not familiar with Trunk Club, it’s a subscription box service where they send you a box of clothes/shoes/accessories each month to try on at home. You send back what you don’t want and only pay for what you keep.
I’ve been working with the same stylist for a couple of years now. She has really learned my style and what I like, and she finds some great pieces for me that I might not otherwise discover. This service is perfect for women who don’t have time to shop and sift through all the options as well as those who want some help staying on trend and keeping their wardrobes fresh.
I specifically asked my stylist, Erin, to send me some options for holiday party dresses, and I ended up going with this velvet sheath.
I don’t love the high neckline, but other than that, it checked off all the boxes, and I think it’s the most flattering of the four dresses she sent me.
I always have good luck with Eliza J. dresses. They fit well, the quality is good, and their prices aren’t terribly extravagant. Nordstrom has a nice selection of Eliza J. dresses, although you can find them at other retailers as well.
The dress has a classic sheath fit, and the ruching on the side is a pretty detail. It’s fully lined so it skims the body and isn’t clingy.
For size reference, I have the 8, which is the size I always wear in Eliza J. dresses. I would say they tend to run small so if you’re in between sizes, go up.
After I decided on the dress, I asked Erin if she had an suggestions for accessories, and she sent me a bunch of options in my next box.
I chose this crystal statement necklace is by Baublebar. They do a lot of fun and affordable costume jewelry, and this necklace worked perfectly on my dress. Because the dress is fairly plain, a shiny statement piece serves as a focal point and draws attention up towards the face.
I already have and love these Sam Edelman Yaro ankle strap sandals in oatmeal suede, so when I opened the box to find them in this metallic jute, I was thrilled. They’re perfect for a party look — they have just enough sparkle to be festive, and because they aren’t really gold or silver, they can go either way to work in with the rest of your accessories.
Fortunately the weather was mild enough that I didn’t mind going in bare legs because I would never wear hose with shoes like these. If you’re in a situation where you must wear hose, I’d recommend metallic pumps instead. For more on that, see my post: What Hosiery to Wear with a Cocktail Dress.
While these are definitely high, the chunky heel is stable to walk on, and the ankle strap keeps them on your feet — unlike pumps, where I often feel like I’m going to walk right out of them (and sometimes do!) I had no problem standing in these for several hours.
This metallic box clutch with the crystal set clasp is the perfect finishing touch to the outfit. I love that it has an optional chain to keep you hands-free.
For lipstick, I wore GrandeLIPS Hydrating Lip Plumper in Midnight Purple, which worked well with the dress. I also had my nails done in CND Berry Boudoir, but I can’t find it online anywhere. Their Oxblood color is pretty close, it just has some more red in it than the Berry Boudoir. In fact, I had Oxblood for my pedicure, and they work fine together. Another one I like this time of year is Fedora.
I also added this sparkly Stella & Dot Trouve statement ring since I wasn’t wearing a bracelet. I didn’t really have one that worked with the necklace, and I think the ring worked out okay.
As for a wrap, my Trunk Club stylist sent me this Fur-Fect faux fur jacket, which I decided not to keep. I was regretting that, though, when I left the house for our event. I actually went without a coat because the weather was mild when we left the house, but I was cold coming home. I still have a dressy black wool coat on my shopping list. It’s one of those things I don’t need often, but when I do, I really wish I had one.
Other than that, I love how this outfit came together. Best of all, I was comfortable. I think that’s key when selecting an outfit for an event like this. You never want to wear something you’ll be tugging at all night long. The stretchy velvet was easy to sit and move around in, it has sleeves so I wasn’t cold, and it doesn’t bare any skin that I might feel awkward about at a conservative company party. Those are all things I consider when picking an outfit for an event like this.
photo credit: Alison Cornell
Do you have a company office party this year? What is the dress code, and what did you wear (or are you planning to wear?)
If you need any help with accessories or other questions, feel free to ask and I’ll see if I can help. I’m also planning to do a Facebook Live on Wednesday at 11AM EST, so we can talk about holiday party attire in that forum as well!
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