What to Wear to a Holiday Office Party

Happy hump day, and welcome back to 20 Days of Winter Fashion! Today I’m sharing the perfect dress for a semi-formal holiday office party or winter wedding.

It takes me a while to find the perfect dress for my husband’s holiday office party, so I try to start looking early. I know what I want, but it’s not always easy to find — something modest but still festive, not too long, not too short, not too bare, not too covered up, something fitted but not too tight… you get the idea!

This little sequined cap sleeve sheath by Eliza J nails it. It has a gorgeous geometric sequin design covering a rich navy velvet, a boat neck, cap sleeves, and it’s about 37″ from shoulder to hem. On my 5’5″ frame, that’s an inch or two above the knee.

The navy is fun and a little more unexpected than the usual little black dress, but not as va-va-voom as red or a metallic, and yet it still has amazing sparkle and shine. I also really love the exposed zipper detail in the back.

This sheath is fitted and figure flattering but still quite forgiving. It doesn’t cling or settle into the creases shapewear tends to create… youknowwhatImean.

For reference, I’m wearing a size 8 — my normal size in Eliza J dresses. It’s also available on Amazon, and they have petite sizes as well.

I debated my footwear for this dress and finally settled on these black suede scalloped ankle strap sandals.

I almost wore my metallic mesh Yaro sandals, and they would certainly work, but I wore those to this party last year with a burgundy velvet dress, so I wanted to do something a little different this year. I also thought they might be taking the sparkle and shine thing a little too far since there’s so much in the dress, plus I have the bracelet too.

Also, these scalloped ones have a slightly lower heel, making them a lot more comfortable to walk and stand in all night. This dress also looks amazing with black suede pumps, if you don’t want to deal with bare feet. Also, the pumps allow you to wear hose if you so desire.

Yes, I’m team pantyhose as long as they’re verrrrry sheer and good quality; I recommend these. I even have a blog post about what hose to wear with a black cocktail dress — and it applies to any color, really.

I often get asked what shapewear I wear under dresses like this, and these Spanx Shape My Day girl shorts are my go-to. They’re a medium control so they help smooth things out without binding.

I carried this metallic box clutch, although black would work as well. I just happened to have this one from last year, and I think it’s a nice pop against the navy.

The rhinestone stretch bracelet is an older piece that I keep around for occasions such as this. I can’t find anything exactly like it, but this and this are similar.

These earrings are older as well. They’re from Stella & Dot, and I like them with my dressier outfits. They have both gold and silver so they go with anything, and they’re large enough to make a statement without stealing the show. I really wanted this dress to be the focal point of this look.

I topped off the look with this faux fur wrap. I cannot believe I’ve gone all these years without a piece like this in my closet.

Every year when we go to my husband’s holiday office party, I cover my gorgeous cocktail dress with a long black puffer coat or my camel reefer coat. Now, granted, it is COLD here in Pennsylvania, and for some reason, they always seem to hold his office party on one of the coldest days of the year.


There is no faster way to ruin a gorgeous holiday look than by putting the wrong coat over it, so I finally decided to invest in a more appropriate wrap. Even if I end up checking it for the night in the coat room, I will feel confident and glamorous when I approach the party knowing I’m wearing a jacket that enhances rather than detracts from my look.

The best part is, this faux fur wrap is on sale for $68! Even at the full retail price of $98 (what I paid), I think it’s a worthwhile investment, but at $68 it’s a no-brainer. I will have this jacket in my closet for years, and it will look great over just about any cocktail dress — or a festive top and jeans, for that matter!

As for being cold? I will just ask to be dropped off at the door. I often do that anyway because I’m usually in bare legs. And after all, it’s better to look good than to feel good, yes???

Haha! Kidding; I don’t think it’s an either/or situation. Honestly, I was surprised at how much warmth this little fur wrap gave me, and trust me, it was COLD the day we shot this look.

If you’ve got a semi-formal winter event coming up — whether it be a holiday office party, wedding, or New Year’s Eve bash, this sequined sheath with the faux fur capelet is a fool-proof combination.

sequined sheath // faux fur capelet // suede sandals // metallic box clutch // similar bracelet here and here // nails: CND Dark Lava // photo credit: Alison Cornell

Shop the Look:

Be sure to visit Cyndi and see the winter outfit she’s styling today!

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Join the Conversation

35 thoughts on “What to Wear to a Holiday Office Party

  1. Gorgeous! I love the navy blue. The whole outfit. I wish I had somewhere glamorous to go so I could buy it all! Ha! Safe travels!

  2. Gorgeous! I’ve always wanted to have a holiday event dressy enough to wear something sparkly like this! You look amazing, and this dress definitely says holiday party. Love!
    Have a safe trip and Happy Thanksgiving!

  3. Just wanted to let you know that the burgundy velvet dress from last year was my mother of the bride dress three weeks ago.
    The venue was rustic and I felt the velvet was perfect without being over the top.
    With your inspiration I did not worry about what I would wear the whole 10 months leading up to the wedding.

    Thank you again for all you do!

  4. You look absolutely stunning in this dress! The faux fur capelet is a perfect addition as a topper. This look is a 10 in my opinion, if I only had somewhere to wear it lol!

  5. This is a gorgeous dress and I love that faux fur caplet.  I think I’ll order one.  I don’t know how many times I’ve needed a wrap and you can never find them at the last minute.  Happy Thanksgiving, JoLynne!

  6. Gorgeous. Stunning. All those descriptive words that nail this look. You look beautiful in this outfit. Everything about it brings out your best, you are simply glowing. Wish I had the figure and the event to wear every single piece. 

  7. That faux fur wrap.is exactly what I have been looking for to wear with holiday dresses and I love the tip about wearing it with jeans and a festive top. Also.. you look fabulous.

  8. What a beautiful dress and you look amazing in it! The wrap is perfect with it.  Have a wonderful time with your family in Virginia!

  9. Well I think everyone has said it already, just beautiful dress on you!

    I have a question that is nothing to do with fashion. Can you steer me to your blog speaking to your daughter’s cyber school. I wasn’t able to do a search on it. Also, what is the name of the cyber school you use?

  10. Love this dress!! It’s absolutely perfect.
    Dark blue is my favorite alternative to black. It seems to be more forgiving, and goes with all complexions.

  11. So pretty. Love the dress. Love navy. You are going to be turning heads at your husbands office party. :). I don’t ever have anywhere to dress up that much. Live in a small town and no one does. I feel overdressed sometimes just wearing my normal outfits. I wish people would more. Even my church has gone so casual. I grew up wearing dresses to church and now jeans is what people wear. Have a Happy Thanksgiving and drive safe. 

  12. I love this look, but I am simply not a dress girl – and certainly not a dress above the knees. I have just never liked the look on me. We all have our comfort zones, i guess. The wrap is lovely and compliments the dress perfectly. You will wow them at the holiday party.

  13. Wow, this outfit is amazing! I have never owned a lbd because I look terrible in black, however; navy blue is a staple colour for me.

  14. This is a great look!  I wish I could have many occasions for holiday dresses!  I think this would work for a wedding too!.  Love the caplet, I have my grandmother’s vintage mink caplet that would look great and give me a reason to wear it.

  15. Wore this dress to my husband’s all physician Holiday party last week and got so many compliments, from both ladies and men. I didn’t wear the fur that night but I am planning to wear it to my son’s wedding over my gown on December 29th!! Love your blog and thanks so much for this outfit inspiration!

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