Saturday, November 8, 2008
The Office Party, Volume 1
Now that the election is over, I can focus again on what's truly on your minds: what to wear to the office holiday party.
I get frequent questions about this apparently uncomfortable nexus of work and socializing. If you already don't like your cohorts, then this is a dreaded event and you might as well amuse yourself by looking awesome. If you like them, then you have a great excuse to wow them with your savvy sense of style.
And yet, every year, I see women buying and wearing the most HIDEOUS excuses for party attire.
Let me make it easy for you: overtly sexy is not ok.
For those of you living in a cave, this means that if you'd feel supremely awkward wearing it in front of your boss/CEO/clients during the workday, then it is not appropriate for the office party. Even with an open bar, she's still your boss.
I'm not saying you have to wear suit separates; that is just boring. A party dress or fancy skirt is a fab idea and I recommend buying something that is a little bit different from what people are used to seeing you in.
Let's start with the basics and I will get into detail and some big, fat nos in a bit...
The dress below is the perfect mix of fun and flirty without being overly sexy. Bare shoulders are great when the rest of the outfit isn't reveling, and showing off some leg (note I did not say THIGH) is perfectly fine.
A taffeta skirt says holiday party to me. With a simple top and great shoes, you are set. Any color is fine, as long as the rest of the outfit stays neutral.
Every woman needs at least one great evening top. It looks great with jeans, dress pants, skirts, etc. For an office party, I recommend teaming it with dark tailored pants (now is not the time for your reindeer print, people), heels, and sparkly jewelry. Make sure the top shows some skin- shoulders, neck, back- but little, if any, cleavage.
Until the Volume 2, I will leave you with this: pick one focal point and dress around it. Too much holiday cheer (read: Santa hat earrings, sequined top & brocade pants- you know who you are) can be just as bad as none at all.