Saturday, 21 December 2013

How to Dress for the Holidays - Tips for a Conservative gal

As someone who takes great pleasure in pouring over fashion magazines and personal style blogs, I always enjoy the glamour and opulence that comes to holiday dressing - sequins, glitter, rich colours and textures. However when it comes around for myself to start outfit planning for the holidays, I find myself in a boutique change room wearing a rich ruby red sweater and sparkling sequin skirt thinking  "this just isn't me."

Yes I am a conservative gal; while I can admire and appreciate the over-the-top styles from afar, I feel my most comfortable in the basics.  Deviating too far out of my comfort zone takes a toll on my confidence - and confidence is really the name of the game when it comes to personal style.

So what's a conservative gal to do? I've developed a list to take us modest party-goers out on the town and into the holiday season with style.

Holiday Party Style


1. Black is okay for the holidays.


There is a big misconception that the holidays call for bright, seasonal colours.  Wearing black, or any dark colours for that matter, can still appear festive - if done correctly.

One way to take a dark outfit to the next level is to play with texture.  Why not try pairing a dark knitted sweater with a leather circle skirt of the same colour?  Instead of pairing your favourite little black dress with an opaque tight, try a patterned 'hose.  The sky is the limit when mixing and matching darker fabrics and textures and the best part of it all is that, because the different textures highlight a slight change to the outfit, your shades of black for each piece don't have to match exactly.  Mixing textures can look as interesting and pack as much of a punch as a loud colour.

2. Accessorize, Accessorize, Accessorize


I cannot emphasize this enough: Accessories are the conservative girl's best friend.  Just a few will do - I like to wear only one statement piece at a time, while keeping the rest of the jewellery fairly tame.  A statement necklace is made for the holiday season, and brings all sparkle and emphasize to your face.  If a bold necklace is too far out of your comfort zone, a beautiful bracelet may do the trick - something with a bit of sparkle to add to the outfit on the wrist so as not to be a focal point and add to a more understated elegance.  Add a pair of stud earings to the mix, and you are good to go.

3. A Bold Lip


Now stay with me on this one, because it was only months ago that I would have gasped at the thought of wearing anything but a neutral on my face.  A red lip can take a simple makeup look to the next level and compliments a demure outfit perfectly, all while being holiday appropriate.  If this is too much for the conservative girl, ease into it by going a few shades darker then your usual lip colour.  I on the other hand, prefer the just-get-it-over-with method - you will be surprised how many people will not be able to pin point the exact change to your look.  In fact the first time I wore a bold red lip to a party the friend I went with didn't notice any difference, only that my teeth looked whiter - go figure!

So, to my fellow conservative girls, I tip my champagne glass to you and wish you all a beautiful holiday party season.
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