One of my worst fashion memories was searching for the perfect cocktail dress for a holiday party two days before the event. I’d left it too long, and I was desperate. As I combed through racks of dresses at the mall, not finding the right thing or, when I did, not finding it in my size, I promised myself I had learned my lesson, and I would never leave shopping for the right dress to the last-minute ever again.
Are you on the lookout for a new holiday party dress? Don’t leave it to the last-minute. Here are four classy cocktail dresses that will make you light up the room.
A Modern Take on the Little Black Dress
Like a lot of women, I’m a sucker for a little black dress but I they can easily cross the frump-like if you choose one that’s too plain or you don’t accessorize it just right. If you do want to go simple and classic, make your dress the backdrop for glam accessories like this red satin clutch. Alternatively, you can make your entrance in a not-so-basic little black dress like the one I show here.
With cold-shoulder, bell-sleeve detailing, this dress is an updated take on the LBD, striking the perfect balance between an elegant classic and a modern head-turner. I’ve kept accessories simple – save for a pop of red from the clutch – to let the dress take center stage.
Red-Hot Fit and Flare
Red is not only perfect for the holidays, but it is also the ‘it’ color of the season. It’s an exciting and energetic color that makes whoever is wearing it seems powerful and just a little sexy, exactly what we over-40 gals are. This lovely dress gives you all that and more. I the classic styling and that chic bow that makes the dress look like a pretty Christmas gift. A dress like this doesn’t need any extra help, so keep the rest of your accessories quiet and neutral.
Elegant Gold and Black
If you are going to wear gold, what better time than the holidays? I love this elegant, ladylike black and gold floral cocktail dress with the fit and flare styling that creates a shapely silhouette and highlights your waist. The shimmering gold against the black lining makes it perfect for special occasion dressing.
Play up the gold and black in your accessories like I’ve done here with gold jewelry, a black clutch, and black shoes. I’ve gone with block-heel ankle-strap pumps for an ever-so-slight retro vibe that complements the styling of the skirt beautifully.
She Wore Blue Velvet
If you like your cocktail dresses with a touch of va-va-va-voom, then this blue velvet twisted halter has your name all over it. It’s made from a lush velvet, one of this fall’s key trends and a timeless holiday party classic.
Can I just say that I love that this dress isn’t black? Don’t get me wrong – I love a little black dress – but it’s such a nice change to wear a little color. Make the most of this lovely lapis blue by wearing a bag, shoes, and jewelry in cool shades of silver.
Thoroughly Modern Midi
After seasons of dresses that seemed to be short, short and shorter, midi-length dresses are finally staging a comeback, and for many of us over-40 gals, it isn’t a minute too soon. Take advantage of the return of the midi this holiday season with this velvet pleat-flared midi. This dress has plenty going for it. The keyhole neckline is a great way to show a little skin without going overboard. The burgundy color is flattering and easy on mature skin.
And if you’re worried about being cold or even a little arm jiggle, the long sleeves, which, by the way, are often hard to come by in cocktail dresses, have you covered. It dresses up nicely to wear to a cocktail party with sparkly shoes and earrings but swap the shoes out for boots and tone down your jewelry, and you’ve got a dress that you can wear for a little more relaxed Christmas or New Year’s Eve. This dress is a winner you’ll find yourself turning to again and again and again.
Are you going to a holiday party soon? Have you got something to wear yet?