Annie Vihtelic

Holidays, with a little dressing on the side

By - Nov 27th, 2010 04:00 am
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Ummm, yeah. No. Photo by "Cheese Roc" via (CC)

Now that the holidays are officially in full swing, chances are you’ll be attending a lot of festive parties and office get-togethers. The question is: what do you wear? Is it necessary to seek out the most atrocious holiday sweater you can find with reindeer or a snowman embroidered on the front? Not quite.

Think sequins, metallic fabric and bows. Keep in mind that “festive” doesn’t mean to overdress–unless of course it’s a formal event and the invitation calls for it — it’s just about adding a little extra sparkle to your normal wardrobe, and having fun with it.

A few quick tips to keep from overdoing it: If you go with something flashy — a sequin top for example – keep everything else relatively tame. Go for minimal accessories and let the garment be the main event. If you choose to wear something more basic, feel free to go a little overboard with accessories. Pile them on, mix and match. Get a little creative with what “festive” means to you.

That's better. Photo by ^Allisun^ via (CC)

Above all else, this is also the time of year where I allow comfort to dictate what I wear. It’s not like I show up to the dinner table in dirty sweatpants and a t-shirt, but I make sure I feel at ease in my clothing, especially when 98 percent of the next month’s activities revolve around eating. I tend to avoid fitted, body conscious outfits this time of year because I know I’ll just be less cheerful and consumed with thinking about how tight my clothes feel, and how I can’t wait to go home and put on something more forgiving.

I used to think differently. I thought if I wear the outfit where I have to be conscious of holding my stomach in then I’ll be more careful to not overindulge. That’s never the case. I tend to overdress and over-eat and then I’m a mess by the end of the night. I know the adult thing to do would be to show a little self control and not be such a glutton, but this time to eat, drink and be merry only comes around once a year and I like to enjoy myself.

So now I tend to be a lot more relaxed when it comes to what I wear because there’s nothing cute about a figure hugging outfit when you feel like you’re about to bust out of it.

A bit over the top, but fun! By Helgabj via Flickr

So what are some stylish but very comfortable holiday pieces?

Leggings! There isn’t anything I don’t love about leggings, but what I probably love most is the elastic waistband. They’re the next best thing to wearing sweat pants. Cover up with a longer sweater or layer a couple pieces with a blazer. You’ll look good and still be able to let it all hang out.

To keep things looking smooth and put together, I recommend Spanx – specifically the Tight End Tights if you want to wear a skirt or a dress. They’re not quite as hard core as other body shapers and they do a superb job of holding everything in and smoothing out bulges. They are slightly more expensive than other versions of shapewear, but the extra cost is definitely worth it — nothing holds you in better.

This is also a great time to wear your most impractical foot wear. If you’re anything like me, the most physical activity you involve yourself in at holiday soirees is moving from couch to couch. Bring out your highest and skinniest heels, or the pair you can’t walk in for more than ten minutes. Take advantage of the low level of activity and bust out the most frivolous pair of shoes you own.

A basic knit dress goes a long way. Dress it up or down. By And Nancy Says via Flickr

Then there are a couple things I avoid. I don’t like to wear belts when I’m feasting, as the feeling of constraint is not so agreeable on a full stomach.

I also steer clear of buttons as well — button down shirts can totally backfire. You may leave the house feeling crisp and put together but by evening’s end, buttons slip out of their spots and a few months later when the photos are developed, you may find that you’ve revealed more than you’d bargained for.

No matter what the season has in store, just wear what feels good and have fun with it. ‘Tis the season, after all.

Categories: Fashion, Threads

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