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Style Basics

How to dress for the office holiday party

By on December 11th, 2017

Are you wondering how to dress for the office holiday party this season? It can be a little tricky because you want to dress festive, but don’t want to show up in something that may come off as immature or inappropriate. But don’t worry, it’s easy than you think.

Here are three easy tactics you can apply to dress for the office holiday party this year.

Layer with purpose

Ever since mom bundled us up for our first snow day as children, we’ve understood the importance of layering to stay warm. Today, the principle certainly still applies, but you can be a little more sophisticated in your execution.

Just start with finer fabrics close to your body and work your way out. For instance, begin with your favorite dress shirt and then throw on a fine cashmere sweater, and finish with a tweed or corduroy sport coat, something with some texture.

Wear a scarf

This holiday season, dress like a Parisian and wear a scarf regularly. But don’t feel like you need to wear that bulky acrylic ski scarf to the office party. There are plenty of more refined options out there that will certainly be more comfortable on some of our more mild winter days. Cashmere is always a crowd favorite, but do some careful shopping and you’ll find artisan woven cotton scarves and even bamboo.

Plus, scarves are downright practical. Wrap them up tightly to keep the chill out and loosen as needed. And don’t fret too much about tying them. Just hanging a scarf over your neck and pairing with a sport coat is a classic look. Stick to neutral tones and subtle patterns for day to day wear, but it’s always fun to have a statement piece in the closet for something like a holiday party.

Be festive, but not overly so

It can be tempting to want to reach for that red sweater or tartan jacket when getting ready for your holiday get together. But more often than not, standard holiday looks can come off distracting instead of helping you to look your best. The whole idea is to dress a little more festive than you would for the office.

If you’ve been waiting for the right time to show off that new suit or neck tie, a holiday party is the perfect opportunity. Simply focusing on the fundamentals and doing them well can go a long ways. And if you want to introduce a little holiday color, do so subtly with your pocket square or socks. This will get people’s attention, but they will remember your sharp looking outfit.

In the featured image, you’ll notice that I paired my red pocket square with the red contrast collar of my dress shirt. And I added a lapel flower for a little extra festivity!

how to dress for the office holiday party

Further reading:

Our three style tips for fall attire

And when it’s time for New Year’s Eve, here’s what to wear. And for further reading…