Your Holiday Cocktail Dress Guide

Party season calls for a new dress to celebrate in style.

The classic LBD (little black dress)
A must-have for the holidays (well, any season for that matter) is a little black dress. Although it is true that the LBD never goes out of style, it is constantly being updated according to current fashion trends. This year, try a new erogeneous zone– the back. Low-backed dresses with deep V’s are trendy at the moment, as are black strapless and halter dresses which can always be accessorized with a wrap against the winter chill. Also, both edgy black cut-outs and dainty feminine lace have appeared on the red carpet this season and are sure to be gorgeous for any holiday functions you plan to attend.

Shimmer and Shine
You’ll sparkle as brightly as the star on top of the tree this season in an iridescent, sequined number. Basic black, deep navy blue, and shining silver all look fabulous, and you’ll certainly be captivating and illuminating with a bit of glitter in your look.

1920’s style flapper Dress
Incredibly modern, featuring tiers, beading, a sleek strappy design, and a versatile length. Paired with lace tights and pumps, or toned down with kitten heels and solid black stockings, they are also easy to accessorize and dress up or down, depending on the occasion.

Variety of textures
In terms of material, fabric on dress styles this season has been extremely varied and eclectic, ranging from the smooth satin of traditional, flouncy party dresses to the jacquard of Mad Men-inspired tightly fitting shifts and the velvety surfaces of winter frocks. Why not be creative and spontaneous this December and wear a material you wouldn’t normally wear? If tiered taffeta brings up dreaded memories of Prom 1986, give it another shot with a modern piece (and better shoes, of course). Not usually one for lace because you find it itchy? Be open-minded and go for black lace details on a fire-engine red dress, to keep both your comfort factor and your look up-to-date!

Length is key
Shorter dresses have been more in style as of late, as they flatter a greater number of body types and are often more appropriate for a semi-formal or casual event. Plus, they give you a chance to show off toned legs, great shoes, and those new tights you bought just for the occasion! Anywhere from two or three inches above the knee to right under the knee is perfect for a cocktail dress. However, do avoid the unflattering and awkward mid-calf style, which has ruined dresses that were otherwise elegant on the red carpet. Too short, thigh-skimming numbers also look seasonally inappropriate and less elegant or festive.

Style tips
Don’t be afraid to try some of the wilder new styles during the holidays, yet when in doubt or attending a more conservative event, it’s best to go with the classics. Happy dress shopping, ladies!

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Tags: dresses winter 2010, holiday 2010 dresses, holiday cocktail dresses, party dresses winter 2010

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