The classic cocktail dress will never go out of style, but there are loads of fun alternatives that will certainly give it a run for its money. Rather than reaching for your tried-and-true frock, try switching things up and stand out from the crowd this holiday season.
Anything But A Cocktail Dress: Unconventional Holiday Outfit Options
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Even more good news: you probably own most of these pieces already, and you can mix and match them to create endless, chic combinations.
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Jumpsuits are easier than a dress and can easily work year-round. Try this sleek Amour Vert Victoria Jumpsuit ($335) in Ivory with Sandro’s Navy Vogue Shawl Collar Blazer ($460) for a minimalist look. Keep your accessories understated, using just a printed heel, as we did with a pair from Schutz, to tie everything together.
Halston Heritage Multi Metal Tab Clutch ($395) in Silver - in stores
Express Earcuff ($25) in Black - in stores
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A bomber jacket may not be a typical choice for an evening out, but load it with muted gold sequins and suddenly it becomes the life of the party. Balance the sparkle of DKNY's Silk Jacket ($925) with a black wool romper, like the Cameo Lotus Romper ($174), a printed scarf in the same color family (similar here), and black Wolford Satin De Luxe Tights ($69). Finally, finish the look with gold accents: Jerome Dreyfuss' slouchy studded Goatskin Bobi Bag ($1095), Zara’s Leather High Heel Court Shoes ($100) and some chain bracelets, like April Soderstrom's Jewelry Chain Gang Bracelet Set ($115), should do the trick.
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Since layering is key in cold weather, why not take this opportunity to juxtapose interesting textures? Pair a structured neoprene coat like Cameo's marble-print Terrible Love Bomber Jacket ($229) with Tibi's silk A-Line Blouse ($298) and a pair of Ella Moss Slouchy Sequin Trousers ($198). Go for understated accessories, like Ferragamo’s Minuadiere in Metal and Lucite ($1490) and Louise Et Cie's Jorly Loafers ($118), to keep the look polished.
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Repurpose a demure pencil skirt like Burberry London Cotton Blend Lace Pencil Skirt ($1010) by adding a few glam separates. Working within a limited color palette, layer Express' Leather Bralette ($25) over a sheer t-shirt like Kain Label's Classic V-Neck ($88) and toss on an oversized, metallic jacket, ideally Isabel Marant's Camelia Jacket ($2190). Finish with a few whimsical necklaces like the Fresh Water Pearl Necklace ($730) and Hand-Painted Rhinestone Necklace ($680) from Alyssa Norton, party shoes like Jimmy Choo's Fedora Heels ($1,050) and a petite clutch in a sedate color, such as See by Chloe's Pernette Small Minaudière ($415).
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LOFT's Tulle Skirt ($80) and lace stockings could skew girly without this buttery Leather Jacket from BLK DNM ($895). Round out the look with Rebecca Taylor's sweet Embellished Tee ($325), classic black Vince Camuto Akido Shoes ($118) and a structured metallic bag, like Banana Republic's Olivia Long Box Clutch ($120).
Vita Fede Titan Crystal Ring ($290) in Silver
Vita Fede Bulloni Crystal Ring ($240) Silver plated
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High-waisted velvet pants don’t initially scream 'sex appeal,' but tuck in a whisper of Cami NYC's Lace Trim Camisole ($128) and drape a blush Marc by Marc Jacobs Tuxedo Jacket ($498 in stores only) over your shoulders and you have a show-stopping outfit. Tuck your hair back on one side with Ben Amun's Crystal Bobby Pins ($130), slide on some metallic DKNY Saffi Ankle Strap Pumps ($245), and stash your essentials in Vince Camuto's Cleo Clutch ($168) before you walk out the door.