Whether you’re a Deck-the-Halls kind of gal or more of a Silent-Night kind of lady, chances are your calendar has been booked with holiday festivities from the moment that first pumpkin spice latte touched your lips. With so many joyous festivities requiring your attention this season, the last thing you want to stress over is what you’re going to wear to all of them—or if you have anything to wear at all.
Don’t blow your gift-buying money on a new outfit for every occasion. Invest in a few essential wardrobe pieces to get you through the holiday season and spread some cheer with a fresh look every time you step out.
1. Stylish Sweaters
They don’t call it “sweater weather” for nothing. This winter, be sure to have a few stylish sweaters on hand that can easily be dressed up with leggings and heels or worn casually with jeans and cute flats or booties. Not only will a stylish sweater keep you cozy and comfy on that spur of the moment carriage ride through the snow, but they’re also a great way to let your vibrant personality out to play. Have a few different styles on hand to get you through the many occasions you’ll want to look good without compromising on comfort.
2. Tailored Black Pants
A great pair of dress pants should not be overlooked when you’re on the search for the perfect holiday party outfit. Look at a pair of sleek, tailored black dress pants as a blank canvas on which to create your masterpiece. Pair them with a colorful blouse and heels or wear them with a pair of black booties to help your legs look longer (and you look taller).
3. Chunky Heels
Nothing is worse than having to compromise on your outfit-making fancy footwear because of weather conditions. Keep a few pairs of fun and stylish chunky heeled shoes in your closet for those slippery evenings, and never sacrifice style again. Plus, they’re way more comfortable to dance in than stilettos—not that this ever stopped you before.
4. Dress in Layers
Layers can be exactly what you need to bring a basic outfit to the next level when you’re feeling less than inspired with what’s in your closet. Have some different layering pieces on hand—like cozy cardigans, structured blazers and festive vests—to bring any everyday look to a whole new level of wow.
5. Impressive Coats
And, while we’re talking about layers, why shouldn’t the one keeping you warm from festivity to festivity share the spotlight every now and then? Let your outerwear work for you this season and let a stylish coat add a little warmth to an otherwise cold and dreary day. Not only will it keep you protected from the harsh winter weather, but it’ll ensure you make an entrance anywhere you go this holiday season.
6. A Cocktail Dress
Dressing up at some point is practically a given during the holidays. Be prepared for any ball-dropping shindig with a jaw-dropping midi or maxi dress at the ready. Even a classic LBD will due in a pinch but, really, how many times in the year are you expected to wear sequins? Add some stylish heels and statement earrings, and you’ll be ready to ring in the New Year in style and class.
7. Add a Little Shimmer
Who doesn’t like shimmery things around the holidays? Give your wardrobe a little sparkle this holiday season by incorporating a few metallic items into your ensemble. Whether a sparkly party dress, some fantastically bold glitter booties or a shimmery metallic sweater, you can make a bedazzling statement at any event when you’re not afraid to shine.
8. Give In to Tartan
You may know it as plaid, but tartan opens a winter wonder world of possibilities far beyond flannel pajamas and the button-up grunge shirts of your youth. Don’t shy away from patterns this season—especially something as classic as tartan. Available in tops, pants and dresses alike (not to mention warm, wooly scarves), the possibilities of timeless fashion statements are endless.
9. Vibrant Scarves
Sure, scarves are a must-have when you’re fighting the snowy, windy elements of winter, but they can do so much more than just keep that elegant neck of yours warm in a cold front. Use a vibrant scarf to add a pop of color and personality to an otherwise subdued color palette. Wrap a colorful, silk scarf in your hair to liven up your day-to-day. Or simply keep a chic, patterned scarf at work to double as a warm and cozy pashmina on those days they still insist on running the A/C at the office regardless of the dropping temps outside.
10. A Killer Clutch
Make sure your accessories match your festive mood this holiday season and keep a stylish clutch on hand for all of those events a regular handbag just won’t do. Something with an eye-catching pattern or vibrant color to tie your whole look together while doubling as a handy conversation starter for those inevitable lulls in conversation around the eggnog.
11. Statement Jewelry
And, as fabulous as all of these wardrobe essentials are, you still ABSOLUTELY need to have some statement jewelry pieces at the ready to give any outfit that little extra something. You know. That something that takes a look from good, to great, to envied on any occasion.
Treat yourself to a few statement pieces that speak to you, and have fun cycling through those festive drop earrings, hanging pendants and chunky bracelets all season long. Just remember not to wear more than one statement piece per outfit. After all, you wear them to elevate your look, not detract from it.
Surviving the demands of the holidays isn’t always easy but, at least, it can be a little more fashionable with these 11 essential wardrobe pieces on hand.