It’s the two words that can strike the fear of God into the fashion unprepared and the fashion uninitiated – ‘party season’. The Littlewoods adverts full of glowing This Morning presenters, all shiny hair and sequins, telling you that it’s the time for sparkle, for glamour and for having a cheeky champers or two. That’s all well and good, but when you’d rather hide in front of a Taggart box set in your onesie with a bottle of Schnapps, it might feel like all hope is lost.
But fear not! Help is at hand. We say help, we mean us. Whilst we’re usually busy running amok in the world of men’s fashion, we thought we’d take a Gok, skip and a jump over to the side of the fairer sex to give you our advice on how to make the office jamboree more ‘ooh, how chic’ than ‘oh I look shit’ (and a damn sight better than people in stock imagery for ‘party season’.)
Sure, sure, the idea of party dresses can cause a cold shiver down anyone’s spine, but the key is not to worry. The office party is just one night, and we’ll survive it together, promise. Our tip? Don’t go with the trends. We can guarantee that come December, peplum will have made more appearances at a cocktail bar than Carrie did throughout all six series of SATC. And that is a -lot- of bars people. Seriously, it’s getting ridiculous. It’s EVERYWHERE. Instead, go for something unexpected. Dismiss the plunging neckline and go for something a bit more covered – you’ll look high fashion and glam. Mesh is your friend. Lace is your friend. Covered up is the new hanging out – just ask Kim Kardashian. And whilst you’re here, why not take a leaf out of the book of the Mad Men lovelies? Pencil skirts will -always- be flattering, and will -always- make you feel amazing. Grab the spanx, have a shot, and you’ll have the night of your fashion life.
Yup, we’re going there. Playsuits did not die after the summer, thank you very much. Teaming a simple playsuit with a pair of killer tights, heels and oversized accessories will give the plain ol’ dresses a run for their money. Just be sure to not overdo it – if you’re going to make a statement with your jewellery, don’t go for a patterned suit. Find the balance by asking a mate if you look like Bet Lynch just to be sure you’ve got it right. Great alternative unless you’ve a weak bladder – we’ve heard they’re a bugger if you’re in a rush for the ladies.
The trouser / shirt blouse combo
We’re going to have to win you over on this one, aren’t we? Think less Sharon Osbourne, more Cheryl arriving at the US X Factor. Oversized, smart, chic trousers, coupled with a flowing blouse or long dress shirt. There’s no need to think that this is just a look for The Older One In The M&S Ad – it can rock on a younger frame too. Think Peter Pan collars mixed with studs and spikes. Don’t be afraid to mix and match fabrics either – just ‘cos it’s party season doesn’t mean you can’ chuck on a pleather or even some of those disco pants from American Apparel. Win.