One Dress, Many Parties

How to style a Little Black Dress, or indeed any dress, for all occasions.

The holidays are coming up and party season will be in full swing soon!

I love parties and fancy events but buying a new dress or outfit for each event can be pricey and is definitely not sustainable. You may be wondering, “so how can a minimalist tackle the holiday season?”.

I’m challenging myself this season to style one Little Black Dress (LBD) for many parties. I chose to style a black shift dress because black is so versatile and can be easily dressed up or down.

If you’re more into colourful looks, go ahead, pick your favourite dress and apply these same styling tricks to create multiple looks.

Dress from Nique.

1. Textures And Patterns

First up is the most classic way to style a party look around the holidays – add texture!

There are so many interesting textures for the winter and particularly for party season. The textures that come to mind for me are silk, velour and velvet, suede, and of course, we can’t forget the sparkles and sequins.

The simplest way to make a statement with an LBD is to pair it with an accessory to add texture. Here I’ve paired this simple silk shift dress with a pair of sparkly gold pumps – these were actually my wedding shoes! What better time is there to re-wear these heels, than during the holiday season? I think it’s quite an understated and elegant party look.

If you’re not into the sparkles and glam, another subtler way to add texture is to wear suede pumps. I love to pair this dress with a classic pair of black suede heels. I love a good monochromatic outfit.

Another way I see texture being a great styling trick is through tights. I don’t personally own any fun tights at the moment, but I think a pair of black minimal, polka dot tights would be fun to pair under a simple LBD.

Playing with texture and different fabrics is such a great way to make the clothing in your wardrobe more versatile.

2. Double Duty Dress

Unfortunately, not all of us live in a warm climate and maybe you live in a really cold place like me and the thought of having your legs exposed with the brisk winter wind does not bring you holiday cheer.

Here is a simple trick I especially love to do in the winter. Why not wear your LBD over pants? I realize this may not work for all types of dresses, but if you have a shift dress, you’ve got to try this out.

Layering pants underneath a dress not only adds warmth, but it also gives the LBD a completely different feel. Here I’ve layered my silk shift dress over a classic pair of black trousers along with a pair of comfortable block heels for a pop of colour. Leaving the dress loose provides a relaxed and casual vibe, and also gives you room to fill up on that delicious party food!

To elevate the outfit for a more “pulled together” look, try adding a simple belt to define the waist.

3. Layering

In the winter, I love to layer my clothing regardless of whether it’s a party look or not. I find that it adds a new level of interest either with hints of texture or colour, not to mention the extra layer of warmth that’s added.

In the next look I’ve layered a cozy knit on top of my dress for a completely different look. This look was meant to be more on the casual, so I decided to style it with a pair of black boots.

The list could go on with the simple trick of adding layers. Try layering a thin turtleneck under your dress or change the look of your dress by throwing on a long line blazer or jacket.

I think this minimalist is ready to tackle the holiday season and its many parties with this one simple LBD. I believe all it takes is a little creativity and thought to style simple pieces we already own.

This holiday season, how will you be minimal with your party outfits?

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