December 21, 2014
F2014: The Holiday Office Party
Ah, ye olde Holiday Office Party...
The stigmas which so often accompany this annual event (lawn-mower accidents, anyone?) are hardly worth mentioning, but whether you're anticipating an eggnog-driven revelry of questionable copy-machine antics or a basic evening of small-talk-endeavors which lend new meaning to "Silent Night," you're going to want to dress appropriately. You still have to face these folks in the new year, after all.
(Disclaimer: As a 20-something who works for a small business, I'd consider any of the above capsule outfits perfect for a more casual holiday get-together. However, I can't speak to the etiquette of the corporate world. If your office has a defined dress code, I'd recommend sticking to those guidelines, even for after-hour occasions.)
Here are some general guidelines when approaching office party attire:
-When it comes to hemlines, follow the school rule. Remember that old dress code directive? That hemlines should rest no higher than the middle finger when your arms are at your side? As troublesome as I usually find dress codes to be, this is a good one to stand by if you (or your boss) is concerned with modesty. When in doubt, add a sheer pair of tights or opt for more leg coverage with a pair of knee boots.
-Focus sex appeal to one area. Appearing sexy might be the last thing you care about at an office party. If that's the case, good on you! Rock on with your bad self! For those who are interested in seizing the opportunity to show a little skin, however, do just that: show -- a little. The simplest way to do this is by choosing one area of your body to feature. If you love showing off your legs, slip on some strappy heels and nix the tights, but contrast with long sleeves or a higher neckline. If shoulders or decolletage is more your thing, consider pairing your sexy shirt with tailored trousers or a knee-length skirt.
-Nix the work clothes. Unless this event is happening during regular office hours, take the time to dress your best. You don't have to be overly formal, nor do you have to rework your usual fashion personality; just give yourself -- and your coworkers -- the opportunity to admire another side of you. Maybe it means pulling out that flashy blazer in your favorite color, maybe it's wearing a funny Hannukah tie. Maybe it just means you don a button-down shirt instead of your company polo. Whatever suits your style, this is the time to be a little more festive -- and therefore a little more you!