’Tis the season to not only deck the halls, but deck yourself out in style — but you don't need to spend like a Kardashian to look like a million bucks. Style maven Stacy London of TLC’s “What Not to Wear” shows ways to look your best for less at the most festive time of the year.
Office party: Winter white
I can't begin to say how many times I've been asked if it's OK to wear white after Labor Day (and yes, of course it is), but most people simply ask HOW to wear white, period. Treat white clothes as you would think of black ones: It's a neutral that looks good with other neutrals, and colors. Everyone assumes they look slimmer in black because it's darker, and while it's true that darker colors emphasize and lighter colors highlight, the most important choice when wearing white is to find flattering cuts. A short cardigan that hits at the smallest part of the waist will accent it, and a wide-leg trouser balances a heavier midsection. Never be afraid to wear a Spanx with these trousers, they can lift your tush, flatten a tummy and generally make women of all body types feel more secure in wearing a lighter color pant (with holiday indulgences, they're like an insurance policy!) For holiday and winter, I love white in heavier, structured fabrics; it's a great look for a work party when paired with rich metallics. If you are going to wear mostly white, make sure to vary the texture of each piece to give the look some visual interest. And pay attention to the tone of white you choose! There are a zillion different shades from white to cream, and you want to look for warm tones that flatter your skin and provide enough contrast rather than highlight any imperfections. If head to toe white feels like too much for you, try this trouser with a deep color like burgundy. Add some sparkly, eye-catching jewelry to transition from work to the party. Gold and white is a nice combination and can make an inexpensive outfit look luxurious. Just be careful with the red wine!
White ruffle front cardigan, White House/Black Market, $82, ; Gold/gray metallic tank, Madewell, $98, ; white trouser, White House/Black Market, $88, ; In Line Super Higher Power shaper, Spanx, $38, spanx.com; Gold/rhinestone flower necklace, Spring Street, $100, ; Amber rhinestone bracelet, Sorrelli, $195.50, ; Large stone cocktail ring, Martine Wester, $51, ; Crystal button earrings, Swarovski Crystallized, $38, ; Shoes, Zappos, $69, ; Handbag, H&M, $29.95, ; Chunky knit sweater, Joe Fresh, $49,
When it comes to one of the season's biggest trends, it wasn't just about the skinny jean; it was about the skinny leather jean. Leather jeans can be expensive and unforgiving in the way they fit, but luckily there are some great faux alternatives this season. Despite what you may think, you don't need baby powder to get these on and off. There are great stretch pleather jeans that are actually flattering, comfortable and are well cut for the tush and the thighs. When pairing jeans like this for a night out, try playing with proportion. Instead of something skin tight on top, try a blouse with some volume. If you carry your weight on your bottom half or midsection, a little more volume up top will balance your body line. Tops with peplums (which is the ruffle at the waist of the top that hits the hip) add some femininity to these tough trousers and flatter curves. Peplums are popular this season on tops and dresses and you'll continue to see them, even into spring. Look for tops with embellishment for a fun holiday feel; all embellishment near the neckline keeps attention up toward the face. For a really fashion-forward look, try pairing these jeans with a long-sleeved sweater or blouse and a faux fur vest!
Black top with gold/silver detail, Chaus, $79, ; Faux leather leggings, H&M, $24.95, ; Black sequin pump, RSVP, $69, ; Pink clutch, Mad by Design, $26, ; Gold metallic resin bangle, Ben Amun, $145, ; Statement gold metallic resin bangle, Ben Amun, $205, ; Gold ring, Chicos, $49, ; Pink bow tangle, Target, $16.99, ; Pink and gold chandelier earrings, Roberta Chiarella, $68,
I have a few big holiday no-nos: Christmas sweaters, Santa hats, reindeer antler headbands for you OR the dog, and mixing red and green. But that doesn't mean you can't wear ONE of those colors as your holiday cocktail party dress. Dark forest or emerald greens really do flatter any skin tone, any age group, and work with neutral or colored (go for brighter!) accessories. We usually associate dresses made with matte fabric for day and shinier fabrics for evening, but matte dresses can be more flattering than shiny fabric on the body. Shine reflects light, so wherever it hits on your frame, it's what we see. Matte fabrics absorb light and detract from problem spots. Check yourself out sometime in two different photographs — one with a shiny dress and one with a matte dress — and you'll see what I mean. Matte fabrics can be dressed up with shinier accessories and sophisticated, elegant cuts. If you have a smaller top half, this dress has cap sleeves, a great and easy way to broaden the shoulders. And if you have a larger chest, it can help de-emphasize the bustline. Look for belts that hit at the smallest part of the waistline — the bottom of the rib cage — for the most flattering hourglass silhouette. Try mixing this dress with a textured fabric like a short tweed jacket for a great day look alternative!
Green bow-front sheath dress, Jones New York, Lord & Taylor stores, $129; In Line Super Higher Power shaper, Spanx, $38, ; Blush sparkle peep toe heels, Nine West, $62.99, ; Black/silver beaded clutch, Banana Republic, $98, ; Green raindrop cuff, Roberta Chiarella, $398, ; Crystal circle necklace, White House/Black Market, $88, ; Silver pave dome ring, Melina Trump Jewelry $75 (QVC price $54.96), ; Black/white crystal band ring, Melina Trump Jewelry, $75 (QVC price $59.50), ; Pearl/crystal drop earrings, Swarovski Crystallized, $78,
Whether it's the Christmas afternoon trip to the family or just a casual outing one afternoon while you're on vacation, it's easy to give up on your style, pull your hair into a bun and keep your head down. But you can always look chic, even in the most casual outfit. Your jeans should be comfortable, but they can also look flattering. A straight-leg jean in a uniform wash always works wonders. Look for items with hints of shine to keep even great basics looking stylish. And especially when you don't have a lot of time, keep things simple. Layer a T-shirt or tank with a well-fitting pullover sweater that hits at the top of the hip. Instead of sneakers, try a comfortable wedge boot to give you some height and elongate the leg line. Add a scarf with some details, shine or color or pattern and a bag big enough to carry kids' stuff and you are good to go! Of course, the best accessory to an outfit like this one is a really cute baby in a badass skull print sweater and red pant! There's your pop of color.
Gray/black sequin sweater, LOFT, $79.50, ; White lace trim tank, White House/Black Market, $34.50, ; Dark wash straight-leg jean, Levi’s, $68, ; Gray metallic scarf, Target, $14.99, ; Gold glitter belt, Merona, $12.99, ; Black wedge boot, Ciao Bella, $99, ; Beige/black tote, Aldo, $55, ; Gold/rhinestone bangles Spring Street, $32, ; Gold/multi-stone drop earrings, Dana Kellin for Target, $14.99,
Model Baby Andres:
Tuxedo shirt onesie, Baby Gap, $34.95, ; Skull shawl collar cardigan, Baby Gap, $34.95, ; Red corduroy pants, Zara, $29.90, ; black suede booties, Baby Gap, $16.95,