Fashion Corner

Kelly Skahan

With all of the final papers, projects and exams coming up, I hate to even tempt you by talking about the semester-end festivities that will follow your return home. Right now you’re avoiding your ACS paper or waiting to meet your management group in the Exchange, so it seems fairly cruel to talk about Christmas party frocks and New Year’s Eve garb, but beauty is pain.

You’re probably getting roped into attending a few holiday bashes this season, so make sure your wardrobe is right for each occasion. When your parents guilt you into following them to the same party they attend every year, make sure your sparkling conversation and lady-like aura overwhelms all those family friends who watched you grow up. Write off a shift dress as a double-duty purchase; with a sequined belt, patterned tights and some pumps, you’ve got a winning holiday party look. Trade the sequins for a plain wide belt and solid tights, and you’re ready to go for your spring internship. Don a cardigan, and even Michelle Obama would be impressed.

Hitting an old friend’s annual holiday bash eager to look good in front of your high school classmates? Keep waist-definition in mind, but lift the hemline a touch and you’ll be good to go. A slightly voluminous tulip skirt will serve you well when you’re hoping to show up the kids who only saw you in uniforms back in the day. The look is flattering on everybody: if you’re slim and athletic, the defined waist will give the illusion of curves, and if you’re already curvy, you’ll make the most of your hourglass figure. If you pick up a skirt in this shape, pair it with a top that flatters you best (you know, the one you wore to that ticket party), and use that same sequined belt.

Christmas dinner with the extended family is a little tougher for some folks. Even if your parents are okay with you dining in sweats and a tank-top, conservative grandparents might be offended if you don anything less than a classic LBD. Go with office-wear again, but up the ante for the holidays. The first order of business is a pencil skirt; everybody looks great in them, so don’t knock it ’til you’ve tried it. Pair it with a frilly blouse in a fun color – J. Crew might be your go-to store in this department. (Added bonus: if you tell mom you can wear this stuff to job interviews, she’ll likely chip in.) Since it’s Christmas, add a little bling with metallic shoes and a cocktail ring. Voilà! Grandparent-approved and hot at the same time.

Finally, New Year’s Eve is the night you can pull out all the stops. You know what that means: sparkly dresses. Bebe has a pretty good selection of sequin-adorned frocks, but don’t be afraid to check out Forever21, too. If you’re up for spending a bit more cash to look crazy-good on Dec. 31, check out Juicy Couture’s sequined dresses and Bloomingdale’s section. Both will make sure you’re the center of attention when the clock strikes midnight.