Dress codes seem to be getting even more ambiguous — and possibly quite confusing — with every year that passes, especially when it comes to those infamous New Year’s Eve soirées. (Just what does “creatively chic black tie” really mean?) Throw in the unspoken dress code for NYE romance, and what’s a girl really supposed to do — rather, wear?
No matter if your partying falls on the low-key or high-octane end of the spectrum, here are five eternally classic New Year’s Eve party looks to power you through the entire evening. The best thing about these ensembles? They stand the test of time and any measure of dress code.
1. Slip dress
Indulge in the lingerie-as-outerwear look and bring the boudoir to that New Year’s Eve bash by wearing a negligee-inspired slip dress, preferably one with a bit of sophisticated, lacy detail. The beauty of this ensemble is in its ever-relevant versatility — not to mention its inherent sexiness. Pile on the glitzy jewels if the slip itself is too minimal for your taste, and there’s much fun to be had with statement stilettos to further enliven the look.
If you’re seeking a funkier spin, wear a pair of ankle socks with those heels. And, don’t be scared of the cold. A slip dress is the perfect excuse to pile on that luxe faux fur that you’re always trying to find a reason to wear.
2. Tuxedo suit
Just as sleekly sophisticated now as it was when Yves Saint Laurent introduced Le Smoking suit in the 1960s, the tuxedo suit for women is always an iconic way to ring in the New Year. And, lest you think it’s not seductive or skin-baring enough for your NYE ways, think again. There is a certain sexiness in the menswear trend for women — and in leaving a bit to the imagination.
Of course, you can always wear the buttoned tuxedo jacket with nothing under it to create a plunging neckline. Or, simply throw the jacket over your shoulders and wear a sheer shirt with those matching high-waist suit pants. One other Le Smoking-inspired option? A tuxedo-style mini-dress (sans trousers) for a leggy look that’s perfectly poised for a sassy pair of spiked heels or over-the-knee boots.
So, we know these glitzy little pieces of shine are ubiquitous on New Year’s Eve — some would even say overplayed. But, like it or not, sequins are here to stay. The trick is to find classic ways to wear these shiny somethings. Rather than go paillette-crazy with a full-on glimmer frock that may or may not be the most classy thing out there, try a bit of moderation on for size. A sequin pencil skirt paired with a fitted T-shirt and nude sandals tempers all that shine factor in a rather sophisticated way.
Another way to put on the glitz in an altogether glamorous statement is via a sequined blazer worn with leather skinny pants and black pumps. If you do have an all-over sequin frock that you simply must wear, try throwing a cropped leather moto jacket over it or even a structured blazer; it will freshen up the whole look for an edgy-modern spin on sequins.
There’s something so undeniably alluring about a lacy frock, and lace is forever a sexy classic when rendered correctly. Of course, the dress can be any color, but we find a va-va-voom cherry red to be particularly appealing. Plus, it’s appropriately festive. But, a jewel-toned emerald color would be equally beautiful, as would a more subdued navy or even the fail-safe black. Pair the dress with some pointy-toe heels to polish off the old Hollywood glam effect, and you’re good to go for the evening.
Want something a bit different? Pair a lacy silk camisole with the aforementioned tuxedo look, or even that sequin skirt, for a seductive yet elegant finish.
No NYE fashion roundup would be complete without every girl of any style era’s favorite go-to, the LBD. We love the little black dress because it’s always in fashion, no matter what sort of party you find yourself at — from casual house-party fun to quirky countdown bash to black-tie soirée. With the simple addition of a statement piece of jewelry, a killer pair of heels, or ultra-glam hair and beauty, this little frock takes on a new personality to get your New Year started on the right foot (or stiletto, as the case may be).