Styles to rock this holiday season
By Natalie Serafini, Assistant Editor
The holiday season presents a series of opportunities to strut your stuff as you move from party to party. The only question is what should you get decked out in before shuffling off to hover under mistletoe? An easy way to elevate your outfit is the judicious application of trendy pieces, and this year it’s a dark Christmas twist on some classic favourites. Stores, runways, and hallways are all about fab fabrics, dark colours, and simplicity.
Black velvet, leather, and lace, if you please. Take your classic standout textures like velvet, leather, and lace, and give them an upgrade. A previous article in the Other Press discussed how to be va-va-voom in velvet (see, “I’m bringing velvet back”), which you can peruse for in-depth tips on the soft and touchable fabric. Stores are teeming with gobs of other texturized garbs, as well. Steer clear of laces in bright whites to avoid looking like a doily, and navigate instead towards plums, navies, and blacks. When it comes to leather, classic black is always a go-to, but trying out more unexpected colours can payoff in spades.
Good hunting grounds for skirts, shirts, and dresses in these fabrics include H&M, American Apparel, Topshop, and Forever 21. You can easily let a single standout piece do the talking, pairing a texturized shirt or skirt with something more neutral. Mixing textures together can make for a more visually stimulating look if done right, but it may require more finesse. Think modern Winona Ryder, not Dracula at a Christmas party. And all of these outfits can be paired with your fiercest—while still being safe on icy sidewalks after a few glasses of wine—heels
Nailed it. Dark colours are so in, with hues of forest greens, midnight navy blues, dark plums, and so-grey-it’s-almost-blacks dominating the nail polish aisle. I’ve been loving a deep red bordering on oxblood, like A-List by Essie.
Alternatively, for bright colour in an otherwise dark outfit, try out poppy reds (I’m partial to L’Oreal Pro’s Apple of My Eye), amethysts, and sapphires. Think jewel tones, whether you’re taking a step to the darker side or going for pops of colour.
Made up. A berry lipstick or stain is a great way to try out statement lips, and it’s pretty easy to find a hue that works for you. Look for deeper reds, shades of plum, or anything with berry in the title. I’ve been wearing Ballistic from Rimmel, which is a dark red with the slightest hint of plum to it, and it’s one of my favourites when I play up my lips.
If you’re not ready to take the plunge with a boysenberry lip, cat eyeliner always looks chic and classic. Perfecting cat eyeliner requires practice, but there are some ways to avoid a shaky line. To get a template before starting, use a pencil liner—which is easily removed if you make any mistakes—to lay down the foundations for your liner. Finding the right formula and medium of application is paramount: gel liner with a thin and precise brush for application will help, and I’ve also found some success with felt-tip liners. For a sharp line, try placing tape at the corner of your eye, angled how you want your liner to look. This technique is like bowling with the bumpers up so you can’t get the ball in the gutters: foolproof.
Un-do. Loose and undone hair is the way to go in weather that quickly and efficiently botches pampered locks. Keep your hair healthy and natural, perhaps using some Moroccan oil to soothe damaged and dry hair.
Alternatively, for a coiffure that is put-together yet simple as can be, try braiding. There are countless tutorials on YouTube if you want to get fancy with a crown of milkmaid braids, fishtail braids, or up-dos that are made entirely out of smaller individual braids. If you want to keep it easy on your patience—and on the circulation to your arms—a classic three-strand side braid will look oh so “I just threw myself together and looked amazing,” when paired with a snazzier outfit.