Now that we are firmly into November, I wonder if your diary is starting to fill up (like mine!) with parties and events? The festive season is just around the corner with many work ‘dos’ being planned for early December, and even late November. With a little forward planning you can avoid that stressful ‘what-to-wear’ panic and avoid wasting money on new outfits that aren’t quite right, or that you didn’t really need.
In this blog, I’m sharing my fail-safe party outfit planning process. If you follow this process, you might just realise that you don’t need anything new to wear at all! But if you do identify a gap, watch out for my next blog where I’ll share some festive outfit ideas for you.
By following my process now, you’ll have plenty of time to get organised, plan your outfit options and feel more in control of a busy December.
I usually have several events throughout the festive season, from gatherings with my fellow business buddies, to long lunches with old friends, evening parties, Christmas Eve drinks and then of course Christmas Day itself. (By which time some of my outfit options are ruled out due to the gradually expanded waist band…which is an important factor to take into account with your planning!). In addition to this, I have certain pieces that are really only suitable to be worn during the festive season. By planning out what I’m going to wear for each event in advance, I can ensure that everything in my wardrobe gets a chance to be worn.
Here’s the step-by-step process:
Grab your diary and list out all of your social engagements. Make a note of anything you need to take into account for each event. i.e. will you be dancing or walking, will there be a cold room or boiling hot kitchen.
Pull out all of your potential ‘ingredients’ for festive dressing. This could be dresses, trousers, skirts, tops, jackets, jumpsuits. I also include footwear, handbags and coats here. Try everything on. This allows you to check the fit and spot anything that needs a repair.
If, like me, you just know that by a certain date in December, some of your pieces will be a bit snug, plan to wear them in the early part of the month. You don’t need to feel bad when this happens, its perfectly normal and you absolutely don’t need to be squeezing yourself into too-small anything. In trying to do that, you’ll start the event on the back foot feeling grumpy and not good enough. Let’s make sure that doesn’t happen.
Once you’ve worked out enough outfits and determined which ones are suitable for each event, take a photo so that you can remember what you paired with what. If you have lots of options, you might allocate two or three to one event and see how you feel on the day. Write the outfits next to the relevant event so you don’t forget come next month.
In going through this process, you might realise that you have a gap that needs filling. Whether it’s a dress, party shoes or a fabulous evening bag, by going through this process early, you’ll have time to find the missing ingredient without any stress.
FINALLY, Before bringing in anything new, ask yourself:
Do you really need it? Will you get enough wear out of it in years to come?
- Is renting a ‘wow’ dress that you’ll only wear once more sensible than buying new?
- What do you feel your best in? Dresses? Jumpsuits? Separates? Try not to be influenced by what everyone else is wearing and stick to what you know and what feels like you.
In my next blog (published on 23rd November), I’ll share some outfit combination ideas to get you inspired if you are in the market for something new. In the meantime, you might well find you have something similar already and could just style things up a bit differently.
For now, get outfit-planning – and remember to let me know how you get on!
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Great advice as always Helen. Now I just need to find the space to get all my outfits out and make decisions.
Enjoy the process!
Really good advice. I usually leave it to the last minute and the get stressed out about what I’m going to wear!
We will be going into this topic in more detail in The Style Club for our December Style Focus – so look out for that Mary!
Give it a go Mary! It’s a game-changer and means its easier to get into the party mood by avoiding the stress.