An overwhelming divide between two camps swept the Autumn/Winter 19 runways earlier this year, with many of the collections that graced the catwalks falling firmly into one of two sartorial categories: minimalism and maximalism.
For the minimalists, Tory Burch and Céline unveiled a plethora of back-to-basic bourgeois essentials, Alexander Wang featured understated supple leather, while neutral hues dominated at Victoria Beckham and The Row. At the other end of the spectrum, volume, drama, rich colours and embellishment – in other words, a maximalist’s dream – reigned supreme, with no shortage of seasonal sparkle. With December fast approaching and party season on the horizon, look to the runways for the key ingredients to scoring the perfect festive party look – warning, you’ll be spoilt for choice.
High on glamour, the holiday season is as good an excuse as any to load up on sparkle. With the season’s mantra that ‘more is more’, nothing is too extra when it comes to the party pieces to get you noticed. Imitate the high-shine styles found on the AW19 catwalks, with options abound for glittering looks that’ll slide effortlessly into your party season wardrobe. Seek blinding seasonal sparkle at Michael Kors, where matching feather boas offered the perfect accoutrement to plunging purple halter-necks and royal azure cut-out glitter dresses. Make a festive statement in a black and silver sequin mini dress with a giant outlandish bow, as donned by Kaia Gerber on the Saint Laurent runway. Or, if you’re looking for something a little less OTT, pair a silk shirt with high-waisted sequin trousers that’ll work hard to uplift a winter soirée, as seen at Paco Rabanne, or an all-over glitter blouse with ombre flares and chunky silver heels as demonstrated by Halpern. A little black dress is a fail-safe number for the office Christmas do – add a layer of edge and swathe yourself in sequins with a glittering black blazer dress inspired by Saint Laurent.
Catch the light in disco metallics, which held sway at Altuzurra in the form of a golden pleated tier dress. At Gucci, shimmering leopard print midi skirts were paired with lace blouses and emerald green mermaid pleats took form in a balloon-sleeve blouse worn with opulent lace red tights. Speaking of which, tights are the accessory du jour. From fishnets to polka dots and diamantée embellishment, a pair of tights adds the perfect finishing touch to a luxurious party look.
Have a penchant for roaring 20s Gatsby glam? A jewel-encrusted mini dress serves as the perfect +1 to accompany you to an upcoming Christmas party – add diamond tassel earrings for an extra dose of glamour as seen as Paco Rabanne, or black studded accessories at Balmain for a flapper-meets-90s grunge look. Take inspiration from Michael Kors and go tonal with a copper fringe dress, matching heels and a (faux) fur coat for that extra layer of warmth – the perfect pick-me-up for dark winter nights. Black-tie occasion? Plunge into luxurious plumage inspired by Marc Jacobs’ decadent ball gowns. Feather trimmings were equally plentiful, with feather-lined shoes worn with sparkling hot pants and a fur shawl at Saint Laurent, and a feather-hemmed black blazer dress unveiled at Balmain. Alternatively, opt for an evening tuxedo as the go-to alternative to a dress – but not without a dose of opulence in the form of rich, jewel-toned puff sleeves as seen at Alexander McQueen.
For the minimalists, there’s still plenty of inspiration to be had, with an abundance of classic all-black silhouettes to imitate. Whether you’re looking for a glittering ensemble, disco brights or luxe textures, there’s no shortage of options to help you solve your festive party outfit conundrum.
Words by Ruby McAuliffe
Graphics by Katie Janes
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