Same Same But Different: Holiday Party Attire
Welcome to Same Same, But Different. As Gen Z and millennial fashion editors, respectively, we know a thing or two about shopping—for all ages, and especially our demographics. As we find the best products for you, we can’t help but do a little shopping for ourselves and build our personal (age-appropriate) wish lists. And now, we’re sharing them with you. Ahead, check out what’s in our hearts and in our carts lately.
Dale: Le sigh. I don’t know about you, but it seems like just yesterday we were prepping our closets for fall—more specifically, Meg Ryan Fall. But now that we’re firmly in December, there’s a new occasion to dress for, which brings me to today’s topic: holiday parties. What’s on your social calendar this year, Meg? Are you going out? Staying in? All of the above?
Meg: Like most things in life, it’s all about balance—at least in my opinion. This holiday party season, I’ll be having my cake and eating it, too. By that I mean I will be equal parts partying and lazing around. C’est la vie. I must confess, however, that I really struggle with cold weather dressing. It’s so hard not to feel shapeless in layers and bulky garments. When it’s cold, I just want to live in sweatshirts and leggings, but that’s obviously not always flattering. Alas, my hopes are not dashed just yet. I’m keeping hopes high that this will be the winter I finally figure it out. What about you? Do you already have your holiday outfits planned and prepped?
Dale: Dare I say I leave my sartorial planning to the last minute with the case of parties? This year’s NYE plans are currently up in the air—as are my outfits. My usual M.O. for fêtes is a zhuzhed up version of what I’d wear any day…and if I can get away with comfort, I’ll do it. Assuming I’m spending a cozy weekend in a cabin and next to a fire with friends—watching The Holiday—I’ll be swapping out the jeans for a pair of hot shorts and shimmery socks topped off with a sweater (I am nothing without my winter knits) for an easy ensemble. To make it party-friendly, I’ll focus on standout jewelry and the most adorable velvet Mary Janes I’ve been obsessing over all year—the ballet flats also double as slippers, so there’s that, too.
From spending the holidays with family to ringing in the new year with friends, there are a lot of scenarios (and dress codes) to dress for. By the way, you have a birthday coming up (!!)—tell me what you’re wearing, because I know you, a Capricorn, are definitely thinking about it.
Meg: Gasp! You’re right, I do have a birthday coming up, but even before that is New Year’s Day, baby. I’m planning an at-home pajama party for New Year’s Eve to celebrate. Three cheers for ringing in 2023 comfortably! Like you, I too will be dipping into my coziest pieces: my favorite yoga pants, the softest socks I’ve ever felt, and few knits of my own are all heavy in my rotation this season. I might slip into a slouchy pair of boyfriend jeans if I feel like getting gussied up. As any good partygoer knows, the key to low-key, at-home soirées is not showing up empty-handed. I recently received the most beautiful beaded bottle bag that fits wine, spirits, or even my 40-ounce Hydro Flask. I think it will make the perfect accessory for a festive evening in a friend’s apartment, perhaps with a side of champagne and fondue.
Dale: Honestly, a chic bottle holder might be the hottest accessory for winter festivities. If not used to carry a bottle of wine as a gift for the hostess, let it carry that 40 oz. Hydro Flask! Thoughts on taking it for a spin on a night out? For a moment, glitzy water bottles (and holders) were dappling the runways, so why not our night lives? We need water this winter, be it for the sake of our skin or the sake of our livers.
Meg: Heartily agree. Water is the way, and to answer your question, I’m all for sporting the holder during a night on the town. However, I think its (dazzling) color scheme would clash with the party outfits I have planned, so I’ll probably hold off until I start sporting spring looks. But now I’m getting ahead of myself…
Holiday party edits are usually full of jewel tones and sparkling metallics, which isn’t quite my beat. For my current social calendar, I’m focusing on finding new ways to elevate my tried-and-true, mostly black ensembles (okay, maybe I’ve been a little inspired by Jenna Ortega’s Wednesday). Make no mistake about it, I’ll still make the most of a little sparkle here and there. As a fine jewelry fan, I know you’ll appreciate this stunning diamond necklace I’m eyeing. And yes, this is essentially what I’m wearing to my birthday party. Spoiler alert!
As for you, Party Girl Dale? When the clock strikes midnight and a new year is upon us, what outfit will you don under the gleaming disco ball? (Suddenly, I’m a poet).
Dale: Truly, the idea of standing beneath a shimmering disco ball could not have spoken to me more. Disco Dale is the real me. But for now, Party Girl Dale—which, I admit, is a vibe—will do.
By the way, I’m all for an all-black ensemble as a go-to look—and yes, I’m so into this necklace (I’m a huge fan of Dorsey, too!). There’s always the tried-and-true staple of a LBD, like yours—and that’ll never go out of style (plus, it’ll always look good in the photos you look back at, which is obviously a major factor). If I were to wear one this year, it’d be a funky updated take to shake things up.
However, this is New Year’s Eve we’re talking about, and I can’t help but take the opportunity of a big night out to wear my bolder things, like an electric blue corset and matching pants. The final touches? Metallic platforms and a pair of earrings where the balls literally drop, because there’s always room to be on theme for the night.
Speaking of themes, do you have any goals for 2023 worth sharing? I think my biggest one might be to clean out and organize my closet ????.
Meg: Okay, so…on a scale from one to 10…how mad would you be if I stole your NYE outfit? I jest, I jest. In all seriousness, I think my biggest goal for the new year is to be better at time management, and that includes waking up at a consistent hour each morning. I have my work cut out for me. On that note, I will manage my time right now and bid you adieu. Until next time!
Dale Arden Chong is the Senior Fashion Commerce Editor at ELLE.com. Previously, she was an editor at MensHealth.com and has written for Who What Wear, GLAMOUR, The Coveteur, and more. She loves fashion, food, and art, among other things—but her greatest love is K-pop idol V of BTS.
Associate Fashion Commerce Editor
Meg Donohue is the Associate Fashion Commerce Editor at ELLE.com. Her passions include spicy foods, sustainability, and the Y2K remake of Charlie’s Angels. She will never stop hoping for a One Direction reunion tour.