Last year we spent most of December rocking statement earrings, sparkly headbands and embellished sweaters (plus our trusty fleece sweatpants) for virtual holiday parties and Zoom cocktail hours. And while we’re not quite back to the same jam-packed holiday schedule we were used to pre-pandemic, there are definitely a few more IRL cookie exchanges and in-person meet-ups on our schedules to celebrate the end of 2022. Here are 31 gorgeous outfit ideas to inspire you to dress up from now until we ring in 2023, whether you’re going all out for a Secret Santa fête or just want to look good on your way to pick up gifts at the mall.
31 Outfit Ideas for a Sparkly, Stylish and Rather Festive December
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1. Modernize a Throwback Denim Silhouette
Denim midi and pencil skirts are having a comeback this season, replacing the micro minis we spotted over the summer. The key to making these pieces look modern and not frumpy is to pair them with polished staples, like tailored jackets and slingback pumps.
Shop similar styles: Chiara Ferragni Cat Eye Sunglasses ($150); Abercrombie & Fitch Cropped Tweed Jacket ($120); Reformation Jayde Denim Midi Skirt ($148); Cole Haan Vandam Slingback Heels (
2. Try an Easy Black-and-White Combo
Crisp black and white will always look chic, even if you’re sporting a simple T-shirt and trackpants. (Although it never hurts to add a swipe of berry lipstick.)
Shop similar styles: Banana Republic Plaid Scarf (
$50; $20); ASOS Leather Trench Coat ( $313; $267); Everlane Organic Cotton T-shirt ($30); Adidas Originals Track Pants ($70); Converse Chuck Taylor All-Star Sneakers ($60)
3. Swap Your Winter Jacket for a Cozy Vest
Keep your core warm and your arms free to move as they please. You'll really appreciate this tip when you discover your chunkiest sweater sleeves will not fit into any of your coats.
4. Match Your Coat to Your Dress
While not exactly monochrome, this two-tone red look is gorgeous and easier to pull off than you might think. Just be sure to pick items made from different fabrics—like faux leather and cashmere, or wool and silk—to make it clear you’re not out to perfectly match your outfit.
5. Winterize Your Shacket
Shackets—aka, shirt jackets—are one of our favorite fall toppers, but they aren’t always warm enough for true winter. But a maxi-length shacket with down filling? That is sure to keep you both warm and stylish.
6. Swap Your Beanie for a Beret
True, when styled correctly, a beret won’t offer much coverage for your ears, but for warmer winter days when you could still use a hat it offers a chic twist on the usual wool cap. And don’t be afraid to try a light colored material, like snow white or buttercup yellow, rather than sticking with classic black.
Shop similar styles: Hat to Socks Wool Beret ($10); AYR The Closer Wool Coat ($695); Caslon Funnel-Neck Cotton-Blend Sweater ($59); Banana Republic Cruise Wide-Leg Pants ($130); Allbirds Wool Pipers Sneakers ($110)
7. Go All in on Denim
This is how city girls do cowboy chic: Update a Canadian tuxedo with white ankle boots, a cozy white turtleneck and tiny sunglasses.
Shop similar styles: Levi’s Original Trucker Jacket (
$98; $59); Naadam Merino Cashmere Turtleneck Sweater ($250); Warp + Weft MAB Jeans ( $98; $49); Tory Burch Lee Radziwill Petite Double Bag ($598); Marc Fisher LTD. Jarli Boots ($189)
8. Get Cozy in a Sweater Dress
This subtly sexy style is the ultimate hybrid of comfortable and dressy. Contrary to what you might assume, longer silhouettes can actually make you appear taller, even if you’re petite, so long as you opt for a style that hugs your curves rather than hangs loose.
9. Mix and Match Trendy Patterns
Plaid and snakeskin aren’t the most obvious pairing, but as this outfit proves, they look surprisingly chic together. One easy way to ensure two unexpected prints look good together is to throw one larger, solid-hued piece into the mix, like an oversize knit sweater.
10. Wear All-Over Beige Without Looking Boring
Beige gets a bad rap as a “boring” color, but it can actually look incredibly chic. For example, the texture and structural silhouette of this turtleneck sweater gives a particularly luxe vibe, especially when worn with tailored trousers, crisp white kicks and a simple-yet-elegant coordinating handbag.
11. Pair a Chunky Cardigan with Silky Joggers
This combination is super comfy, yet chic at the same time. Especially if you accessorize with sleek pointy-toe flats and a clutch rather than sneakers or a shoulder bag.
Shop similar styles: Everlane Alpaca V-Neck Cardigan Sweater (
$125; $88); J.Crew Tissue Turtleneck ($40); Nation LTD Del Rey Pants ($198); Mansur Gavriel Mini M Frame Bag ($695); ASOS Laura Embellished Flats ($35)
12. Try a Leather Dress
Leather and faux leather are both surprisingly warm, meaning you can wear something like a leather minidress or pencil skirt and not have to worry about freezing in the chilly December air. (Although we do recommend adding a pair of tights if it’s truly frigid.)
13. Stick to One Color Family
Pick either warm tones (yellows, oranges, reds) or cool ones (blues, purples, greens) and mix and match shades until you find your perfect combination. (P.S. This works best with solid pieces, but feel free to play with prints if you’re more of a maximalist at heart.)
14. Swap Plain Leggings for Faux Leather
Even if you keep the rest of your outfit super casual (oversize sweatshirt, simple booties, etc.), faux-leather leggings can give your look an instant upgrade.
15. Sport Sequins for Day
A cozy, oversize knit in a neutral hue and simple accessories help balance the glitz and glam of a sequin skirt to make it feel more appropriate for day. Be sure to keep your jewelry fairly basic as well to really allow your skirt to steal the show.
Shop similar styles: Naadam Merino Cashmere Turtleneck Sweater ($225); O.P.T. Danone Sequin Skirt ($138); Charles & Keith Asymmetrical Shoulder Bag (
$66; $53); Sarah Flint Perfect Pump 85 Heels ($595)
16. Layer a Minidress Over Skinny Pants
We know, we’re just as surprised at the return of this Y2K trend as you are, but there is a way to make it look chic, we promise. Opt for a minidress or even a tunic with more of a polished vibe than boho, and choose pants that have a very slim fit. If you stick with black and white it will have an overall ’60s Mod look.
17. Layer a Sweater Over a Fancy Maxi
Turn a formal wedding-guest dress into something more appropriate for a holiday dinner or a festive cocktail party by pulling a chunky, cozy knit over the top. Keep your hair and makeup minimal and add a few brightly hued accessories to really tone down those fancy vibes.
18. Tie a Sweater Over Your Coat
If you often find yourself overheating in a super-warm coat (especially one that’s more appropriate for an arctic excursion than suburban living), simply wear a thin tee under your coat and tie your sweater around your waist. Then, when you get wherever you’re going, take off the coat and put on your sweater.
19. Try a Standout Scarf
Picking up a bold new blanket scarf is less of an investment than a scene-stealing coat but has the same “look at me!” impact that will make you stand out from the crowd.
Shop similar styles: Lands’ End CashSoft Beanie Hat ($20); Acne Studios Mohair Scarf ($310); Club Monaco Slim Belted Coat ($479); Staud Acute Shoulder Bag ($350); The North Face Half Dome Fleece Sweatpants ($55)
20. Rock Red and Green the Grown-Up Way
Nothing against ugly holiday sweaters, but some of us prefer our festive outfits to be a bit more subtle. Separate your Christmas colors with a basic neutral, like blue-wash denim, khaki green or marled gray, to make the combo feel less obviously holiday-centric.
21. Slip Into a Festive Blazer
Wear a bold, cushy topper like this one over your winter whites and finish the whole look off with a pair of smart suede loafers. You're officially ready for any and all invitations that come your way, from your office holiday party to your best friend's cookie exchange (even if they’re just over Zoom).
22. Rock a Chunky Sweater Over Pinstripe Pants
Our weekend and work wardrobes have melded together to become one big, stylish family. So why not mix and match your most classic office trousers with a super-cozy chunky knit?
23. Create Your Own Colorblocking
Play around with any and all bright, solid-hued pieces in your wardrobe to create a bold combination all your own.
Shop similar styles: Calvin Klein Mid-Length Coat (
$280; $196); C by Bloomingdale’s Cashmere Turtleneck Sweater ($188; $113); AKNVAS O’Connor Pants ($460); Mark & Graham Italian Leather Pouch ($79); Rothy’s The Point Flats ($149)
24. Really Embrace Celebratory Dressing
How often do you have an excuse to rock a full tulle skirt and ornament-shaped earrings? It doesn’t matter if you’re only plans are to hang out in the living room trying to prevent your pets from knocking over the tree, we say bring on the tutus, candy cane knits and all things glam.
Shop similar styles: Deepa Gurnani Roberta Earrings ($45); Hyacinth House Rouge Color Block Sweater ($148); Nouvelle Amsale Nandita Skirt ($550); Marc Jacobs Leather Tote Bag ($450); Nine West Timie Slingback Heels (
25. Dress Up an Ugly Holiday Sweater
Sweaters covered in tinsel, pom-poms, blinking lights and unexpected holiday scenes have become as much of a December staple as sequins and velvet. And while you can always wear yours over some simple jeans and boots, dressing them up with tights and a sexy skirt or embellished accessories just adds to the fun.
26. Think Outside the Layering Box
You wore your long-sleeve lace blouse over silky camis all summer long, but now it’s time to rock that baby under your chunkiest sweater for a fresh contrast of styles.
Shop similar styles: Cider Floral Lace Top ($18); Lunya Lofty Wool Sweater ($348); Lovers and Friends Regina Midi Skirt ($188); Lulu Guinness Queenie Bag (
$325; $162); Keds Champion Lace-Up Sneakers ($55)
27. Embrace the Power of the Puffer
You resisted the practical puffer for so long, but it’s finally time to give in. And hey, there’s no need to resign yourself to looking like the Michelin Man when there are so many colorful, fun and even flattering options out there.
28. Wear Sweats All Day Long
Opt for a sleeker pair than the grays you usually wear the to the gym, like a slim-fit cream set or camel rib-knit. Then finish with a long tailored coat, some elegant jewelry and either sneakers or ankle boots, and no one will even notice you're wearing your PJs out and about.
29. Slip Tights on Under Your Jeans
We’re all pretty well versed in the basics of layering tops, but when it comes to our legs, they often get left out in the cold (literally). Slip on a pair of tights to give your stems some extra protection.
Shop similar styles: Jakke Faux-Fur Coat ($304); H&M Cableknit Sweater ($30); Commando Ultimate Opaque Control Top Tights ($40); Abercrombie & Fitch Ultra-High Rise ’90s Straight Jean (
$99; $70); Tory Burch Perrine Heel Loafers ($378)
30. Break Out the Colorful Faux Fur
When it comes to faux fur, we say the more faux the better. That means super-bright colors and unnatural prints galore. They are meant to be fun, after all.
31. Ring in the New Year in Full Glam
For New Year's Eve, think beyond black, gold and silver. We're partial to rosey pink but seafoam green or deep plum could also work. (P.S. Pair your over-the-top sparkles with a leather moto or luxe faux-fur coat to keep the party vibes going on the way to the event.)