Be Yule cool with these few simple rules and you won’t look like a fool at the Christmas parties
‘Tis the season to be jolly as bottles are uncorked in boardrooms, bars and restaurants. Although ostensibly occurring outside normal work time, these annuals melees of mistletoe and wine, secret Santa’s and illicit intimacy are actually fiercely-fought festive opportunities for one-upmanship – especially in matters sartorial.
Yuletide tailoring is an end-of-year essential if you want to get away with being partly legless at the party. You want to look suitably festive without turning up in a Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer jumper. There is, after all, a fine line between cheery and cheesy.
To ensure that you do not overstep any boundaries, visiting an image consultant might be one option. Fashion designer and image advisor, Eve Roth Lindsay, founder of Savvy Style, says the secret of getting it right on office party night is to be prepared. Avoid waiting for the invitation, she advises, then rushing out to buy something at the last minute.
Lindsay says: “You know you will need something smart to wear, so go shopping when you are not under pressure. Think about the types of parties you will be going to and the type of impression you would like to make.”
Her advice for making an entrance is to find a colour that demands attention. Her own clients are provided with a colour analysis, where they are matched with a varied set of colours and patterns from a swatch book, to determine what works best for them.
She also recommends brushing up on general dress code guidelines. She sees these as now internationally consistent for many social events and as the easiest way to avoid a fashion faux pas.
She says: “The key here is not to wear a holiday-themed garment – so forget the Santa Claus ties. On the other hand, wearing a red shirt, jumper or tie will look great. Make an effort to do something special, whether it is in terms of colour or fabric. A velvet jacket worn with dress trousers certainly shows you are in the party mode.”
To ensure you look the whole package, pampering is essential. Lindsay advises getting regular haircuts and using approved skincare and haircare products. Checking your teeth to ensure a winning smile, practicing your handshake and having a pre-emptive manicure are also high on her list of recommendations. She also suggests updating your accessories from time to time, as wallets, belts and shoes can soon tire and downgrade your overall appearance.
During the actual ‘do’, Lindsay says the most important thing to remember is to smile and look like you are enjoying yourself. She says: “Generally people like to be around happy people. Hold a drink in one hand, even if you aren’t drinking. Learn the signals of body language and avoid crossing your arms, a sure sign that you are unavailable or uninterested. Try not to spend too much time with one person. The more you meet, the more you network.”