The holiday season is officially upon us, which means your social life is about to become seriously busy.
For every party, there’s a different dress code: Intimate gift swaps allow for casual threads, while swanky soirees call something a bit fancier.
Unless you hate shopping, (in which case, go away) outfit planning is half the fun. What better excuse than a party to snag that leather skirt you’ve been eyeing?
The fun ends, however, when it comes to dreaming up an ensemble for your office holiday party.
You’ll want to look party-ready, but still professional; dressed up, but not overdone. So to help along the process, instead of listing what you should wear, this list covers what you shouldn’t.
Normally, fashion rules are made to be broken — but when it comes to the workplace, it’s best to play it safe.
Skip the bandage dress
First off, bandage dresses look good on approximately one percent of the female population, and unless you model thongs for a living, you’re probably not one of those people.
A good rule of thumb: If it could double as Spanx, it’s too damn tight. If you want to show off your curves (and who doesn’t?), opt for less college-freshman-at-a-nightclub details. Think cinched waistlines, peplums and classic wrap dresses, which all enhance that coveted feminine hourglass shape.
Pass on boob-bearing necklines
The old adage “if you’ve got it, flaunt it” is a damn good rule to live by, except if you’re in a work environment. While your male cubicle-mate would undoubtedly enjoy a peek at your two best assets, that’s not the kind of attention you should be aiming for.
Flatter the girls (without baring them Rihanna-style) by opting for tops with interesting necklines or embellishments. While the visual interest will draw attention to the area, a touch of modesty will ensure you’re known for your work — not your killer D-cups.
Same goes for those sky-high stilettos
The ability to strut your stuff confidently in pin-thin stiletto heels is one very few women actually possess. Add alcohol into the equation, and you’ll be stumbling around like a baby giraffe learning to walk all night.
Yes, heels are flattering, but if you’re going to be dancing (and you will), you’re better off in something a little more wearable than those 6-inch platform pumps.
If your heart is set on heels, try lower and thicker styles. Other options include comfier platform styles and dressy flats.
Just don't do anything white
Two peppermint martinis in and your motor functions are seriously compromised. By the end of the night, your pristine winter-white frock will probably end up looking less Snow Goddess and more slush-on-a-Manhattan-street-corner (read: dirty).
Unless you possess an unusual knack for coordination (or are sipping from a spill-proof glass), forgo the ivory in favor of darker, richer hues — they’re more appropriate for evening wear, anyway. If you really prefer light colors, opt for prints; a busy pattern can help camouflage the inevitable spill or stain.
Say no to cutouts
If you’ve got the type of body that can rock cutouts without looking like a sausage squeezed into a condom, lucky you. But just because you can doesn’t mean you should -- showing too much skin at a work function is a recipe for disaster.
Aside from becoming the subject of gossip until next year’s holiday party, exposing too much conveys a lack of respect for your professional role. Instead, make a statement with bold patterns, funky accessories or unexpected embellishments, and your look will be memorable for all of the right reasons.
Check out more fashion inspiration from Elite Daily on Polyvore.