What does “Holiday Attire” Really Mean?

How to dress for a holiday partyThe day after I posted my last blog about Maintaining Your Professional Brand During the Holiday Season, I received a call from one of my fav male clients in Texas. His question to me, “My wife and I have been invited to a holiday party and the invitation says, Holiday Attire. What the heck is Holiday Attire?”

Many times the location can be an indicator as to what to wear. BUT don’t assume! Your best bet is to pick up the phone and call the host and ask for clarification because you don’t want to be over or under dressed.

Several years ago I went to a holiday party and the invitation specifically said Cocktail Attire. One woman showed up in a racy red formal dress with a plunging neckline and long train. And yes, she had matching red lipstick and red shoes. OVERKILL! In addition, it was a business holiday party at the Chairman of the Board’s home—and she was indeed an employee of the organization. So, point being; don’t be THAT person who is wildly out of touch. Be sure to maintain your professional brand during this festive season.

As the host of the party – you need to be more specific. You’ve left your guests in quite a quandary— Holiday Attire means absolutely nothing! Are you asking them to come in formal, cocktail, snappy casual, business attire or are you asking them to go buy a cheesy Christmas sweater? Be clear, concise and to the point on your holiday invitations.

As the hostess, I have made this mistake as well. Many moons ago, I threw a pre-golf tournament party for 500 people. The invitation that I belabored over for weeks requested that the guests come to the event dressed in Texas Chic attire. Let’s think about this—I am catering to mostly male golfers—need I say more! I received no less that 100 calls asking me what Texas Chic was and for many who didn’t call—let’s just say we saw it all! Hey, it happens to the best of us.

OK, back to you—Once the host has clarified what the attire is for the occasion and you still don’t know what to wear, we can help!

Did you find this valuable? Would you like additional information so you can have success at every event this holiday season?

 

 

 

 

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