Friday, December 12, 2008

Party Perfect in 5 Days: Day One: Plan Ahead

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Party Perfect in 5 Days
Day One: Plan Ahead
 | Get a Head Start  | Research
Cynthia Nellis   from Cynthia Nellis
This is your big night: you want the dress, the date, the accessories and the hair to be memorable. Relax! Start by making plans and researching dress types that are appropriate for different occasions, as well as colors and styles that flatter your figure.
 
 
Get a Head Start
  Formal, Casual, Cocktail or Something Else?
Usually the event invitation will clue you into the formality of the event, whether it's casual or black tie. But sometimes even that will cause confusion (short dress or long?)

In general, the later in the day the event (after 6 p.m.), the dressier. Long dresses are usually reserved only for formal (black tie) occasions.

While some fabrics are year-round -- silk, brocade, organza, jersey -- fabrics like velvet and gold spangles are best reserved for winter holidays.

 
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  Flatter Your Figure
The most important feature of your new dress -- more important than its trendiness, designer or color -- is how well it flatters you. Not every dress silhouette will work for your body so you'll need to do some quick research on your specific needs.
Flattery tips for formal dresses:
  • Remember that darker colors and simple cuts (a sheath, an A-line) are the most flattering.
  • The best way to look special is to show off your best feature. If you have gorgeous eyes, then play them up with beautiful makeup, off-the-face hair and jewelled earrings in a complimentary shade. If your legs are spectacular, then show them off with a short, fitted dress and stilettos.
  • Dressing to flatter your figure is as much about playing up your best features as it is about hiding what's not perfect.
  • Not sure what your best asset is? Ask a friend or significant other. Or go to a store that sells special occasion dresses and enlist the salesperson's help.

 
  Formal Dress FAQs
Wonder how to accessorize a formal dress? Not sure what "Cocktail Attire" really means? Browse through these frequently asked formalwear questions for a quick education on dressing for occasions.
 
Research
  Dress glossary
Find photos and descriptions of dress styles: from empire waists to ballgowns.
 
  Choose a Color
You could just wear black (classy, flattering and slenderizing), but why not explore some of the other dressy options?
Red, bold prints, even gold are dramatic enough for evening wear. Pastels, mid-range brights and soft prints look great for dressy day occasions.
Blue (from navy to royal), pink (from cotton candy to fuchsia) and white (from candlelight to cream) look great on almost everyone. Remember that the "Don't wear white to a wedding" wisdom is still considered a "Fashion Don't" by most women.
 
Cynthia Nellis
 
 
 
 
 
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