30 Holiday Party Dresses for Every Event on Your Calendar

Tis the season for holiday party invites, from fancy cocktails to charity galas to formal dinners. Having multiple head-turning outfits ready to go is a must for me during the holiday season — but finding the perfect holiday dress isn’t always easy, especially when you’re working under a time crunch.

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If you’re not quite sure where to start, begin with a LBD. The little black dress is the hero of the holiday party season. Why? It’s an easy match for that statement clutch and those fancy shoes you’ve been waiting to wear. Plus, you can get away with wearing the perfect LBD just about anywhere. Work, brunch, the club … you name it.

If basic black isn’t your thing, why not try something with sequins? It’s the perfect time to go full-on glam in head-to-toe glitter — the holidays are about being extra, after all. If you’re a freeze baby, look for a cocktail dress with sleeves. There are plenty of details to look out for that will set your holiday party look apart from the rest — see below for some inspiration, a gift from us to you.

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Best Black Party Dresses

You can never have too many black party dresses in your closet. The universally-flattering color can make even the most inexpensive materials look fancier. Plus, you don’t have to worry as much about any spills or makeup stains from hugging all your friends.


Saks Fifth Avenue

Alice + Olivia
$895

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Neiman Marcus

Halston Heritage
$525

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J.Crew

J. Crew
$178

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Best Party Dresses with Sleeves

Just because the event is a bit more formal, doesn’t mean you have to wear a sleeveless dress. Keep your arms covered and warm in one of the long-sleeve options ahead. The long-sleeve designs also add an elegant touch that the Royals would certainly approve of.

Related: All of the Royal Family’s Fashion Rules and Restrictions


Nordstrom

Topshop
$85

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Shopbop

Retrofete
$575

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My Theresa

Rebecca Vallance
$423

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Best Designer Party Dresses

Special occasions call for special outfits. The designer dresses below are made with high-quality fabrics and impeccable craftsmanship, which means you’ll get to re-wear them over and over again during the holiday season.


Shopbop

Zimmermann
$630

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Net-a-Porter

Rixo London
$550

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Bloomingdale’s

Michael Michael Kors
$155

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Best White Party Dresses

That whole “don’t wear white after Labor Day” thing is tired. In fact, the color seems to be quite a hit for fall/winter 2018 — Meghan Markle and Michelle Obama both recently wore it. So if you’re thinking about wearing white this holiday season, we go for it. There are plenty of options to choose from in the stores, and these are our favorites.


Shopbop

Marchesa Notte
$695

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Saks Fifth Avenue

Alexis
$298 (Originally $596)

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Revolve

NBD
$132

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Best Plus Size Party Dress

Here are three brands that need to be bookmarked for all of your party needs. They keep a versatile selection of dresses stocked for every shape and size.


Macy’s

R&M Richards
$64 (Originally $89)

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Macy’s

Adrianna Papell
$200

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Eloquii

Eloquii
$170

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Best Bodycon Party Dresses

If you’re looking to show off your figure, a bodycon dress is always a solid option — plus, these dresses look great under leather and fur jackets.


Nordstrom

Bailey 44
$167 (Originally $238)

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Nordstrom

French Connection
$95 (Originally $158)

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Nordstrom

Reformation
$298

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Best Sheer Party Dresses

The naked dress trend is definitely a favorite for celebrities on the red carpet. And you can try it out, too, during your next event with a sheer party dress.

Related: The 30 Most Naked Dresses of all Time


Nordstrom

Tadashi Shoji
$368

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Nordstrom

Equipment
$448

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Nordstrom

Ali & Jay
$138

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Best Party Gowns

Sometimes you’ll need something that’s a bit more formal than a cocktail dress. These gowns check that box and are sure to help you nail a spot on the best-dressed list.


Nordstrom

Alice McCall
$490

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Nordstrom

Chiara Boni La Petite Robe
$995

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Nordstrom

Frame and Partners
$329

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Best Mini Party Dresses

Go ahead and show off those legs while you’re on the dance floor. Shorter hemlines are a party dress staple, and will instantly give you a confidence boost.


Nordstrom

NBD
$148

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Nordstrom

Privacy Please
$148

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Nordstrom

Retrofete
$615

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Best Sequin Party Dresses

Did the holidays really happen if you didn’t wear a sequin dress. The shiny embellishment is a hero when it comes to dressing up for major events. 


Nordstrom

Topshop
$34 (Originally $68)

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Urban Outfitters

Dress the Population
$238

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Fwrd

RtA
$425

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