Mom’s Personal Shopper: Holiday Dresses (Under $200)

By Kristin Hull

Photos courtesy of retailers
Photos courtesy of retailers

As a mom, you may be looking at the upcoming holiday season with trepidation. It’s not that you don’t enjoy it, it’s just that there’s So. Much. To. Do. And since most of the “to-dos” have to do with everyone except yourself, guess whose needs get relegated to the bottom of the list? Right.

On top of it, you’re probably getting invited to all kinds of soirees from the office holiday dinner to the neighborhood cocktail party. And you really want to go. After all, you haven’t been to a dressy grown-up party since well, probably last December. But, who has time to find something to wear that is stylish, doesn’t have little hand stains on it, and actually fits? Well, we do. So, we’ve done the shopping for you.

Put a look together in no time

The best thing about all of the pieces in the photo above is that they can be worn with black tights and black shoes so putting together an entire outfit is easy. If your choice is a solid color, try some patterned tights. As for shoes, pointy-toe pumps are back with a vengeance but if you’re feeling a little funkier try a pair of high-heeled booties.

Don’t Be Afraid to Show Those Gams

Cocktail dresses are often fairly short but don’t let that stop you from wearing them. As long as most of your upper body covered, it balances out. Plus, it’s sexy – and you deserve to feel sexy every once in a while. And the beauty of colder weather is that tights are required so there’s no need to worry about not having a tan or highlighting your cellulite. You can even buy Spanx tights to help camouflage the tummy, thighs or butt.

How to Cover Up

To keep the chill away, try pairing your holiday ensemble with a blazer or a leather jacket.

Wear It Again

If your parties involve different groups of people, you can wear your dress again and again and no one will be the wiser. On the other hand, if it looks great on you (and you feel hot/sexy/pretty in it) does it really matter if you are seen in it more than once?

Now, let’s get to the shopping part!

(top row, left to right)

Lace Side Jumpsuit ($125/Warehouse – free shipping and returns!): This is from a British company so chances that someone else will be wearing the same thing are slim. Also, give yourself plenty of time for it to arrive since it has to travel from afar. Body types it flatters: straight, hourglass

Pink Wrap Dress ($50/Miss Selfridge – free shipping!): This is another British company so order soon to ensure it will arrive in time. Amp it up with some long necklaces and a sparkly black belt. Body types it flatters: straight, hourglass

Steel the One Dress ($214.99/Modcloth): Stand out in this gorgeous twenties-inspired frock. Body types it flatters: straight, hourglass

Sister Jane Crystal Crown Shift Dress ($121.03/Asos – free shipping both ways! British company, order early): If you’re looking for simplicity with a little wow factor consider this sleek shift dress. Body types it flatters: apple, straight

Lace Skater Dress ($105/Oasis – free shipping! British company, order early): Add a skinny patent leather belt to this dress to give it a designer feel. Body types it flatters: pear, hourglass

(bottom row, left to right)

Sequined Chiffon Dress ($189.99/Mango – free shipping!): Look sassy and chic in this sparkly shift. Body types it flatters: apple, straight

Barcelona Balcony Dress ($52.99/Modcloth – free shipping!): The fuller skirt on this dress helps hide the tummy while the black waistband adds curves. Body types it flatters: straight, hourglass

Tinsle Metallic Dress ($50/Chloe Loves Charlie): A dress for the modern Audrey Hepburn-type. Body types it flatters: hourglass, straight, pear

Adrianna Papell Snakeskin Embossed Crepe Sheath Dress ($118/Nordstrom – free shipping both ways!): Snakeskin is a big trend right now. Mix it with a vibrant red and you’ve got the perfect holiday frock. The cap sleeves draw attention to the shoulders and away from the hips. Body types it flatters: pear, hourglass

Hi Lo Black Tube Dress (now $55.99, reg. 99/Chloe Loves Charlie): My hourglass figure is jealous it can’t wear this super-contemporary, totally comfortable design. Apple bodies rejoice; you’ve got it made with this dress. Body types it flatters: apple, straight

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