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  • Style and Shop the Christmas Party Season the Mum a Porter wayShopping for the Christmas party season, I have realised since becoming a mother,  if not executed with strategy, can be a frivolous and tedious task. Spending all that time and money on sequins and sparkles that will get worn once and then left collecting dust in the wardrobe  doesn’t seem appealing now I am a mum and time and money is so precious. Having said that, that doesn’t mean I am going to go all Grinch on festive fashion and not partake at all, in fact for the first time in a while I am so excited about a little sparkle! I am just going to do it in a way that works for me. If you are on a budget this Christmas or can’t even think about finding the time to consider shopping or styling the Christmas party season, then I think my approach might also be useful for you.

    If you read my previous Festive Style Guide Edit you will know that I basically gave up on dressing for the festive season last year, I was still using my clothes as a means to hide in the dark and all the glimmer of party season sequins and glitter was just too overwhelming for me. I ended up wearing an all black outfit that I bought limited for time and short on options. If you don’t have the budget or the time, I can totally understand why styling and/or buying clothes for the Christmas party season can feel like a complete and utter waste of time or money. But if, like me, your clothes and the right outfit can make you feel amazing about yourself, then why should you miss out on that opportunity?

    That doesn’t mean you need to buy all new everything, or even wear a single sequin, just shop in a way that is right for your time, your budget and your style. This edit should help you to nail the kind of look(s) you’re going for this Christmas party season, give you a little bit of inspiration and help you style and shop in a way that really works best for you.

    Small Buys, Big Wins

    These can be appealing to those both on a budget or limited with time, simply because these little items can completely transform your entire look with very little effort and in most cases with very little money too. The likelihood is that you will already have a black shift dress in your wardrobe, so a pair of statement tights is already a game changer. You might not have a simple black dress, but a black jumpsuit, which would look amazing styled with a turban, a bright red lipstick, a pair of dazzling diamante Isabel Marant earrings (or inspired) and an amazing pair of gold sandals.  That black dress or jumpsuit is no longer a simple black item, but a blank canvas for you to showcase all of your amazing accessories. You can basically do the same with just about any outfit in your wardrobe, even a pair of black jeans and silk shirt ensemble can be transformed with a statement chain, a necktie or a chain belt, open a few buttons and show off a lacy bra beneath and suddenly you have a whole new outfit. Ultimately you can create a whole new look with very few items and if you’re on a budget, you can shop accessories for as cheap as a few pounds!

    The amazing time saving factor here is, you won’t incur any issues with sizing that you are likely to incur when shopping online for clothes, as most accessories don’t even require you to try them on! #winwin

    Buckle metallic belt
    Coin multi chain waist and hip belt
    Hammered coin chain belt
    Gold shell pendant earrings
    Shell choker necklace
    Gold shell anklet
    Straw Clutch
    Neon Bag
    Twist Snake Bag
    Black top handle Bag
    Black evening bag
    Yellow Boxy Bag
    Coin Belt
    Gold Bracelet
    Gold Earrings
    Checked Headband
    Leopard Print Belt
    Burgundy Captains Cap
    Large Round Earrings – Green
    Spotted tights
    Gold Metal waist belt
    Rhinestone Earrings
    Rhinestone Earrings
    Door Knocker Earring
    Glittery Alice Band
    Gold Glittery Alice Band
    Moschino x HM Gold-plated Belt
    Isabel Marant crystal drop chandelier earrings
    Shrimps - Antonia Bead Embellished Hair Clip - Womens - Black Multi
    Giorgio Armani Rouge Ecstasy Lipstick (Various Shades) - 402
    Leopard Spot Black Tights
    Womens Black stud embellished knit turban headband
    Ashley Williams Hello Hair Pins
    Ashley Williams Yes Hair Pins
    Topshop Womens **Matte Sequin Hair Bandeau
    Shrimps Antonia faux-pearl barrette
    Jeya Jewelled Headband
    Kristina Textured Leopard-Print Headband
    Rock 'N' Rose gold ornate cross drop hoop earrings
    Asos Design ASOS DESIGN pack of 2 barette hair clips in circle and triangle in gold
    Gucci - Crystal-embellished Tortoiseshell Resin Hair Slide - Brown
    Elizabeth Cole Star Hair Pin Set
    Asos Design ASOS DESIGN pack of 2 wavy hair clips with pearls in gold
    Shooting Stars Glitter Hair Clips Pack of Two
    Womens Black plisse velvet twist turban headband
    GG lurex turban
    Valentino Garavani printed turban
    Gucci - Guccilux Logo Jacquard Lurex Turban Headband - Womens - Multi
    Maison Michel Carolyn Lurex Headband
    Oliver Bonas Plisse Knotted Green Turban Headband
    Plisse Knotted Blue Turban Headband
    Missoni Lurex Turban Headband
    Dolce & Gabbana Leopard turban
    Bourjois Rouge Fabuleux Lipstick 2.4g (Various Shades) - Cindered-lla

    Shop and Style Separates

    A statement dress is a statement dress and when you wear it mostly you are just wearing that dress. It is the centre piece of your ensemble, unlike the aforementioned simple black shift dress. However, when you shop separates, if you opt for the right pieces the styling opportunities are endless. With the help of changing up the accessories, hair and make up, the shoes and handbag, a sequined bodysuit for example, can also be styled with a pair of leather shorts for a relaxed sexy vibe, with a leather skirt for a straight up glam and sexy look, with a pair of straight leg black wash jeans for a vintage retro feel and with a pair of culottes or black trousers for a smarter put together look. All just as Christmassy, completely different looks for lots more styling opportunities.

    Needless to say buying the right separates makes it incredibly easy for you to style your new items with what you already have in your wardrobe. Who said everything has to be new, if anything at all?

    Snakeskin flatform espadrilles
    Ivory lace insert boho top
    Snake print boho top
    Jacquard-weave Bohemian top
    Lonely Hearts Tee
    Lace Cami
    Pink Snakeskin Shirt
    Nasty Gal Faces T-Shirt line the Reclaimed Vintage Tee
    Reclaimed Vintage T-Shirt
    Reclaimed Vintage Stars and Moons Sweater
    Reclaimed Vintage Art Cropped Sweater
    Pale Green Tea Blouse
    White Tea Blouse
    Gingham Top
    Sheer square neck top
    Linen mix with Top
    Square neck top in broderie with shirring
    Square neck top in broderie with shirring
    Square neck top in broderie with shirring
    Off-the-shoulder Blouse
    Off the Shoulder top
    Geo Print Wrap Top
    Black Woven Top
    Woven Natural Top
    Basic v-neck tee
    Black Bodysuit
    Red print blouse
    Black Shirt
    Ruffled Cotton Blouse
    Gingham Shirt
    Off-the-shoulder Blouse
    Black Pleated Blouse
    Electric Sound Tee
    Blue Tunic
    Snake Print pleated body suit
    Black pleated bodysuit
    Silk top
    V Neck Body Suit
    V-neck Bodysuit
    V-Neck Longline Long Sleeve Blouse
    Plunge Blouse
    Velvet Shirt
    Gold Leaf Shirt

    Count your Sparkles

    This guide is by no way saying that you mustn’t buy a single sequin or any sparkle or glitter, especially if you’re dying to do so! It’s only Christmas once a year and if you’re craving some sparkle I say go for it! I have spent the past four years wearing black and velvet in monochromatic colours and have never worn sequins or sparkles at Christmas. This year will be my first. Nevertheless my distaste for investing in festive fashion still remains, so I am trying to keep any typically and specifically festive pieces that I purchase to a minimum and of a maximum spend of £50. In this case shopping separates works well, because separates are usually a little cheaper than buying a dress or jumpsuit for example. Having said that, I have been pleasantly surprised by how much you can get for your money from the likes of H&M and Topshop. So, even whilst budgeting, you can actually get yourself some amazing pieces. My favourite Christmas party season item is a pair of sparkly flared trousers that cost just £20 and I can’t wait to wear them!

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    Christmas and Beyond

    Last but not least, if you’re awful at budgeting, don’t like the idea of spending a single penny on sparkles and sequins, don’t have the time or don’t care to be styling separates and aren’t one for going HAM on accessories, then shopping for items you can wear now and beyond Christmas could be your solution. Shopping this way needn’t mean your Christmas ensembles be any less special just because it’s not Christmas crazy. It just means that you’ll end up with items that not only you love, but can and will want to wear over and over again even once the Christmas party season has well and truly ended.

    To do this I would advise going for either a subtle, alternative or a less predictable take on dressing for the season. On my Instagram I have spoken about wearing prints and patterns that have a subtle nod to Christmas, like a star print, feather print or even a Rixo London inspired constellation print, which I love. Go for a red dress that can be dressed up with a pair of gold heels and dressed down with black boots. Alternatively, I quite like red leopard as an option, not only is it festive, but it’s completely on trend.

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    You can watch my try-on and styling videos featuring items from this post here.

    Happy Styling Lovelies,

    Ayesha (Mum a Porter) x

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