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72233_bk0001Q. I recently bought this black chiffon skirt with sequins from J.Crew.   I am planning on wearing it to a semi formal attire party where everyone will be wearing dresses.  Any suggestions of what to wear on top?  Keep in mind that I’m only a teenager and don’t have the bank account I would like to have. Thanks!
-Skirt SOS

A. We like coming to the rescue of stylish budget-minded girls like ourselves.  I went “window” shopping on several sites for you and found several party-worthy tops that would do your skirt justice and not make your bank account look suddenly bleak. I decided to stick with black tops to give the illusion of a dress since you believe many girls will be wearing dresses. And each top has something to be desired whether it be sparkle, shine or a great shape. Don’t forget a great pair of earrings to finish the look.

Yq3631_001deep v-neck tank
$49 at espritshop.com

P193863b
Sparkle & Fade
Sequin Inset Cami
$19.99 at urbanoutfitters.com

P203103b

Sparkle & Fade
Glitter Tank
$24 at urbanoutfitters.com

AxdressQ.  I bought a silk chiffon red dress from A/X for my company’s holiday party and I have no idea what to wear it with.  What color shoes go with it?  What type of jewelry? I work at a trading firm on Wall Street and the party is going to be at a trendy Meat Packing District loft-type space.
-Party Wear

A. For a party dress like this, look for metallic gold, a rush of rich red or sassy black with rhinestones to slip your feet into and definitely wear earrings that dangle.  I’d skip a necklace and if you still want to wear more jewelry, then choose a few thin gold bangles or a big faux stone cocktail ring.

Shown left: silk chiffon dress, $109.99  (sale) at armaniexchange.com

174187

JLO by Jennifer Lopez ‘Jenni’ Sandal
$114.95 at nordstrom.com

162677

Argento Vivo Ruby
& Pearl Earrings
$198 at nordstrom.com

Tpa_1871_99721856
Meg’s 12 Carat Gold
& Amber 14k CZ
Cocktail Ring
$99 at emitations.com

Q. What color shoe should I wear with Winter White pants?
-Shoe Color Confusion

A. Play off the color of your top or jacket.  White is a neutral so anything will work, but keep it toned down.  If you’re wearing winter white from head to toe, then look for caramel, latte, soft metallic pinks, pale autumnal colors, even opt for patterns like animal print or plaid. Of course, black and winter white is always a chic combination. Some suggestions:

827184452dClaudia Ciuti Rum
slingbacks
$285.95 at zappos.com

985142199d

Vigotti R1969
Pump
$37.95 at zappos.com

827128876d
Giuseppe Zanotti
E5703 Pump
$185.95 at zappos.com

AnthQ. I am trying to figure out what to wear to family gatherings during the holiday season. I need something that strikes a good balance of dressed up but somewhat casual so I look nice and pulled together but not over the top or inappropriately dressed. I would appreciate any suggestions you may have.
-Festive Dress

A. Keep it simple.  Don’t wear jeans.  If you want to be comfortable, avoid wearing a dress. The items that strike a good balance of festive, but not over the top, are velvet pants or a fitted velvet jacket, a camisole top with lace or in a silky fabric that can be worn under a jacket or a cardigan, a cardigan with details like beading and a skirt than can be paired with knee high boots.

shown right: the teahouse wrap and gray pants strike the perfect balance, $138 at anthropologie.com

Q. I am attending a black-tie event in November.  I don’t feel comfortable in floor-length dresses.  Is tea-length acceptable?  If so, what do you suggest?  Help…and hurry! 
-Black-tie challenged

A. If celebrities can walk the red carpet for the Oscars and Emmys in sophisticated tuxedos (a la Greta Garbo and Diane Keaton) and sweet tea length confections (think Sarah Jessica Parker), then it’s certainly fine for you to attend a black tie event in a dress that doesn’t skim the floor. Here are a few favorite finds:

166139
velvet dress
Laundry by Shelli Segal
$265 at edressme.com

166119

BCBG Max Azria
´D Esprit´ Trimmed Point Strapless Dress
$400 at nordstrom.com

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