When it comes to planning your wardrobe for the holiday season, get ready to embrace holiday party dresses in rich jewel tones, crimson red and glam metallics — and winter weddings are no exception. But with so many choices, how are you supposed to pick the perfect dress for the occasion? We've rounded up 15 festive options that are sublimely suited for the most common wedding dress codes. So whether the invite says "black tie" or "dressy casual," you'll be dressed to impress. From an ankle grazing satin silhouette to a brocade sheath, these holiday-worthy dresses are guaranteed to dazzle at all your seasonal fêtes.
If the invite says semiformal or dressy casual...
This romantic shift dress is a must in any winter wardrobe. An angular lace panel, cap sleeves and slant hip pockets add a hint of whimsy. Complete the look with tights and glitter-flecked booties — more formal occasions call for an embellished pump. You can even throw on a blazer for your office holiday party. ("Rene" chantilly shift dress, $348, Nightcap x Carisa available at Shopbop)
If you know it's going to be a more casual, you can totally revamp something you already have in your closet, like a classic crepe shift dress. This wardrobe staple is finished with a tiered hemline and ruffled elbow-length sleeves. And that new crystal collar necklace you've been waiting to bust out, now's the time. (Ruffle hem shift dress, $138, CeCe Kate available at Nordstrom)
We've found your new favorite party dress! This festive frock catches the light with every shake and shimmy on the dance floor. Just make sure to pair with a stack heel, so you can show off your best moves all night long, sans sore feet. ("Peyton" party dress, $146, Show Me Your Mumu)
Brocade and berry tones? We're sold! This shift steals the show with a figure-skimming silhouette and party-ready mini length. The daring hemline is balanced by a high neck, so you're not showing too much skin in the dead of winter. You could totally rock with over-the-knee boots, if the occasion allows. ("Betty" brocade tunic dress, $158, French Connection)
Give 'em the cold shoulder with this flirty, off-the-shoulder stunner. It features a ruffled overlay and oversized silhouette, so you can move and groove with ease. Pair with statement tassel earrings and sky high heels. ("Maison" burgundy dress, $428, MLM Label available at Revolve)
If the invite says formal or black tie optional...
You can totally rock a knee length (or slightly above) cocktail dress at a "black tie optional" wedding. Just make sure it feels more formal — and in the case of a holiday wedding, festive — than your go-to LBD. Winter is a wonderful time to embrace rich, elegant fabrics. Italian diamond jacquard elevates this soiree-ready silhouette. ("Allie" diamond jacquard dress, $675, Milly)
When the music starts playing, that's your cue to hit the dancefloor in this made-to-move silhouette! The figure-flattering empire waist nips in at your narrowest part, showing off your shape. While the bronze, accordion-pleated skirt twirls and shines every time you show off your epic dance moves. ("Alba" dress, $895, A.L.C)
'Tis the season to don crimson red. We're head over heels for this romantic chantilly lace dress, featuring an illusion neckline, high collar and sophisticated midi length. This little number calls for a bold red lip and pointy toe pumps. ("Leading Lady" dress, $215, Yumi Kim available at Shopbop)
A glamorous throwback to the 1940s. Sparkling stripes create striking texture on this mid-calf cocktail dress. The bow shoulder straps add a feminine touch, which beautifully contrasts the structured silhouette. ("McCarti" sparkle midi dress, $699, Rebecca Vallance)
When in doubt, an ankle-grazing dress is your best bet for a "black tie optional" affair. This bias-cut slip, rendered in skin-caressing emerald satin, is a stunning choice. Accessorize with sparkling statement earrings — we'd suggest rich jewel tones, like rubies, emeralds or sapphires. And, of course, an oversized cape or fur coat is certainly in order for the season. ("Amoret" satin bias dress, $625, Tibi)
If the invite says black tie...
A "black tie" wedding is the time to bust out that runway-ready, dream dress you bought but haven't had the occasion to wear. Go ahead and glam it up with a floor-sweeping silhouette and a luxe combination of fabrics — in this case foiled georgette, sheer lace and tulle. ("Delana" metallic-blocked dress, $598, BCBGMaxazria)
Show off your best assets with this curve-hugging, stretch crepe gown. This striking, asymmetrical neckline highlights toned shoulders and arms. Take it up a notch with dazzling drop earrings and a blinged-out cuff bracelet. (Pleat one-shoulder crepe gown, $295, Katie May available at Nordstrom)
Oh la la! Talk about a knockout! This figure-flaunting frock sparkles with sequins and floral lace. This dress speaks for itself, so best to keep the rest of your look minimal. Opt for a sleek chignon, sparkly studs and barely-there heels. ("Vivienne" sequin lace gown, $308, Dress the Population available at Nordstrom)
Attending a formal affair at the Plaza or Pierre? This black and gold jacquard gown is the perfect choice. The striking, structural silhouette is complete with a high neck, asymmetrical back and zip closure. Keep it streamlined with a black box clutch or give it some edge with a studded minaudiere. ("Janessa" racerback gown, $1,095, Alice + Olivia)
Va va voom! This red hot gown is embellished with thousands of iridescent sequins. The wrap bodice and dramatic maxi length create an ultra-flattering shape. Don't be surprised if you stop traffic — or, at the very least, make one heck of an entrance. ("Tatiana" scarlet dress, $725, Parker)