How to dress without stress at Christmas
Stress in the run up to Christmas
I'm super organised for Christmas this year. To be honest, compared to how it used to be I’ve been super organised and a lot less stressed than I used to be these past few years anyway. Don’t get me wrong we used to always have lots of laughs, and I have some very fond memories, but it's never really like the adverts, is it? It's not all smiles in matching pyjamas in front of log fires.
There can be so much stress and pressure around Christmas, especially if you're the one who has to make it all happen. This week I have a few tips for you that might help you take away some of the stress
How to look good but still be comfortable at Christmas
As far as I'm concerned you need to be comfortable and confident in your clothes every day of the year, but even more so during the festive season when you are out and about socialising.
Understanding your Style Personality is key to learning how to dress without stress. I have a quiz that I do with all my clients to assess what their primary style personality is and that is our starting point for any work. It’s one of the 4 steps in my Project FAB! framework – can read more about that in my book or in this blog.
As an example, if you are invited round to friends for drinks over Christmas and usually always dress in a casual way in jeans and a t shirt you are not going to feel totally comfortable giving yourself a makeover by donning a body con dress and teetering around like a new-born calf in sparkly party heels. It would totally spoil your enjoyment as you worry about falling off your stiletto skyscrapers or your dress showing that you’ve eaten one too many mince pies.
You might, however, want to look a bit more glammed up than usual. This is where dialling up and partifying your usual style comes in, so you look more glam than usual but are still dressing as YOU and feel comfortable and confident. Remember – comfydence is always the number one aim. You’re still dressing like yourself and expressing who you are but in a way that is right for different situations or environments. I talked about this a few weeks ago in this blog.
How to be the stylish hostess with the mostest
A few tweaks are all it takes. Easy wins for dialling up a notch are swapping out basic fabrics for more sumptuous ones such as silk, satin, lace, velvet, brocade and devoré or changing your shoes so they have a shiny element such as patent leather, satin or embroidery or another embellishment. It can be as simple as swapping your faded denim jeans for a darker blue or different colour so that you look more dressed up.
If you’re hosting/cooking Christmas dinner, choose short or 3/4 length sleeves and a top that isn't made out of very drapey or floaty fabric, you don't want to be dangling your sleeves in the gravy. It's the same with jewellery - you don't want anything that could get caught up as you are serving your guests.
Natural fabrics are obviously going to be the best solution for keeping you cool as you are hosting and to stop you overheating in the kitchen. You might want to consider layers too so that you can peel one off - you don't want to be looking hot in the wrong way!
Patterned or dark fabrics are less likely to show any spills if you do have any accidents as you are keeping everyone’s drinks topped up or as you are basting the roasties. An apron is practical but not always the most stylish solution - unless of course you find one that coordinates with your outfit. (I have a special Santa apron and chef’s hat that has come out these past few years.)
How to pose for photographs
We’ve always put on our Sunday best on Christmas day (a long-standing tradition) but this year I might not bother. It’s not like we’ll be going anywhere or seeing anyone else. And I’m usually back in my pj’s by 7pm at the latest anyway 😊. I’ve ordered us all matching t shirts with reindeers on to have a family photo in for a bit of fun – if they’re comfy I might just wear that and my pyjama bottoms.
Speaking of photos please don’t avoid being in them. I’m so happy that my mum always took loads of photos as they hold fond memories of our family Christmases with my parents and grandparents. Now they are no longer with us these photos are very special reminders of forgotten times.
If you’re not sure how to stand and feel uncomfortable posing for photos remember a ‘flat arm is a fat arm’! Pose for pics with your arm slightly away from your body or hand on your hip...this will create a more interesting shape. You might not necessarily want to go all ‘Instaglam’ posy but putting one foot slightly in front of the other too as it stops you from having the awkward ‘walking doll’ or Lego character stance. Also, pushing your chin slightly forward and down will prevent double chins appearing that aren’t usually there.
Make up tips for redness Santa cheeks
If you get a bit red in the face after a couple of celebratory glasses of prosecco my tip for making sure you don't look like you’ve got Santa cheeks is to have some face powder or blotting papers to hand so you can powder your nose. You can also use a green based concealer to cancel out any redness. Think about having a lippy handy for touch ups or use one of those 24hr long lasting ones so you look glam on the festive photos and don’t want them to be deleted as soon as you see them.
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