Party season confidence boosters


Do you view the onset of the the Christmas party season with a good dose of excitement – mince pies, mulled wine, an excuse to dress up! – mixed with a vague sense of dread – bingo wings, painful high heels, make up! – underlying the whole thing? Colour and style analysis has certainly enabled a far more confident and colourful party season for me, but sometimes you need just a bit more in your arsenal as well.

Luckily, I have the solution to at least one of those worries – no longer need you fear the sleeveless party dress and its upper arm flaunting ways. Kettlewell’s lace bolero works brilliantly for camouflaging less than perfect arms, without giving you the nana-goes-to-bingo effect of a woolly cardigan over your pretty party dress.

Whether your Christmas party is a full on evening do or a smart lunch out with friends, the lace bolero has it covered:






As well as the lace bolero and its magical arm-slimming ways, there are a few other essentials that form my festive season survival pack. With this little lot (finely tuned over years of research in the form of office Christmas parties, client events and mince pie and mulled wine evenings with friends. It’s a tough job, but somebody had to do it), the Christmas party marathon need hold no fears.


  1. Lipstick: you just can’t beat it for instantly brightening your face and giving you that indefinable ‘put togetherness’. Remember the golden rules of apply/blot/reapply for longevity, and discreetly lick your glass before drinking to stop yourself losing all your hard work as soon as you take a sip.
  2. Arm coverage: pair the lace bolero with a matching or contrasting shift dress to add a little evening glamour, or smarten up a pair of jeans and a camisole for a work lunch.
  3. Bridget Jones pants: a raging cliche, but a light support foundation garment can really smooth out the lines under your dress or suit. Don’t size down unless you want to spend forty five minutes puffing and panting every time you need to pop to the ladies. Trust me on this.
  4. Foldable ballet pumps: pop them in your handbag in case your friends turn out to be surprisingly precious about high heels on their parquet floor, or to give you a comfy walk home at the end of the night.
  5. Day to night make up: Rather than taking off your entire face and redoing for the office Christmas party, just have a quick blot with shine absorbing sheets, add a touch of powder and reapply eye shadow, mascara and the aforementioned red lipstick.
  6. The ultimate party bag: fashion for evening bags isn’t exactly fast moving, so investing in a good one, even though it feels a little frivolous, is a shortcut to fabulous party dressing for years to come.

Details of all items shown can be found on the Kettlewell Polyvore page.


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