What To Wear To A Work Holiday Party: Men’s Edition

November 17, 2023

Figuring out what to wear to a holiday work party feels challenging to a lot of guys.

They’re unsure how casual or dressy to go, or even how to add some holiday spice to their usual workwear. Fear not, that’s where we come in. 

At Next Level Wardrobe, we have over six years of experience dressing men stylishly for their daily lives and special occasions. Whether you’re headed to a casual office gathering or a normal affair, we’re ready to help you find your merry way.

We’ll walk you through our basic ground rules for dressing for formal work events. Plus we’ll give you real examples of outfit formulas that’ll make dressing for the big bash a snap.

Work Holiday Party Attire Ground Rules

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If you’re a guy wondering what to wear to a work holiday party, your biggest question is probably about the dress code.

After all, most people don’t even know how to interpret their usual work dress policy, let alone special event attire.

Our first suggestion here is: it’s almost always better to be overdressed than under. By at least making the effort to look presentable and put on something special, you’re showing that you care. 

That’s a lot better than showing up in sloppy jeans or a sweatshirt.

Second, you can use your nine-to-five dress code as a baseline. If something would be inappropriate to wear to the office, you probably shouldn’t wear it to the party either.

Third, have fun with what you decide to wear. The holidays in particular are a time to show off your creative side. You don’t have to wear a subdued, all-business outfit. You can incorporate fun elements like playful colors, on-trend pieces, and eye-catching textures. 

Getting Ready for Your Work Holiday Party

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You’ve got the basics down, now let’s talk prep. When getting dressed for a holiday party at the office, you want to consider a few things first:

  1. What’s the venue? Is it a casual after-hours hang at the office? Or is it a formal dinner at a five-star restaurant? The setting gives you a hint of how you should dress. AKA: the more formal the setting, the more formal you should dress.
  2. What’s the weather? Recommendations for what you should wear to a work holiday party in Miami aren’t the same as what we’d recommend in New York. Especially if the event will be partially outdoors. Check the weather and factor that into what layers you wear and what materials you reach for.
  3. What kind of impression do you want to make? When you walk into the room, do you want to be the life of the party? Or do you want to play it cool and blend in a little? Figure this out and you’ll know if you should reach for a bold statement piece or keep things low-key.

Think about these questions, find your answers, and you’ll have a clear path for selecting your holiday party outfit. 

What To Wear to a Work Holiday Party: 3 Stylish Outfits for Men

At Next Level Wardrobe, we believe great style should be simple. That’s why we’re giving you three easy outfit formulas to follow for each dress code. We’ll explain why these looks work and what you can do to make them fit your personal brand

Formal Dress Code

If your office holiday party has a normal dress code, you can’t go wrong with a suit, or even a tuxedo. However, if you want to show off your style savvy, we recommend going for something suave and modern, like this all-black look. 

This look would be fine with a white shirt under the jacket, but interestingly enough, the monochrome stands out more. It’s different, slightly unexpected, but still sophisticated.

For a formal dress code, experiment with contemporary twists on classic go-tos. 

You could do a monochromatic look or add visual interest with textures. Think velvet suit jackets or leather details on the lapels.

Power Casual Dress Code

If you know us, you know our favorite dress code is power casual. It’s the ideal blend of formal and informal elements and traditional and relaxed pieces. 

Power casual is a great go-to for a holiday party because it gets you just dressed up enough to feel festive without going over the top.

If you want to wear a power casual look for a holiday party, try something like this steely blue look. 

The vintage double-breasted jacket gets a stylish update with the corduroy texture. Then instead of pairing it with a dress shirt or button-down, go with a sweater under your jacket.

Something like this cotton-cashmere crew neck is simple but looks well-made. High-quality pieces tend to feel a little fancier because they look better.

Casual Dress Code

Stanley Tucci might be showing off his cookware line and not heading to his company’s end-of-year shindig, but his outfit is a fantastic example of how you can rock the casual dress code.

From a distance, his outfit might seem pretty simple. A blue suit with a white shirt and shoes, right? What’s so casual about that?

But take a closer look and you’ll see this ensemble has way more attitude. 

For one, he’s wearing jeans and a jacket in the same denim blue. Then instead of a button-up, he’s gone for a polo and matched it back to a low-profile pair of white sneakers

He’s mixing classic workwear staples with more casual, cool basics. This creates a look that’s ready for anything.

Ready to take the stress out of getting dressed? Apply for Next Level Wardrobe’s styling services for men. Whether you’re stumped on what to wear to a work holiday party or you need a new daily wardrobe, we’ve got your back. Our stylists are ready to create a personalized style plan that’ll change how you approach clothing for good.

About the Author - Cassandra Sethi
About the Author - Cassandra Sethi

Personal Stylist & Image Consultant

Cassandra Sethi is a Personal Stylist and Founder of Next Level Wardrobe, a luxury Personal Styling and Shopping Service that helps successful professionals of all ages and sizes. After working in the fashion industry for over 25 years, she used her expert knowledge to create a proprietary styling system called ‘The Next Level Wardrobe Style System' which guarantees clients more outfits with less items in their closet. NLW has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, The Tamron Hall Show, NY Mag, Huffington Post and more.

*Disclosure: Next Level Wardrobe only recommends products that we’d suggest to our clients or personally wear ourselves. All opinions expressed here are our own. This post may contain affiliate links that at no additional cost to you, Next Level Wardrobe may earn a small commission. Read the full privacy policy here.

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Cassandra Sethi

is a NYC Personal Stylist and Image Consultant. She is the Founder of Next Level Wardrobe and 'The NLW Style System' that guarantees clients more outfits with less items.

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