If I had to select one holiday as my favorite fashion holiday, it would be New Year’s Eve. The sequins, the glitter, the sparkle—all things that make my little maximalist heart sing. But styling New Year’s Eve sequin outfits can be surprisingly challenging. Layering embellishments on embellishments can get busy fast—leaving your statement-making pieces feeling more competitive than complementary.
True to form, I sought to tackle this sartorial quandary the only way I knew how: I challenged myself to craft four truly maximalist New Year’s Eve outfits—all of which had to use sequins in a major, major way.
Ahead, my attempts to do so—and a few tips you can employ if you decide to try these maximalist New Year’s Eve sequin outfits at home.
Sequin Mix and Match
I started by layering a multicolor sequin dress over a sheer mock neck top. The texture combination created a really interesting juxtaposition—one that felt simultaneously dainty, edgy and totally fun. Naturally, I didn’t stop there. I cinched the waist on my dress with a millennial pink sequin belt and threw a gold sequin blazer atop the look. Both colors evoked tones that were already in my colorful dress, which kept things from skewing too over-the-top.
While it would’ve been easy to pair this look with simple accessories—black heels, a matte black bag, etc.—I decided to do what any maximalist would: I added gold glitter heels, shiny statement earrings and a colorful, gemstone-covered clutch. These further varied the texture of the look; glitter, metallics and gemstones all feel distinctly different from sequins, but still in-theme enough to warrant inclusion.
To top things off, I added a pair of black cat-eye sunglasses. Because come on, this look deserved one simple element. (Plus, sunglasses are necessary if your late night turns into an early morning—no shame.)
Funnily enough, my first look turned out to be my favorite of the bunch. Catch me wearing this interesting, edgy and totally party-worthy look to every fun event on my calendar next year.
blazer and belt – Greta Constantine / dress, $94 at Lulus / shirt – vintage, editor’s own / heels, $33 at Lulus / clutch, $495 at Alice + Olivia / earrings, $9.90 at Forever 21 / sunglasses – editor’s own
Sequin Meets Velvet
I tend to avoid neutral shades and simple color combinations, but I wanted to do something totally different for my second outfit. If my first look was about tried-and-true maximalism, my second would be about pared-down luxury. Because you can cover yourself in sequins without veering into over-the-top territory—like, at all.
So I started with a neutral dress. OK, forest green isn’t technically a neutral—especially not when it’s rendered in velvet and covered in silver embellishments—but considering my typical palette of choice, it felt neutral. I kept the rest of my look’s color scheme pared down, as well—opting for black over-the-knee boots and a black box clutch.
Since I rarely sport looks this color-less, I treated myself to some seriously fun embellishments. I layered beaded bobby pins in my hair and threw on a pair of massive silver statement earrings—both of which added a little party-worthy flair to the look without jarring with its understated luxe appeal.
Though a far cry from what I usually wear, this looks was super comfortable, versatile and definitely wearable—for New Year’s Eve parties and other lower-key events, alike.
The Little Silver Sequin Dress
Who needs an LBD when you can have an LSSD (little sassy sequin dress)? Though admittedly less versatile than the LBD, the LSSD acts as a go-to for any sparkle-worthy event. And what’s more sparkle-worthy than New Year’s Eve?
I found myself particularly drawn to this silver ruched dress, because it was basically a one-stop shop for statement-making style. (Plus, ruched styles promise to take 2019 by storm.) Though the sparkly fabric would’ve been fine without accessories, I decided to layer a crystal belt over the dress’ waistline. It made the otherwise girly-glam dress feel a little edgier, which created a super dynamic look.
Since it’s winter, I decided to add some cozy pieces to the look, as well. I mixed textures with a long faux fur coat, a feather bag and suede heels. I stuck with the same color family—pink—for all three to complement the all-over sequin dress, rather than clash with or otherwise overpower it.
Sequins and comfort might seem mutually exclusive. Anyone who’s worn sparkles more than once has undoubtedly encountered a scratchy sequin snafu—one that’s resulted in sore red arms or itchy red arms (or both). But I’m here to let you know there are plenty of ways around this seeming dichotomy, especially if you’re willing to get creative.
For my fourth and final outfit, I set out to throw together a look that was as sparkly as it was cozy. I did so by starting with a comfy-cute foundation: a fitted black dress (that came with built-in removable fur cuffs). I then layered a sequin dress over this piece and belted it to tie the look together.
Since no look is complete without accessories, I threw on some heart-shaped statement earrings, laced a cozy velvet headband into my hair and grabbed an embellished clutch. I kept the comfy-cute vibes going with my footwear, opting for comfy heeled boots over stilettos.
See something you like?
Shop the credits to snag similar pieces, or bookmark these images so you have them the next time you go looking for maximalist New Year’s Eve sequin outfit inspiration. Cheers to 2019—and have fun out there.