Sadly, holiday parties are much more casual than they used to be because we are living in an age of casualization. Helping clients prep for their parties confirms this point because few of the outfits we’ve been creating are formal and dressy. Even my own holiday outfit this year is casual. 

Matching jeans and trousers with a shiny top is a tried and tested casual holiday party formula, one which my clients still enjoy wearing. But turning the formula upside down has been going down just as well for three reasons. One, it’s different. The little shiny pant is on trend and fitting for our trouser season. Two, the assortment of fancy jeans across a variety of price points is prolific. And three, fancy jeans have style life beyond the holidays. 

Fancy jeans come in all sorts. Liquid metallic like gold and silver. Brocade, lace, embossed and embroidered styles are other options. Go for an eye-catching look like bright gold, or a more subtle one like tonal black brocade. Remember that you can size up fancy skinnies to create a slouchier look. No need to sport the extra tight vibe if you prefer more room.

Once you’ve found a pair of fancy jeans, it’s on to matching it with a top. You have many options, some of which are more casual than others:

  • Sweater: Think fine gauge cashmere and merino wool blends, lace pullovers, or thick chunky knits. Keep them fairly roomy to offset the body con effect of the skinny bottom. You could also layer an unbuttoned cardigan over a top if pullovers are not your thing. 
  • Jacket: Think basic blazer, lace jacket, tuxedo jacket or tweed jacket. Pattern mix! 
  • Knitted Top: Think simple solid tops for very shiny jeans, or add sparkle to subtle styles. 
  • Blouse: An untucked lace blouse or a silk style with collar and cuff embellishment works well. A button down shirt, scrunched at the sleeves, is a more casual and boyish pairing. 

I like fancy jeans matched with low or high heeled pointy pumps. Dressy flats, peep-toe pumps, peep-toe booties and booties are another option. Personally I prefer dressy footwear with fancy jeans, especially if you’re keeping the rest of the ensemble casual. 

Carry a clutch to finish off the look because there isn’t another bag that is going to look quite as fab. Remember that clutches often come with short shoulder or wrist straps, so carrying them across your body or on your wrist can be an easy hands free solution. 

After the holidays, dress down fancy jeans with items like denim shirts, denim jackets, moto jackets, plaid shirts, trendy sweatshirts, big Tees, and casual footwear like suede booties or Fryes. The fancy jean is actually a lot more versatile than you might expect.