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Stepping up Your Fashion Game

With an influx of santa hats and ugly sweater parties dwindling, the holidays are nearing their end. New Year's is one of the great fashion opportunities to adorn something out of the norm with a few steps up in the sparkle department and accessories category.

There are many of us who need a reason to "dress up", such as an event like a best friend's wedding or a charity gala your mother's friend invited you to. Others fill their calendar's up with nothing but events and happenings in which a tuxedo or evening gown is required. Lastly, there is a smaller niche that do not need a reason or event to encourage a formal ensemble for the day, they walk their dogs in a winter cape, cloche and knee high boots.

New Year's eve is an appropriate time to "whip out the good stuff", as some might say.  Whether you are attending a cocktail party with friends, going to the local lounge, freezing at Time's Square or at a classy hotel gala, your attire should be on trend or fashion forward. Now I know for many of us, weather will play an important role in our choice of garments, however, don't let it play a role in what is being sported underneath your faux fur coat or Burberry pea coat.  There are tons of creative and trendy outerwear so keep that portion of the outfit simple and focus the attention on what will be in photos the next day.

Modest long sleeve dresses are back in style and not a staple for adults only. I recommend a simple neutral color, floor length with a drop necklace or diamond statement earrings.  If you want to bring a bit of youth into this look, choose something backless or with a slit below the knee.

Lace is certainly on trend this season. Color is also a big player in the Fall/Winter 2012 fashions. Mixing both color and lace is an option for the more outgoing crowd for New Year's, the ones attending the cocktail party.  My suggestion is to ring in the New Year with Patone's recently named color of 2013, Emerald, and try something similar to this macrame lace and silk dress by Valentino. 
Details such as chiffon layering, tulle skirts and bodice beading are also popular this season.  Some dresses even incorporate more than one embellished trend like this Karl Appliqué mesh piece.

Finish the look with the proper accessories, including the clutch.  Statement necklaces and drop earrings are best paired with most of these dress choices. Just make sure you follow proper protocol with the necklace length versus neckline. (pendant with boat or scoop neck, a bib necklace with a plunging neckline)
Keep in mind, gold is the new silver and the bigger the stones and cocktail rings, the better!

*New Years Tip: Suffer through the pain in your best pair of heels for one night. (Dr. Scholl's inserts)