All That Glitters is Wardrobe Gold

What to do with all that sparkly shit you bought for New Years


I fear that if I mention New Year’s Eve one more time you all might come forth as a stampeding, angry mob holding pitchforks intended for my jugular, so before we begin let it be known that NYE shall henceforth be called Zoo Year’s Steve.

That said, my Zoo Year’s Steve was spent lollygagging around my apartment and eating things until a friend sent me the text I’d been dreading all week: “What are you going to wear tonight?”

I had no idea. I never have any idea because despite my hyper-propensity for planning my future in a ten-year trajectory, I cannot for the life of me pre-plan an outfit. Instead, what I like to do — especially before nights that require a Look — is procrastinate until the final hour and then run to SoHo in a sweaty panic to find something to wear. It’s an awful tactic that typically causes me to spend more money than I wanted to on a stupid embellished skirt all because I needed something festive, new, and NOW, as was the case with this particular Zoo Years Steve.

With the night behind me and The Holidays officially over, this skirt began to haunt my conscience, mostly because of the two-hundred-plus dollars that I was one-hundred-percent-plus not supposed to spend. It threatened to fester and de-bead, taunting me with the fact that I’d never use it again and there was no way I could return it post-wear (NOT THAT I DO THAT! ONLY SOMETIMES! JK I REALLY DO NOT DO THAT. I DON’T). But then, mid-fetal position, I realized that I was being an idiot.

The skirt is really pretty. It’s pink and silvery and intricate and patterned, a cry from anything else that permeates my daily wardrobe but not so outrageous that I can’t make it work. So now I’m going to project a here’s how and make you think it’s for you even though I really need to advice too.

First, we’re going to need some basic t-shirts and oxfords. Keep them on the baggy side to avoid looking contrived. (If you bought a dress or jumper, just layer over. If your sequined item-o-choice was a pair of pants or a skirt, wear the shirt like a normal human. If that’s hard for you, yell YOLO. If your Steve-a-thon-jawn was a blazer, HANG ON.)

Next, let’s add a sweater. Keep it chunky, funky and textured to cut the saccharine. A crew neck sweatshirt will also rule. Layer over your shirt. Blazer kids, now you can add the blazer on over. (If you bought a tiny blazer fit for a baby, go for a paper-thin layering knit. Reconsider buying one-size up next time in case you’re not an actual baby, but no worries, we’re here to learn.)

For the skirt and dressed-to-kill club, just add black tights and ankle boots then shine on sweet Lindsays. If you went the sparkly pantaloons route, simple black pumps will do. And, let’s none of us forget the sweet pairing perfection of sneakers.

Remember, it’s not our sparkly dresses’ and glimmering blazers’ fault that the party said “Pants Optional, Sequins Mandatory.” It is, however, our duty to, a la Tim Gunn, Make. It. Werq.


Get more Shopping ?
  • Lavinia

    tim gunn would approve, although his wardrobe mostly consists of black suits. shine should be worn all year. i feel like a walking holiday cliche but I cant help it you know i just sparkle . i say WEAR IT AND WEAR IT GOOD. Why not? Do it. sparkle on bitches.

  • I’m such a procrastinator when it comes to something to wear on special occasions. I’ve never understood how people really put so much thought into an outfit for one night. This is a great formula for an outfit…you should do more like this! Like fashion math! haha


  • Shade of Red Blog

    I love glitter, glitter is me. What can I say? *hangs head in shame*

  • Sequins and intricate beadwork are for life, not just for Zoo Year’s Steve. Shine on inappropriately at the office year round, I say.

    Emma Louise Layla

  • I love a good sparkle and believe it can be worked into the wardrobe at any time. 🙂

  • Kiri Yanchenko

    I am sure you looked fab! I love the mantra at the end – Pants Optional, Sequins Mandatory! I really love your options and I can see a dozen combinations at the moment BUT I am really loving the jumpsuit – I ruined my one so I need to get a new one!

  • dupras

    I always wear sequins for New Years but to honor my year of introversion and keep with the theme of avoiding as many social situations as possible, I wore…my pajamas. At home. Asleep while the ball dropped. I may buy that asos bodycon to compensate and jumpstart my resolution to get (the fuck!!) out of my house. It’s cool, and so are you. xx

    Blog à la Dupras


  • mfashionfreak

    hhaha i love glitter but never wear it for new years!


  • I elected not to buy anything new and sparkly this year since I never wear it again, but this is good advice for next time! xx

  • Sarita Williams

    You’ve definitely inspired me to try something at work with my very sequiny shirt I wore for Zoo Year’s Steve!! Thanks for the tips.

  • Mrs Trendy

    Yeah Tim Gun would like it ! I love glitters and sequins <3

  • Adrianna Grężak

    I bought a sequined Michael Kors dress as a complete impulse purchase for NYE 2012 and I haven’t worn it since. I still can’t for the life of me figure out what to do with it. (This is a close example, my dress is a bit more silver/shiny than the photo suggests.) Layering a skirt and cardigan would tone it down, but even a sequined top is too much for Brooklyn nightlife

    • Amelia Diamond

      I think you just have to layer over the dress — is yours short sleeved? That would annoy me to wear a button down over short sleeves so maybe under, and then throw a big chunky knit over. Or a cool crewneck sweatshirt. and then just add tights because it is FREEZING COLD HERE. As soon as you add in more textures and layers — someone mentioned flannel below I think, maybe some denim — it will balance out the sequins.

      • Adrianna Grężak

        Yeah it’s short sleeved, and the dress rides up my legs as I walk. I actually Man Repelled and wore an oversized cardigan over it on New Years Eve. Ironically, I attracted and met my current boyfriend.

  • Katja Kozlevčar

    actually I can only digest sequins in a combination with something non festive. Tartan shirt + leather jacket + sequin skirt > mind glowing!

  • Melissa

    i love this!!! I can’t wait to put all my sequins to good use!

  • Glitters work only on few occasions.
    These are good tips to carry them multiple times with different matches.
    Surely many combinations can work.

  • A sequin or glittery piece really does making dressing for special occasions easier. But all the ones I own for some reason are not very comfortable…and itchy at times 🙁 maybe it’s time to invest in something that’s not H&M haha

    The Artistically Challenged: Beauty, Fashion, Music, Lifestyle Blog

  • john