By Rachel Zavecz
Over the years, Valentine’s Day has become a day of romantic confessions, chocolate giving, and ultimate expositions of undying love (Oh! Wherefore art thou so-and-so?). However, Valentine’s Day also presents many different opportunities to enjoy one’s self by dressing up – from parties to fancy dates and even adventures, romantic or otherwise. Whether you’re in a relationship or not, Valentine’s Day is an opportunity to shake up your normal wardrobe and show a little self-love through fashionable expression. Below I’ve outlined a few potential scenarios and possible outfits for this most chocolate-y of days.
“Oh gosh! I’ve made reservations at an extremely fancy restaurant with my significant other and now I have no idea what to wear!”
Well, fear not, because dressing for elegant dinners is beyond doable, it’s downright enjoyable. Here I’ve dressed Thirii fairly simply in a white statement top and a long, high-waisted black skirt. Now you may be thinking, ‘Long skirts? But I’m on the short side so I can’t wear those!’ I’ll tell you right now, that is false. The long skirt or dress is not something that is exclusively attractive on taller ladies. A higher skirt waist creates a longer leg line, and throwing on a heel creates balance down through the calf. In regard to the statement top, I suggest visiting your local thrift stores or Goodwill for lovely vintage shirts at low prices (Pro-tip: run your hand along the shoulders of the shirt racks, stopping for shoulder pads – often these pads can signify a vintage find). Throw on a dark blazer or cardigan to keep warm, add a splash of Valentine’s color with a bright pink or red lip, and don’t forget to utilize your own accessories to jazz the outfit up and make it your own.
“You know, this Valentine’s Day I really just want to go on a picnic, take a walk through the woods or explore a new part of the city.”
If this describes your Valentine’s Day plans, look no further than the lacy dress pictured above. Pairing a light, lacy dress with a heavier boot is a good way to contrast soft and hard as well as allow for a day that demands practicality (i.e., some walking or physical activity). When choosing your dress, think about layering and how the dress might look if adding a lacy slip underneath. As with the dress pictured, sometimes allowing a delicate slip to show at the bottom or top of a dress can create soft depth and enhance an already lovely dress. If the look isn’t quite festive enough for your personal taste, try a dress in a more obviously themed color such as red or pink. Consider utilizing a slip that is the same color as whatever dress you choose – if a slip does not blend with the dress it may look as if it is showing accidentally and lack cohesion. Here Thirii is wearing a glittering chain in her hair, and I would recommend experimenting with other hair accessories and styles to balance out the length and lightness of the outfit. If your hair is long enough, putting it up in maiden braids is a viable option.
“I think it’s great that it’s Valentine’s Day and all, but really I just have way too many things going on and it’s not really that big of a deal to me.”
For many people, Valentine’s Day is just another day. It’s a day for going to work to bring home the bacon, going to school to absorb complicated information, or even just a day full of time-consuming errands such as taking your squirming cat named Squiggles to the vet for his annual shots. But just because you don’t plan to do anything particularly special on Valentine’s Day doesn’t mean that you can’t have some fun by recognizing the holiday in your wardrobe. Thirii is wearing a practical black skinny jean with a slightly ruffled black sweater. The ruffles show some whimsy and recognition of romanticism, while her red lip and crown of flowers gives an overt nod to the holiday. Because the top and pant are both simple and monotone black, it allows for a bolder shoe to really shine and makes the red of the accessories pop (Pro-tip: make sure any jacket, blazer or sweater is also black to retain the effect). This outfit concept is extraordinarily easy to replicate in your own personal style, as you can simply choose any type of all-black clothing you desire, pair it with a statement shoe and choose an accessory that is bright and festive. The idea here is contrast, and it is important to retain a feeling of balance.
“Invited to a Valentine’s Day party and everyone is going to be there! Super excited!” OR POSSIBLY “Invited to an office Valentines Day party and my elaborate escape plans have all failed spectacularly.”
Either you’re really excited to go to a Valentine’s-themed party or you just can’t weasel your way out. Regardless of your circumstances, it’s actually pretty fun to dress up in more obvious holiday apparel and sway to some Stevie Wonder (or whatever jams incite your inner romance dance fiend). The simple, short red or pink dress is a great way to go because it allows for ease of movement and can be accessorized in almost unlimited styles. If you plan on wearing something classy (most notably if it’s an office party or other official function), consider a solid colored heel with some texture, such as the black velvet heel pictured. Putting your hair up in a high ponytail is always a good idea in party situations in terms of keeping cool, but a bun also works for more refined situations. Because this outfit is so basic, allow your creativity to shine in your accessories – for example: statement earrings and a chunky bracelet. Remember that because you are attending a Valentine’s Day party you are being given license to take the theme a little bit further – don’t be afraid to wear some heart-shaped jewelry, get a Valentine’s-themed manicure, or even utilize some glitter.
Although these four scenarios are not the end-all be-all of Valentine’s Day events, they outline a group of basic outfits that can easily be tweaked to fit most situations. From hot date to vet visit, just remember that Valentine’s Day presents a wonderful and unique opportunity to show a little love for yourself through your fashion. Make sure to dress in a way that makes you feel special and don’t forget to have fun.