The holidays have arrived and so has the announcement of the annual office holiday party. The problem? What, exactly, are you expected to wear? Timing and location will dictate the answer.

TIPS ON WHAT TO WEAR TO YOUR OFFICE HOLIDAY PARTY

ON-SITE OFFICE HOLIDAY PARTY

If it is literally an office party that takes place in the company conference room, you’ll want to crank it up a notch before coming to work that morning.

If jeans, khakis, sneakers and chukkas are the normal attire, leave them at home and choose a dark, slim-fitting pant with a leather loafer or low-cut boot. Add a subtle striped or plaid button-down shirt without a tie. For colder climates, a solid cotton pullover with a cardigan or shawl collar sweater is perfect. It doesn’t have to have the traditional Christmas colors but you don’t want to win the ugly sweater contest either!

If business casual is the everyday dress code, splurge on a new tie and wear a blazer or herringbone sport coat with tailored pants. Polished shoes with nice socks (not the ones with the reindeers on them) can dress you up instantly.

OFF-SITE OFFICE HOLIDAY PARTY

Is the celebration offsite and straight after work? Simply bring a clean shirt and maybe a different sport coat to change into. Don’t forget your favorite cologne—it only takes a spritz to freshen you up.

If the party is to be held later in the evening at a place other than the local hangout, the timing alone implies it’s a dressier occasion. Break out that suit you save for special events. Add a pocket square to complement your tie for a classic look.

If you are new to the job and still not quite sure what’s appropriate, be sure to check with one of your coworkers.

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