New Year's Eve 2011: Black Sheath Dress

Dress: Sold Out–Similar Tahari Dress, Here ($127)

From Left, Tights: Hue ($16) Earrings: Black Buttons ($36) Necklace: Marni Chain ($153) Bag: BCBG Paige Clutch ($158) Shoe: Vince Camuto Cannon Bootie ($159)

From Right, Tights: Hue Baroque Lace ($14) Earring: Tang & Song Drops ($73) Belt: French Connection Bow Belt ($42) Shoe: TopShop Groove Heels ($110)

Modern Minx. If you wear a black sheath, and it fits you perfectly (which is key), I don’t like to do a lot to it.  I think that sometimes when you try to make a dress all-purpose, most women overdo it and end up looking like they’re trying too hard.  So I like to keep it simple.

For this outfit, I added a modern feel to the dress with a Marni chain necklace and a pair of chic booties.  Very opaque tights and a simple stud earring balance out the look.  Add the tasseled flap bag and you have a look that makes a statement without being too complicated.

For the hair, I would try a braided up do or a sleek ponytail.  For the makeup, I would wear a nude lip, smokey eyes and a subtle cheek.  I’d also break out my NARS Purple Rain Nail polish to play off the purple in the necklace.

Lovely Lace. My friend Virginia wants to wear lace tights this New Year’s.  They’re not my favorite look, but you can make it work if you don’t overdo the accessories. 

Here, I added some frilly drops to compliment the floral pattern in the lace.  I also added a simple black bow-belt to draw attention to the waist and make the dress more interesting.  A simple tube clutch and some black suede (or leather if you prefer) heels round out the look. Balanced and pretty, letting the tights take center stage, not overwhelming.

For the hair, I would wear it in a wavy half-up/half-down look.  For the makeup, I’d wear a red lip, rosy cheeks and a simple lined eye with a light grey eyeshadow.



  1. Jennifer says:

    I noticed you paired tights for both looks. Are tights/pantyhose a requirement on NYE with a short cocktail dress?

    December 29, 2011/Reply
  2. Belle says:

    No. Not at all. I just don't like to wear booties without tights. And as for the lace, that's what Virginia asked for.

    December 29, 2011/Reply
  3. 1L says:

    I love both looks! For someone who does not like to have bare arms how would you alter either looks? I recently lost a lot of weight, but my arms still do not look nice out on their own. I'm only a 1L, so I'd like a nice youthful look ­čÖé (This would not be for NYE, rather pageant and gala @ my ungrad institution in 2 weeks)

    December 29, 2011/Reply
  4. Belle says:

    1L: I'd wear a leather jacket with look one and layer a chiffon top in black under two.

    December 29, 2011/Reply
  5. Meghan says:

    Belle, this probably won't be for my NYE look, but I have some grey booties that were a Christmas gift and I was wondering what your take on incorporating them into a “modern minx”-esque look would be… I know you've posted on tights before, but just wanted some advice – should the tights be grey or black in this case if the grey booties would in fact work in this lovely ensemble. Thanks so much and happy new year – Meghan

    December 30, 2011/Reply
  6. Annabeth says:

    1L: as someone who also recently lost some weight, first let me say congrats, and second right now my go to LBD currently has elbow length sleeves (helps camouflage that last bit that needs a little work) with a bit of a scooped back and I had it altered to be a bit shorter and fit perfectly so I don't feel like I look dowdy but still feel comfortable without a jacket or sweater

    December 30, 2011/Reply
  7. Belle says:

    Meghan- For everyday, you should look for grey tights in a shade as close to the boot shade as possible. Or the darkest black you can muster.

    December 30, 2011/Reply