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Formal Outfits You Need in Your Cold-Weather Wardrobe

When the weather starts getting colder, the outfits start getting warmer. Winter brings many different parties and gatherings — which means dressing up in formal winter outfits. Here, gain inspiration with our list of 10 formal winter outfit ideas, including complete outfit ideas and the top things you need in your winter wardrobe.

10 Formal Winter Outfit Ideas

The following is inspiration you can use when creating formal outfits for cold weather:

1. Plenty of Textures

Winter fashion includes plenty of layering and textures — after all, you want as many layers as needed to keep warm in the colder weather! Strategizing your fabrics adds natural layers and texture. When you're shopping for your formal outfit, look out for classic winter fabrics and styles like:

  • Tweed
  • Cotton
  • Knit
  • Leather
  • Pleats
  • Velvet

Cotton and knit pieces are fairly easy to layer. Casually, you can pair both with a pair of denim jeans for a full look. But when you're trying to dress up cotton and knit fabrics, pair them with tweed, leather or pleated clothing. An example of a texture-rich and layered outfit is a tucked-in cotton turtleneck with a tweed skirt, accessorized with leggings, knee-high boots and plenty of accessories.

2. The Right Winter Color Combinations

When considering what colors to include in your winter wardrobe, think about the colors that commonly appear during the winter season. Winter colors include:

  • Denim
  • Navy
  • Black
  • Gray
  • Berry
  • Rose
  • Camel
  • White
  • Evergreen
  • Champagne
  • Blush

Most of these colors are easy to combine, like pairing evergreen with camel or champagne with berry. The most important part of winter fashion is choosing something that speaks to you. 

What's your style? If you gravitate toward natural colors, stick to an outfit with navy blues and camel browns. Consider a navy blue turtle neck with black leather pants and pointed ankle booties. If you gravitate toward pink, consider a solid-color outfit with rose, berry and blush pinks.

3. Long Jackets or Blazers

A reliable and formal winter outfit staple is a jacket or blazer. Jackets and blazers are great winter clothing options because you get the best of many worlds — including layering, warmth and fashion statements.

A popular winter trend is longer jacket and blazer options that end around your mid-thigh. Pair long jackets or blazers with dresses, skirts, turtle necks, chunky sweaters, blouses and so much more. Consider adding neutral-colored options to your closet, like gray, camel, white or black. You may see yourself in a cute and formal winter outfit with a black sweater dress with tights, tall boots and a white knee-length blazer. Of course, the outfit wouldn't be complete without formal pearl accessories and an elegant handbag.

4. Statement Bottoms

A dramatic outfit always centers around one fun piece of clothing. Make that piece of clothing your bottoms — a surprise few will expect! A statement pant can be one with a bright color, fun patterns, dramatic flares or uncommon fabrics.

Examples of statement bottoms are:

  • Brightly colored tweed skirts.
  • Knee-length pleated skirts.
  • Classy leather pants.
  • Flared black linen pants.

When wearing statement bottoms, subdue the rest of your outfit with staple pieces, like a natural-colored sweater or blouse. Depending on the piece, you may want to keep your accessories light, too.

5. Pencil Skirts With Tights

Skirts aren't just for a summertime fling — you can wear them in the winter, too! In warmer climates, you may be warm enough with a velvet skirt, a thin turtleneck sweater and a pair of knee-high boots. For colder climates, add some warmth by layering tights or leggings and a thick blazer. Both styles deserve layered accessories, like statement earrings or necklaces, for added elegance.

6. Tucked-in Oversized Sweaters

Oversized sweaters are great because they're comfortable, warm and extremely versatile. You can dress them down with a pair of jeans and booties, or dress them up with statement bottoms and tall boots.

The key to wearing oversized sweaters is styling them. With certain pants, it looks natural to leave the sweater untucked. But for other bottoms — namely skirts — you're going to want to tuck in the front. This is a great opportunity to accessorize your outfit with a statement belt.

7. Ankle Booties

If you don't have ankle booties in your winter wardrobe, it's time to hop on the bandwagon. Ankle booties are exactly what they sound like — boots that end right around your ankles. You can find ankle booties in a variety of styles, like in a fun color, with a tall heel or with a dramatic pointed toe.

Keep a pair of casual ankle booties in your closet for everyday looks. For formal occasions, you may want to invest in a luxurious and dramatic boot.

8. Knee-High Boots

Winter is your excuse to bring out the tall boots, and the taller the better. Like ankle booties, your winter wardrobe deserves at least two pairs of knee-high boots, a casual and formal pair. You can find knee-high boots in styles like velvet and leather, with buckles, pointed toes, taller heels, wedges and much more. Find what works well with your style. Wear your knee-high boots over pant legs, with skirts and tights, or with dresses over long socks.

9. Layered Accessories

A quick way to elevate any outfit is by accessorizing. It's hard to find any formal outfit without a pair of earrings or a statement necklace. Some accessories you can layer are:

 

  • Necklaces: Use your jewelry collection to dress up your sweater or blouse with a necklace. If you're wearing a statement outfit, keep things simple with a dainty piece. If you're wearing a simpler top, take your outfit to the next level with a statement necklace.
  • Earrings: Your earring choice may depend on your hairstyle. For dramatic outfits with tall necklines, consider styling your hair in an updo or long curls. Simple earrings go well with long hairstyles, while updos allow you to show off any statement pieces.
  • Scarves: Keep warm and add layers to your outfit by adding a scarf to your winter outfit. There are many winter styles to choose from, like long-tailed, knitted or infinity scarves.
  • Belts: Belts are more than a functional accessory and can make a great statement in a formal outfit. Consider a belt with dramatic metal hardware, layered over pants and skirts with tucked-in tops.

 

10. Jaw-Dropping Handbags

Handbags are the ultimate accessory. Most bag-wearers grab their handbags each time they step out of the house. In your collection, keep a casual handbag for everyday use and a formal handbag for dressier occasions.

For your formal winter outfit, one winter trend is big, colorful bags. Find an oversized tote in a bright color to add class to your outfit. If your outfit speaks volumes by itself, pair it with a neutral-colored crossbody with bold metal detailing.

Looking for Formal Outfits for the Cold Weather? Shop All Sizes at Perfectly Priscilla

At Perfectly Priscilla, we empower you to express yourself, no matter if you're a size 2 or 20. When you're looking for ways to dress up when it is cold, rely on Perfectly Priscilla for the latest trends and style inspiration. We have the exclusive styles and sizes you're looking for. Shop our tops, bottoms, outerwear and more online today

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