3 chic ways to dress up your black leggings for holiday party season

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Photo: Stocksy/Studio Firma

As the weather gets progressively chillier, loafing around in all things athleisure sounds pretty appealing. And yet, your calendar is jam-packed with holiday bashes. Good news: There are tons of ways to dress up those trusty black leggings for basically any festive occasion on the books.

“They really showcase your special pieces without competing.”

“Black leggings are a blank canvas, so they really showcase your special pieces without competing,” explains superstar stylist Ashley Avignone, who’s worked with clients such as Emma Stone and Ashley Benson. For more formal occasions, be selective with the type of legging you choose. “Opt for a sturdier, opaque fabric rather than a sheer stocking-like legging,” Avignone says. “These will look more expensive and dressy.”

Ahead, check out Avignone’s expert tricks for dressing up the workhorse of your activewear wardrobe for a trifecta of festive situations.

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Photo: Topshop

A luxe, holiday party-worthy look

Avignone suggests going for an embellished wrap dress that closes in the front, worn open, to layer over a trusty pair of black leggings and inky camisole. “I would choose a higher-waisted, cropped legging,” she advises. “Pair with a simple black sandal, and make sure to leave a gap between the bottom of the legging and the ankle strap.” As for accessories, the stylist recommends a sparkly earring—”It brings out the subtle sequins of the dress,” she says—and a petite metallic bag with a delicate strap (along the lines of this Saint Laurent heart-shaped bag).

Our pick: Topshop Velvet Plunge Dress, $75

Photo: Totokaelo

A fun, office-appropriate getup

“I would start with an oversized, crisp white button-down,” she says, noting that a style with darts in the bodice helps avoid looking bulky. “To jazz it up, I would throw on a bustier over the shirt,” she says. For footwear, she’s a fan of jeweled mules. “This pair from Manolo Blahnik has a little something extra for the holiday season,” Avignone says. Her pro tip: “Adding another luxe fabric, like a velvet bag in a bright color, gives the look some punch,” she says.

Protagonist bustier top, $220

Photo: Zara

A casually cool look for basically any holiday gathering

Even if you’re weary of the ugly Christmas sweater, some stylish, but cheeky, knits are worth considering. “There are so many great novelty sweaters right now,” Avignone says. Pair a fun knit with a jacket that has a unique shape or detail.” Stick with a classic black legging style, or try a stirrup legging with a white boot. No need for baubles with this getup, but if you do want to accessorize, consider a simple, geometric pair of danglers: “I’ve been eyeing these gold drops from Sophie Buhai—earrings are definitely the accessory of the season,” Avignone says. Complete the look with a boxy, medium-size bag.

Zara Checked Blazer, $90

Dress up your leggings for day with these embellished kicks, then get your skin glowing for night.

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