Pro packers know versatility is the name of the game. If you’re going to pack an item, it has to mix and match while meeting lots of different needs. That’s all fine and dandy when you’re packing jeans and sweaters, but what about holiday party outfits? Is it really possible to get lots of wear out of special occasion dresses?

Choosing a Versatile Party Dress

My answer is yes! With the right item. A few years ago, I spotted an amazing velvet polka-dot wrap dress when shopping in Lisbon. My travel mates didn’t really understand why I loved this dress, since it was so much more “extra” than my usual choices and not that versatile at first glance. But I saw more potential! That’s because wrap dresses can be layered in really fun ways. Don’t believe me? Take a look at these three outfits with one dress.

The Fancy Party

Wear this dress with a pair of heels and a classic red lip for an easy party look. Surprisingly, velvet packs pretty well. It doesn’t really show wrinkles if you protect it from indentations caused by sharp objects.

The Cozy Dinner

Having dinner with the family but still want to be festive? I love layering a chunky knit over this dress to make it a skirt. The colours complement each other and you can wear simple flat booties for a totally comfy outfit.

The Artsy Event

Open up this dress and you have a cardigan. It’s a very long cardigan, mind you, and reminds me a bit of a wizard robe, but paired with some laid-back jeans and cool accessories, and you’ve got a stand-out outfit that can turn heads.

There are lots of examples of wrap dresses worn as cardigans, for example the internet-beloved Crysalid Cardigan by Encircled. It’s a bit simple for me, but achieves the same goal.

Inspired yet? Go give it a try! Find items in your closet that can be worn in multiple ways and discover all the outfit options that can extend your travel capsules.