How To Find the Perfect New Year’s Eve Outfit on a Budget

Much like Halloween, New Year’s Eve comes with a lot of hype. Part of that hype includes rocking the perfect outfit. What to wear while ringing in the new year? New Year’s style is all about glitz, glam, and sleek dark hues. And even though I’m well-aware of the NYE dress code, somehow I’m always scrambling to find an outfit at the last minute. With all of the distracting Christmas madness, New Year’s tends to sneak up on me. Not this year. This year, I was determined to find the perfect ensemble long before the ball had begun to drop.

The first step was to begin the dress-scouting process early. As soon as December 1st hit, the hunt began. I browsed my favorite clothing sites each morning to check out new arrivals and recent additions to their clearance sections. My closet consists of items from Forever21, Modcloth, American Eagle, and Urban Outfitters, so those were my online stops.

Once I decided I wanted to wear a black dress, I ruled out American Eagle, Forever21, and Urban Outfitters immediately. These stores are amazing, but they don’t usually carry the kind of LBD I was looking for. I wanted something unique, something of appropriate length, and something that I would love well into 2014.

Modcloth is the shopping cathedral of vintage apparel, and a lot of their products are worn by the always gorgeous Zooey Deschanel and her character Jess on New Girl. Modcloth’s dresses can run anywhere from $30 all the way to $300, so the key is to keep an ongoing wishlist of the items you like. You can get email or text updates on items from your wishlist that go on sale or go out of stock, so it’s easy to keep track of your desired pieces.

For this occasion, I added several LBDs to my wishlist, and I didn’t discriminate based on price. I knew I only wanted to spend about $50 on my NYE dress, but I included pricier items because Modcloth has several incredible flash sales throughout the year and you just never know when you’ll find a $200 dress on sale for 70% off. It happens, and when it does, their sale items sell out instantly.

For about a week straight, I would check my wish list and revise as new items were added to their site or went on sale, until I noticed one dress in particular that held onto its spot, no matter what else I found. This dress was the “Delight at First Sight Dress.”

EUREKA! It was beautiful, chic, sexy without being too sexy, and unique. It’s a backless dress, which I’m usually too intimidated to wear, but it has a thick tie at the neck that hangs low in the exposed backless section. The front is a v-neck that doesn’t go too deep, and the skirt is double lined with tulle – giving it a playful, vintage poof. It was also only $52.99, so it was very close to the amount I wanted to spend.

Since I’m signed up to receive their newsletters, I remained on the lookout for flash sales and discount codes. I also checked their deal page everyday, just so I didn’t miss anything.

Then came the glory. I received an email from Modcloth with a discount code to receive 10% off any order and free shipping over $50. I knew I probably wouldn’t find a better deal between then and New Year’s, and I wanted enough of a buffer to make sure it fit comfortably, just in case I needed to return it and order something else. Plus, the reviews on the dress were a mixed bag of positive feedback, flattering photos of customers in the dress, and some negative responses too. Modcloth’s customer community is great about including honest product reviews. The ones for this dress were about general fit, which is different for everyone, so I wasn’t deterred.

Good news – it arrived within a week of ordering it, and it’s a perfect fit! Now that I have my NYE dress, I can glide right through the holidays on my stress-free, shopper’s high. See you all in 2014.


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