Red is always popular colour choice during the Holiday season, and no more so than this year.  It’s wonderful to see this warm colour everywhere. I love red, but it’s not always the easiest colour to wear.  Here are some hot tips on wearing red, and some perfect red pieces to make your Holiday wardrobe pop.

Red Hot Tips:

  • Select the right shade of red for you – especially any red you’re wearing close to your face.  Some reds have blue undertones, such as cranberry red,  and some reds have yellow undertones – so if a red doesn’t seem to be suiting you, it may be due to this. Simply try a different shade. Classic Christmas or mail box red suits most of us, except those who normally wear a strong autumn colour palette i.e. orange, yellow, browns.
  • One large or two small red items are usually enough – so, if you wear a red dress, choose accessories and shoes in a different colour – black is the classic, but also consider silver grey or even brown. Wearing a fabulous pair of red shoes? No need to match your purse, but you could add earrrings or a necklace with red gems, for example.
  • Unless you’ve volunteered to be Mrs. Claus at the community centre, avoid wearing bright white with red at all costs!  Off-white might work – ask a friend to be sure that your choice of red and white work.
  • Coordinating hose and tights – if you’re wearing a red dress or skirt, select hose in a toned down version of the shoe colour. For example, barely black hose with black shoes or soft brown hose with brown shoes.  The standard alternate is nude – and make sure it is nude and NOT tan.

Red Hot pieces to get passionate about:

  • Move over little black dress! Stand out in the crowd with a classic Holiday alternate, the little red dress. I have a red cocktail dress that I purchased 9 years ago and have worn it every so often over the years – including this one.  Here are a few options out in the stores right now from Club Monaco (note the black accessories), American Eagle, Gap, Banana Republic and Victoria’s Secret.                                                            
    Club_momaco Ae_dress

Red_gap_dress Brreddress Vs_dress

  • Red on top. Add a statement to your closet with the purchase of a red hot top. The choice is endless right now, for every occasion the Holidays call for.  Everything from red hot evening tops to sleek sweaters and cosy knits. Take a look…these are from Gap (ruffled blouse and fitted v-neck sweater), Victoria’s Secret and American Eagle.

Gap_blouse Gap_sweater Vs_topAe_cardigan

  • Put on your red shoes and dance. Liven up black, grey, blue jeans or just about any plain outfit with a punch of colour on your feet. Who doesn’t love a pair of fabulous red shoes? Here are some hot heels and fabulous flats in outrageous red. The patent, peep-toe pumps (try saying that fast three times) are from Payless, the power pumps are from Aldo, the ballet beauties are from American Eagle and the party pretties from The Shoe Company.

Payless_pump Aldo_shoe_2 Ae_ballet_flats Party_shoes_town_shoes

  • Awesome accessories.  Even if you’re not sure how to wear red, you can create the right, red effect with accessories. Consider red jewelry, gloves, scarves and belts. Below is jewelry from Old Navy, ruby ring from, red leather gloves from, Payless red bag and belt and Banana Republic evening clutch.

On_red_bead_collection Ice_ring Red_gloves_jcp Payless_bag Payless_belt Brclutch

  • Cosy up in crimson. Check out the choice of pjs, robes and loungewear choices in red this year.  These items also make great gifts. All the following from La Senza.

La_senza_pj Lspjs Lspjs_and_robe

  • Staying in the red.  if your red budget runs to no more than a few dollars, you can still get miseltoe-ready with no more than a gorgeous red-toned lip colour. CoverGirl Trublend sheer, shiny lip shades works with your natural lip tones and claim to complement up to 97% of skin tones so you can select the perfect shade for you.


  • Racy red. Yes, red is warm, cheery and fun, but it’s also the colour of passion. Even if you’re not wearing red on top, you can heat up the Holidays with some senstaional, seasonal undies. These are from Victoria’s Secret and The Gap.

V268142   Gap_bra

Until next time…wishing all you red hot mamma’s a wonderful, safe, healthy and happy Holiday season.

Katie is host of the Style File.  As a public relations professional and a student of style and design, Katie has helped many retail and fashion clients promote their brands. She is mom to two boys (the best anti-shopping devices on the market) and now indulges her love of fashion by conducting wardrobe consultations, personal shopping expeditions and by participating in media interviews, providing advice on everything from wardrobe must-haves to accessories and footwear.  Katie firmly believes that high style does not have come with a high price tag and her shopping philosophy is based on saving both time and money.

For more style musings, visit Katie at Real Canadian Style

  • Susane

    Amazing find!! Love it… I prefer to buy my dresses and accessories from Brooks Brothers store through by using coupons….

  • Katie

    Elizabeth – good for you – red is definitely not just for evenings. same rule applies as any other colour – if it’s an evening style or shiny, adorned fabric (like the Victoria’s Secret top above) – it’s for evening – otherwise go for it and stand out in the crowd.
    Margot – As for red hot maternity wear – I’ll be on the look out and let you know if I spot anything. If you can’t find anything you love, an option is to go for the red shoes and/or accessories.

  • Elizabeth

    Katie, I was at a Christmas function today with about a hundred other women thinking I was so Miss Instyle in my red sweater, and I was the only woman in red! Everyone seemed to be in grey or black? It was a morning event, is red only an evening colour?

  • Margot

    Love those The Shoe Company shoes!! We already had my hubby’s holiday party & I had to trot out some old combo of skirt & shirt that actually fit over my ever-expanding belly (honestly it seems to grow about 2 sizes as the day goes on). Little funny story about that is that the only pantyhose I could find (at the last minute of course) were control top. Control top pantyhose & 5 months pregnant do not mix well. If I could have taken them off during dinner I would have!!!
    I would love to find something red, cute & maternity to wear for the holidays but the search has only turned up duds & exceedingly expensive options.

  • Katie

    Wendy – you go girl!

  • Wendy

    I love that red halter cocktail dress from Banana Republic. I saw a similar one at Femme de Carriere. Too bad I don’t have a cocktail party to go to. I guess I’ll just have to get the red undies and have a special party at home!

More Posts From The Category

My Kid's Sleep Regression Is Turning Me Into A Mombie

Sleep regression is a thing and it's terrible. Where did my child who sleeps so well go? I rather desperately need to…

Chill Out And Let Them Have Halloween: The Case For Tee…

Who knew that teens trick-or-treating were a subject worthy of heated debate? Turns out that it’s not only a hot…

WE Day And Telus Encourage Youth To #RiseAbove

You may have heard about the WE Organization founded by two Canadian brothers, Craig and Marc Kielburger. As young…

Is The $500 Dyson Supersonic Hairdryer Worth The Hefty…

Earlier this year Dyson unveiled the Supersonic hair dryer. With stars in our eyes, we collectively swooned  over what…