When it comes to seasonal dressing, I’m an all-or-nothing kind of gal. While my friends and family know me for my devotion to fall outfits, holiday styling also holds a special place in my heart. I particularly enjoy how the season invites so many different kinds of styling opportunities and outfit ideas (including ones inspired by your favorite holiday movie!). From comfy family-matching PJs to sequined party dresses, December is a month filled with an exciting range of clothing.
While it’s fun and natural to take fashion inspiration from the weather, our environment, and trends as the seasons change, come Christmastime, it’s also really joyful to draw inspiration from holiday movies. After all, what better way to give yourself some main character energy than to literally dress like a main character?
This season, as you’re rewatching all your favorite holiday movies alongside your kiddos, have fun taking note of different outfits worn throughout the films. From party-ready looks to cozy ‘fits, here are some Christmas movie-inspired outfit ideas to jumpstart your holiday wardrobe.
Holiday Movie Outfit Ideas to Try This Season
If you’re like me, you’ve seen Home Alone more times than you can count. But it wasn’t until last year that a Google search—I had to know how the McCallisters so effortlessly afforded to live in a mansion—led to my discovering that Kevin’s mom in the film is a fashion designer. And this wasn’t a surprise. Mrs. McCallister’s profession certainly comes through in her chic, timeless outfitting. Draw inspiration from Kate McCallister’s wardrobe this season for an office-ready outfit that can also see you through holiday events—from holiday bake sales, shopping excursions, visits to see Santa—and beyond.
Shop this look:
1. camel coat
5. leather tote
If you’re like me and enjoy elevated-casual looks that err on the side of cozy and cute, then take inspo from Kevin himself. An intarsia or fair isle sweater paired with a plaid skirt nods to the traditional Christmas aesthetic seen throughout the film. Vibrant red and emerald green, in particular, pay homage to the color palette visible in every scene and scream “holiday.”
The Christmas movie of all Christmas movies! With metallics and the color green both trending this holiday season, there has never been a better time to outfit yourself like everyone’s favorite adopted North Pole elf. Pull both trends into a party-ready ensemble with a shiny, eye-catching skirt and elegant top. Metallic accessories and tall black boots pull the look together.
The Santa Clause Series
Growing up, I remember being absolutely enchanted by the sleigh scene in The Santa Clause 2. The horse-drawn carriage pulled down the twinkle light illuminated street while trailed by a personal snow cloud made my younger self feel like magic truly was possible. Recreate Carol Newman’s wintry look from the scene with a powder blue coat and pearl drop earrings. A neutral sweater dress paired with kitten heels is a pulled-together look well-suited for winter concerts, Christmas plays, and fundraising events.
Is it weird to take fashion inspiration from a Vince Vaughn Santa Claus? I haven’t yet answered that question for myself but I’m going to roll with it. While it may not be the first holiday movie that comes to mind, I personally love this feel-good Christmas comedy and am always game to take dressing inspiration from just about anywhere. In the movie, Fred is known for his leather jacket—an outfit staple that will be synonymous with “cool” until the end of time. Add jeans, boots, and a scarf for a practical look that can hold up against long, kid-driven, activity-filled December days.
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation
The Griswolds are iconic—and so is their over-the-top Christmas style. Always a contrast to her husband’s commitment to taking Christmas traditions to the most extreme level possible, Ellen Griswold’s final film outfit is festive without being loud. It’s also fairly simple to recreate. Style a white blouse with a green skirt and you’ve nailed the look.
For an Ellen-inspired everyday ‘fit, grab your coziest Fair Isle sweater and a pair of black jeans. Pull half of your hair back with a trendy bow to keep your locks out of your face while you’re busy baking, cooking, and decorating.
Christmas with the Kranks
Christmas with the Kranks is one of those movies that has grown on me over time. I grew up watching it every year, only to realize in adulthood that—somewhere along the line—it became one of my favorite festive films. It never fails to make me laugh (the honey baked ham scene comes to mind) and I love that it doesn’t take itself too seriously. In the movie, Blair Krank’s go-to ensemble—a Fair Isle sweater and jeans—is an easy-to-achieve, practical look that we moms can channel all December long as we run around (both figuratively and literally) making all the holiday magic come to life.
If minimalist chic is the holiday fashion aesthetic you’re going for, then Kate from Four Christmases is your style muse. Pull out your favorite black dress and style it with glitzy shoes and earrings for a touch of holiday charm.
I’m a little embarrassed to admit I’ve never seen The Holiday, but am proud to say that it’s at least on my to-watch list this December. But even I, who has yet to see the film, am somewhat familiar with its styles—is Cameron Diaz ever not fashionable? Recreate an Amanda Woods outfit for an ensemble that’s perfectly seasonable but can also live on past December 25. Swap black heels out for loafers or flats to make the look more mom-friendly and snowy-sidewalk appropriate.
I have a daughter named Elsa. Before you ask, no, she’s not named after the Disney movie. That being said, I’ll admit I am a fan of the Frozen films. As someone who went to school for visual art, I’ve always been absolutely enamored by the film’s artwork and the care that went into designing the animated textiles, in particular. If you’re lucky enough to have a formal event to attend this holiday season, don’t shy away from drawing inspiration from everyone’s favorite snow queen. A tulle dress in powder blue is sure to turn a head or two. Add a pair of metallic silver heels for pure, winter-outfitting magic.