Our D.C. Editor's Ultimate Tips For Taking The Night By Storm

When it comes to owning the evening, our own D.C. Editor, Holly Thomas, knows how to turn the entire District into her late-night plaything. Yes, she always keeps it comfortable — but she never scrimps on style (in Washington, people only respect demonstrations of power, after all). To learn how our Holly does it, scan down for a strong dose of on-the-town-ensemble intel. Holly-Thomas
"For me, getting dressed to go out is all about setting a mood and deciding which part of my personality I want to project. Do I want to bring out the rock-'n'-roll badass? The relaxed-cool vibe of an M.O.D.? Or some Bianca Jagger-esque glam? Music definitely plays a roll in the process, too. Whenever I'm lacking in outfit inspiration, I'll shuffle around my playlists until I find something that gets me going, whether it's Niki and the Dove, Robyn, The Black Keys, or Fleetwood Mac.
"Head-to-toe black might seem like a fashion-industry cliche, but there are ways to pull it off so you don't look like you're doing PR for the event you're attending. First, play with texture — this lace jacket is actually a vintage nightshirt, but I love the fact that it adds a subtle pattern to break up the monochromatic palette. Second, experiment with silhouette. This dress is ancient, but I can't part with it because the full skirt — with a crinoline! — makes it so perfect for last-minute fancy occasions. (It's Luella Bartley for Target — how's that for old-school?) The embellished clutch is a prize piece I found at Goodwill and bought for my vintage shop, Butler + Claypool.
"My shoes have to be comfortable for a night out — nothing ruins a night faster than a blister. I bought these Dolce Vita wedges new at Bloomingdale's (a splurge at the time), but they've paid me back tenfold. For jewelry, I always opt for a few pieces with a lot of impact. In this case, that means three chunky cocktail rings — two from Australia and one from Italy, so they're very dear to me — and a pair of carved feather earrings from my boyfriend. Wearing a few pieces that have personal significance makes me feel more like myself, no matter how dressed up (or down) I might be."

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