The famously flattering all-black approach to cocktail attire is made more palatable with an ambush of vibrant color. The modest Little Black Dress--now more abundantly available than in decades past--easily befriends a bright and happy headscarf. Like the deep, dark ocean at midnight beneath a faraway flash of lightning, the contrasting hues make a fierce combination.
Dress: Lafayette 148 New York, shop similar / Scarf: Papillon
Shoes: Aerosoles, shop similar / Necklace: Nordstrom
Ponte Sheath + Desert Tones
Hushed but intense shades of pink, terracotta, and cactus green complement the slim but forgiving fit of a ponte sheath. The dress's sleek silhouette is minimalist enough for daytime but easily evolves at dusk. Think Holly Golightly in Breakfast at Tiffany's.
Fit-and-Flare + Berry Tones
Juicy berry shades of elder-, blue-, and rasp- look poised atop a black fit-and-flare dress. Complete the effect with a matching lip color turned matte: blot with a tissue or dab with Smashbox's Lipstick Transformer.
The Lacy LBD + Oversize Florals
Dainty lace and feminine florals are reincarnated with large-scale proportions. This works for a late-fall dinner party or girls' night out.
LB Wrap Dress + Citrus Grove Hues
Take a fantasy vacation to the tropics with a gauzy scarf in punchy shades of lemon, lime, and blood orange. The cheery hues play nicely with candy-corn stripes of nail varnish.
Lately modest LBDs have been cropping up in the most unexpected of places. You might have luck searching vintage or handmade on Etsy, at thrift stores in cosmopolitan locales, and even your local Target. So slip into your Spanx, powder your nose, and illuminate your frock with the feel-good vibes of a polychrome scarf.
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Explore more lovely, low-key dress ideas here.