7 pandemic-friendly fashion trends to shop for this holiday season

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We all know there are two types of holiday dressers: You’re either lounging in pajamas or strutting around the kitchen in your dressiest getup.

We (Paige and Bri) visited several local boutiques to roundup winter looks, no matter where you fall on the style spectrum.

Note: We wore masks the entire time, including between changes/while setting up the photos. Links are included to each piece/shop if you prefer shopping online. 

Where to shop

Over $250: Coplons, Poole Shop, Capitol, Five One Five, Charlotte’s

$100-$250: Monkee’s, UniquitiesJT Posh (resale boutique)

Under $100: BoemGirl Tribe, K|LA, Ivy & LeoJulie’sVestiqueBelk (it’s locally based!), Winnie’s BoutiqueWorthy Figures (curvy and plus sizes up to 3X), Great Things (resale boutique), To The Hills Boutique

(1) Structured skirt (or dress)

This one can be intimidating. But, Charlotte shops have found ways to transition this look off the runway and into a Charlotte restaurant, or better yet, your apartment, because safer at home. To me, structured pieces can elevate any look.

Monkee's structured dress

I fell in love with this flouncy Celia B. dress from Monkee’s. Admittedly, it’s a lot of look, and at $448 it’s a lot of money. But, it’s great because it combines quite a few of this season’s trends (puffy sleeves, velvet, the color red) without going overboard.

(2) Puff sleeves

We’ve seen the puffy sleeve trend before, but it’s coming back in newer, fresher ways. Throughout Charlotte shops we found lots of otherwise plain, single-colored tops with puffy sleeves. The trend is practical and approachable — everything this year hasn’t been.

PH puff turtleneck

I had a very hard time leaving this $158 Agolde ribbed turtleneck from Uniquities at the store. Loved the shape of the sleeve and the color.

Holiday fashion guide Boem puff sleeve trend

The puff sleeve trend is still going strong. And I’m still here for it. This English Factory top is $60 from Boem. Leather pants are Pistola $128, also from Boem. 

Puff blazer PH

This incredibly versatile blazer takes the puffy sleeve trend to a new level. It’s by Joy Joy and $180 at Monkee’s.

Holiday Fashion Guide Amanda Uprichard Tawny Top

This Amanda Uprichard top from Uniquities has a tiny puff complimented by ruffles on the sleeve. It’d be easy to dress up or down and would spice up any Zoom call fit.

(3) Prairie dress

The long dress trend is alive and well in Charlotte. This one can be polarizing, but we couldn’t love it more. You get to look put together without putting in much effort.

Holiday fashion guide prairie dress trend Charlotte's

Bury me in this. I’ve fully embraced the flower print long dress trend and these colors help carry it through the colder months. Made from 100% silk, I can’t overstate how wonderful and luxurious this fabric feels. Also, Marie Oliver is a North Carolina-based designer! $458 at Charlotte’s.

Holiday fashion guide prairie and sparkle trend Charlotte's

Blend holiday glam with the laid back prairie silhouette. $298 at Charlotte’s.

Kendall Lane Heather Tiered Dress

Yes, prairie dresses are traditionally long, but, this Kendall Lane tiered dress gives a similar look, but short. It’s $68 at Uniquities.

(4) Sparkle

‘Tis the season to sparkle, right? Celebrations might be scaled down, but you can still turn up the glam factor. From sequins to glittery fibers, Charlotte shops are stocked with pieces that make you shine.

Holiday fashion guide sparkle blazer trend coplons

Equal parts sophisticated and fun, this glittery blazer from Coplons was one of my favorite pieces. $1,455 by Zuhair Murad. (If you’re reading this, I’m still thinking about this blazer.)

Holiday fashion guide sparkle trend coplons

This DVF sweater dress is for those who prioritize both chicness and comfort. The metallic effect makes this LBD festive. $448 at Coplons.

Holiday fashion guide K|LA sparkle trend

Another metallic beauty in blush, this $68 from K|LA and also comes in black.

Holiday fashion guide Charlotte's sparkle trend

A sequin top and a skirt with some sheen to it says holiday like no other combo. Top is $218 and skirt is $278 from Charlotte’s.

Fringe and sparkle skirt

This Danae skirt combines two trends by adding sparkly fringe. Here I paired it with a graphic tee but it’d be just as nice with a plain white top or even a button down. It’s $58 at Girl Tribe.

(5) Leather

This season we saw a lot of (faux) leather. Beyond your standard jacket, there are colorful leather tops, pleated skirts, and so many styles of leather pants/leggings.

Holiday fashion guide red leather trend coplons

This puff sleeve leather top by Crosby is the gift that keeps on giving this year (I tried it on in blue this fall). The red is on trend and just feels right this time of year. $365 from Coplons. (These black flare pants have a gorgeous lace detail on the bottom. $595.)

Holiday fashion guide Boem leather trend

One shoulder puff bodysuit + a tiered faux leather mini skirt = the ultimate cool girl NYE look. $98 and $72 respectively, from Boem.

PH leather jumpsuit

This buttery soft Annika jumpsuit from Monkee’s was surprisingly comfortable, probably thanks to a little bit of stretch. It’s $260. Pair it with stilettos to ring in the New Year.

Holiday fashion guide leather texture trend Coplons

Tan and hot pink leather pleated skirt? Why not. Play it up with an equally colorful cheetah print sweater. The skirt is $1,450 and sweater is $718 from Coplons.

(6) (Faux) fur

Faux fur is also big. Try it in a poppy color like red or pink. Why not?

Holiday fashion guide leather and fur trends

Another Marie Oliver piece from Charlotte’s, this deep plum and black faux fur jacket is so fun. $328. (The skirt is $465 and I love the sheen on it.)

Holiday fashion guide red fur coat texture trend coplons

This red faux fur coat is giving me major holiday party vibes. $325 from Coplons.

(7) Loungewear

A sign of the times, every boutique owner we spoke with said people are looking for comfort these days. Something tells me cute loungewear look and a fun face mask are items on many of our holiday wishlists.

Holiday fashion guide loungewear trend K|LA

A sweatshirt dress is very 2020. It’s not cold for very long here, so the length and weight are great. $58 from K|LA (also comes in gray and rust).

Rails Quincy Top Holiday shopping guide

Cutouts were also popular on the runway this season. This cutout sweatshirt by Rails makes the trend very pandemic-friendly. It’s $138 at Uniquities.

More shopping to do? Check out our holiday gift guide with 46 local finds under $100.

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