What to wear Christmas Day

Nikki Parkinson Fashion 63 Comments

It’s four weeks until Christmas Eve.

I know gift buying is all about giving to others but I’m a big fan of the self-gift too.

We’re worth it, don’t you think?

The gift I’m most likely to buy myself at Christmas is something to wear on Christmas Day.

I think this goes back to being a kid and more often than not receiving something new in the clothes department on Christmas morning … well, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

Now while I may not be a fan of fancy dress, I am a fan of channelling an outfit to suit the theme of the occasion.

And when that occasion is Christmas, you can expect I’ll be as coordinated as a shopping centre Christmas tree in colours of red, green or white.

Throw in a few gold and/or silver accessories and you could probably park me in the corner, wrap a strand of lights around me and stick a few presents at my feet. No-one would be the wiser.

There is a lot of fun in dressing for Christmas Day.

Whether you dress in a Christmas colour scheme or not, these what to wear Christmas Day tips will help you find an outfit worthy of a self-gift. Plus I’ve found 12 festive frocks you can shop online for right now.

Christmas Day style tips

1. Dress for the location. Yes, I know the occasion Christmas but will you be celebrating pool or beachside, on a deck, indoors in air-conditioning (or heater depending on which part of Australia you live), at a hotel or restaurant? This will determine how casual or dressed up your outfit needs to be.

2. Beach or poolside calls for loose garments you can easily take off and throw on over a swimsuit.  Make the swimsuit and your hat and sunnies part of the outfit as that’s what you’ll most be in throughout the day.

what to wear Christmas Day red

1. Maiocchi dress $319 | 2. Skylark maxi dress $69.95 @ The Treasure Emporium | 3. Firefly dress $80 @ The Butterfly House | 4. Bohemian Traders dress $109 

3. In the backyard or on a deck or verandah? You’ll most probably be relying on nature’s air-conditioning system to keep you cool. Help that along and opt for natural fabrics in more flowing styles.

4. If lunch is a more formal home affair or you’re out at a restaurant or hotel, something a little more dressy is called for. We’re not talking cocktail, more an outfit you’d wear to the races (without a hat) or to a summer wedding.

What to wear Christmas Day - white

1. Ollie & Max dress $149.95 | 2. JAG dress $159.95 @ Birdsnest | 3. Metalicus dress $159.95 | 4. Surafina dress $69

5. White really is all right. I know you’re sick of me saying there’s no need to be scared of white but really there isn’t. Just have Napisan at the ready. Preparing food? Wear an apron. It’s such a cool and fresh colour.

6. Accessorise with shiny baubles.  Whatever colour you opt to wear, a little shimmer and shine will only add to the festive nature of your outfit. Metallic flats, a cocktail ring or statement necklace … all are your friends in the outfit decorating department.

What to wear Christmas Day - Green

1. Country Road dress $249 | 2.  Kalokeri maxi dress $179 @ Sequins and Sand | 3. Adrift dress $79.95 | 4. Blue Bungalow silk kaftan $310

7. Frock up.  If you haven’t worked it out already, I’m all for the frock when it comes to Christmas Day dressing. Mostly this is because it’s your coolest option for beating the heat but also because a frock just simplifies the whole putting an outfit together scenario. Frocks for me also mark a moment in time. If I’ve bought myself a new frock for Christmas Day then I very much remember that Christmas and associate that particular frock with a wonderful day.

So tell me … do you self-gift at Christmas time? Do you buy yourself something new to wear? Bought anything yet? Share below in the comments?

PS. Many (not all) of the frocks I’ve featured today are from small independent designers or boutique owners who advertise on Styling You – I’m so appreciative of their support and would love you to click through and see what they have on offer.

PPS. Make sure you check out the links below for more gift ideas and tips. And bookmark this page as those links will increase as we get closer to Christmas. If you’re a blogger who’s posted about Christmas gift buying, add your link too!


  • Tinaline

    It’s really great thinking for the wearing dress of Christmas. Because it’s really a day of lots of enjoyment. For more https://tinaline.com.au/

  • These all fashionable items are really so nice and attractive. Great to see these all items. For more http://www.tallboysapparel.com/

  • Kel

    Some fabulous options! And I’m with you, I love having something new to wear on Xmas day. That being said, I’ve only recently treated myself (with hubs approval so less guilt) to a few new pieces from tiger lily so will prob wear one of those! Can’t wait to see what everyone else wears!

  • Oh my goodness yes, I’m a firm believer in buying a new outfit for Christmas Day! Have I got mine sorted yet? Erm, no. Best get onto that…

  • I love buying a new frock for Chrissy! It’s just gotta be flowy to hide the Christmas baby 😉

  • I love a cool white dress for Christmas – am now on the hunt for a linen one to replace my current favourite which I have worn to death : (

    Thanks for a great round up of ideas, Nikki!

    • Oh good luck! Try Bohemian Traders – I’ve got a lovely white linen one from there!

  • Loving lots of your suggestions; fabulous for Christmas Day and to pack for the holidays – our xmas day this year is low key – swimmers and a cover up – but the night of the 24th is another story – glamorous cocktails, absolutely need to dress up for this occasion – loving the GREEN options for a nice change – thank you for the updates xx

    • I’m so loving all the green that is around Monique … such a beautiful shade!

  • Love a Christmas Day dress. Something to get me in the groove and put a pep in my step for the big day ahead. Cool, relaxed chic and floaty. Then down to the beach for a looooong walk. Lovely choices. Always hard to go past the white, red and green numbers. Thanks for the inspiration. Have you yours yet 🙂 Ax

    • I’ve got some options up my sleeve Anita thats for sure! Very relaxed day poolside for me.

  • M

    Think I just bought the last firefly dress…

  • Thanks for the fabulous Christmas dress suggestions. I’ve been so busy Christmas shopping I haven’t yet had the chance to think about a Christmas outfit. Now I’ve got a great starting point.

  • Countrymum

    You are a woman after my own heart! I have been pondering what I will wear on Christmas Day and you have inspired me to go out and buy a new dress. It is quite hot where I live in country NSW, so I need something cool and flowing! I love the Red Skylark Maxi and the Green Adrift dress but both are sold out; there are some lovely dresses on their websites. I am going shopping next week in Newcastle so hope to find something there!

  • Petra

    Love all the dresses you’ve showcased. I’ve always bought a new frock for Christmas day, which of course is something slightly more special (but dressy casual) than I would normally buy. I have even always bought my son a “Christmas t-shirt” although this year he’s 13 so I don’t think he’ll oblige!!! However, there’s always the odd family party the week before, then NYE so another couple of outfits need to be bought!!!

  • Amanda Garven

    Love this post. I get so excited about buying an outfit for Christmas Day, it really makes it special! My boys and husband always get new t’s for xmas that inevitably get worn that day. As we are home this year, I’m going a bit casual, i just yesterday bought a striped dress from Sussan that I’m going to jazz up with red/ silver accessories. But there are some lovely suggestions here, I may also need something for Boxing Day!!

  • Jane

    Yes I self-gift. However I will buy some nice and modest pyjamas for myself as inevitably end up with hubby taking photos from the crack of dawn when the kids wake up to see what Santa has brought…..and they have no patience to wait for mummy to get her frock on

  • Amanda

    Oooohhh I love dressing up for Christmas Day and love all your suggestions. Scary how it only seems about 5 minutes since your last what to wear on Xmas Day post though….

    • It does seem scary Amanda and with the move and the book it’s been such a big year!!

  • Hope

    love the dresses.but what to do when you are born with chuncky legs.I envy ladies who can wear the shorter dresses.Sometimes long dresses and slacks are just so hot,Insert sad face.

    • Amanda

      Dear Hope, I’ll bet no-one but you thinks they are chunky. In fact I’ll bet they are not even chunky at all! You can wear definitely wear a short dress. My legs really are chunky but I feel better about them with a high heel and after the 2nd glass of wine I don’t care! Go for it! X

      • Well said Amanda … I haven’t met a woman who is perfectly happy with her body. Heels and wine – great tips! x

    • What Amanda said, Hope!

  • Wendy

    Went to buy the Skylark Red Maxi Dress and it is sold out! Is this another Mrs Woog Seed Condom dress incident?

    • Oh possibly except as a small store they may not have had a lot to start with! Good memory Wendy!!

    • Oh possibly except as a small store they may not have had a lot to start with! Good memory Wendy!!

      • Wendy

        They were FAB! They emailed me to let me know it was in so I got one and they shipped it super quick! Love them!

  • Lisa Mckenzie

    Yes Nikki I am very good at gifting myself something new to wear on Christmas day and I’ve bought 2 new maxi dresses from katies and I’m off to Myer today to spend some birthday vouchers so I will see what I can find.Love all the dresses you have picked I’m definitely a dress girl,thank you Xx

  • Johanne Taylor

    Love that Metalicus dress- good length and it looks very forgiving of an extra serve of dessert, too.

    • That should have been one of my style tips too … needs to accommodate the pudding!

  • You had me at red dresses. I just bought the Firefly one. 🙂

  • Suzie

    Gorgeous choices! I got a little worried when you mentioned Christmas colours and dresses in the one sentence but I love em!

    • I know, I know. I should have said … only buy a Christmas colour if it’s a colour that you’d normally love to wear throughout the year! And yes, I love supporting the independents too!

  • sydneyshopgirl

    Perfect timing, Nikki!

    I just ordered the Firefly dress from Butterfly House. I love how descriptive they are about each dress, outlining the body shape each dress would suit best.

    Can’t wait until my dress arrives.

    It’s been very slim pickings at the bricks and mortar stores this season with regard to pretty and comfortable frocks to wear this season.

    Thanks again

    SSG xxx

    • That is great to hear that they do a great job with explaining to online customers – go The Butterfly House!

  • merliyn

    a good selection of frocks, especially love the white … thanks nikki for the prompt! … note to self! … get sorted hun! … I’m not a frock person though
    and I try not to wear black on Christmas day!;0 … i’ll wear white this year! … btw I do know which shoes I’m wearing! … love m:)X

    • merliyn

      just looked at your f/b page and love the black and white number on you! ab/fab nikki! and you do try to cover every different style and budget! … good on you! hugs! m:)X

      • Oh thanks M … sometimes I really feel like I’m damned either way. I can’t please everyone but hope that I cover some sort of middle ground!

  • Karen

    Fantastic suggestions, Nikki. You have got me thinking. I was planning to wear something I already own on Christmas Day but it would be nice to get something new. I love quite a few of those dresses and great to see some independent labels and affordable pieces on the list. The Firefly Wendy dress is my favourite. Do you own one? Would love to see what it looks like on someone roughly my size.

    • Karen

      Argh, I was too slow and it has sold out. Never mind I bought a few others from Butterfly House. She has gorgeous stock.

      • Oh that’s wonderful … so appreciate you supporting one of my advertisers!

        • Karen

          Thanks Nikki. She is such a nice woman. She has ordered more stock. Looks like I’ll have my red dress for Christmas Day afterall.

    • I don’t own this particular style of Firefly but did feature a Firefly dress back in Winter here: https://www.stylingyou.com.au/2014/06/firefly-clothing/

  • Sheena

    Thanks so much Nikki, just bought the Skylark maxi dress ..great price with bonus free postage and they also take returns if doesn’t suit ..Christmas events and Christmas day wear (poolside ) now sorted ! x

  • Jenni from Styling Curvy

    Great choices Nikki, I love a new frock (or two) for Christmas x

    • You need options Jenni … there is Christmas Eve and Boxing Day after all!

  • I love your choices. I have a post of what to wear christmas day coming up tomorrow. I love Christmas and buying something special for that day. V x