Party people, prepare yourselves! New Year’s Eve is imminent and the pressure is on. What pressure? The pressure of having a grand ol’ time of course – a night that you can’t quite remember is perfectly acceptable but a night that is not memorable is completely unacceptable. And with that, comes the pressure of bringing your A-game. Your outfit will be telling of character and style. Underdressing for the setting will mark you as socially unaware, while overdressing will mark you as socially overeager. And regardless of your sobriety level, the clock will inevitably strike 12 and when that happens, what will others remember you in? Let us help guide your first moments into 2013 in style.


All-Night, All-You-Can-Drink, Upscale Celebration

You’ve got a solid group of friends. You don’t mind spending every weekend with them. You’ve seen the best of times and the worst of times together and of each other. And you’re all looking for a reason to get fancy, outside of the usual weekend get-up. It’s a big night, so why not do it big?

That all-night open bar deal at [insert swanky lounge or night club here] comes with a price tag, and with a price tag comes a dress code. It’s simple. Suit up. Consider the ladies you’ll be meeting. Consider the kind of dude they’re going to want to find themselves next to a couple drinks in and a couple of minutes before the clock strikes 12. That dude will be wearing a dark, fitted suit with a crisp, custom shirt, pocket square and nice shoes.


We suggest:

1. A suit that will make a statement before you say a word

2. Only a custom shirt will do that slick suit justice

3. Draper never knew about this one

4. The last night of the year deserves a nice tie 

5. A classy, understated time piece so you don’t forget when it’s time to get close to one who will get your New Year’s kiss

6. Closing statements come in cognac


House Party

Your best bet on meeting people you might actually want to see again in 2013 will happen at a house party. Friends-of-friends-of-coworker’s cousin’s friend? Yes, you might actually ask her out on a date. So who has the best apartment? More importantly, is the person with the best apartment inviting some good-looking friends? Make sure the host has an equal amount of attractive lady friends to go along with the fact that you and your boys will be alternating between party versions of Stockton and Malone.

But a house party means tighter quarters. You’ll be back and forth from couch with cute girl, to kitchen to refill cute girl’s drink, and back. How do you stand out without sticking out? Make sure you’re fitted in something casual but smart, clean and put together. And don’t miss out on the chance to kill it in the details department. Add some color to your pieces, accessorize and definitely rock some “f*ck-yeah-it’s-party-time” socks.


We suggest: 

1. A sick varsity jacket just in case you come across the unlikely scenario of that girl dressed as a cheerleader

2. The perfect gingham shirt is always in style

3. A layer sweater, but not an ugly Christmas one

4. Some nice, heavy denim

5. Some McNairy’s, also known as McNasty’s with aforementioned “f*ck-yeah-it’s-party-time socks”)

6. The right wrist wear = high style IQ

(or take Park & Bond’s guide to buying a vintage Rollie)

7. Need some next-day memory aid? Try an iPhone olloclip camera lens



Sometimes the best place to be on New Year’s Eve is at home, especially if you’re literally or figuratively “wifed” up. If you want to keep it low key, we suggest a robe (with underwear optional), champagne and a nice meal (home-cooked or takeout both play). It really doesn’t get much easier than that.


We suggest:

1. Keeping it cozy with a robe

2. “Sleep pants,” because your home and you can

3. Make it official with some bubbly

4. If you need to set the mood, there’s no better soundtrack for an evening of romance

Your Local Bar’s Shindig

Sometimes the best thing to do on New Year’s Eve is to keep it familiar and kick it at your local bar. There won’t be much travel involved and when the night, or morning, comes to an end, you’re close to home. What’s the vibe of your local spot during the week? Feel free to wear what you’d typically pick, but kick it up a slight notch. Hipster-ish joint? If it’s all plaid button downs, skinny jeans and beanies during regular hours, try throwing on a skinny tie or a bow tie with your regular ensemble. Sports bar? If you’re always here watching the Knicks and want to keep the spirit, consider wearing a blue French Terry sweater over a button down with dark denim and a pair of burnt orange Chuck T’s rather than actually rocking a Melo jersey. Then again, you can never go wrong keeping it clean with a blazer, nice sweater, some darker colored chinos and crisp white shoes. But keep in mind that there are bartenders and people in the neighborhood that you could run into again. This could be a moment to make an impression or leave as “that mess from that one New Year’s Eve.”


We suggest:

1. The perfect, easy blazer. If you don’t already have one of these, you need to add this to your list of resolutions!

2. Patterned sweater, why not?

3. Colored, but muted chinos work well here

4. Wrap-around bracelet with silver nailhead? No, you’re not too manly for this.

5. Crisp white sneakers. Just make sure you have a rag and shoe cleaner handy the next day.

6. This might be “handy” if an out-of-towner doesn’t immediately know where your loyalties lie


Times Square

All we’ve heard is that you have to arrive hours before, you can’t use the bathroom and you have to stay put in your designated spot for hours. But hey, if it’s your first time in NYC and you want to watch the ball drop, that’s your choice and to be fair, it is a once in a lifetime experience (…that you’ll always regret doing hint hint*).

Our advice would be to keep that Accu Weather App on your iPhone very handy. The last thing you want is to be stuck in the snow/rain without an umbrella and stuck in the cold without a proper jacket. And if it’s cold, as it likely will be, it gets colder when you stand in the same spot for hours. So don’t try to be cute with your one layer, wool blazer and chic bow tie – we’ll let you choose function over fashion this time. Just stay warm. Depending on how crazy New York winters can be, anything short of the below bundle and you may freeze to death before you see 2013.


We suggest: 

1. A huge, puffy, warm, down jacket

2. We know people who buy heat tech in bulk

3. It doesn’t matter how crazy you look, just don’t say the words “bomb” or “explosion” too loudly

4. Gloves are crucial if you want to be able to feel your fingers when video recording the ball drop

5. Shearling boots are perfect for winter, Times Square bound or not

6. A flask, ’cause how else are you going to pass the time? Just remember the part about not being able to use the bathroom!

7. NYC + large crowds = You never know when you might need pepper spray from your iPhone case


Whatever you end up doing, make sure you stay safe, have a good time and of course, look your best. It’s another 364 days before you the whole world stops to party, so make sure you close out the year correct.

Happy New Year from Black Lapel!