Not-So-Basic Black

Fashion blogger Bows & Sequins wearing a classy leopard print dress with crystal statement earrings.

You know when you see a dress and buy it before you have anywhere to where it? That was me with this burnout velvet leopard midi situation. It was too good to pass up! (Oh, and lucky for you, it’s now on sale to the tune of FORTY PERCENT OFF.. I really need to learn how to exercise some patience.)

Honestly, though, I’m not even that mad about it because the opportunity did present itself. One of my best girlfriends from college, Ellen, is essentially family at this point, and we’ve all gone to her dad’s company’s Christmas party for as long as I can remember. Well, I missed last year because I was living in Mexico City at the time, but we’ve been going since we were in college! So basically a decade, which makes me feel REALLY FRICKEN OLD. 😳

Fashion influencer Jessica Sturdy of Bows & Sequins wearing a black velvet hair bow with blonde curls.

But I digress… I feel like this dress is oh-so-perfect for any type of work-related holiday party! The leopard print is so very subtle and couldn’t be classier… The velvet detail adds a festive touch… And the slightly sheer sleeves keep it from being too matronly! It’s the perfect midi length, and the fit and flare shape is flattering on every body type. ✔️✔️✔️

Chicago stylist Jessica Sturdy wearing a black leopard velvet dress for the holidays.

Just an FYI on sizing: I’m usually a 4-6 in dresses, but I always take a 6 in this brand! I’ve got some room in the waist and could have probably taken a 4 there (although it might be snug), but I have broader shoulders and the 6 fits perfectly throughout the top. The material doesn’t have any stretch, so I always like to err on having a little extra room! (More room for cake and cocktails! Or a steak and pasta, let’s be honest.)

Oh, and I’m wearing the Regular length! I’m only 5’5” (my legs makes me look taller than I am), so if you’re shorter that me, you could probably get away with the Petite because the midi length is definitely on the longer side, hitting me at mid-shin.

Chicago personal stylist Jessica Sturdy of Bows & Sequins styling a black velvet midi dress with classic ankle strap heels for a holiday Christmas party.

I kept my accessories super classic… Ankle strap pumps (yes, my toes were cold, but hey, no snow on the ground so I was feeling adventurous)… Crystal statement earrings… A fun flower ring… And a burgundy suede clutch to match my lipstick and nail polish!

Fashion blogger wearing a black velvet dress in leopard print with a crystal flower statement ring and a burgundy suede clutch.

Shop My Outfit…

Boden Velvet Leopard Dress
Schutz Ankle Strap Sandals (similar here for less!)
Old Navy Burgundy Clutch (old; similar here)
J.Crew Velvet Hair Bow
Loren Hope Earrings
Capwell + Co Flower Ring (similar here, here, & here)
Lipstick: Bite Beauty in ‘Beetroot’
Nails: OPI ‘I’ve Got the Blues for Red’

Fashion blogger with feminine style wearing a Boden black velvet leopard dress with Schutz ankle strap heels.

Oh, and if you’re feeling a bit more daring, this dress also comes in a fabulous navy and copper combination. Again, also on sale! It’s so much fun and I actually have the perfect pair of copper pumps that would look so cute with it, but I went with the option that I’d probably wear more often.

But, like, if you’re local and a size 8.5 and want to borrow my shoes to wear with it, you know I’d let you. 😂

Feminine style blogger Bows & Sequins wearing Loren Hope earrings.

And if you are ordering the dressit’s free shipping, too! No code necessary. And for what it’s worth, my orders from them usually arrive pretty quickly even though it’s coming from the UK!

Chicago lifestyle blogger Bows & Sequins styling a Boden dress for the holidays.

And a few more subtly cheetah-print pieces…

Fashion blogger Bows & Sequins styling a black velvet dress in a subtle leopard print with a burgundy clutch and a gorgeous rhinestone flower statement cocktail ring.

Fashion and lifestyle influencer Bows & Sequins styling a feminine velvet midi dress for the holidays.

Feminine fashion blogger styling a J.Crew Velvet Hair Bow for the holidays.

Chicago blogger Bows & Sequins styling a leopard dress for a holiday party.

Chicago fashion blogger Jessica Sturdy styling a black velvet dress for a holiday party.

Fashion blogger Bows & Sequins styling Loren Hope Abba Crystal earrings.

Fashion and beauty blogger Bows & Sequins styling a classic black dress for a holiday party.

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  1. 12.10.19
    Lauren said:

    What perfect timing! I’ve been trying to find a dress to wear to a company holiday party and have had no luck! I ordered this immediately after seeing this post, thanks for finding this!

    • 12.10.19
      Jessica said:

      Ahh yay, glad the timing worked out! Hope you love it as much as I do!

  2. 12.10.19
    Brynne said:

    Just ordered in the navy and copper option! I’ve been looking for a dress to wear to a winter wedding rehearsal dinner and I think this will be perfect!

    • 12.10.19
      Jessica said:

      Ooooh, you’re going to have to send me pics! That’s such a fun color combination, I can’t wait to see it IRL!

  3. 12.10.19
    Maria N. said:

    this is such a gorgeous look on you! so classic and chic.

    • 12.12.19
      Jessica said:

      Thank you!