Style & Beauty

Holiday Party Style Inspiration From The Women Of Old Hollywood

Make like Lucille Ball and get your sequins out!
12/13/2018 05:45am ET
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Elizabeth Taylor, Dorothy Dandridge, Grace Kelly

There’s no better time than holiday party season to pull out your cocktail dresses. Sequins and sparkles are optional, but definitely encouraged. And, of course, there’s no better source of inspiration than the women of Old Hollywood.

The actresses of the film industry’s golden age ― to whom we turn for style advice regularly ― were masters of cocktail dressing. Whether wearing traditional frocks or even a plaid blazer (à la Audrey Hepburn), they looked oh-so-classy. They also appreciated a little sparkle and shine, which we can always get behind.

This holiday season, take some notes from these stylish women.

Marilyn Monroe
Hulton Archive via Getty Images
The actress wears a black cocktail dress in a promo image for the 1950 movie "The Asphalt Jungle."
Lucille Ball
Herbert Dorfman via Getty Images
Ball wears a sequined top in this undated photo.
Elizabeth Taylor
Bettmann via Getty Images
The actress wears a black and white cocktail dress in Italy in 1953.
Audrey Hepburn
Hulton Deutsch via Getty Images
The "Breakfast at Tiffany's" star wears a plaid blazer in 1950.
Lauren Bacall
John Kobal Foundation via Getty Images
Bacall wears a silver dress in a promo image for Warner Bros. Studios, circa 1945.
Sophia Loren
John Springer Collection via Getty Images
The Italian actress wears a red dress in this undated photo.
Joyce Compton
John Springer Collection via Getty Images
Compton wears a floral dress in this undated photo.
Lauren Bacall
Sunset Boulevard via Getty Images
The actress wears a bold red dress in this undated photo.
Dorothy Dandridge
Evening Standard via Getty Images
Dandridge wears a flowy jumpsuit in this 1956 photo.
Judy Garland
Silver Screen Collection via Getty Images
Garland in a sparkly silver dress sometime in 1945.
Elizabeth Taylor
Hulton Archive via Getty Images
Taylor wears a satin dress in a Holiday-themed publicity portrait circa the 1950s.
Audrey Hepburn
Mirrorpix via Getty Images
Hepburn in a black cocktail dress, sometime in 1953.
Grace Kelly
Gene Lester via Getty Images
The actress-turned-royal wears a strapless green dress in this 1954 photo.
Gladys George
Edward Steichen via Getty Images
The actress wears a sequined frock in this undated photo.
Gene Tierney
Bettmann via Getty Images
The actress wears a beaded dress and pearls in this undated photo.
Joan Crawford
Archive Photos via Getty Images
Crawford poses in a sequin dress in 1935.
Rita Hayworth
Herbert Dorfman via Getty Images
Hayworth wears a lace dress in this undated photo.
Natalie Wood
Michael Ochs Archives via Getty Images
Wood poses for a photo in 1955.
Esther Williams
Donaldson Collection via Getty Images
The actress wears a plaid skirt in this photo from the 1950s.
Rita Moreno
Bettmann via Getty Images
The actress wears a wide-neck dress in this undated photo.
Ava Gardner
Silver Screen Collection via Getty Images
Gardner wears a holiday-themed outfit in this 1960 photo.
Bette Davis
John Kobal Foundation via Getty Images
Davis wears a dress with sequins in a photo from 1937.
Gene Tierney
API via Getty Images
The actress wears a low-cut dress and statement necklace in this undated photo.
Jewelry Inspired By Old Hollywood