How does the expression go? New Year's Eve is for amateurs? An evening to get fancified and go out with throngs of other fancified (and loaded) people to over-priced bars, clubs and restaurants? You can never get a cab. It's probably gonna be cold, too. No, thanks.
But, I know—I'm one of the few who eschew the whoop-de-doo.
Not many of us frown upon the countdown.
But I take a reprieve from New Year's Eve.
OK, enough bad rhyming poetry. You know you all still wanna get dressed up with red lipstick and go out, so here are my favorite places to get fancified clothing, aka purty dresses.
Mimi & Red (3032 University Ave. and 5630 La Jolla Blvd.): Was anyone wondering why M&R was missing from my oodles of gift guides? I was saving them for this here column. There are two, you know: one in North Park, another in the quaint Bird Rock neighborhood of La Jolla. The dresses (and other dressy garments) are always priced fairly—around and under $100. BB Dakota is kind of a no-brainer, easy line—it's cute and priced right. Leopard is all over racks—from Motel Rocks, Obey and Everly. I love the long dresses from Las Angeles and the lace, high-neck dress from RVCA that features a flirty, pleated skirt bottom. I love the Yumi Kim drape-y color-block dresses, but head's up—you will be cold. The Charlie Jade dresses may be more for day wear, but with some black tights and jewelry, you can turn a shirt-dress into a very stylish and fancified night-out ensemble.
Vocabulary Boutique (414 West Cedar St.): If sequins are what you want, then sequins you should have. And no one does them more tastefully in town than Little Italy's Vocabulary. You may pay upwards of $200 for a dress covered in the stuff, but that seems fair—those buggers are small! Plus, they carry a lot of super-sassy dresses for right around $100. Collective Concepts always makes a modern dress and Vocabulary carries a lot of the brand, as well as Frock! By Tracy Reese and Single, two other truly lovely lines.
Haven Boutique (751 Fifth Ave.): If you're short like me, you should stick with minis. But if you're tall(ish) you can go for the maxi dress. Haven in the Gaslamp (just a few doors from Urban Outfitters) has several cute ones from Style Stalker, plus light and airy pleated maxi skirts, perfect to pair with something less girly. But since I'm short, I'll stick with the dresses from Tulle—they are always perfectly petite, deliciously retro and responsibly priced. This teensy shop has a whole lot of dresses packed into its 250 square feet, as well as jewelry, clutches and more adorable accessories.
So, have fun shopping for your pretties. I'll be sitting at home in my flannels that I got for Christmas, warm and toasty in front of the TV. Good night, San Diego!
P.S.: These are my favorites, but don't rule out Twirl in Hillcrest, Cecilia Boutique in Mission Hills, Villa Moda in the Gaslamp and, despite its awful name, Dreamgirls in Ocean Beach. All trade in very cute and reasonably priced dresses perfect for the holidays.