Donna Morgan Print Dress available at Saks Fifth Avenue. Photo:

Q: I have organized a surprise 40th party for my husband and all is sorted apart from my outfit. I want to look fashionable and like I have made an effort but not over the top. I am 33-years-old and a size 14. I recently had a baby and have a bit of a belly that I would like to disguise.

A: What a great question! For such a special occasion, it is important to look the part but also feel comfortable.

There are a few avenues that you could take. A nice shift dress would certainly be elegant option that could be dressed up with accessories. (Think Audrey a la "Breakfast at Tiffany's!")

"Black is always stylish and sophisticated especially when accessorized with a really fabulous piece of jewelry," says stylist Meg Goldman. "A bold necklace or an arm full of bangles and some dangly earring can really help complete the look."

Or if that's a little too reserved for your taste then there are lots of different L.B.D.'s that would suffice. It doesn't have to be an office-y shift. Take, for example, this above-the-knee dress with flared sleeves and matte print detail. It's a flirty, fun option that doesn't require much adornment to stand out. (The aforementioned "dangly earrings" would work best!)

Since concealing leftover baby weight is a concern, black or a strong print are probably your best bets in terms of slimming shades.

"Believe me, patterns hide a lot," says Goldman. "Pick [patterned] colors that you love and that look great on you. The one thing to remember is that you want to avoid any stretchy or sheer fabrics. Instead look for a woven or heavier silk, something that skims the body without settling in any one area."

"Also, since it's a party and you're indoors, you can even wear a spring or summer shift (if it's not too sheer) with a little cardigan thrown over if get cold or want to cover up your arms. When it's your party you can really wear whatever you want."

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