Go modern in a black gown with swaths of white.
Left: Narciso Rodriguez Tailor Made Gown, $350 rental, at Rent The Runway
Right: Veni Infantino Satin Trim Chiffon Gown, $488 (includes stole, not pictured), at Nordstrom, 865 Market St., 415-243-8500
Stand out in the sea of B&W with some metallic (they're allowing platinum this year).
Left: Adrianna Papell Sequin Shift Dress, $258, at Nordstrom, 865 Market St., 415-243-8500
Right: Antonio Berardi beaded dress, $3,780, and jacket, $4,555, at Curve, 2360 Fillmore St., 415-885-4200
Feeling classy? Pick a floor-length solid with gathered or embroidered details.
Left: Nina Ricci Bow Detail Gown, $4,590, at Barneys New York, 77 O'Farrell St., 415-268-3500
Right: Sue Wong Strapless Embroidered Gown, $528, at Saks Fifth Avenue, 384 Post St., 415-986-4300
Show a little skin while secretly staying warm.
Left: Kay Unger Lace Bodice Dress, $480, at Saks Fifth Avenue, 384 Post St., 415-986-4300
Right: Kay Unger Lace Dress, $530, at Saks Fifth Avenue, 384 Post St., 415-986-4300