3/4/2017 2:13:00 PM Guide to shopping smart for prom
Graduation and prom season can be an exciting time in a teenager’s life. This time in a young person’s life marks a rite of passage and a pivotal time bridging childhood and adulthood while giving students the opportunity to let loose and celebrate their academic successes. Prom also serves as a way to make memories with a group of friends who may go in different directions after graduation.
Many students are eager to begin planning their prom experiences as early as possible. Promgoers may want to begin browsing stores and shopping for prom apparel in the months leading up to the big night, but it’s important to follow a few bits of advice before making any prom purchases.
- Pay attention to the rules implemented by the school or venue. It’s time to follow one last directive before graduation, and that means heeding the requirements for prom attire and any other rules they may have. Some schools implement dress codes, so learn if your school has one so you do not spend money on clothing that will be inappropriate. School personnel have the right to refuse entry to the prom if dress guidelines are not met. Choose a private occasion, such as a graduation party, if you want to wear something less traditional.
- Shop early and shop sales. Waiting until the last minute to purchase prom dresses or tuxes is not ideal, as the pickings might be slim. Begin your search early so you have more options and more time to find attire that fits your budget.
- Shop further away from home, if necessary. Broaden your horizons to shops and retailers outside of your town, if necessary. This may guarantee that your attire isn’t a carbon copy of what everyone else is wearing — or a complete duplicate of another student’s outfit. Look for independent retailers, such as mom-and-pop boutiques, which may carry more unique and diverse offerings than big retailers. Such stores may offer more personalized service as well, such as alterations and tailoring.
- Fit clothing to your current size. Some students hope to lose a little weight prior to prom. But it’s best to avoid purchasing a gown or suit in a size you hope to be, as it’s easier to alter clothing to smaller sizes than make sizes bigger.
- Browse magazines for inspiration. Professional stylists are often behind the amazing looks of magazine spreads. Take inspiration from their ideas, but also make the looks your own with some modifications. It may be a different accessory or a different color pairing. Don’t be afraid to take a magazine to a store and ask if they have similar pieces.
- Be open to new ideas. Sometimes the clothing you see on the pages of magazines may seem to be the ideal style for you, but keep yourself open to other cuts, colors and designs. An outfit you never imagined wearing may end up being the perfect fit.
- Know store return and exchange policies. Formalwear is frequently governed by different rules from casual clothing. All sales may be final, or there may be a small window of time for exchanges. Keep your receipts in a safe place and be aware of return policies, in case prom plans change.
- Consider renting or borrowing. Niche businesses have sprung up that enable customers to rent gowns or suits for a day or two. The costs may be less than purchasing new outfits. Otherwise, see if an older sibling or a friend may have promwear you can borrow.
Prom season involves shopping trips to find the perfect promwear. Start early and design a plan of action to guarantee you have the time to find affordable attire you will really love.