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Prom Dresses: A Statement of Self
miranda mcevoy 13 arts entertainment editor
May 26, 2011

Draping fabrics sweep across the grass as light laughter and murmurs echo over the quad while people begin to make their way into the dining hall. The night has finally arrived: it’s senior prom.

Prom is a highly¬-anticipated event, and at the heart of the planning and excitement is the search for the “perfect” prom dress. Dress shopping is both an exciting and hectic period of time. Searching for a dress can be stressful; it can, however, also be highly rewarding.

While most girls bought their dresses from stores, some chose to don the vintage and used dresses. Lydie Blundon ’11 bought her dress from eBay.
Blundon explained, “I didn’t want to wear a standard dress that everyone else would have. It’s from last season, and I’m into recycling. I just think it’s better to buy things second hand. It really seemed unique to me.” With a multitude of sequins arranged in a colorful pattern on a cocktail length dress, Blundon’s is not the typical prom gown.

When asked through an anonymous poll, more senior girls preferred a long dress to a shorter one. The more “classic-prom” style of dress was certainly in favor this year. Long trains, no straps, and soothing shades of blue were the most popular among senior girls.

Ellie Parker ’11 chose a dress that was both timeless as well as one-of-a-kind. She said, “I was helping my grandmother clean out her closet and jokingly tried a couple [dresses] on, and this one fit shockingly well, considering I’m four inches taller than she is. It’s 65-years-old, hand-made Italian linen.” Floor length, vintage, and delicate straps completed with minimal accessories are her preference. While traditional, Parker’s choice certainly stands out; a dress that is hand-made in Italy is not something you normally see worn to prom.

Some might see finding a dress as trivial, even inconsequential. But, as Courtney Murray ’11 explained, “Besides junior prom, you wouldn’t have had a chance to get such an elaborate dress for such an important occasion, and I think your choice in dress separates you from other people.” Sometimes, dressing up and wearing the perfect dress is what makes all the difference on prom night.

Murray reflected, “Your dress defines your style in terms of who you are.”