Prom season is right around the corner–and that means kids will be spending lots of money on things like clothes, flowers and extras! One of the biggest expenses for girls is the dress. But you don’t have to spend a fortune to find an elegant gown! Just try some of these cost-cutting tips:
Shop at home! It’s possible Mom has an evening dress that could easily double as a prom dress. In fact, many teen girls are looking for a more sophisticated “Red Carpet” gown. If that’s the case, Mom’s elegant black party dress may provide plenty of “grown up” glamour. And it’s free! Just add shoes, gloves and a necklace for accessories.
Ask around! Neighbors, cousins, friends and family–odds are at least a few of the folks you know have teenage daughters. You may be able to borrow a dress from someone else. Alternatively, you may be able to purchase it from a friend cheaply, since most teen girls won’t wear the same formal gown twice. Don’t just ask about prom dresses, since homecoming dresses or beauty pageant evening gowns could work for the occasion, too. With a few minor alternations, the dress could be like new!
Go bridal! Surprisingly, you may be able to find an inexpensive dress at a bridal shop! Many discounted stores sell bridesmaids dresses for a fraction of the price of big name retailers. Many bridal stores are offering sales around prom time in anticipation of June weddings, too. So check the clearance racks of your local bridal shop for basic, simple gowns.
Revitalize! Whether it’s a basic black dress from your closet, or one you purchased at a discount store, you can revitalize a simple dress with some embellishments. Things like ribbons, beads, pearls and tulle–plus some fancy accessories–can make a plain dress look elegant! You don’t need a lot of sewing skills to revamp a dress. Tulle, for example, can simply be cut, tied into a bow and pinned to a dress.
Shop consignment! Buying secondhand at thrift stores often means outdated clothes and a poor selection. Who wants to look like they bought their dress in the 80s? However, consignment shops have higher standards than thrift stores, which means you’re likely to find better garments in like-new condition. Since consignment shops are choosy about the items they sell, everything should be stylish and trendy rather than outdated.
Sew it! Know an aunt or neighbor who is handy with a sewing machine? A simple sheath dress–which is both elegant and sophisticated–requires very little sewing skill. In fact, a handy seamstress can easily put one together with a day’s worth of work. Even after the cost of cash and labor, you’ll probably still spend less than department store prices.
Although the dress is usually one of the highest cost items for a girl’s prom night, there are plenty of ways to find a gown that’s both beautiful and inexpensive. Check out a few different options and you may be pleasantly surprised at the money you’ll save.