Wednesday, January 1, 2014

2014 Prom Dress Shopping Tips

With Prom 2014 just around the corner there are many factors that you will want to consider before going on a shopping adventure. Prom dress shopping is one event many high school junior and senior students look forward to every year. In the ever-changing world of fashion, prom dresses are showcased in a variety of styles that change annually to suit new trends. But before hitting the hottest boutique in town or surfing the internet for the perfect gown check this tip list to make sure that you are covering all of your bases!

1. Keep an open mind
Almost every girl has an image of what she would love to look like on prom night; while this is all well and good sometimes an open mind is best. Many cocktail dresses and gowns look very different on a body than they do the hanger, if you kind of like something it could be worth trying or you could pass up your dream come true without even knowing it!

2. Think about color
It's spectacular if you can find your dream dress in your favorite color but sometimes you may want to look further. Different colors go well with different complexions , and vice versa. Not everyone looks great in every shade but if you love a color, go for it just be mindful of the hue and color in comparison to your skin color to ensure the gown doesn't wash you out or clash with your complexion.

3. Shop Early
This is one tip we cannot emphasize enough. All too often girls come in and leave crushed because their dream dress is no longer in stock in time for their prom. Shopping early helps you not only beat the prom rush, but allows you first selection to gowns in a greater variety of sizes in colors. Believe it or not, but most designer gowns can take up to three months to be made if they are not in stock in a boutique or with the manufacturer. To ensure you get the dress of your dreams start shopping early so you won't have to settle on a second choice gown for one of the biggest nights of your life. Shopping early also ensure no other girl will show up with the dress of your dreams if you shop from a boutique that logs every dress sold to prevent selling duplicates. Many high end dress boutiques such as ours offer this service to help make prom a unique experience for every young lady. 

4. Shop Reputable
Buy a gown from an authorized retailer of your favorite designer and don't be tempted by cheap knockoffs. Saving $100 is great , but getting a disaster dress two weeks before the dance isn't. All too often online purchases are made for prom only to find out the dress is a cheap copy. Many of these copy sites sell gowns of poor quality with defects such as uneven stitching,  patterns that don't match the photo, dresses that are the wrong color or worse NEVER receiving  the dress at all! For a list of authorized retailers and knock-off sites visit

5. Keep your body in mind
Let's face it ladies, not every dress looks great on every body. Being conscious of your body type when shopping for a prom dress is essential so you find not only a beautiful gown, but a gown that looks beautiful on you as well. Its very difficult to enjoy prom if you're constantly pulling and tugging at an ill fitting gown that doesn't flatter your shape. 

6. Know your dress code
Unfortunately most formal boutiques online and local do not accept returns on formal gowns. Because of this it is important to know your school dress code in advance for the event. With the dress code in mind you can shop for a beautiful gown without the worry and hassle of rules or question of return if the dress is not approved. This not only saves money, but time and tears as well when you find out the dress you've set your heart on is not allowed to your event. We usually  recommend that you print a copy of the dress code or download the link to your mobile phone for quick reference while shopping.

7. Plan Carefully
Most go out to eat before or after prom as well as other activities. Plan your night out and make sure your dress is going to be appropriate for the event. If heading to the beach after or sitting in a confined space is a must a ball gown and certain other styles may not be your best friend. Think about what your doing and find a dress that works for the whole night, if that isn't possible then plan a change of clothes after the dance to save your gown from destruction and damage. A quick wardrobe change is worth saving an expensive dress and keeping your night polished and pristine.

8. Talk about your plan with friends
If you're going in a group discuss dress choices and plans amongst you and your girls. If you think nothing is worse than showing up and finding someone with your dress; then imagine showing up WITH someone with that same dress. Many local boutiques, such as ours keeps a log of every dress sold and will not resell that style to the same school in a year; so if possible shop the same stores and do so together. If everyone is on the same page, then hopefully all fashion crises can be avoided for the night and all will be well.

9. Coordinate carefully
If you and your date plan to match on prom night, then do it right. If your dress comes with a shawl or the boutique you have purchased from offers color coordinated tuxes then go for it. If you can actually match the colors or have them matched for you there is no need to worry about the hue being off in photos or at the dance and you both will look perfectly put together. Many boutiques such as ours partners with tux companies such as Jim's Formal Wear to ensure both you and your date look your best on your big night. If this service is not offered try and provide your date with the shawl or a swatch of fabric leftover for alterations so he can have an exact match on prom night.

10. The final tip
Have fun! Prom is a night you should always remember and when you follow the 9 tips above you are sure to avoid some of the most common prom mishaps while having the time of your life. Stay tuned for other tips, tutorials and fashion posts about this upcoming prom season and other events year round.