Creative Teens Are Going Viral With Their DIY Prom Dresses
Creative teens are going viral with their DIY prom dresses and it’s so exciting to hear they are taking the DIY route as an option to save money. Although the average woman in today’s world owns around 30 outfits, there’s one outfit, in particular, that’s of particular importance to teenaged girls: the prom dress.
And in many cases, that one garment doesn’t come cheap. But since the DIY route has become a popular way to save money and make something special, it’s no surprise that this trend has made its way to high school proms across the country.
According to a Seventeen magazine poll from 2012, American girls at that time planned to spend an average of $231 on their prom dresses, with $45 allotted for shoes, $23 for a handbag, $32 for jewelry, and $118 for hair, nails, and makeup. Visa’s Prom Spending Survey found that the average household spent $978 on prom-related expenses in 2014, including transportation.
Though the first limousines created could seat only four people, today’s stretch cars and party buses can fit many more teens — and they’re almost considered to be a rite of passage. In 2013, prom attendees spent an average of $91 on the limo ride. And these expenses don’t even include the actual cost of the prom tickets themselves.
But now, some teens have gone viral for their innovative ideas for cutting costs and expressing their individuality through their personal prom dress creations.
Teenaged couple MJ Johnson and Nazmayde Castillo made a splash on social media when they posted their prom looks on Instagram. Johnson is well-known for recreating iconic images of celebrities like Beyoncé and Nicki Minaj — but this time, the credit was all their own. ‘
Johnson revealed that the base of the dress was a $50 short body-con dress from Fashion Nova, to which Castillo and her aunt added fabric flowers and glitter to make a full-length embellished gown. While the entire dress wasn’t a DIY endeavor, it just goes to show what a little imagination can do.
And YouTube star Amber Scholl showed how teenaged subscribers can turn literal trash into treasure with her garbage bag prom dress tutorial. Scholl is most well-known for her “Broke Girl Hacks” video series. Though she started off making thrifty videos, she’s now among some of the highest paid (and best dressed) social media influencers.
Recent posts on her Instagram showing her wearing $900 Yves St. Laurent heels, along with other designer brand clothing and jewelry. But while Scholl certainly has a taste for the finer things in life, she regularly pairs bargain finds with her higher-end pieces to make them look more expensive.
That’s the same approach she took with her Haus of Hefty creation, which involved a bustier bodysuit, duct tape, glue, scotch tape, a sheer black skirt, and the all-important garbage bags. The result went viral, garnering up over 3 million views to date, showing that DIY options are anything but trashy.
They aren’t the only ones embracing make-your-own prom dresses, either. Several other young women have made waves on Instagram for their homemade dresses. Some made statements like the DIY prom dresses Skyler Branch and Kyemah McEntyre made for their dances, about race, inspiration, and rising above stereotypes.
Others were made of necessity, like Shami Oshun’s $15 creation made just 24 hours prior to her prom. The growing popularity of DIY prom dresses reflects an even bigger trend: that young people crave unique experiences.
As Elissa Stein, author of Prom Night: The Best Night of Your Life, explained to USA TODAY, “[Prom is] reflecting what’s going on in the world as a whole. It’s much more about individualism now. Individualism, personal taste, and expression.”
And while some retailers are trying to appeal to those looking for unconventional prom looks, it seems like many teens are eager to put their own ingenuity to good use by making something that’s one-of-a-kind — and they have total control over.
That said, it might not be the right choice for those without the time or the creative prowess to devote to such a project (especially if it doesn’t turn out right!). But for those with aspirations to go viral during prom season and create something totally exclusive, it might be the right route to take.
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