Saturday, March 1, 2008

The plan for junior prom

If a girl looks swell when she meets you, who gives a damn if she's late? - J.D. Salinger, The Catcher in the Rye
"What if her dress is better than mine?!" a dear friend asked me earlier this week, signifying the beginning of prom season for me. It seems to be a common fear among girls -- heaven forbid that anyone should wear the same dress as someone else at prom, and look better in it. Still, many girls forget that the outfit isn't just about the dress -- after attending upperclassmen prom my freshman and sophomore year of high school, I've seen far too many pretty dresses (some even custom-made!) that have been ruined by the shoes. Even I foolishly decided to buy a hideous pair of pink sandals only because it matched my pink Betsey Johnson gown -- I blame it on my naivety back then as a freshman, though.

After ideas for my junior year prom outfit congealed in my head during the week, I've finally decided on a fool-proof plan in which no girl on the dance floor will look like me -- because the outfit is me: slightly whimsical, full-heartedly feminine, and classic in taste.

Miss Couturable's Junior Prom Ensemble (subject to change)
I don't care about shopping vintage -- there's nothing glorious in wearing a person's old clothing. It's amusing when I hear people describe their style as "vintage" because vintage isn't a style -- Dita Von Teese doesn't dress "vintage", she emulates a 1940s pin-up girl. However, I've been a browser of Vintageous since 7th grade, and I am going to do everything in my power to snatch up a beautiful 1950s strapless cocktail gown. Betsey Johnson actually makes great vintage-inspired dresses that I'm considering if I can't find a vintage gown in my size, but Vintageous prices are quite low compared to those of other online vintage retailers. I am also a huge fan of Grace Kelly and would love to own a dress from her era. Not to mention there's probably a 13 year old celebrating her bat mitzvah in the dress I like from Betsey Johnson -- fretting over dress exclusivity is still prom tradition.
I've been seeing a lot of hats on the runway this season, particularly with dresses and smart skirts. Without looking too gaudy, I'm going to wear a sleek black top hat slightly tilted on my head. This symbol of masculinity contrasts magnificently with my 1950s debutante ensemble -- and it adds height.
Betsey Johnson's Clover Shoes have been on my mind all week. Unless my plans change, I truly must have a pair of these pumps. The silly tulle bow with the silver sparkles is just enough for me to think 'Cinderella' without showing off too much of my hideous toes. The Teen Vogue February 2008 My Funny Valentine fashion spread inspired me to buy a pair of polka dot gloves from LaCrasia -- romantic, yet innocent. I'm definitely going to wear a single strand of pearls around my neck, and the amazing polka-dot wristlet I saw at Target a month ago (only $12.99!) is still the best purse clutch that I've set my eyes on -- the price is unbeatable and it's absolutely adorable. Lastly, I feel incomplete without a bow and since I won't be wearing one of my bow headbands at prom, a pair of bow earrings from Betsey Johnson will have to do.
Oh right, the date. Of course I'm infatuated with Penn Badgley like millions of other Gossip Girl fans are, but Jack Yang who plays some hot intellectual neurosurgeon on Cashmere Mafia is a close second. However, my heart is already taken -- I'm in love with Huckleberry Finn. He's got to be my favorite fictional character and would be a wonderful person to meet -- alas, only if he was real. Reading The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn after school for about 30 minutes or so every day is just as satisfying as watching a new episode of Gossip Girl -- and that's saying a lot.

Yet, one of my best friends Janet eloquently summed up the essence of the high school prom, which has nothing to do with pretty dresses or debonair tuxedos:
"but whether i go with a date or not--honestly, are dates REALLY that necessary?--im going to do one thing for sure, and that's kicking off my terrible heels and dancing barefoot and singing along to a cheesy r&b slow song with my girlfriends as loudly as we can like we did at winter ball. maybe that'll be our last song. the saddest song for seniors, the happiest song for juniors."
I couldn't have said it any better.

Miss Couturable
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