With the average cost of a prom dress running anywhere from $100 - $400, you may want to make sure that you get your money's worth out of the dress. While your teenager may balk at being wearing a dress that their friends have already seen, there may be ways to convince your teen to wear it again, or to at least get some of your money back if this fails. Here are a few ideas to get you started.
Invest In Alterations
One of the easiest ways to get the most for your money is to ensure that your teen wears the dress more than one time. A great way to do this is to change the looks of the dress with a few simple alterations. You can alter it yourself or, if your teen have sewing skills, allow them to alter it themselves. If either of you are unable to sew, consider investing in a seamstress to have it altered. Even if you pay for alterations, you will still probably spend less than if you purchase another new dress. Some relatively simple transformations may include the following:
Changing the length of the dress - For example, a full length formal gown can be shortened to make it tea length, or even to bring it all the way above the knee. Depending on the style of the dress, this could provide your teen with a classy dress that could then be worn to a non-formal event.
Change out the fabric of the skirting of the dress - Tulle is one of the hottest materials on the market. Consider pairing a fitted bodice with a tulle skirt. Add several layers to create volume.
Separate the pieces - One of the hottest trends this season is two-piece formal dresses. If the dress your teenager purchased is not two pieces, consider converting the dress into this style. Not only will this give them a cohesive set of a top and bottom that can be worn together, but it will also give them separate pieces that they can wear apart.
Add bling to the original dress - If the original dress was rather plain or bland, consider dressing it up. This is easy to do by adding sequined ribbon to the waistband, or large sequined beads to the neckline.
Layer What You Have
If your teen has a strapless dress, create a new and different look by layering it over a sheer or lacy top. This will give you sheer shoulder coverage and give your dress a new look. If you do not want to add a layer under your dress, consider adding a layer over your dress. Combine a tight-fitting, short-cropped sweater with a short, full skirt for a totally new and different look, or simply try adding a jacket.
There is a large market for used prom dresses, but instead of selling it at the local consignment shop, consider utilizing one of the online services. In addition to Amazon or Ebay, you may want to consider some of the following:
- Liketwice.com and others
Selling online offers advantages over selling locally. Many of these sites specialize in name-brand apparel, which means that you may be able to get more than you would from your local thrift store. In addition to this, selling online allows you to access a much larger audience.
Donate Your Dress
If you are pretty sure that your teenager is not going to wear the dress again no matter what you do to it, consider donating the dress to a good cause. Not only will this keep the dress from hanging unworn in the back of the closet, but donate to a non-profit agency, and you can take the tax write-off at the end of the year. This will give someone else a chance to enjoy the dress and will keep it from cluttering up your closet.
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