One of the most significant events of your daughter’s adolescence can be to attend prom. For decades, teenagers have made this social gala the focal point of their senior year of high school, and according to one 2016 report, the average cost of a prom dress alone is $250. Because the prom experience can revolve on the dress your daughter chooses, it is important that you help her make a choice that is both affordable and fashionable. If you are ready to start shopping, there are several tips you can keep in mind that may help.
1. Plan Ahead
While it might be difficult to plan far in advance for prom, especially if your daughter does not have a steady boyfriend and is not assured of having a date ahead of time. However, the sooner you know details about a school’s prom, the better, so work to plan what you can.
A few factors you can plan for when it comes to buying a prom dress is the average cost of dresses in your area, which local stores always carry a wide selection, and when they typically become available. Once your daughter confirms that she wants to attend prom, you can start shopping for an individual dress.
2. Set a Firm Budget
As you begin shopping for a prom dress, your daughter is likely to be excited and have visions of the perfect dress in her head. However, visions of perfection are not likely to meld with your budget. Before you take your daughter out shopping, it is a good idea to let her know exactly how much you can spend. When you both know the financial limits, there are likely to be fewer arguments during shopping trips.
If your daughter wants a dress that it slightly over budget, talk about her contributing to the total cost. If she works a part-time job, she can make up the difference and if not, discuss allowing her to work it off in some other way. Not only can this help her appreciate her dress more, it can give you the opportunity to teach her about responsibility as well.
3. Think Prom but Shop Smart
Prom night equals big business for many businesses and especially for companies that specialize in fancy dresses. However, you do not have to buy a prom dress specifically from a section labeled as such, whether you are shopping online or at your local department store. Consider checking out different locales, such as bridal shops, as bridesmaids’ dresses are often suitable for the prom.
4. Look for Deals Online
If you have a definite budget to follow, then you might consider shopping online at dress shops that carry prom gowns, such as tobi. These online shops often carry a wide variety of prom dresses in an array of shapes, sizes, and colors, and with promotional deals and virtual coupons, you may be able to find a dress that makes your daughter happy and allows you to stay within your budget as well.
You might also use the internet as a resource for narrowing down what type of dress your daughter might want. Because there are so many different choices, looking at dresses online can help you find the right style or even discover one she may not have considered before. You may want to start looking as soon as possible so you have plenty of time to buy.
5. Ask About School Dress Codes
Some schools require that their students follow a dress code, even for prom, so you might want to call ahead and ask about these rules before you shop. The length of a dress, the color, and the thickness of the shoulder straps may all fall under dress code restrictions, and you do not want to buy a dress your daughter will be prohibited from wearing.
If your daughter’s school is having a themed prom night, her dress may have to reflect that theme in color and style. This is another detail that you may want to know about ahead of time, especially if the dress is one that you will have to special order.
Helping your daughter choose a prom dress that you are both happy with can be a parental trial. However, when you plan ahead and work together with your child, it can result in an evening she will remember for a long time to come.