The boys and girls circle around each other, in a frantic game of ‘kiss and tell’, whispering sweet nothing’s into each others ears, loves first dream. They shed their school days behind them as as they dance to the beat of ‘Prom season’, where the teens finish their GCSE’s and the young adults are dreaming of university. In this thin veil between reality and fantasy, your wildest dreams all come true and for one night only you feel like you belong, in this parallel universe previously controlled by the ‘populars’. Begrudgingly they allow you into their ‘secret circle’ , and you see HIM, the guy you spent hours doodling in your journal, intertwined with nonsensical doodles and equally daft lyrical nonsense. With more confidence than you feel, footsteps turn into strides, until you are almost nose to nose , peering into each others eyes. Blue against amber, irises dilated, hands outstretched, you lean in and smile. An out of rhythm tango causes you both to giggle and despite the heinous b***hes venomous eyes glaring behind you, it fades into nothingness as your Midsummer’s Night Dream comes alive, where the unicorns sprinkle you with their magic rainbow dust and the sirens sing from beyond the sea, luring your crush into your Mermaid Kingdom. Mouths fall open, you are a starlet, this is your moment to shine, the curtain falls and you take centre stage…
Dripping in diamonds and gold, you recant a tale of a young girl once lost in the shadows, who clawed her way into the secret circle, with her courage still attached. The darkness was cloaked in a thick smoky blanket, whose grey tendrils coaxed you into staying hidden, until one day you heard the calls of the Prom, you needed to make a change. You scraped the dirt away and was reborn a butterfly, magenta and blue. Flying came naturally to you, no surprise given that you were born fighting in the womb, a motherless child, but the mermaid’s took you in. That is until the demons came to claim you as their own, the inky darkness took hold of you for many years to come. Salt mixed with tears dribbling down your face, smudged mascara.
But now look at you, the dirt is gone, the darkness locked in a cage and double padlocked, this is your moment, this is your prom. You relished the crappy buffet food, wilting lettuce in stale burger buns, at least the French Fries were good. But you loved breaking the secret circle even more, all those demons bottom lips jutting out petulantly like spoiled children. They used to say that you were just a bottom feeder but oh how wrong they were. For it is the ‘bottom feeders’ and the ‘supposed scum’ who steal the limelight this night, the ‘populars’ no longer exist, they are miffed. We bag the boy and we bag the dress, a rainbow sea of colour, crystal and rhinestones, chandelier earrings. Floral’s dance with polka dots, a marriage of texture and colour, long and short, asymmetrical, a-line. There are the rebels who break the rules in their non-conformist pinstripe trousers, it’s a Gatsby Revolution swilling sidecars, and there are the girls who dreamed of becoming Princesses, who contrary to popular belief are not ‘anti-feminist’, sugary pink confections, cotton candy. And there are the in-betweeners, the mythical creatures that shouldn’t exist, it’s the mermaids and unicorns who dance as one, vibrant as can be. But who are you I hear you ask, biting down on your bottom lip, it stains scarlet. You are the girl who dreams of becoming a Princess and the Mermaid who lost her tail. You are the Spanish Flamenco Dancer, twirling with the girl who is polka dot mad, after all you are the rebel who breaks the rules. At times you are a minimalist and the Old Hollywood screen icon reborn, but ultimately are you the sassy jumpsuit wearer who doesn’t give a f**k?
The Girl Who Dreams Of Becoming A Princess
One question lingers on your lips long after midnight, when the popular boy you kissed melted into the secret circle once more and threw away the keys to the ‘kingdom of populars’. You wonder whether it was all a dream, the kiss light and innocent, butterfly soft, hair ruffled nonchalantly, no numbers exchanged. But then you realize something, prom means more to you than just a kiss with a silly little boy who just wanted to tick you off his ‘to do list’, Prom is an experience, a wish fulfillment, a chance to become the princess you have always dreamed of becoming. When you lived in the mermaid kingdom before the darkness took you, you spoke passionately about the kind of Princess that you would become. You would be fearless and strong, courageous and brave; dark hair plaited, laced with auburn highlights.The smell of pineapple and cinnamon would waft around you, enveloping you in its comforting scent while you enthusiastically debated and convened with anyone who crossed your path, philosophical pondering day and night. You would be a feminist and stand up for women’s rights, chanting in the streets with slogan placards. You would save animals from abuse and neglect, nestling them in your home that showed love had no boundaries. And you would champion the underdog, refusing to be silenced, floral midi dress and court shoes, you meant business.
At last your day as a Princess came to light, like Cinderella you were a transformed by a Fairy Godmother, rags to riches, a classic tale. Pink hooded eyes with a dab of gold, highlighted cheeks, peaches and cream blush, a dab of red on your waiting lips. Your slippers were pink court shoes, a five inch heel and you stepped into a gown that had been made with a Princess like yourself in mind. Navy and pink, diamond studs in your ears and pearls round your neck, you clutched them for luck. And you met HIM, for several intertwined dances of teenage romance, nothing more, nothing less, a kiss as light as a feather imprinted on your lips, it scalded slightly.
Shop The Princess Look
The Mermaid Who Lost Her Tail
You were a mermaid who had lost her tail, an ‘Ariel’ cast overboard onto land, tail flapping frantically in the sand. Days turned into weeks, weeks into months, you learned how to adapt and grew legs, alien limbs encased in flesh and blood, you could feel the veins pulsating, misdrawn green and purple lines. They took you to school, you were the smartest in your class, the Mermaid Kingdom had taught you well, you knew all the answers, aced every test . The other kids were jealous, cornered you during lunch. So you hid in the toilets, lunchbox in tow, parentless, noone to tell, why would the school do anything? The tears would mix with the salted cheese in buttered bread, it felt limp in your mouth. Until one day it would stop, you slipped the letter for prom into your bag and vowed things would change, you would make a difference. You might have been the mermaid who had lost her tail, but you certainly weren’t someone who should be dismissed so easily. You were a warrior who learned to walk on land, who was cast ashore and captured by the demons who made her life a living hell. But you never gave up did you?
You stay at school late, googling all things Prom as you start your new life, re-born mermaid again. You search for prom car hire ideas, a solo traveller aboard a human automobile, so different from those sea chariots you rode under the sea, carried by the coral curtains that decorated the ocean beds ever so lovingly. There was no coral here but you still had your dose of happy sprinkles prescribed by the human doctors, they made you feel better, they took the pain away. The big day was here, you packed the happy sprinkles and set off, you were a shimmering mermaid, a vision in silver, faux fur shrug. You glistened in the light and you shimmered in the car, heads turned as you dared to arrive solo, you didn’t need no boy on your arm. Cameras pushed obtrusively into your face, snapshots of you, you didn’t dare blink, just smiled. Eyes watched you as you walked into the centre of the room and twirled, silver sequins, black embellished heels, you showed a bit of leg and winked. No longer would you hide in the toliets or bemoan the past, nor would you let the demons grab you with their thorny arms that made you bleed. ‘No-one’s going to take me alive’ you vowed… noone.
Shop The Silver Mermaid Look
The Spanish Flamenco Dancer
You hear the music before you leave the womb, you dance. You visualize the music notes in your head before your mother holds you in your arms, you sing. You learn the art of theatre with all those strangers that peer at you in your cot, you act. And you hold a pen between forefinger and thumb, you write. For you are a Spanish Flamenco Dancer perfectly orchestrated in time to the music, deliciously sensual, imaginary fan in hand warding off admirers who dot your hand in sloppy kisses, a trail of saliva like a spiders web across your hand. The ruffles encase your legs, intertwined with florals, pink and red, a matching crop top, red heels, flower crown. The music starts and you act with musicality, immersive theatre, a show they call Prom. The others are there in their prim ballgown’s waltzing to cult classics that make you yawn, but then you step in, flaming in colour, the beat sizzles once more. The guitar strums tentatively at first, the first stanza begins and the cante (song) kicks into action, the time for the Baile is here, you smile at your audience. Hips swaying, legs kicking, hair whipping behind you as you dance into cante chico, recanting a humourous tale of love, unlucky in love you were. They told you that you were an ugly duckling, that you would never amount to anything, you believed them at first.
But now your part as the Spanish Flamenco Dancer has begun, you feel sassy and confident, no longer the so called ‘troll’ they named you to be. You are blooming, a flower ripe for picking, lips red like cherries, eyes dark with desire, The sensuality courses through your body, it’s injected into your veins. You feel alive, you feel wanted, you feel like… well you.
Shop The Spanish Flamenco Dancer
The Girl Who Is Polka Dot Mad
Burgundy and polka dots was the recipe for this Prom, a knee length beauty,a split knee high. A symbol of innocence bordering on flirtatious danger, red flowers in your hair. You would twirl through the waiting crowds, a bunch of roses in your hand, red against pink, fragrant to the nose. And then you saw them, leg propped up against the wall, clothes slightly rumpled, a jacket caped over their shoulders. You smiled and walked over slowly, long legs almost getting caught in the dress, but power through, a polka dot beauty in burgundy red. They look up, a slow smile, warm like toffee apples, it’s almost too sweet. They slip their phone into their pocket, a smartphone model and take you into their arms, will you dance they ask optimistically? And dance you do, legs interlinked, sashaying across the floor, you feel the music in your veins, it’s electrifying. The drug is addictive- both them and the music- and you sink into young loves first dream, a tale of wonder and innocence, tinged with the beginnings of adult passion, it’s almost hedonistic.
Kisses stolen as the night progresses, they taste like honey, eyes closed in ecstasy. But all too soon the night comes to an end, you both spill out into the night, giggling like schoolkids once more. What are we doing you cry almost questioning their devotion to you. The games begin and the truth serum activated, you are the questioner and they are the questionee, no longer equals, no longer teens. In a game of cat and mouse you chase each other into the new adult world, where bills pile up on the counter and the washing machine is forever broke. But still they stay in the arms of their polda dot lover, until you fall asleep, a dreamless dream, where prom season is here once more and you waltzed down a different path, found a different lover, danced to the beat of a different dream.
Shop The Polka Dot Dress Look
The Rebel Who Breaks All The Rules
F**k the rules you scratch oafishly across the old school blackboard, the screeching sound is almost grating, but you don’t care. You will make them listen, you will make them hear. For you are the rebel who breaks all the rules, who thinks nothing of breaking convention and having breakfast with the devil. They say that you should wear a dress, that you should be formal, that proms are this and that, but you smell bulls**t. Who said that trousers were unacceptable, that women couldn’t wear the f**k they wanted? It’s time to make a change, trousers in a sea of dresses, not exactly formal, smart casual I think they call it. Red heeled sandals underneath candy cane pinstriped trousers tied up neatly in a bow. A slogan tee about something random like pineapples, it’s red like blood- or like danger you whisper mischievously. Feminine androgyny, they call you a tomboy, you call it a revolution.
You will no longer slip into dresses that are uncomfortably tight, a new aesthetic awaits you. You call it feminine androgyny , you like to gender bend, a delightful blend of masculine and feminine energies, no longer homogeneous. You no longer melt into the crowd, you are no longer a shapeless face among many. The artist draws your features, roughly at first while you find your identity, and then you find it, gleaming in a golden aura. You find that it fits like a glove, the mask becomes you, you are the mask.
Shop The Rebel Who Breaks All The Rules
*The gorgeous trousers and slogan t-shirt are from an online store called ‘Diva Dames‘ which you can follow on Instagram here . Their personal style is inspired by ‘girl power’ and embracing your inner diva, with ‘power boss’ trousers as shown above, sassy slogan t-shirts and a wonderful injection of colour, perfect for all those mavens of colour out there like myself. Find out more about Diva Dames in a lookbook coming very soon.
The Scene Stealer ( Don’t Steal Her Limelight)
She thrived on attention, in fact craved it like a limelight junkie who had been fed on a diet of 15 minutes of fame and parents who were desperate for notoriety. She didn’t remember the last time that she was not in the papers, she would never fade into obscurity, she would be famous, she would be outlandish. She would wear the most extravagant clothes and say the most outrageous things, but when it came to friends… well she had none. Sure she was ‘liked enough’, she had plenty of money and brought her way into friendship circles, convincing herself that this what real friendship looked like, that when she was at deaths door they would circle her with remorse and despair, flowers in tow. But she knew that they would be like vultures, feeding on the dead, while the dead were still living, fighting over the credit cards in her purse. Would they even come to her funeral, watching her be put into the cold ground? She died too soon they cried… but they didn’t care.
Yet despite this grim observation she craved attention, she wanted to be noticed, she wanted to be seen and Prom was no exception. Faux friends in tow, she wore pleated pink, a simple bridesmaid maxi dress, with a satin ribbon sash. But it was the crown that stole the limelight, a perfect flower nest that demanded people be captivated with her as much as she was entranced by herself. She couldn’t help it, sure she was somewhat of a scene stealer but from the moment she entered the world she was cuddled and shrouded in gifts. The gifts made up for the neglect somewhere along the way, at least partially, but as she danced, peacocking if you will, she realized something. Money doesn’t buy happiness. She couldn’t keep pretending that she was as bolshy as she made herself out to be, she had to feel the real her, the distilled essence that had been lost over the years. Would she find it?
Shop The Scene Stealer
The 90’s Minimalist Starlet
It was just a slip dress, simple and elegant but it took her breath away from the moment that she saw it. A beautiful pink gown, floor length, worn with a pink faux fur coat for a maximalist approach to 90’s minimalism, pearl triangle earrings in her ears. The bangles jangled nosily on her wrist and drew her attention to the ring that was on her finger from her beloved. Not a symbol of marriage but a symbol of devotion, childhood sweethearts pledging their undying love to each other, it was a sweet gesture really. A quick spray of perfume, clouded mist, slightly cloying, she sifted through the new book she brought from WH Smith , a fictional narrative akin to her own. A young woman with her first love, going to prom for the first time, expectations high, it was a dream come true. The doorbell rang and she smiled, he was here, the corsage was on his tux, he pinned it on her dress, complimented her beauty, sang her praises.
Her heart thumped, he made her feel like the whole world had paused for one moment in time, to give them their dance in the moonlight. And dance they did, they paused mute on their peers and drank punch uninterrupted, pulling the others trousers down mischievously with their pants round their ankles, it made them laugh. For this was the one last chance to be a kid again, the world through rose tinted glasses, a sepia tone filter. Everything seemed better in this retro world, where we played SIM’s and chortled at the terrible things we made them do. We would leave our Tamagotchi’s with a rising sense of guilt as we forgot to feed our pets and braid friendship bracelets with our initials interlinked. But as the 90’s turned into the noughties new trends came and went, in the endless cycle that they call growing up. So we danced to the beat of a different decade once more, remembering when we were 90’s babies, suckling at our mother’s breasts.
Shop The 90’s Minimalist Starlet
The Sassy Jumpsuit Wearer
She ripped her dress to shreds, a tattered assortment of garments lain across her bed. She didn’t want to remember the shadows of the past that clung to the clothing like magnets and leeches, that drained her of all vitality. So she tried something new, in the ripped chaos of her old clothes lay a new silhouette, a sassy jumpsuit that would erase the past. The demons would latch on at first, strong at first but they would grow weaker with every stride that she would take, legs encased in soft satin, an oriental bloom. She would take inspiration from the beauty of nature, a tranquil garden etched on each leg, it brought her peace. She felt the demons leaving her body and her confidence mounting… she could smell the courage on her breath. Her biceps flexed and she etched the veins pulsating underneath, she felt alive, it was time to enter her new destiny.
In the trash her old life went, bitter memories extinguished in a bonfire, she felt invincible. The fatigue left her body and her limbs were no longer heavy, dragging along the floor. She danced, high energetic kicks, kimono jacket flaring out behind her, towering over her enemies in her green platform heels, a giant in a human’s body. The music changed and the mood shifted, orange lights burning above, framing her in an electric glow, the old her was dead. She was no longer cowering in the corner, terrified of the world and the people in it but instead she was a warrior the battle scars visible, a poignant reminder of her troubled past. But she wore them with pride, a warrior who had earned her stripes.
Shop The Jumpsuit
What Would You Wear To Prom? Did You Have A Memorable Prom?
Please note this is a collaborative post but all thoughts are my own and are not affected by monetary compensation.