So ten years ago, I was a senior in high school getting ready for the prom. Last night, I did it all over again. A few of my library regulars that recently started referring to themselves as the "Prom Committee" asked if me and my husband would join them for their senior prom... as chaperones of course. Heck yeah! It may have taken ten years, but I finally got asked to prom!
I don't remember much about my own senior prom. I had a couple of dates but both fell through at the last minute and I ended up taking my kid sister who as it turns out, is one of the best prom dates ever. After what seemed like hours of picture taking in various suburban front yards, me, her and 23 of our closest friends piled into a white stretch Hummer and rode to the Princeton Hyatt (?) for an evening of dancing. I petitioned to be on Prom Court but didn't make it and I don't really remember having any magical moments or sweet slow dances. What I do remember is my prom dress, mostly because it's hanging in my closet here in Brooklyn, but also because of how pretty and perfect it was. My grandma made it based on a tweaked pattern that was drawn up from an old nightgown from the 1970s that I used to wear for playing dress-up. It was so beautiful and I really did feel glamorous that night. In retrospect, I look like an extra from The Virgin Suicides dance scene but I always felt as though I belonged to a different generation and I don't look so great in beaded bodices with giant skirts made of 70 layers of tulle, so it was perfectly appropriate. Over the past few years I've actually considered hacking away at my prom dress and making it more wearable, but I'm not sure I could bear to see my grandma's handiwork altered.
Last night was an entirely different kind of soiree. With a class about a sixth of my own graduation group, the event was much smaller and more personal. A small and eclectic townhouse in the Village was transformed into a raucous evening of dancing by super stylish city kids and a well selected group of "cool teacher" chaperones. My sense of style hasn't changed too significantly but it has matured. Rather than flowy 70s, I went with chic 60s for my second shot at prom. And though the school doesn't encourage competition and has no prom court, I was informed by more than a few of my kids that the hubby and I had been dubbed the unofficial Prom King and Queen. I've often wished that my high school experience had been different, that I had been more secure with myself and had maybe been a little cooler, but working with a bunch of teenagers everyday makes you realize that, no matter where you grow up or what kind of privileges are afforded you, 17 is still 17 and it's always awkward. Now, after making the rounds and keeping the kiddies in line, I get to relax and enjoy prom knowing that those teenage days are behind me. Prom is way better the second time around... plus, being a chaperone means not having to worry about how to get away with enjoying a good after-prom party since it's totally legal!
|sbhs prom 2001|
|fs prom 2011|
2011 prom details -
fab vintage 1960s cocktail dress from etsy seller coliedawg
vintage lord and taylor purse stolen from mom
super old strappy silver shoes that i found in my closet
sparkly beaded bracelet that my dear friend michelle made in college
retro looking hair thanks to the tutorial posted on a cup of jo
the result was a look that one of my students described as "straight up mad men hotness"