I Said “Sure” to my Prom Dress

My Prom Dress Shopping Experience


Megan Mitchell, Op-Ed editor

Prom dresses. They became the hot topic to talk about as soon as we came back from Christmas break… in JANUARY. I originally thought January was a bit early for prom dress shopping since prom is in May, but what do I know?

Now, one thing I was going to try to do was not break the bank while buying my prom dress. Even buying a dress that was more than $200 was out of the question for me. This led me to Macy’s at the mall. My lovely friend, senior Lydia Rader, also informed me about a new dress store that had moved into Ross Park Mall: Windsor. Upon perusing their website, seeing the stunning dresses and the even more appealing prices, I added Windsor to my prom dress shopping destination list. 

So in late January, I went prom dress shopping for the first time with my friends Lydia and senior Lexi Sedlak. Lydia did not try on any dresses because she ordered hers online from Windsor, and by the way, it is STUNNING. So Lexi and I each grabbed three dresses to try on. 

Here’s the scoop about Windsor’s dresses. For the most part, they are all relatively tight fitting and extremely long, which is good if you’re a tall gal like me. They are also VERY affordable. Most are around $99, which for a prom dress is great. I don’t know if that means they’re cheaply made or anything, but it’s a dress I will probably only wear once so I personally am okay with that. The dresses come in a variety of colors and many have a lot of sparkle.

Going into prom dress shopping, I had absolutely no clue what I wanted my dress to look like. I didn’t know what style or color I wanted. All I knew was that I wanted sparkle. Like, A LOT of sparkle.

The first two Windsor dresses were a bust, and I figured out that I didn’t like high slits in the skirt. The third dress, however, showed promise. It was black with green sparkles all over it. The style of dress was comfortable and flattering, and I really liked it. The same exact dress came in another color that I liked better, black with blue sparkles, but they didn’t have that dress in my size at the store; I would have to order it online.

Since I am indecisive, I then went to Macy’s to see their collection before committing myself to the Windsor dress. I tried on a lot of dresses at Macy’s and fell in love with one in particular. It was a really pretty, light purple a-line dress. This dress cost $169. Note that Macy’s dresses are definitely more expensive than Windsor’s dresses, however there are still options that I consider affordable especially when compared to dresses bought at boutiques and stores like that. For example, the name Formal Dresses for Less is a bit misleading. Are they really less? The world may never know… 

This led to my predicament. I was in love with two different dresses from two different stores, and when I say different, I mean that these dresses couldn’t be more different. I asked the lady at Macy’s to hold the dress for me for the rest of the day. I thought about it more and more as we wandered around the mall, and I started to really convince myself that I wanted the purple dress. 

But before I could buy and commit to the purple dress, I had to go back to Windsor just to be sure. I decided to try on the blue sparkly dress even though it wasn’t my size just to see how the color looked on me, and suddenly my confidence to commit to the purple dress wavered. I left the mall that day with no dress because I could not decide between the purple dress and the sparkly blue dress. I showed a ton of people at school pictures of me in the dresses, and the blue sparkly dress won the popular vote. 

The next weekend I found myself back at the mall and ran to Windsor to see if they had the sparkly blue dress in my size. They didn’t. That was all I needed. I was going to Macy’s and I was going to buy that purple dress. So I went to Macy’s and… they didn’t have the dress (not in my size anyways). Drat. Another bust.

For those that don’t know me, the first thing you should know about me is that I am a panicker, and the fact that it was now early February and I didn’t have a dress and other people did sent me into a frenzy. 

A week or two later I found myself at the Pittsburgh Mills with my family, so I decided to check out that Macy’s. Of course anyone that knows anything knows that the Pittsburgh Mills is dying a slow, painful death, and this Macy’s is no exception. They had a few dresses, and I decided to try on one that was the exact same style as the purple dress, just a different color (it was nude with a seafoam colored pattern layer on top). 

It fit the same as the purple one, and I figured I like the color well enough, so I decided to buy it, and if I found something I liked better, I could just return it. I just knew I would feel better having a dress. The funny thing is, the longer I thought about the dress, the more I liked it, and now I am totally in love with my dress!

Even more funny to me: it has no sparkle. Who’d have thought?