Our 2012 Prom Contest Winners!

Posted on by Kari      1 Comment

We Have Our Winners!!


huge thank you to everyone who participated in our Best Dressed at the Prom contest this year! Every year we get more applicants as you all spread the word, making our decisions even tougher. We appreciate each and every one of you who sent in your photos and stories, and are excited to see such a big trend toward recycled prom attire.

Our awesome prizes are a big draw for all you thrift savvy prom-goers. After much deliberation (and EXCITEMENT!) here are our winners for Thrift Town’s 2012 Best Dressed at the Prom contest!

. . . . . . .

1st Prize: NEW iPad 2 & $100 Thrift Town Gift Card!
2nd Prize: NEW Kindle Fire & $100 Thrift Town Gift Card!
3rd Prize: NEW iPod Touch & $100 Thrift Town Gift Card!


1st Prize: NEW iPad 2 & $100 Thrift Town Gift Card!

Like many girls, Madeline dreams of a trip to somewhere far away and magical like Paris, but for now in the everyday realities, she has to use a bit of elbow grease and determination to make her dreams come true. Madeline really inspired us, and we are so happy she was able to have such a beautiful look for a wonderful night. Hope you’re inspired too!

Madeline’s high school gala was held in a party barn out in the country (she lives in Texas after all), and for her, the entire evening’s production was a personal DIY project. In order get her ticket to the night’s fun, she spent a few weeks selling cookie dough door-to-door in her neighborhood.

Once the ticket was purchased, it was time to piece together the perfect gala look…

  • Shoes: borrowed from her sister
  • Necklace: on loan from mom
  • Earrings: borrowed from her other sister
  • DRESS: found at the Arlington TX Thrift Town for $10.81

And the dress wasn’t just ANY dress. It’s a one of a kind, handmade gown with hand-sewn sequins to match Madeline’s happy eyes. With a little sewing help from mom, she was able to take up the tiny-bit too long hemline, and use that fabric to transform the top of the dress into a modern princess gown.
Proving that a glam prom look can be done for under $11 is pretty awesome. Madeline is now saving for that magical trip, and we think she has just enough ingenuity and determination to get there, and get there in style.
SECOND PLACE: Nancy H., El Sobrante CA
2nd Prize: NEW Kindle Fire & $100 Thrift Town Gift Card! 
Nancy wasn’t out scouring the Thrift Town racks for a prom dress. She was tagging along with her mom, who was determined to find her daughter a secondhand dress and save herself a hit to the wallet of a new frock. Nancy wrote in and told us about her mom finding a dress at Thrift Town, and how reluctant she was to try it on or be excited about it in any way. She made all kinds of excuses to not get a secondhand dress, not look at the one her mom picked, try it on or like it, but to appease her mom she tried it on and …
“I turned around slowly and stopped when I saw myself in the mirror. Whoa, I actually liked how I looked, I liked the dress! I walked out of Thrift Town that day with a newfound respect for my mom’s judgement, second hand clothing, and trying new things.”
“I would have never imagined wearing a secondhand dress to Prom,
but in retrospect, I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way.”
“I got so many compliments that night, had a blast dancing, and felt like a princess the entire night.
Though it was definitely stressful at first, I will never forget my first Prom.”
THIRD PLACE – Lucia I., Oakland CA
3rd Prize: NEW iPod Touch & $100 Thrift Town Gift Card!

To shop thrift is to embrace one’s unique sense of self, to find humor and value in the quirky, and beauty in the value of history. Our third place winner is all of these things, and it makes perfect sense to us that she not only inadvertently found her secondhand dress because she was putting on an Eco-Fashion Show, but that she celebrates her uniqueness through participating in aerial circus and ballet.

Lucia says she wasn’t “popular” or fit into any particular cliche high school clique. She didn’t go to dances in high school, and would stay home with a good book or recipe instead. But Senior prom was a right of passage for high school, right? In planning the fashion show at school, she asked her fellow Eco Club members to bring in secondhand pieces to refashion. One of the club members brought in a 1980’s Oscar de la Renta gown that had belonged to her mother. Lucia decided to try it on, and despite the frumpy long sleeves and baggy bodice she felt transformed. Elegant and sophisticated in flowing black chiffon and velvet.

 Senior year is taxing and Lucia soon wondered if she’d have time to alter the dress that had so much potential – there was a lot to do. First the snaps along the right shoulder had to be reinforced,then the long sleeves had to be cropped. The velvet sleeve on the right side needed to be removed entirely. She chose to keep the chiffon sleeve on the right to echo the flowing chiffon of the skirt but just cut it into a fluttery cap sleeve. Finally, the bodice needed to be taken in to fit her slender frame. Somehow she found the time, and here is her fun evening:

“On the big day all my friends convened, for prepping, prettying, and pictures. I slipped into the restyled dress, and emerged from the changing room feeling sleek and stylish. I accessorized with black heels from the San Leandro Thrift Town (only $4 thanks to a lucky color tag sale), and a minimalist 1960’s pearl necklace and bracelet, heirlooms from my great Aunt Josie who passed away when I was young.

I took a break from formal photos to play on my friend’s old swing set. Folded into a swing, giggling with my friends as we posed for the cameras, I realized my prom experience, non-traditional though it may have been, was exactly right for an uncategorizable high school girl like me.

Brand new, department store prom dress and shoes could never have reflected the unique quirkiness that defined my high school experience. My refashioned dress, thrifted shoes, and heirloom jewelry all brought something from their previous lives with them when they joined my prom ensemble, adding magic to my special night.


Thanks again to everyone for entering our Go Green for Prom Contest!
Talk to your friends about going green for next year’s prom & spread the green love!



Aren’t our winners fabulous?
Are you planning on going green for prom next year?
. . . . .

We LOVE your input – there are so many ways to stay connected:

Leave us comments here on the Blog,

Like Thrift Town on FB & post pics & comments there,
Click the FB Like or Tweet button on any of our Blog posts to share with friends,
add us on Twitter (@ThriftTown) & tag us in any pics or thrifty Tweets,
Simply send pictures & stories to kariatthrifttown@gmail.com