Monday, March 10, 2008


Know your budget in advance to avoid unnecessary frustration and wasted time.

• When getting fitted for your dress, consider dancing and other activities on the night's agenda.

Make sure your bra is the right kind for your dress.

• Don't overdo jewelry. Simple dresses generally can handle more bling.

• With detailed stone and beadwork at the necklines or straps, bold earrings look better than a necklace. And stacked bracelets look hot on bare arms.

Coordinate hair and makeup with the dress. Consider an up 'do for a back-baring dress and longer locks for frocks in animal prints and bold designs.

Don't wear shoes the exact color of your dress. That can look boring and costumey.

• Monitor weather forecasts to see if you'll need a wrap, sweater or shrug; be sure any such piece complements your dress and doesn't look like an afterthought.

If you plan to attend an after-prom party, consider saving money by buying a cocktail dress that you can wear to the prom and then reaccessorize for the party.

Tips for guys

Don't select a tux or suit without taking a fabric swatch of your date's dress. There are many shades of turquoise and pink, and you want to complement rather than clash.

• Don't limit yourself to what you can see in a showroom. Stores have access to hundreds more styles, so ask questions and look at their catalogs.

Don't wait too late to tux shop. Sizes and styles often run out.

If you have time and your date is getting a dress custom made, see if you can buy enough of the fabric to have a matching vest, cummerbund, tie, pocket square, hat band, etc., made for you.

• Ask your date whether a wrist corsage or nosegay works better for her look. Or perhaps she'd prefer a small bouquet for home.


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