Prom Dresses: Schools Have To Enforce Standards Because Parents Won't

With all due respect to my blogging sister Jenna over at High Gloss and Sauce,  someone  should be policing prom fashion because clearly some parents have fallen down on the job.

And if that someone happens to be a principal, dance chaperone or other duly appointed  adult it doesn't make them skeezy; it makes them responsible.

The fact that a principal has to measure----let's let that sink in----actually measure the hemline on a prom dress because the parent(s) either don't have enough common sense (or decency) to cover their daughter is now a sad fact of our modern culture.

How do I know?

I know because I've seen the dresses that are being sewn at my neighborhood  seamstress.

And when I say dresses, I mean material that sewn together to make modern day fig leaves.

I was in her shop last week saw a dress on a mannequin and stopped in my tracks.  After giving the dress the once over, I asked her where the rest of the dress was.  She replied that the young woman's mother saw the design and signed off on it's construction.

I don't blame the seamstress.  She's a talented business woman and prom season is a huge revenue stream.  She doesn't dictate the taste of her patrons.

Yet when I asked her if she thought the dresses that she sews were appropriate for high school aged girls, she just smiled.

She once again mentioned that the parent(s) not only sign off on the designs but pay her fee.

She also mentioned that in some instances a few mothers indicated that bodices weren't plunging enough or slits weren't high enough.


Seeing that some parents have missed the boat on the prom dress front, it seems up to the school to enforce a standard.

Just because your parent(s) okays a dress doesn't mean that it will get you inside of the dance.

Help the kids understand it by looking at the scores of adults that are being taken to task by their employers because of their social media usage.

Yes, everyone has a first amendment right to free speech but your employers don't have to keep you as an employee if your views are in sharp contrast to theirs or causes embarrassment/public backlash to the company.  If young ladies (or in some cases gentlemen) don't like the rules enacted by their individual school or school district, they don't have to attend the prom.

If time, circumstance & finances allow perhaps they, their parents and other like minded individuals should get together and have their own formal event.  That way they can dress as questionable or inappropriate as they want without worrying about those pesky school rules.

This isn't about being prudish or puritanical---it's about learning life lessons early.  You can't always do (or wear) what you want.  You can't always offer your opinion without some consequences.

It's about learning the difference between the things you can do and the things you should do.

I think some Secret Service agents are learning that life lesson right now.

Asking for a young woman's dress to actually have a skirt, bodice and back isn't wrong.

Trust me, you'll have the rest of your life to dress is short skirts & barely there dresses.

Just don't do it at prom.






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  • I think its a combination of problems...we have seniors that are 18,19 d@mn near 20...we have younger parents..barely in their 40's..then you have peer pressure,over inflated self-indulgence & oh yeah...everyone is now a 'star'..

  • Joe,
    I fully expect children to want to push the envelope. Hell, I wanted blue/black hair when I was in high school. But here's the difference, my mother said "NO!" That was it---end of story. Parents don't parent. It seems that they want their kids to be their friends and in order to keep their friendship they give in to the most outlandish requests.

  • I left a similar comment on your FB page:

    I just think it's up to me what my child wears to a social event. If I say something is okay, I don't want a principal sending her home - that insults my judgement. The 3" ruler is too extreme. By that standard I would have never been let into my prom (pic posted, you can see it was nothing outrageous whatsoever).

    If something is too crazy, like actually showing butt cheeks etc? There's always the law. If something is that extreme, a principal can always call the police. It's just my *opinion* that between the indecent exposure laws and approving parents, girls in their prom dresses don't need another set if judging eyes. I find it creepy. Taste and morality are developed in the home.

    HOWEVER. I come from a very firm parenting stance in general. I have control in my home. Would my daughter walk out in something tasteless and potentially dangerous? No way! Which is why if I did make the judgement that at, say, 5'9" she can pull off a hemline higher that three inches from the knee I'd be furious if blowhard overruled that and made her feel cheap for a decision I made.

    Lol at the fig leaf dress. What a prerogative to wear something like that!

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    What gives you the right to decide which rules apply and which don't? If you want to let your daughter leave the house with a dress that ends where her glutes and hamstring meet, that's your decision ... if she's then allowed into a school funciton is their choice. She can play by the rules or not play at all.

  • *of

  • From what I've seen neither taste nor morality have been high priorities inside or outside of the home. I weep for what passes for parenting.

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    How about letting people do what they want so long as it's not harming anyone. Old people are ALWAYS going to be shocked by what young people do, that doesn't make it wrong and that doesn't give anyone the right to tell anyone else how to live.

  • In reply to Michael Schmid:

    If you think that someone ISN'T going to tell you how to live (or dress) as you get older, you clearly don't plan on having a good job. There are rules and standards for almost every facet of our lives. Get used to it now.

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    I think schools have every right to turn away the girls who want to look like strippers and hookers and have parents that let them. And guess what young Michael Schmid, the schools have every right to enforce whatever codes they deem appropriate. In loco parentis, baby. Look it up.

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    "She replied that the young woman's mother saw the design and signed off on it's construction."

    'its' - no apostrophe.

  • In reply to Steve Atkinson:

    *thumbs up*

    Clearly possessive & plural can be a challenge.

  • the schools should make the standards public and students should follow the rules. Any parent who thinks their "judgment" would be insulted if the child were sent home....well, they probably should have used better judgment in the first place. It isn't any different than the dress code in your workplace.

  • If parents think it's ok to have their kids shirk the rules now, what's going to happen in college and once they get a job (IF they get a job). You can't follow her around and tell her professors and bosses that YOU think whatever she does is appropriate and you're ok with it.

    actually I'd love to see that and to see the reaction when she's shown yet another door

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