July 2, 2012

*** THE REAL*** PROMABALLOONA


sophomore year.  asteroid blue dress.

if you hung out around these parts last year, you'd might've come to my virtual birthday party.  peeps got quite drunk on fresh lime basil concoctions, sang songs, and brought all sorts of favors to the soiree.  in the end officer mcnaughty had to be called in.  it was BANANAS.  well.  this year, i would very much like to have a prom for my birthday.

i went to prom.  actually i went to prom three years running.  i know, i know, i'd have you believe i was a social outcast in my high school career (and in the popular clique i certainly was), but with the "other" crowd i had a certain je ne sais quois that got me invited to prom early.

no i did not put out.


is that a face that puts out?  junior year.  the dress was actually pink.

mall gowns were bought (that is not a typo), pictures snapped in front of rose bushes, dances danced.  fairly uneventful and nice.  no stress, man, it's not MY senior prom.  i'll stress when it's important, yo.  and therefore, my senior prom was an absolute bust.  six of us chipped in for a swank ride, and drove around for over two hours trying to find the locale of one of the dates (she was from another school, like eighty six towns away).  by the time we got to prom, it was ninety percent over.  i had decided to go with a friend (wah WAAAAAAH), and possibly in some stroke of karma, chose an underclassmen.  we entered the room, and i didn't see him again for the rest of the very short night.

I DIDN'T EVEN GET A PICTURE.


but i DO have a picture of senior ruggy.

let's talk about The Dress That Was Not Snapped In Front Of A Velvet Curtain In Some Cheesy Banquet Room. kalkatroona, the motherland, is what you'd call the mecca of malls.  and the Balloonas took me to Every.  Mall.  In The Tri-Kalkatroonaan Area.  in the end i decided on the first dress i saw on that three hour tour, and i don't even want to tell you what Nan Balloona shelled out for it.  because i know i could make that jersey knit tube with sateen rosettes and half cape for about 15 bucks.  it was the EXACT shade of my skin.  flattering, no?  after ten minutes of pseudo dancing, one of the rosettes (which were the size of my head) had wilted right off the damn thing.  the storeowner was not amused when we tried to take it back.  it's handmade, she said.  um, YEAH, obviously that's the PROBLEM was our uniformed and shocked response.  duh!  if only we had known in the first place!  how could anything handmade last for more than one night?!

no seriously that's what i thought. 

so.  i want to go to prom for my birthday.  i want to go in something stunning, something created in my sewing room and not a mall, something properly handmade (whatever, boutique lady), armed with the man of my dreams, and i would be ever so off the charts thrilled beyond belief if you joined us.

here's my proposal: make a prom dress.  (edit: you may also alter, thrift, repurpose, or wave a bottle of vermouth around a prom dress.)  you can go for the era you attended, you can go for the era you wish you attended, but GO.  go with a friend, go with a lover, go with a cocktail, GO BIG, AND GO OUT.  go out in something handmade and rock the surrounding vicinity.  you've got the weekend of august 4th and 5th to paint the town whatever color you choose!  (probably don't go for flesh tone, word to the wise).  snap a pic, and post it on your blog.  let me know you went to promaballoona, (yeah that's right I NAMED IT) and i'll do a wrappy linkup here the week of monday, august 6th.  that would be my birthday week.  are you surprised i get a week?  really? you did read that whole promaballoona thing, yes?  good.  

the week of august 6th i'll be sharing your prom pics and doling out awards.  that's right.  maybe you'll be voted most likely to succeed.  maybe you'll be class clown.  

maybe you'll be Prom Queen.  

(i'm obviously Birthday Promaballoona Ultimate High Ruler In The Known And Unknown Universe, so yes, i will dub a Queen.  maybe a King too.  BRING IT, BOYS.)

edit: if you're in los angeles, come on out to sew LA for a real life promaballoona!  and don't forget to share your links if you're celebrating virtually :)

72 comments:

  1. HAHAHAHA! I know exactly what I'll make. Never went to prom, but had to have a formal gown for high school chorus. Still have the pattern, still have fond memories of that dress. (Would still have the dress but it was destroyed by a pack of toddlers who hit the dress-up box real hard one summer.) I'll re-use it later this summer at a civic 250th anniversary celebration, at which we are invited to come in costume. I know they mean us to come in 1776 gear, but I'm doing 1976, 'cuz I'm such a rebel.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. really, 1776 / 1976, it's such a small difference...

      Delete
  2. omg, those pictures and stories are amazing!! And is it just me, or does it always seem like senior prom, the one that 'matters' is always the one that's a bust? well, I may be taking you up on this challenge, because it sounds like a fun one. and I can't wait to see what you come up with!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Woo! Any excuse to sew a nice dress, huh? If we bring our 19 month old daughter in a me-made dress, could she be a prom princess? :)

    ReplyDelete
  4. Oh man, I'm going back to visit my folks this month, and I will definitely scan the photos of me in all my '80s prom glory. Both dresses were handmade by my aunt (VERY WELL, THANK YOU VERY MUCH!), and I dragged those around with me for almost 20 years before I tossed them. Boo. Although there was no way I'd ever fit into those 25" waists anymore....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. oh, i can't wait. that's when you were all trampy, yes?

      Delete
    2. Trampy? Where did you ever get that idea?! Oh yeah, I may have shared a little too much at one point while late night commenting under the influence of G&Ts and too little sleep. I kept up a very respectable exterior throughout my high school days though, since I had learned how to fly under the radar: look not too weird (but just enough to make the adults shake their heads about Teenagers These Days), do well in school, don't get into trouble and GET AWAY WITH MURDER. Incriminating prom photos to follow.

      Delete
  5. My birthday's only a couple weeks after yours so I think I need a princess dress too - count me in! :)

    ReplyDelete
  6. This is so perfect, I actually missed my senior prom. can you say doorrk! This raises so many wonderful possibilities! Yay! Rum and coke, a 40's prom dress and some jitterbugging for me!!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Oh dear, all my fancy fabric is back at our apartment! This just means that I'll need to go fabric shopping, of course!

    ReplyDelete
  8. BEST. IDEA. EVER. I'm thinking cake truffles, a big colorful dress, and drinks with my BFF. I may have to reconsider my decision not to purchase more fabric this year...

    ReplyDelete
  9. SO EXCITED!!!!!!!! This is the best idea ever. I'm telling Trees.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Oh my goodness this is ssoooo tempting!!

    ReplyDelete
  11. I can't wait!!! It's giving me an excuse to go ahead and start a Bombshell Dress a la Gertie's online course on Craftsy :D

    ReplyDelete
  12. Oooooh man, you throw the best parties! This might be just what I need to bust out out of my sewing hiatus. PS: I am dying from that picture of Ruggy! Epic Fabio Hair Alert!!!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Oh, my disdainful high school spirit has been reengaged! I will start teasing my hair immediately. I think I will try to be less flammable this time! I need a wrist corsage!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  14. YAY!! Official announcement! I am actually super excited about this. I went to prom with a group of friends (read: dateless) and would LOVE to go out and show off my hubby!! His bday is around that time, so I see a super formal dinner out. Complete with waterfront, posed snapshots after!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Also, your wee Oona pics are killing me with their sweetness!! I think we would have been friends if we were in the same school. If we could both fit in a room together with out big hair, that is ;p

      PS- Blondy, baby Ruggy is a babe.

      Delete
  15. Best. Idea. Ever! I was just mourning my final year ball/ prom dress (shot crepe de chine) has faded in places when I was careless and left my wardrobe door open. I wonder if I should try and resurrect it for Promballoona? Will that be allowed?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. oh, resurrection is definitely allowed. you could win the award for miracle worker.

      Delete
  16. We don't have prom here, so this would be a great excuse to make something I've seen (and envied) during my childhood in all those American teenage movies that ended with the characters at prom..
    You always have the best ideas, lady!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ha! i wikipedia'd it to see if it was a worldwide thing, and it said something like "because of the popularity of prom in cinema, it is now a widely recognized and adopted event." and you know wikipedia is always right.

      Delete
  17. Whoop! Sounds like a fabulous idea! Although I may do the dress for a daughter, rather than for me... :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. we have several prom princesses attending, she'll be in good company :)

      Delete
  18. Oh my pictures from the past.
    I didn't go to any of my proms. Not something I regret either.
    Might consider joining in, just need to figure out where am I going to go.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. anywhere!!! even for a stroll down to the deli. that would be kind of fabulous, actually.

      Delete
  19. I too went to prom three times. One year I actually wore a homecoming dress from two years prior. lol. I just happen to have 5 yds of a fabulous blue party dress ready fabric in my stash. I see a 50s prom dress in my future! Woot! I always needed an excuse to make one.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ack! the horror!!!!!!! :)) did anyone notice your repeat?

      can't wait to see your beautiful blue!

      Delete
  20. I had crazy prom experiences. I got stood up for my junior prom (that jerk!) but ended up going with my dear girlfriend and my senior prom was a bust (um, hello McDonalds drive-thru? ugh. seriously? yes, sadly). I LOVE the photo of your prom picture..you are looking very demure while rockin' the 80's look very well. And OMG, RUGGY......what a rebel! I love it!!!! Look at that pose...the expression...THE HAIR!!!! Brilliant idea...I'll have to see what I can cook up for the promaballoona!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. eeeeeeeeeeeewwww mickey d's and stood up? you so need a prom do-over. especially since you now have the perfect date.

      yeah, ruggy says he'd try to tell his younger self something, but he wouldn't listen. younger ruggy was tres bad ass.

      Delete
  21. OH. MY. GAH. Ruggy looks like the Tiger Beat version of a Die Hard villain! AMAZING.

    Maybe I'll post my senior prom photo if I can work up the guts! I "designed" my own dress (read: ordered my mom around until she made just what I wanted!), and I'm such a nerd that my date was Man Friend (yehhh... we've been together for a LONG time).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "Ruggy looks like the Tiger Beat version of a Die Hard villain"

      There are no words to describe how hard I laughed at this sentence.

      Delete
    2. ruggy LOVED that!!!!

      (and yes, please, post)

      Delete
  22. Please please can i have a framed copy of Rob's prom pic.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. if you send me one of jason i'll photoshop them at prom together.

      Delete
  23. Holy Moly. We don't even have prom in OZ. I guess this is my chance...

    ReplyDelete
  24. I'm using this as an excuse to start my dress for the Red Carpet Affair at D*CON. I may not be done in time for your birthday but definitely getting my ass in gear for September!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. come on girl, i believe in you... remember you was all late to the soiree last year....

      (or you could just have prom hair)

      Delete
  25. a) IN! So so SO so in.
    b) Now that Tilly has introduced us all to the joys of Twitter chatting...Tweet-prom and cocktails?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. i. LOVE. that!!!! details, details... before? during? after? maybe two so all sides of the world can join in?

      Delete
  26. Did you go to homecoming, too?! I LOVE this idea. Ruggy! Wow, that was worth my blog vacation by itself. Oh, this makes me want to dig out photos. I sewed then but I did not sew my prom dress. Or my wedding dress. Or my anniversary dress. Or my 40th birthday dress. Something has to change about that ;).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. i DID. and oddly enough i was on the homecoming team, or party, or whatever it is, court? they picked 5 junior girls (who "they" were, i have no idea) and the class voted. me & one other mixed chick were quite certain we would not be queen, and we were right. but still, surreal.

      i kind of can't believe you haven't sewn any of your Important Date Dresses yet, especially since you were sewing. maybe you should dig out those pictures and create today's version for alla them. YEAH, EVEN THE WEDDING DRESS.

      Delete
  27. You already know I'm in---and totally sorry I didn't spot this re-vamp sooner. The pics are awesomesauce.

    Also, as of this past weekend I now have *two* vintage prom dresses to choose from.... but I'll get a-blogging that soon enough...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. oh my gah. am i smelling a marriage refashion?

      Delete
  28. This is a genius idea!
    My sister & I have the same birthday (not twins) so we often have a birthday week and when it was my 21st and her 30th we managed a birthday month, with 2 birthday holidays!

    We didn't really call it prom when I was at that age (in my part of the UK, we just had a "leaver's ball".)
    My mum made my dress - I wanted a long silky black number with a high neckline and a patterned type of cut-out back.
    It was an absolutely beautiful dress, she got it just perfect... but I decided to go and get glandular fever! I was in bed for about 2 weeks before hand and when I felt slightly better I pleaded with my mum to let me go (she checked with the Doctor and he said as long as I didn't over exert myself it should be ok)
    Well the neckline was pretty tight due to my ridiculously swollen glands, and I only stayed for about an hour and a half before I felt like rubbish and called my dad to come and get me, but I went!
    I still have the dress (16 years later) but we had to alter the top completely as my boobs were pretty late developers and there just wasn't enough hem to let out ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. oh, this story is too much! at least you went out in it... would love to see your revamped pic...

      Delete
  29. Oh, that picture of your man is priceless. I think J had the same hairdo. There is a picture of him leaning back on a brick wall with his leg up in a CALENDAR from his high school called the HANNA HUNKS. Ha! I've been begging his high school friends to find me a copy. He was Mr. November.

    My senior prom pics are waaaaay embarrassing. I'm not sure I'm ready to revisit at this point...

    Love your crazy ideas, lady.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH. if you find it, YOU MUST PUT THAT CALENDAR UP. he could totally be in the running for prom king.

      now come on, tiger woman, i know nothing is too embarrassing for you. it's admirable, actually.

      Delete
  30. Replies
    1. woohoo! i can't wait to see what you make!

      Delete
  31. I don't know if I can do this because, I went three times too and was so massively relieved to know I WOULD NEVER DO THAT AGAIN. My mom made my first dress. Mena made a version last year http://www.sewweekly.com/2011/07/the-by-the-dawns-early-light-dress/#!prettyPhoto, and I had the quilted jacket too. No photo, of course.
    The next year I wore a thrifted 50's dress with a massive bustle. Weird but fun.

    The third time was during the period when I was a High School dropout living on an Indian reservation. Terrible memories. Not even a re-do could make me want to revisit prom, but Promaballona. . . well it's got potential!

    ReplyDelete
  32. Oh, yeah those photos are priceless!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. you can make it all be your own prom. a "screw you" prom!

      Delete
  33. Girl, photographic proof you have always been TOO gorgeous. Its NO surprise you were a sought-after date for the discerning high school bloke.

    Proms! We don't have them here in Oz, though we do have the Year 12 formal. You don't have to have a date, if you did I would not have been able to go! We had the Debutante Ball for Year 11s every year too, and you had to have a date if you wanted to get be a Deb, so again, no date, no big pouffy white dress and curtsy-before-the-Mayor for EmilyKate, but a bunch of pals and I went to the formal dinner in standard partywear, which in 1993 meant we all had on burgundy or black dresses.

    Ruggy's flowing mane is glorious. That's the only word for it. When I was 15 I went back to Canada and stayed with my penpal's family, and my penpal had a bunch of Christian rock albums and the guys in the bands ALL had those gorgeous shining locks in shades of caramel, maple and auburn. Please tell me that Ruggy has a Christian rocker past as one of the guys from Liaison.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ruggy is all kinds of speechless about this.

      Delete
  34. Best idea ever! I'm already pattern-hunting! I always complain about making too many impractical items, but this one is a necessity!

    ReplyDelete
  35. Senior Ruggy. A.M.A.Z.I.N.G. I will only wear a prom dress if Ruggy sports this 'do again!:)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. i might be able to make that a reality....

      Delete
  36. Wah, I can't believe I nearly (?) missed out on this! The perfect excuse for me to finally *finish* my graduation ball dress (as in, it was not really finished five years ago when I wore it to the ball). I'm proud to announce it's almost nude-coloured. Still love it. I wore a me-made smooth empire-line dress, nearly everyone else was stuffed into rented, bad-fitting strapless whipped cream. Classmates struggled with hoopskirts, I sashayed. (Never thought I'd use that word!)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ooh girl. you must sashay in your pics...

      Delete
  37. as i was coming back home today, for weekend off (well, sunday off work), i was boiling in the back of the damn car (it's freaking 40 degrees celsius here for days, but i digress), and i've been thinking - it's july already, i wonder when all the oona b-day craze is going to start?
    and then i got home, got online, and boom! it's ON, big time! hell yeah.. i have absolutely no idea how am i going to squeeze out prom dress, with virtually no free time (i have some 23 hours to spend at home, per week, minus sleeping, cooking, laundry, socializing, love making, grocery shop visits and sitting still, staring at the wall, enjoying quietness, not necessarily in that order), but you bet you're lovely ass i'm going to make it! and i'm going to nail it, i tell ya (i once made a prom dress, for young friend of mine, and she was a prom queen, so, watch out ladies)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. AAAAAAAAA! i can't wait to see your prom dress!!!!!!! i miss me some mokosha.

      Delete
  38. I've been planning my outfit for three months. Obsessive or just savvy? judges are out BUT I AM SO EXCITED!!!

    PS Love Ruggy's hair, and all of those pictures of you. You are, and have always been, stunning :)

    ReplyDelete
  39. Oh man, what on earth can I make that's preggy-friendly?!?!?! Thinking cap going on now......

    ReplyDelete
  40. Oh man, I knew this post was coming, got a sneak peak and everything, and then I completely missed the actual post!! Hopefully if I go fabric shopping tomorrow I'll have enough time to finish it because I already have the pattern picked out!

    I never went to the prom and didn't miss it. But I do need another lovely dress to wear out on the town. So looking forward to this!

    ReplyDelete
  41. happy birthday, oona! i did not go out, but i did make a dress in your honor. looking forward to hearing how the IRL meetup went, and am still shaking my fists at you that it is on the WRONG COAST this year!

    ReplyDelete

i thankya truly for taking the time to comment, i love a good conversation-- and hope you know my thanks are always implied if not always written!