For many students, prom is a special night, but for parents, it can be a bit pricey. Now for the second year in a row, Lamphere High’s Spring Dress Extravaganza aims to ease the burden with a variety of good deals. And students from other schools are invited as well.
The April 16 event, to be held from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Lamphere High, 610 W. 13 Mile Road in Madison Heights, costs $5 to get in and will provide access to a wide selection of formal dresses costing $20 or less. The dresses are good for prom, homecoming — even the eighth-grade dance. There will also be shoes and jewelry, men’s ties, and services including nails and tanning.
Organizers are still collecting donated dresses, shoes and accessories, as well as other items that could make for prizes: limo rides, dinners for two, pedicures and manicures, hairstyles and makeovers, photographers on prom day, tickets to prom, and more.
Once the sale is over, the remaining items will be taken to a shelter for runaway or displaced girls and allow them to choose their own dresses, shoes and accessories. After last year’s sale, organizers took the remaining donations to Vista Marie Home for Girls in Dearborn.
The event is organized by PACT — Power to Achieve and Conquer Together. PACT is a club at Lamphere with about 50-60 students from all four grades. Students encourage one another to achieve academically and otherwise, according to Jackie Gilmore, a teacher at Lamphere and one of the club sponsors. They also reach out to others in need and help them achieve as well.
Twice every year, the PACT students go on a team-building retreat. They have speakers, activities, lessons and training. Last year, the students went rock climbing at a new business in Madison Heights. They also continue to put together a canned food drive each fall, taking the goods to a homeless shelter or Gleaners Community Food Bank, where they’ll also volunteer. PACT also presents the annual Black History Month assembly at Lamphere.
There will be at least a dozen PACT students working at the Spring Dress Extravaganza, which will raise money for club activities. Gilmore said in an email that last year’s event was a big success, with people standing in line before it even opened.
“We began this effort because last year, we had a set of 12th-grade triplets who were girls, and it dawned on me that if it’s tough for parents to afford long formal dresses for one student, imagine how hard it would be to have to buy three prom dresses, shoes, accessories, hairdos, nails and such,” Gilmore said. “For most, prom is a once-in-a-lifetime event. To miss it because of a lack of a dress or because you cannot afford it would be a shame. I want as many girls as possible to save as much money as they can on prom!”
Gilmore said this year will feature a wider selection of dresses, as well. The event will be held in the high school cafeteria.
Fellow teacher and PACT co-sponsor Amy Guzynski said in an email that the event aligns with one of PACT’s core values: helping others.
“Prom, especially now and especially for girls, represents a significant cost,” Guzynski said. “Many parents and students ‘stock up’ and buy their prom and homecoming dresses for the next couple of years.”
She noted that they’re still collecting donations of gently used prom or homecoming-style dresses, shoes, accessories and men’s ties, but there are other ways people can help too.
“You can help make this event successful by spreading the word. Please post the information on social media, and tell all your friends,” Guzynski said. “Also, please consider donating food, beverages or your time to the event.”
Every week, they ask the same questions of different famous people. One of the questions is: "What would your superpower be?" Many of the A-list say invisibility, because it must be hard to have us saucer-eyed plebs gawking at them all the time.
Of course, an actor asking for invisibility is a joke, they are, by definition, desperate to be seen. The superpower question makes me think, though, about what mine would be.
Invisibility sounds awful. The way I see it, we go through life trying to be noticed, like the tubby kid in PE class, whether in school, work or relationships, we are always inwardly shouting: "Pick me, pick me!" So it sucks when someone doesn't pick you. And that is where my superpower comes in. It dawns on me as I am making the (second) wine run with my flatmate. He is telling me about a woman who went on a round-the-world trip with her partner, only to have him turn around at the first stop and tell her it was over.
I've never met her but I know (having been dumped while printing boarding passes) that if I had a magic wand I'd wave the pain away. Like the Fairy Godmother of break-ups, when your heart gets broken and you think you can't go on - poof! - I appear with a bottle of red wine, a Xanax and my wonderful heartache-reversing wand.
I wouldn't eradicate all the pain, because that raw emotion is life-affirming, character-building and 99pc more likely to make you think twice before dumping someone by text. Also, the immediate dumping aftermath, when your friends feed you wine with a spoon and wipe your nose, is lovely. So I'd let everyone have a day or two of crying in the shower, then I'd arrive with my magic wand just before the 'no one will ever love me' sets in and ping, you're back.
I'm a street angel and a house devil too
When I open my mouth, my mother comes out. She had a certain way of looking at you. A withering expression where you knew to retreat hastily.
I can remember situations where she held a door open for someone and they walked straight through without a thank you and she would say in a very caustic, posh and clipped way: "Don't mention it".
As my twilight years approach, I'm rapidly morphing into her. I was coming down a narrow road the other day with parked cars on the other side and I nicely waved a car through.
He struggled to pass me by and started glaring at me. An ugly specimen. Before, I would have mouthed swear words at him but I rolled down the window and said: "It's your lack of gratitude I have an issue with." There's decorum for you. Mother would have been proud.
Singing the re-entry blues after a break
I got an email on Monday morning, thanking me, amongst others, for our participation on a trip. We'd had a great time he said. We'd been in Italy, he said. Skiing, he said. When I looked up from my gardening-shredded cuticles, I did have a vague recollection of somewhere chilly. Pasta, skis, dancing, laughing... We'd got back on Saturday evening but this was Monday, a full 36 hours of real life later and reality was showing its teeth. I was back at work, I'd gone grocery shopping, the bank card was rejected, the stairs needed vaccuming. Had I really been away?
On a guided tour, you only have to worry about appropriate outfits and whether you need to pee. All the important stuff involving where and how is decided for you. Granted, on this one, with the skiing and all, I was also supposed to contribute by staying upright but they were very understanding about the fact that I struggled with that a lil more than others.
Because of their divine absence of any great need to be responsible, guided tours are extreme versions of any holiday. Even if you don't quite forget your troubles, the physical distance dilutes them. Perspective or escapism, who cares? A change really is as good as a rest.
But no matter the distance or degree of rest, reality can often seem turbo-turgid when you land back. In the dazzling glow of an impending break, certain jobs will be graaaaaaaand to finish at 6am on your returning Monday, the insurance shop-around and broken fridge light will all be easy "when you get back". But in the shadow of a retreating break, even emptying the dishwasher feels like a psychic attack. It's okay. This too will pass. It's just the re-entry blues.Read more at:short formal dresses
While most clothing remains categorized along gender lines, there is a growing movement among some fashion brands to blur the boundaries distinguishing styles for men and women.
Spanish-based retailer Zara recently launched Ungendered, a 10-piece collection encompassing T-shirts, joggers, sweatshirts, jeans and Bermuda shorts for both men and women.
Designer Nicola Formichetti, who previously crafted outlandish looks for Lady Gaga, is at the helm of genderless clothing line Nicopanda, with rose-printed T-shirts, hoodies with cutouts and pink parkas among its spring-summer offerings.
And Montreal-raised designer Rad Hourani has devoted his signature label to celebrating gender neutrality. While marking his fifth anniversary at Toronto Fashion Week in 2012, Hourani unveiled a utilitarian collection with military-inspired touches.
Beyond the runway, skirts have become embraced as stage style for artists like Justin Bieber and Kanye West. Jaden Smith — the teen son of star couple Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith — recently made a buzzworthy debut as the new face of Louis Vuitton when he wore a motorcycle jacket, fringed top and pleated skirt in the fashion house’s spring-summer campaign.
When androgynous styles start to surface in fashion, it’s typically reflective of a greater social shift driving the movement, said Dale Peers, professor and program co-ordinator in the school of fashion at Seneca College in Toronto.
Peers said in the 1920s, social freedoms given to women after patriotic service in the First World War and earning the right to vote translated to style changes symbolic of their new status, with more masculine-looking silhouettes seen in clothing.
The changes of a century ago seem to be resurfacing with the more recent embrace of gender-neutral styles, she noted.
Spencer Badu can recall occasions when he’d make modifications to a female top he’d purchased because he liked certain elements, like the length of the garment.
“For me, there are no rules,” said Badu, who is currently completing studies at the Fashion Institute at Olds College in Calgary.
The Toronto-born designer said his main objective with his label S.P. Badu is to challenge preconceived notions of gender, which could only be accomplished with a unisex brand.
Badu said he is focused on inclusivity, and tries to put an emphasis on comfort in his clothes. But he acknowledged that he needs to make key adjustments to ensure the styles will fit both male and female bodies, like placing invisible zippers on particular T-shirts and crafting exaggerated sleeves.
“I think my esthetic is very narrow and it appeals to certain people,” said Badu.
“Where I challenge myself is that I try to appeal to people that also wouldn’t consider wearing a unisex piece, that also wouldn’t consider throwing on a cropped jacket because they’re kind of afraid.”
Sandy Silva, director of fashion and beauty at the NPD Group, said despite the current crop of brands touting gender-neutral fashions, she doesn’t see the divisions being entirely dissolved any time soon.
“I’m pretty sure dollars and cents will speak at the end of the day.”Read more at:formal dresses 2015