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DIY prom without losing the fun

by NEDRA RHONE The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on April 08, 2014 11:00 AM

ATLANTA — For some teens, prom night is all about splurging. But if prom is really about the experience, there are several things you may be able to do yourself without losing the “magic” of the night.

Here are five of the top things you can (and should) consider DIY’ing for prom:

MAKEUP/HAIR

Girls are booking hair and makeup trials for prom just as brides do for weddings, but professional hair and makeup adds another layer of expenses to prom costs before you even get to prom. Check out local schools such as Aveda or Paul Mitchell to experiment with hair and makeup styles for less.

You also can head to Sephora or department store counters for a free makeover. If you really want to DIY, click on YouTube for step-by-step tutorials on creating hairstyles and various makeup looks. Give yourself time to practice and hit the drugstore for any items you may need so you will have it all perfected by prom night.

DINNER

Having dinner at a nice restaurant on prom night can be fun if you just want the experience of being gussied up while dining out. It can also be a drag — you can’t really chow down on a slab of ribs when you’re trying not to get sauce on your formal gown.

Instead, ask friends or parents to host a dinner party at home complete with three courses, table service, soft lighting and background music. Or choose the more casual option of grilling in the backyard or hosting a pizza party and have everyone come to your house for a pre-prom dinner before getting dressed.

CORSAGE/BOUTONNIERE

There’s a good chance your corsage or boutonniere will become a casualty within the first few hours of prom night. Avoid floral shops and pluck flowers from your garden or ask your neighbors with the lush florals if you can pick a few from theirs.

Spend a few dollars at the craft store on ribbon, wire and glue to design and make your own corsage or boutonniere with help of online tutorials.

PHOTOGRAPHY

Do you really want those cheesy photos shot at prom? Ask a friend or family member who is into photography to serve as your official prom night photographer. You can even set up a backdrop in your home to create more formal portraits.

This will save you a lot of money on official prom photos, and you’ll have the freedom to style the images any way you wish. Be sure to have your personal photographer take candid shots of all the pre-prom festivities as well.

POST-PROM ACTIVITIES

From expensive afterparties to day-after-prom trips to the amusement park, post-prom costs can quickly add up.

Avoid these additional costs by planning an afterparty at home or enjoying a picnic in the park the next day.

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