The lovely Pia from Vintage All Sorts had a very special birthday on the weekend and celebrated with a vintage prom themed party. Funnily enough, even though prom is often a theme here in Oz, we don't actually call our high school dances proms. In New South Wales they are known as formals, and in Western Australia, where I finished high school, we were very Jane Austen and called them "school balls." Even stranger was that Western Australian schools held them in the middle of the year, before school had even come close to finishing, and when our skin was all pasty and white. Lucky for me, I guess, I finished school in 1995, before fake tan really took off.
Pia's prom theme got me a little nostalgic (even though high school is a largely awful experience), and I dug out this yearbook pic of me and my friend Marina at our Year 12 Ball. Note that the reason we are featured prominently on the glossy pages of the yearbook was because we edited it, and not because we were in any way shape or form popular. If there was a high school popularity rating system out of 5, I'd put myself at a 4. That means I wasn't quite a social outcast who people jeered at, but I was nowhere near the realms of the athletic and confident types that hovered around 1.
Anyway, it was the mid 1990s, everyone wore black or deep rich colours like dark green and burgundy, and wearing your hair half up half down was all the rage. I remember buying my black dress, with the very 90s cut-out lace midriff (I think this look is making a comeback??) at a boutique in Perth's Murray Street mall, and I accessorised with a lovely antique necklace courtesy of my grandmother and the first professional make-up job I ever had. My hair now looks incredibly dated.
By contrast my prom look on Saturday night was pulled together in a matter of hours. I had all of twenty minutes to do my hair and make-up (hence the hastily arranged ponytail) and picked this dress up, which I LOVE LOVE LOVE, the morning of the do. What a pity I didn't have time to press it.
But regular readers would remember me gushing over taffeta plaid recently, and now I have my very own item of 1950s plaid gorgeousness, care of the lovely Sandie at Sandie Bizy's in Annandale.
Thank you Sandy for the pretty pink gloves you threw in too!
My friend Louisa was my date for the night and as usual she looked flawless in floral.
Blonde bombshell Annette told me this dress has been in her closet for about six years and she managed to give it a new lease on life on Saturday courtesy of a pink petticoat and a very Brigitte Bardot like hairstyle.
And finally here is the gorgeous birthday girl herself, who had two outfit changes for the evening. This showstopper was pulled out when Pia jumped on-stage to sing with the big band (yes, there was an amazing band ... just like the proms in the movies), but she also wore a phenomenal ballgown earlier on. Pia is off to New York now to continue the birthday fun, but when she gets back I'll ask her for a photo of this amazing dress.
Don't you love the cake too? Very matchy matchy.
PS As an interesting aside my friend Marina disappeared from my life some years ago after I received a card from her telling me she was moving to Greece to join a nunnery and that I would never hear from her again. If this was a ploy to break-up our friendship, it was certainly a dramatic one, but alas I fear her note was completely true. There might be a book in that for someone.