Byline: Nicole Phelps

NEW YORK — The prom is a big deal: kings and queens, even entire courts. And don’t forget the limos, the before and after parties and the dresses. Around the country, tastes in prom dresses are as different as the students themselves.
Following is a sampling of what promgoers in different cities are wearing, how they choose it and other prom factoids.
Los Angeles
Christina Gregory, 17, writes a fashion column for The Ultraviolet, her private school’s monthly paper.
“I’ve written about Prada’s chunky heeled shoes and how to look cute in uniform, because we wear uniforms at Marlborough,” she said.
Gregory bought her dress, a design by Shackelford, on sale for $50 at Nyse, a store on Beverly Boulevard. “It’s not really a prom dress. It looks Fifties, it’s black silk and short with a scooped neck and no sleeves.”
According to Gregory, about half the girls in her class shop vintage stores for prom dresses and the others buy new. Her friend bought a yellow daisy dress for $2. “When you wear vintage, your look is more individualized,” Gregory said.
Lilburn, Ga.
Eighteen-year-old Brittany Beaver is one of 12 members of The Teen Board at Legends, a special occasion dress store in Roswell, Ga. Teen Board members model prom dresses at local stores and at special events and get discounted dresses that once purchased, become unavailable to other girls from their school.
Beaver’s prom dress is by Alyce Designs. It’s a long periwinkle blue beaded gown and with a sheer inset at the waist. Her shoes are clear with rhinestones attached. “Like Cinderella’s,” she noted.
East Granby, Conn.
Carrie Figal, a senior at East Granby High School, wants to look like “a modern-day Cinderella.” She will wear a dark green Scott McClintock gown. The bodice is fitted “like a tank top,” but from the waist down the dress is full. She’s carrying her grandmother’s handbag, which is simple and white. And her shoes are like “Cinderella’s glass slippers.”
Figal, who says all the girls in her school wear short black dresses to the prom, plans to stand out in the crowd.
Warrenville, Ill.
Katie Dean, a junior at Wheaton-Warrenville South High School, participated in a prom fashion show sponsored by her student council with local merchants.
She will wear a black and white satin dress by Blondie & Me Evening that she got on discount for modeling in the show.
“I can never decide to do the new and funky or the traditional and classic,” Dean said, adding that she likes the “little-of-both look.”
Staten Island, N.Y.
The last time 17-year-old Kristin Kochanski was shopping for a prom dress — last year at Bloomingdale’s — she was discovered by a modeling agent, and wound up in Paris two weeks later. This year, the junior at the all-girls Notre Dame Academy is looking for a “nice black dress that’s long.”
Kochanski noted that her taste is different from other girls’ at school. “They wear cheesy pastel satin dresses with beads on top.”
Vienna, Va.
Noemi Martinez, a senior at Oakton High School, designed her gown herself. The dress is long and gold with high slits on both sides, a low back and sheer insets down the center of the bodice and at the waist — her dad’s suggestion. “He’s a liberal guy,” Martinez said. Martinez will complete the look with gold platform shoes and sparkling body dust.

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