Lori Pickens

A fairy-like lady in a mesh flowery purple gown smiles as she stands on top of a log surrounded by beautiful flowers and trees.

Prom Prep in Parkersburg, WV: Finding Your Dream Dress Here!

Getting ready for prom is a whirlwind of excitement and anticipation. From finding the perfect date to planning unforgettable memories, the most important element might just be the dress! For Parkersburg, WV and mid-Ohio Valley teens, the search for the ideal prom dress doesn’t have to involve a long drive. Here’s a local guide to help you discover your dream gown:

Hitting the Boutiques

  • Elizabeth Michaels: This is your one-stop boutique store where you will find the perfect outfit. From Pageants to Proms and Bridal, they carry all the latest designers and a welcoming staff to help you every step of the way.
  • Anchors and Arrows Boutique: Known for its trendy and stylish selection of clothing, Anchors and Arrows Boutique (3113 Murdoch Ave.) might surprise you with its prom dress options. From chic cocktail styles to flowy gowns, you might find a unique treasure here.
  • Hornor & Harrison: This established Parkersburg institution (2709 Murdoch Ave B1) offers not only tuxedos but also a curated selection of formal dresses. They might have the perfect dress for a classic and elegant prom look.
  • Universe Bridal and Prom is located at the famous Unusual Junction train depot in West Lafayette, Ohio. Founded in 1997 their little shop has grown into the largest prom and bridal salon in and around Ohio. Universe stocks thousands of authentic designer prom dresses in the store in sizes prom/hoco 000 to 34).   Plus, they offer you access to thousands more online. Their store offers seating for your two guests to relax while you try on dresses, and an awesome stage and mirrors to pose in while you check out your dress selections. Making for a truly memorable experience.  They are open by appointment – make sure to schedule your appointment ahead of time.

Mall Shopping

Windsor Store: One of the spots I see most often recommended is Windsor Store. They now (opened in May 2023) even have a shop inside the Grand Central Mall! Windsor is known for its trendy and affordable styles, Windsor offers a wide selection of prom dresses online. They cater to various styles and silhouettes, so you’re sure to find something that flatters your figure and matches your taste.

You can also find a smaller selection at stores like

  • JCPenny
  • Ross
  • Belk
  • Considering Consignment
  • Too Small Shop: Looking for a sustainable and potentially budget-friendly option? Too Small Shop (1100 Murdoch Ave.) is a consignment and thrift store that might have a hidden gem waiting for you. With a little imagination and tailoring magic, you could score a one-of-a-kind prom dress at a fraction of the price.
  • Plato’s Closet – with a location in Lakeview Shopping Center this thrift store usually has a season prom dress section.
  • Threads in Marietta on Front Street offers unique women’s clothing.

Exploring Online Options

While there aren’t major prom dress retailers with a physical presence in Parkersburg, the internet opens up a world of possibilities! Here are some online favorites to consider:

Sherri Hill: This designer label offers a stunning selection of prom dresses, from classic ball gowns to glamorous high-low styles. While typically pricier, you can find authorized retailers online that might carry Sherri Hill dresses.

Parkersburg South’s own Prom Queen – Alayna shown in her beautiful gown from Sherri Hill.

A fairy-like lady in a mesh flowery purple gown smiles as she stands on top of a log surrounded by beautiful flowers and trees.
  • JJ’s House: Offering a diverse range of prom dresses at various price points, JJ’s House is a popular online option. They even have a custom sizing service to ensure a perfect fit.

Remember: When shopping online, be sure to factor in shipping costs and return policies. It’s also important to order your dress well in advance to allow for alterations if needed.

Must-Haves for Your Dress Appointment

  • Shoes that match your prom vision: Bring heels or flats similar to what you plan to wear on the big night. This helps visualize the complete look!
  • Neutral undergarments: Opt for nude or seamless bras and shapewear to avoid showing through the lighter fabrics.
  • Hair options: Style your hair up or in a way you might for prom. This gives a better idea of how the dress looks with your entire look.
  • Feeling fresh and confident: Arrive showered, shaved (if that’s your preference), and with your usual makeup on. Feeling good translates to looking great in dresses!
  • An adventurous spirit: Be open to trying on different styles! You might be surprised by a dress you never thought you’d love.

Beyond the Dress

While the dress is a key element, don’t forget the accessories! Local shoe stores and jewelers can help complete your prom night look.

Parkersburg’s prom scene is waiting for you to sparkle! With these tips and a touch of Parkersburg charm, you’re sure to find the perfect dress to make your prom night unforgettable.

Be sure to reach out to me about booking a prom mini session for your big event or if you are still looking for the perfect senior photographer.

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Lori Pickens is a Mother, Wife, Tech Geek from Parkersburg, WV, and the podcast host of Photo Goals. She is a true lifelong local and has been photographing in the area for over a decade. She serves families from Parkersburg, WV to Marietta, OH. Lori is also a Click Pro Elite and Click Community Mentor. When she’s not capturing pictures or spending time with her kids, she enjoys organizing her lists and spending time on her family farm.

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