WinFo Windfalls: Snagging the Perfect Dress for Winter Formal


Maggie Erickson and Ryleigh Sharp

With heads a chillin’ it can be hard to think about finding the perfect outfit for winter formal. Whether you’re going for a similar look to your homecoming outfit, or a completely different vibe, we’re sure you’re going to find something to express your inner beauty. This year’s fabulous styles are being sold at similar stores as the homecoming dresses seen in the homecoming article last fall; mostly selling dresses online on websites like Lucy in the Sky, Lulus, and Princess Polly. The ‘22 homecoming season was filled with stress about shipping, and negative experiences shopping for outfits. These online shops have a reputation for shipping errors, sizing charts being wrong, and poor-quality dresses for high prices. So what are the trending styles, and where can I find the outfit of my dreams?

When looking on Pinterest or online stores the trends point to satin or velvet, long sleeves, sequins, body-con dresses, and dark colors such as black, plum, and navy. Red is prominent on these sites due to its proximity to Valentine’s Day. These styles are marketed towards winter dances or special occasions or Valentine’s Day all over the internet. Dresses like these are what most students desire this year, but unfortunately, this is not what is being sold in in-person stores.

In homecoming season there were so many issues with shipping and sizing. Hannah Tanner and Samantha Kendal both struggled with their dresses not shipping until the week of the dance.
To prevent a repeat of these tragedies, most shoppers are looking in stores, and shopping on more stable websites like online department stores, such as Macys, and Von-Maur.

“All the dresses from Von-Maur weren’t to my taste, but I managed to find one for $11 on the sales dress rack,” junior Maia Wolf said.

However, other students seem to have luck when willing to shop around. Some benefits are free returns and customer-friendly websites.

“I bought a dress from Urban Outfitters but the color was advertised differently online. Then I ordered from Princess Polly. Princess Polly pulled through with their speedy shipping. I paid around $70 for the dress and shipping and I feel like it was a reasonable amount to pay for a dress,” Junior Dakota Curtiss said.

Junior Lauren Beier had a negative shopping experience.

“The dress I wanted was out of stock in my size, so I went with my second and third options from Princess Polly. I am grateful for their good return policy because I can try on a few options,” Beier said.

It seems that many websites have updated their return policies to prevent some of the issues seen earlier this year. This season’s winter formal is bound to have some of the best-dressed students Thomas Worthington has ever seen. We wish you the best of luck shopping and finding the dress of your dreams.