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  1. gaia
    gaia April 19, 2007 at 1:02 am |

    Color me clueless. I’ve seen very similar dresses (in terms of fit and style) at church weddings. Being that I’m from the bible belt and most church weddings were either in the catholic or the southern baptist church – 2 churches not necessarily known for their tolerance of women’s bodies – and never heard of a bridal party being castigated, I’m rather shocked.

    I thought they looked lovely.

  2. Allie
    Allie April 19, 2007 at 1:17 am |

    I saw more revealing dresses at my Catholic high school’s proms. Some of them show off some cleavage, yes, but a number of them are downright demure. I do notice that many of the girls in the pictures are on the larger side, and correspondingly have larger breasts, and I too wonder if this was relevant.

  3. r.tavi
    r.tavi April 19, 2007 at 2:19 am |

    ???
    These romans americans are crazy.

    Those seem like perfectly normal evening dresses to me. And “too revealing”? What was revealed in those dresses? All boobs were covered, no nipples peeked out and, as far as shown on the photos, not a single skimpy skirt (not that there’s something wrong with skimpy skirts).

    I’d love to see the dresses of the girls who got admitted or the “fixed” dresses.

  4. Jenny Dreadful
    Jenny Dreadful April 19, 2007 at 3:03 am |

    I don’t see anything wrong with those dresses whatsoever. Very confusing.

  5. Thorne
    Thorne April 19, 2007 at 3:07 am |

    I’ll give ya a big hallelujah and an amen to that!!! I have been dealing with the big boobs judgments since I first had um. At 12. And yes; women and men, (pretty much equally) have it. What exactly is it about an abundance of mammary flesh that equates with so many negative stereotypes in so many people?? If you’re not stupid you must be a slut. Get over it. I have boobs. They’re nice boobs. I show them off how, when and to whom I choose. You’re welcome to admire them… or not. But my large breasts no more make me a slut or stupid, than your small ones make you frigid, or particularly intelligent. (And then ya gotta wonder how many gals gettin’ implants would really have wanted to go through high school with them. ) All I wanna say is big or small; set them puppies free!!!

  6. Taube
    Taube April 19, 2007 at 3:15 am |

    This is stupid. Quite a few of those dresses are less revealing than what the girls probably wear to school every day, and would look perfectly ordinary in almost any formal affair for teens. I’m also curious about what they did to ‘fix’ the dresses. As a busty woman, I’ve come to realize that the only way fabric can completely disguise my breasts is if I tie it as a blindfold over the complaining person’s eyes. The first dress in the slideshow – the orangeish halter – really confuses me. I see no exposed breast tissue. Are bare shoulders the new nip-slip?

  7. little cabbage
    little cabbage April 19, 2007 at 3:23 am |

    I noticed that most of the young women turned away were Black women, and most (including the lone White woman) had larger bodies, including breasts. I wonder to what extent that reflects the demographics of the school itself, and to what extent it reflects cultural disapproval of both Black bodies and fat bodies. It certainly couldn’t have been the dresses themselves, since not a single one of them looked like anything out of the ordinary for prom.

  8. Maura
    Maura April 19, 2007 at 3:33 am |

    I’ve chaperoned many high school dances and I can’t see a single dress among those that I would consider “inappropriate”. Many of them entirely cover the “breast tissue”, and they are by no means unusually revealing. Most of them are quite tasteful, actually.

  9. Scott Eric Kaufman
    Scott Eric Kaufman April 19, 2007 at 5:43 am |

    Quick note: as someone who calls Lousiana his home, I feel the need to note that Marrero’s about 15 minutes south of New Orleans. From what I’ve heard, it’s been “repopulated” with evangelicals in the aftermath, which is why you have the locals complaining about the situation. (Sort of like what the VaTech students will be saying about the Scientologists in a month or so.) In other words, you may not want to blame the populace for what the opportunists have achieved.

    So yes, terrible and racist, but not necessarily because the residents are yokals. They’re good folk, creoles, actually, for whom race don’t — nay, can’t — matter much, family trees being the tangled banks they are.

  10. Mighty Ponygirl
    Mighty Ponygirl April 19, 2007 at 5:44 am |

    little cabbage, I was thinking the same thing.

    I find myself trying to give the benefit of the doubt to the teacher — maybe these women had a history of discipinary problems and fight-starting or something, and the “too revealing” was just grasping at straws to keep the dance safe for the other kids–but it doesn’t wash. Because those dresses are not Too Revealing by a longshot (ditto on the affirmation that they were pretty standard prom dresses, one of them even looked like a wedding dress!), and if you can come up with that as a flimsy excuse to keep those women from their prom, then whatever disciplinary record they have should have sufficed.

    I saw one very mild glimpse of cleavage. Certainly nothing compared to what you see on prime time TV. This is horseshit.

    It would have been great if one of these women had read Persepolis 2 and been able to scold the woman who turned them away “If my dress is too revealing, maybe you should stop staring at my tits!”

  11. libertarianchick
    libertarianchick April 19, 2007 at 5:58 am |

    This is clearly a case of rascism and sizeism. I’m not one to toss around those words lightly, but this teacher clearly targeted the large-breasted, fat, “hootchie-mama” black girls for their race, size, and sexuality.
    There is no way those girls could have gone into a store and bought anything different thanthey did. Those are completely normal prom dresses in construction and coverage.
    (on an aside, I thought the dresses were a lot uglier than my prom a few years ago…not really relevent, though)

  12. Hawise
    Hawise April 19, 2007 at 6:41 am |

    That teacher is an extreme prude who should have her head examined. Those were all pretty standard evening gowns that would have been appropriate at a wedding, prom or charity fundraiser. As a big chested woman, I am appalled that such an ignorant woman is in charge of dictating which woman can enjoy herself and under what conditions. She and the school board are on a power trip that needs to be restrained.

  13. Peter
    Peter April 19, 2007 at 6:46 am |

    Before I could really comment and feel that I was confident in my opinion, I’d have to see what dresses the girls who just sailed in were wearing — in the incredibly unlikely event that the rest were all in full Amish dress or buhrkas, then I might buy the revealing thing.

    But on most of the dresses, the only thing “revealed” was shoulders, fergoshsakes.

    I think that maybe, seeing it as “about the tits” is a step in the right direction, but my guess is that this is about the teacher seeing these young women as “kids” and being uncomfortable with the idea of them as adult women (read: sexual beings). My guess is that the girls who still looked to the teacher like girls playing dress up sailed right in.

    There is nothing tawdry or overtly sexual about any of those dresses, but all of those women looked like they were presenting themselves pretty successfully as beautiful adult women who could carry themselves well and with dignity.

    If the teacher still thinks of them as 8 year-olds, then I can see (but not support) how that could make this seem inappropriate wear for children.

    But, like it or not, when you are old enough to go to the prom, you are no longer a child. Maybe not a fully-mature adult, but certainly no longer a child.

    And maybe the teacher lost sight of the fact that one of the points of events like Prom is to give young people the chance to have grown-up experiences in a relatively controlled environment, so that they have some practice for the “real world.”

  14. Mostly Normal
    Mostly Normal April 19, 2007 at 6:46 am |

    Those were totally acceptable, tasteful prom dresses by even the most conservative standard. What were they supposed to wear, turtlenecks? And it’s true, all most all were large women. Ridiculous.

    Can they take legal action for this?

    The only thing I noticed in common about the dresses were that many were strapless, even though they were generally high-cut. Any info on what this supposed long-standing dress code was?

  15. Mostly Normal
    Mostly Normal April 19, 2007 at 7:08 am |

    Also, I just read the Carol Lloyd article on “hoochie mama” 9-year-olds who dare menstruate and develop breasts. Unbelievable. Here’s hoping Lloyd’s daughter finds some good resources to deal with the not-so-veiled misogyny of her mother.

  16. Wally Whateley
    Wally Whateley April 19, 2007 at 7:21 am |

    As far as I can tell, the only theme that ties the dresses together is that you can see the girls’ shoulders. They’re all either strapless, have thin straps, or bare the shoulders in some way.

    I’d love to see the dresses that got the stamp of approval…

  17. Kate H.
    Kate H. April 19, 2007 at 7:21 am |

    As the owner and operator of a rather large set of bodacious ta-tas, I can’t help but suspect that the real problem the teacher had was that most of the girls pictured have large breasts.

    Ditto. Thanks for writing this.

  18. Hedonistic Pleasureseeker
    Hedonistic Pleasureseeker April 19, 2007 at 7:27 am |

    Word. THANK YOU.

  19. wolfa
    wolfa April 19, 2007 at 7:42 am |

    Wow, those were the “too revealing” dresses? They were entirely appropriate for any formal party. I’m not going to call them conservative — they tended to be sleeveless, etc — but there’s a huge range of appropriate, and they’re well in the middle of this range.

    I also wish I could see the dresses of people who were allowed in.

  20. human
    human April 19, 2007 at 7:48 am |

    I wonder what the race mix of that school is, and the race of the teacher. All those girls but one are African-American.

  21. Mostly Normal
    Mostly Normal April 19, 2007 at 8:14 am |

    Anyone who sees more articles on this, please post.

  22. BStu
    BStu April 19, 2007 at 8:18 am |

    There are only a couple of dresses that I could see even a prudish individual unfairly getting freaked out about. Add me to the list who wants to see the dresses that got in. I’m guessing similiar styles on thin white girls wouldn’t raise an eyebrow. This “dress code” is sure to be arbitrary and penalized these women very unfairly. The school owes them an apology and probably a good chunk of change to compensate them for lost expenses.

  23. Moira
    Moira April 19, 2007 at 8:22 am |

    Yeah, my thought at looking through the slideshow was “Was the teacher in question white?” Okay, that was the second thought. The first one was “What the fuck?”

    Someone The school owes these young women an apology. And another prom.

  24. Kelsey
    Kelsey April 19, 2007 at 8:39 am |

    I generally don’t care about this kind of stuff because I think the whole idea of prom enforces a whole lotta patriarchy, but owning a set of 36Ds, I understand first hand how you’re treated if you “got em”. I sometimes wish mine were smaller, it’d make it a lot easier to find shirts that fit.

  25. Sally
    Sally April 19, 2007 at 8:43 am |

    That teacher would have turned me away from my brother’s wedding, at which I was a bridesmaid. Because I wear an F-cup on a small day, and what I wore was close to identical to some of those dresses.

    Except probably she wouldn’t have, because I’m white.

    Through the magic of google, I have discovered that 62% of the student body of Higgins High School is black, 28% white, 6% Asian-American, 4% Latino and 1% American Indian. So yeah, I think something fishy is going on there.

  26. Sally
    Sally April 19, 2007 at 8:50 am |

    From the Times-Picayune story:

    Parents also said that girls with bigger chests have a harder time complying with the dress code.

    “There are some breasts you can’t hide in a dress,” said parent Laura Fayette. “You can’t discriminate against a big-breasted woman.”

  27. Torri
    Torri April 19, 2007 at 9:04 am |

    a district code that says: “A student will not wear clothing that exposes the student’s back, chest or midriff.”

    apparently they did want turtle necks… here’s the Link to where I found that…

  28. Maureen
    Maureen April 19, 2007 at 9:08 am |

    a district code that says: “A student will not wear clothing that exposes the student’s back, chest or midriff.”

    What kind of school enforces dress code at prom?

  29. Maureen
    Maureen April 19, 2007 at 9:08 am |

    a district code that says: “A student will not wear clothing that exposes the student’s back, chest or midriff.”

    What kind of school enforces dress code at prom?

  30. Em
    Em April 19, 2007 at 9:10 am |

    Yeah, I skipped my prom, but this is ludicrous.

  31. Nomie
    Nomie April 19, 2007 at 9:24 am |

    But those dresses didn’t expose the chest or midriff. Not more than a fucking tank top would, and I bet that girls wear those to school all the time.

    Seriously, what the fuck? I saw some dresses that looked remarkably like the ones I wore to my proms, and I didn’t get turned away in puritan New England, so… what the fuck?

  32. Shinobi
    Shinobi April 19, 2007 at 9:26 am |

    Bodacious ta ta’s is possibly my new favoritist phrase ever…. if only I had a pair.

    Some of those girls looked so beautiful, it breaks my heart that they got turned away. That teacher should be ashamed of herself for ruining what should have been a fun night for these girls.

  33. exangelena
    exangelena April 19, 2007 at 9:37 am |

    I think that with breast size there’s a size that’s considered “right” by society – probably a B or C (?) and that if you’re much over or under that, then it’s considered gross. Mary Pipher wrote about something similar, where girls who are extremely pretty are devalued for their intelligence/personalities, girls who are unattractive are ostracized, and the girls who “win” in the rat race are the “right” level of attractiveness.

  34. Laurie
    Laurie April 19, 2007 at 9:47 am |

    As a professional alterationist, I see a LOT of prom dresses around this time of year. These are by no means the most revealing that I’ve ever seen, and for big busted gals, some of them were downright conservative. I saw very little cleavage whatsoever, and this was a formal event. I’ll repeat it because it bears saying: formal gowns for women tend to show off a woman’s body, including shoulders and breasts, even the “modest” ones. FWIW, there are definitely gowns out there that I think no 16-18 year old should be wearing on a date — the sophistication level is just way beyond my comfort level for a high school girl. *None* of these fit into that category.

    That teacher should be slapped (metaphorically, people!!), and the district *should* pay those girls some sort of restitution. Prom dresses are not cheap — the range is from $150 to over $400 here in Minnesota, depending on brand and materials. Shoes will run another chunk of change, and if any of those girls had their hair done at a salon, that’s *another* chunk. Jewelry purchased especially to go with the gown. A purse/evening bag. The expenses are many, and those girls should be compensated somehow. While I didn’t attach a whole lot of importance to MY prom, many girls do. And they deserve to have it acknowledged.

    At the very least, those “rules” needed to be reiterated well before Prom if they were going to be enforced . And given the one example of “the rules” we’ve seen, I totally would have encouraged every single girl to show up in a tux. :)

  35. lou
    lou April 19, 2007 at 9:53 am |

    here’s the original story from NOLA.com

    It’s pretty appalling.

    I definitely think racism was involved. One of the girls even gave a picture of her dress to the teacher beforehand and cleared it with her.
    The parish spokesman is a real asshole too. Check out his comments “unsympathetic” to the complaints of the larger girls.

  36. BStu
    BStu April 19, 2007 at 9:56 am |

    Knowing the phrasing of the dress code the school is relying on, I think seeing pictures of the women who got in is more important than ever. Because I cannot imagine their dresses showed that much less back or chest. Only one girl in those pictures was showing any “midriff” and even still it twists the dress code beyond recognition to use a rule banning half-shirts to ban a formal dress with small cut outs down the stomach. Even still, that’s not nearly as bad as using a rule that bans tube-tops to ban strapless or spagetti strap dresses. I agree with the parent. A lot of these kids were bounced for having fuller figures and not wearing burlap sacks to hide them. Its BS, plain and simple.

  37. piny
    piny April 19, 2007 at 10:06 am |

    You know something? I’m really fucking tired of my body being classed as “vulgar” or “inappropriate” or someone’s fucking “stumbling block” just because I have large breasts. I try my best to not let the girls out in public unchaperoned, though I will certainly wear honest-to-god revealing tops when I’m in the mood to turn someone on. But as we’ve seen in this space recently, it doesn’t take a whole lot of breast tissue for people to start making judgments about one’s character and sexual habits — even so-called feminists.

    Thank you.

  38. piny
    piny April 19, 2007 at 10:10 am |

    I noticed that most of the young women turned away were Black women, and most (including the lone White woman) had larger bodies, including breasts. I wonder to what extent that reflects the demographics of the school itself, and to what extent it reflects cultural disapproval of both Black bodies and fat bodies. It certainly couldn’t have been the dresses themselves, since not a single one of them looked like anything out of the ordinary for prom.

    And stereotypes of black women and black teenage women as “hypersexualized.”

  39. Mostly Normal
    Mostly Normal April 19, 2007 at 10:29 am |

    I’d like to see not only what the admitted women were wearing, but what the teacher was wearing.

    At the very least these women should be paid back for the dresses, shoes, hair, tickets, everything.

  40. wolfa
    wolfa April 19, 2007 at 10:32 am |

    And finally, I am incredibly curious to see what the teachers themselves wore.

  41. Natalia
    Natalia April 19, 2007 at 10:36 am |

    SICK.

    One of my friends in middle school developed big boobs – and developed them early too.

    She had a teacher who tried to give her detention for wearing a, get this, buttoned-up oxford that was “too tight.”

    Her parents came to school and caused a ruckus, to be sure. I think the line that was used was: “Well, excuuuuuuse my daughter for having breasts, you sickos.”

    It seems as though with some people, you can’t win.

    Either you’re not attractive enough, or you’re a shameless hussy who dares to look female.

  42. Natalia
    Natalia April 19, 2007 at 10:38 am |

    Women’s bodies just inspire holy terror, don’t they?

  43. TinaH
    TinaH April 19, 2007 at 10:39 am |

    it doesn’t take a whole lot of breast tissue for people to start making judgments about one’s character and sexual habits — even so-called feminists.

    A-yup. I’m in the bodacious ta-ta club, too and get that all the time.

    Before my mom had breast reduction surgery (back pain, shoulder pain, etc) she was working with an engineer who would NOT stop talking to her breasts. She finally got good and pissed off at him, bent from the waist and spoke directly to his crotch for the remainder of their (very short!) conversation.

    Apparently, he never did it again.

  44. Lucy Gillam
    Lucy Gillam April 19, 2007 at 10:41 am |

    The maternity top I am currently wearing to teach at a community college in shows more cleavage than some of those dresses. Oddly, I’ve not only had to get over my “the slightest cleavage = unprofessional” since getting pregnant, but I’ve found society supports me in this. Apparently it’s okay to show boobies as long as they’re proof that you’re doing your womanly duties.

    (Says the person who spent much of her prom yanking her dress up because I’d been made horribly self-conscious about my boobs.)

  45. prairielily
    prairielily April 19, 2007 at 10:42 am |

    This is DEFINITELY breast size discrimination. Look:

    Nowakowski, who said he had conferred with Higgins Principal Germaine Gilson and others, wasn’t sympathetic to arguments that well-endowed girls find it harder to meet the district’s standards.

    “They do make extra material for dresses for large-breasted women,” he said, adding that those who feared their dresses might not comply with the code could have brought the dress to school earlier and tried it on for Gardner. Seeing a dress in a picture and seeing it on the girl may lead to different conclusions, he said.

    It’s from the NOLA.com story.

    And I don’t think a turtleneck dress would have been acceptable. Because while turtlenecks cover everything, they have a tendency to make breasts look even bigger.

    Face it, these girls went down just for existing. There’s nothing they could have done to please these assholes.

    And maybe the teacher lost sight of the fact that one of the points of events like Prom is to give young people the chance to have grown-up experiences in a relatively controlled environment, so that they have some practice for the “real world.”

    On the contrary, as a D-cup, I feel that they got an EXCELLENT practice run on how large-breasted, coloured women are treated in the “real world.” I feel terrible for them.

  46. lawbitch
    lawbitch April 19, 2007 at 10:44 am |

    I see more skin and clevage than this when I drop off my son at elementary school. I suppose that these moms, as affluent white women, are allowed to strut their stuff more than less-affluent black girls.

    This is a senior prom, right? These are young adults. Perhaps this school will offer their own line of Mormon-approved, “modest” prom dresses. LOL!

  47. Sniper
    Sniper April 19, 2007 at 10:53 am |

    WWB – Walking While Busty.

    Sheesh.

  48. Mnemosyne
    Mnemosyne April 19, 2007 at 11:34 am |

    The girl on the right in slide #2 needed a little Hollywood Fashion Tape to keep the edge of her dress from rolling, but other than that, I didn’t see anything out of the ordinary. The girls in slide #7 looked like models for bridesmaid dresses in a fashion layout for Modern Bride.

    And, hmm, yeah, only one white girl in the whole bunch. Funny, that.

  49. Bird
    Bird April 19, 2007 at 11:40 am |

    Wow, I’ve seen more cleavage than that in professional offices. I have to agree—this wasn’t about the dresses, it was about the size of the girls in them. I think they looked completely appropriate for a prom.

    Another thing I noticed in my time as a plus-sized woman was that a lot of larger-sized dresses are cut to flatter the shoulders and bustline because for a heavier woman, it’s a part of the body that’s considered attractive despite the way our culture views larger women. I bet it really would be hard for these girls to find prom dresses that offered good coverage, looked good and still were appealing to them as young women (which I think they managed nicely).

    On a side note, I miss my bodacious tatas. Since dropping 60 pounds, they’re now a 32B. I’m sure they’re still big enough to be some creep’s “stumbling block”, though.

  50. PseudoAdrienne
    PseudoAdrienne April 19, 2007 at 11:46 am |

    Ooh! Can we go back to the days when showing off a little bit of ankle was considered slutty?! I’m sure one of these damn prudes would get the vapors and clutch their pearls over that. I wonder if any of the puritanical female teachers at that school lose their shit if they see themselves naked…because you know that their poor husbands wouldn’t be able to restrain themselves.

    Any bets that these are the same people who just lose it if they see a woman breastfeeding in public?

  51. tzs
    tzs April 19, 2007 at 12:01 pm |

    Wow. Based on the slideshow, the only thing I can think is:

    Somebody really, really hates bare shoulders.

    Heck, none of those fall even remotely into what I would call a “grace-of-god” dress (you need the Grace of God to keep it on). Those are all beautiful dresses and those are all beautiful young women.

  52. prairielily
    prairielily April 19, 2007 at 12:27 pm |

    And then you have crackpot law professors making intern jokes about you.

    Haha, zuzu, so true.

  53. Magis
    Magis April 19, 2007 at 12:50 pm |

    ????

    Can one cha-cha in a burka?

    I notice in the policy “back, chest, and midriff.” I see nothing about butts. Butt crack okay, chest crack no?

    /snark

  54. Mighty Ponygirl
    Mighty Ponygirl April 19, 2007 at 12:52 pm |

    Those students need to be told that they looked beautiful. I can only imagine how their body image has suffered recently because of this.

  55. Storm in a D cup « The Coracle
    Storm in a D cup « The Coracle April 19, 2007 at 12:58 pm |

    [...]

    « Tiny Bubbles Storm in a D cup via Feministe About two dozen young women in Louisia [...]

  56. Mnemosyne
    Mnemosyne April 19, 2007 at 1:04 pm |

    I used to know a high school teacher and, yes, there is sometimes an issue with the dresses that the girls would wear to prom. They issued a few rules the year one poor girl’s skimpy top tore on the dance floor and she had to spend the rest of the night hiding out in an office until her parents could come pick her up. Before they set the rules, they would have girls showing up in outrageous dresses (think of J.Lo’s infamous cut-to-the-navel dress and you’ve got it). Because, hey, they’re teenagers. That’s what teenagers do — they see what they can get away with.

    I don’t see a single dress in that slideshow that would fall into the “outrageous” category. Not one. Unless, of course, your category of “outrageous” includes “having breasts.”

  57. reid
    reid April 19, 2007 at 1:10 pm |

    I hate to mention the obvious, but the pictures shown probably are the more tasteful dresses. For examples on less tasteful wear that is also gracing the high school dance floors:
    http://www.sirenssecrets.com/gowns1.html
    http://www.nbc5i.com/slideshow/news/4128883/detail.html?qs=1;s=1;dm=ss;p=news;w=320
    http://www.cbslimited.com/prom-dresses/detail_prom_xcite-4111

    For the news article about such dresses:
    http://www.nbc5i.com/news/4128870/detail.html

    Save the rhetoric about blaming it on your bodacious ta-tas until you know the full story, please.

  58. Chicklet
    Chicklet April 19, 2007 at 1:35 pm |

    Another owner of bodacious tatas. I was admonished by my father not to run in public because I “drew attention to myself.” Which mean, men looked at my big, bouncing breasts and any dirty thoughts they had were all my fault.

    I love my dad and know he was trying to protect me. But boy, did I get a complex thanks to that and other incidents.

  59. piny
    piny April 19, 2007 at 2:32 pm |

    Clearly, you can’t find anything wrong with the dresses pictured in the slideshow, so you have to invent a fantasy that the girls who aren’t pictured must be wearing dresses Li’l Kim would be ashamed to wear.

    And even if that were true…why were the girls in the slideshow booted, then?

  60. Raincitygirl
    Raincitygirl April 19, 2007 at 2:42 pm |

    “They do make extra material for dresses for large-breasted women,” he said, adding that those who feared their dresses might not comply with the code could have brought the dress to school earlier and tried it on for Gardner. Seeing a dress in a picture and seeing it on the girl may lead to different conclusions, he said.

    Because your average seventeen-year-old TOTALLY wants to put on a private fashion show for a creepy teacher who’s obsessed with cleavage. I mean, eeewwwwww!!!!!!

    Not to mention the fact that prom dresses tend to be kind of big. Have fun taking it to school on the bus, and hey, it’s your own fault it got ruined when another commuter stepped on it or dropped coffee on it, because you should have parents who have cars and lots of free time to ferry your dress around. And of course it doesn’t fit in your locker, so it’s your fault if it gets stolen.

  61. wolfa
    wolfa April 19, 2007 at 2:48 pm |

    Well, if only about 25 people were turned away (what the articles suggest), the pictures seem to cover about that many people, so the weirdly extreme dresses don’t seem to have been the problem this time.

    In any case I tend to doubt this is really a big trend, girls wearing the extremely daring dresses to their proms, I think it’s just some story for a slow news day.

  62. Mighty Ponygirl
    Mighty Ponygirl April 19, 2007 at 2:56 pm |

    wolfa — are you sure there wasn’t an UltraSlutty dress that the news media decided was too titilating to say… broadcast on the 11 o’clock news? Maybe in slow-motion? With a soft lense? Because I’m sure that they only went for the tamest of the tame dresses when covering this story.

  63. Melissa M.
    Melissa M. April 19, 2007 at 3:01 pm |

    All of the dresses pictured were tasteful and not in the least skimpy. I don’t think that women can buy concealing prom dresses (ie: those that don’t show cleavage or shoulders) in most stores. I went to a conservative-dominated high school at which tank tops were outlawed in the dress code and girls couldn’t wear shorts shorter than 6” or shirts that wouldn’t tuck in or showed their shoulders. Most girls at my school wore dresses similar to the ones pictured in the article to prom.

  64. sabotabby
    sabotabby April 19, 2007 at 3:08 pm |

    Not to mention that less revealing dresses would be prohibitively warm for a spring dance in Louisiana.

  65. wolfa
    wolfa April 19, 2007 at 3:11 pm |

    Mighty Ponygirl, you’re right. There is no way the media would have jumped all over any girl who was actually wearing an inappropriate dress, posting every imaginable picture of her, they would have carefully left out any of those stories, since “teenage slut” is a story that never goes over well.

    Clearly someone was wearing a backwards prom dress, just like the model in slide 2, here.

  66. Interrobang
    Interrobang April 19, 2007 at 3:21 pm |

    I’m not really seeing the problem with those dresses. A few of them I’d personally class as “moving taste violations,” but I come from a more sartorially-conservative culture than those women, I think. On the other hand, “moving taste violation” doesn’t automatically mean “too revealing” or anything. Those were some pretty non-revealing dresses, really.

    It is in fact hard to get any kind of clothing that doesn’t show that you have large breasts. I own a pair of 38D-DDs (I seem to be between sizes) and it’s tough. I second the notion about turtlenecks. I wear them a lot because I’m always cold, but they sure do make my top half look…sturdy. Incidentally, sartorially-conservative culture or not, the last time I was in a dress like those ones (for a friend’s wedding), everyone commented on how nice I looked. (They might have just been trying to reinforce me in the endeavour of “dressing girly,” however.)

    This really smells like a case of EWBB to me, or Existing While Busty and Black.

  67. tinfoil hattie
    tinfoil hattie April 19, 2007 at 4:36 pm |

    I may lose my feminist cred for saying this, but some of those gowns were absolutely beautiful.

    And according to that teacher’s criteria, I’d have been thrown out of my own wedding.

    IDIOTS

  68. Jessica
    Jessica April 19, 2007 at 5:03 pm |

    Sweet! My prom dress was “sluttier” than all of the girls in that slide show. All that breast you know.
    When I was in high school, prom dresses in the junior department were tending towards the flapper trend.
    My boobs inspired me to find a beautiful vintage gown made at some point in the 1950’s. From when my body type was “in”.
    I would hate to think that a dress someone’s grandmother wore was somehow inappropriate to wear to prom.

  69. Re:Generator Magazine  » Blog Archive   » Denied

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  70. philosophizer
    philosophizer April 19, 2007 at 7:10 pm |

    I checked out reid’s slideshow of racy prom dresses, and I still think that even only half of *those* are inappropriate.

    I don’t *like* most of the dresses the girls are wearing that got banned – I’m personally opposed to the whole cocktail/evening sheath style of prom dress (I was all about the ballgown skirt, and since it was out of style when I went to prom, I got mine for less!) – but they are all lovely on them and perfectly appropriate.

  71. Manda
    Manda April 19, 2007 at 7:16 pm |

    I think the shirt I’m wearing is more revealing than those dresses.

    I just don’t understand what is so offensive about breasts. You can emphasize almost every other part of your body without because called a slut. If nicely sized breasts are one of your body’s positive attributes, then there’s nothing wrong with showing them off.

  72. philosophizer
    philosophizer April 19, 2007 at 7:58 pm |

    I know I went to school in more revealing shirts than that, with decently-sized ‘ta-tas’…

    y’know, now i wonder if they would’ve banned my senior prom dress (tank top style wide straps and square neck, open back) if I’d had the 32Fs I have now.

    probably not – I’m a white Chicagolander.

    (that and 32F doesn’t look all that big, especially when you’ve got swimmer shoulders, but I digress.)

  73. Marian
    Marian April 19, 2007 at 9:03 pm |

    I can’t view the slides. In Explorer, they don’t show at all. In Netscape, they don’t flip. At work, your site is blocked entirely. Does anyone have all the pics posted somewhere?

    The one displayed above doesn’t look cleavage-y at all.

  74. Danyell
    Danyell April 19, 2007 at 9:10 pm |

    I didn’t read through all the posts but I wouldn’t stop at saying it’s simply against large-breasted girls. Most of those girls with big chests are also big girls. The vast majority of prom dress styles are suited to fit thin girls and they cause the dresses to fit tighter on bigger girls. Trust me, when I was in high school, the only kind of dress I could find at the time had to have built-in ribbing. Everything else was very straight and I have big breasts, a round belly, wide hips and a big ass. Sure, the dresses look tighter on girl who fill them in more, no matter what the body part is! There are a couple of dresses that I would be too modest to wear myself, but none of them made me think “oh, she looks trashy!” It’s prom, it’s spring, it’s warm. Just let them be comfortable, feel beautiful and have a good time!

  75. Rebecca M.
    Rebecca M. April 19, 2007 at 9:36 pm |

    I wonder what they would have done about the girl at my prom who showed up in a tuxedo.

  76. Sally
    Sally April 19, 2007 at 9:40 pm |

    Hey, Marian, if you google “Higgins” and “prom”, a lot of the stories are illustrated with one or the other of the pictures from the slideshow. Here’s one. Here’s another.

  77. Laurie
    Laurie April 20, 2007 at 12:27 am |

    Sniper:
    Walking While Busty — omg that cracked me up! :) I think you have hit a nail on the head. Maybe not THE nail, but A nail….

    And seriously, yes, one *can* cha-cha in a burka. No one else would be able to tell what the *hell* you were doing, but it could be done…. ;)

    Danyell:
    Any dress that is strapless or relies on tiny little spaghetti straps needs to be boned to lay smooth and stay up. Same for a lot of the backless stuff. Even the teeny girls need that — it’s just physics! :) I concur with the bigger gals getting a raw deal on a lot of formal gowns, though. The designers/companies just don’t seem to care that what looks good on a smaller bodied woman just doesn’t cut it when you are larger busted, let alone larger all over. Then again, I DO see a lot of gals who get worked up over the number on the tag and buy dresses that don’t fit to begin with. :( If the choice is between too loose and too tight, take too loose. 99% of the time that can be taken in. Most of the time, we can’t let out the dresses that are too tight — no fabric in the seam allowances.

    I really would *love* to see pix of the gals that got to go into that dance unharrassed, though. I think it would be enlightening.

  78. Saorla
    Saorla April 20, 2007 at 2:39 am |

    Where I’m from, Prom is organised by students and the teachers have no say with regard to dress or other matters and I went to an all girl uniform wearing school.

    The teacher’s attitude is appalling – sizeist, sexist,and racist. The dresses are not revealing. The girl on this post looks beautiful – her dress is not revealing.

    Thank you for posting it even if this sort of behaviour by people was power makes me sick. Of course it might not be the tits but a simple power trip. Compensate those girls!

  79. William
    William April 20, 2007 at 6:09 am |

    Just a devil’s advocate arguement . . . the dress code also applies to showing too much back, all of the photos showed the front of the students. Few of them showed the length of the dress. We are assuming that the reason those girls dresses were deemed unappealing was because they showed too much cleavage, but its altogether possible that there *was* something wrong with the dresses that wasn’t featured in the photo. Obviously its also possible that this is yet another case of teachers overreacting. I couldn’t figure out what the problem was for most of those dresses. But at least one of the girls in the photo was wearing a dress that would not have met the standards in place at the school were I work.

    Slide 8, the young lady’s dress is very low-cut and apparently has transparent cloth extending down almost to her navel. We require that prom dresses be made of solid material. Their policy did not allow for see-through material on dresses. Its hard to tell from a picture, but if those are the rules, then those are the rules (again, it’s hard to tell what might have been wrong with the other dresses, so I’m not defending every judgement call of this teacher). “No transparent material” is a bit more clear-cut than “no excessive [whatever]“.

    I can say this: without guidelines, students will wear innappropriate clothing. Personally I think proms are a huge waste of time and resources and our society would be better off without them. But they are a traditional school activity and probably will be with us for a while. Its unrealistic to think that all high schools are going to have school activities where anything goes as far as clothing. So for me the big questions are 1.) are the rules fair and realistic and 2.) were the rules fairly enforced. 12 photos with no explanation of what was wrong with the dresses isn’t enough for me to make a judgement one way or the other.

  80. Sjofn
    Sjofn April 20, 2007 at 7:16 am |

    And according to that teacher’s criteria, I’d have been thrown out of my own wedding.

    Me too! We’re harlots. :(

  81. agatha mandrake
    agatha mandrake April 20, 2007 at 3:51 pm |

    Look at slide 12. The girl is wearing a one-strap, asymmetrical gown, deemed too revealing. Now flick back to slide 5. Look at the girl in the background. She is wearing what appears to be a one-strap, asymmetrical gown. Judging by her facial expression, she was not terned away from prom. The only other obvious difference would be that she is white, whereas the girl in slide 12 is black.

    Mmmm, the stench of racism.

  82. DWF
    DWF April 20, 2007 at 4:46 pm |

    Completely ridiculous. NONE of those dresses looked too revealing to me. Especially not the two girls in the white strapless dresses! My Catholic high school prom gown in 1984 was more revealing!

  83. Lara
    Lara April 22, 2007 at 10:13 pm |

    My god(dess), I am also very, um, well-endowed, and I remember being harassed by the principal of my highschool at least once every week or two weeks (I am not overexaggerating) for wearing “low-cut” or “too-tight” tops. I was not wearing anything that was at all different from other girls, who were mostly thin, white, and had smaller breasts than I did. Every time he would scold me for my shirt he was always loud and it was always in the middle of the main hallway where lots of other kids walked and stood around and I remember feeling so ashamed, angry, and humiliated. I remember wanting to punch him in his perverted, sexist face for making me feel like crap and that I “deserved” to get stared at for simply having large breasts. Amazing how women are blamed for the incessant harassment and perversion of male students and teachers, ugh! It makes me insane!

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