Remember the 1990s

In most situations, prom dresses are so lengthy that they resemble gowns. In this example, though, this mother-daughter combination demonstrated that short skirts can look great at prom — regardless of the era they’re worn in.

This all-black tea-length dress with a flared shape was a hit in 1991, and it was a knockout again in 2016 when her daughter brought it back – although with new shoes, haircuts, and accessories to personalize the look.

Beaded Wonderland

As a prank, one adolescent opted to wear her mother’s old prom gown to her prom, uploading the photograph below with the message, “1989 is like, extremely trendy right now.” Her mother, on the other hand, contributed her own opinion and was visibly moved by her daughter’s prom dress choice.

“I can scarcely find words. Yes, this antique gown came from my wardrobe — it was from my graduation prom in 1989!” Though the picture quality in the more current shot is obviously much superior, the mesh fabric neckline and beading show that his clothing is lovely regardless of the year.

Princess Peach

After discovering an incredible treasure of a dress stashed in a cabinet after 26 years, this kid turned to social media and posted the photograph below with the description, “Look what we discovered at my mom’s!”

Colorful prom gowns are usually so brilliant that they may fry a camera lens, but this traditional dress is more understated while still adding a burst of color to the proceedings. What makes this costume even more incredible is that it arrived with mom’s prom shoes, and the entire ensemble was a great fit for her daughter!

Red as Roses

Check out this gorgeous ensemble worn by a mother and daughter who are 25 years apart in age. This adolescent captioned the photo, “Found my prom dress in my mom’s closet. I wore the same gown that my mother wore to her prom in 2015 | 1990.”

This dress draws attention because of its brilliant red color, as well as the beading on the breast, which is naturally drawn due to the garment’s neckline. What about those earrings? They really bring everything together, right?

Sequin Galore

Don’t you think this vivid blue outfit is eye-catching? Mom and daughter look stunning in this sequined gown with fantastic detailing and exquisite workmanship. The aqua color was perfect for their skin colors and the beading just added to the glamor.

The beadwork on the neckline is obviously the star of the show, but both family members bring their own distinct touch to the costume with their makeup and jewelry, making this dress a timeless classic.

Beaded Beauty

This outfit may be a junior prom veteran, but Aiden Whittemore opted to wear her mother’s pick to her own prom, commenting, “Me (2017) in my mother’s junior prom dress (1996).”

Instead of going for a bright hue, both ladies opted for a dramatic style with a dress that mirrored the light beautifully owing to some exceptional beading. And Ms. Whittemore deserves praise for maintaining the outfit in such good shape for 21 years!

Saving Money

One apparent advantage of wearing your mother’s old prom gown to your own prom is that you will save money, as this kid explained: “Saved money on prom by going retro — I wore my momma’s prom dress!”

Of course, not every dress is built to last, which is why this young woman made a few changes to bring this ensemble into the present period while still paying honor to her mother’s style.

Keeping the 1970s Alive

Everyone adores the 1970s – it’s a legendary decade that offered the world so much, from music to fashion to movies, and even memorable prom dresses! We really like the criss-crossed straps in the front.

The gentleman’s white prom suit and massive bowtie would obviously not work today, but the vintage dress is ageless, as seen by the young girl on the right. She captioned this photo on Instagram, “Since I was wearing my mom’s senior prom dress from the ’70s, we had to replicate this gem.”

Family Tradition

This list’s obvious theme is new family traditions, as seen by this teen’s remark on the prom photos: “I suppose we just established a tradition…” It’s not a unique custom, but it’s still pleasant to witness. Props for trying!

The dress may appear basic at first glance, but it’s enhanced by some gorgeous embroidered accents and a gorgeous light-catching fabric that worked well for both mom and daughter. It flattered everyone’s curves and brought out their beauty.

Jessica Rabbit Would Be Proud

Another red gown, another show-stopping look! This sleek silhouette garment is ageless, which is why both parent and daughter were able to wear it years apart. It reminds us a lot of the gown that Jessica Rabbit wore in Who Framed Roger Rabbit?

The plunging neckline and side slit are two dress components that haven’t gone out of style, and for good reason! It’s encouraging to see that this kind of clothing may be worn today, 20 years ago, or even 20 years from now!

Mothers to Daughters

Here’s something a little different: a prom gown was worn by three generations of ladies from the same family! The form of the dress has obviously slimmed down over the years, but this is unmistakably the same outfit.

From left to right, we see grandma in her prom gown, followed by her two daughters and grandchild in the same ball gown – which was originally worn in 1962 but still looks wonderful in the most current image from 2013!

20 Years Hence

These two photos are separated by 20 years, as Mom wore this dress for the first time in 1996, and her daughter brought it back for her own dance in 2016. It’s modeled after a cheongsam, a popular Chinese style of dress.

The distinctive collar is the most remarkable feature of this gown, aside from the lacework, but one also observes how each girl was able to make the costume her own. Mom wore a basic outfit, while her daughter wore a plethora of accessories as well as her vibrant neon hair to the celebration.

Slimming the Silhouette

What do you think about this as a family heirloom? This teen’s mother had been preserving her prom gown for years, hoping that her daughter would one day get it off the rack for another occasion.

“My mum had been preserving her old prom dress for all these years just so her future daughter might take it on,” the young woman wrote. We’re confident you’ll agree that with a few little tweaks, the finished product was outstanding.

Elongating Alterations

When we see adjustments made to vintage gowns (especially old prom dresses), it’s normally to remove some length, not increase it! The trends lately have reflected a love for shorter dresses, either knee-length or t-length.

This inventive adolescent captioned the above photo, “My mom going to her senior prom 1987 vs. me going to my senior prom 2017 (same outfit only a few tweaks ).” The extra length was a risky move (as was the removal of the gloves), but it paid off!

Little Black Dress

You can’t go wrong with a gorgeous black dress, no matter the age, as one girl opted to do in 2015, uploading this photo with the caption, “Wore my mama’s dress to prom.”

The gown features a pleasing, sleek form (with a classic slit up the skirt) and a welcome splash of color with the golden straps, implying that it just works – and always will. Obviously this lady and her daughter understood that.

It’s a Classic

It appears that if you want a garment that will last for years, you should invest in a wonderful black dress (particularly one with a basic, classic style!). As you can see, it’s the black ones that are most often reused.

This mother turned to social media to share a photo of herself and her daughter sporting the same gown 20 years apart, captioning it, “My daughter’s prom was this last weekend and she wore my prom dress from 20 years ago as well … black gowns are never out of style.”

Getting Funky

Okay, so it’s not a fortune, but this youngster deserves praise for wearing her mother’s actual prom gown from 1986 to her own trashy prom. Tacky proms are exactly what they sound like — the prom ‘idea’ remains the same, but students are encouraged to dress in tacky clothes.

That’s why this youngster opted to wear her mother’s vividly patterned dress for the evening – but one has to wonder how her mother must have felt knowing her daughter believes her outfit is garish.

Sharing a Gown

Though we don’t have a date to go with the photographs below (which were provided by this mother’s daughter with the message, “Mom and I shared numerous outfits, 24 years apart”), we’re guessing Mom went to prom in the 1950s.

Why the 1950s? Start by looking at those gloves, which were prominent throughout that time period, as well as a telling haircut that was prevalent during that fashion decade. You can also tell by looking at the grain on the photo.

Sequins for Days

We’ve already seen a couple of sequin-heavy gowns steal the show on this list, and this gown — covered in stunning black sequins – is no exception. When you rock a solid color, the chances are high that the dress is still in style.

This parent captioned the above side-by-side photographs, “Me at prom on the left in 1990. In 2014, my daughter wore my prom gown to her prom.” Sequin gowns always make a statement, and the young lady’s heels and jewelry complete the look perfectly.

Father to Daughter

Dad’s attitude in this photo suggests he’s not thrilled about seeing his daughter off to prom – or perhaps he’s simply mimicking the exact posture from her Mom’s prom day (minus the smile).

Whatever the explanation, Tori, who wore the dress in 2016, looks stunning in the vivid blue gown, which was first worn by her mother, Amy, in 2003.
Hopefully, her father agrees!

Lacy Additions

Solid color gowns are usually a good choice, but it never hurts to wear one with a pop of color to make it stand out. The white lace appliques on this dark crimson (really maroon) piece make it stand out.

The photographs were uploaded side by side with the caption, “1993 that’s me on the left and 24 years down the line my daughter on the right did the same thing for her prom 2017. I’m glad she enjoys my fashion sense. This is the second time she has gotten to wear one of my high school outfits… Moms are the best.”

Wedding to Prom

Now, this is a unique situation! This girl wanted to wear her mother’s old wedding gown to prom! You might think it’s uncommon to see a bride wear a long red gown instead of a white gown for her wedding, but red used to be the color of choice for the women walking down the aisle.

It wasn’t until 1840 that white became the norm for bridal gowns, due to Queen Victoria wearing a white gown to her own wedding — which was deemed unusual at the time!

It’s a Keeper

This mother was clearly overjoyed when her daughter wore her prom gown to prom, captioning the photos, “Who imagined my only daughter would wear MY prom dress 22 years later! She was extremely stunning!”

Despite the 22-year age gap, this dress still looks wonderful, owing in large part to the lacing around the neckline and the side slit. This adolescent even imitated her mother’s haircut for the occasion!

Homemade Dress

There’s nothing amiss with purchasing a new prom gown, and certainly, repurposing an old prom gown is a valid cost-saving alternative that has created some fantastic outcomes. But a handcrafted, family-owned gown passed down through generations? That’s something truly unique.

One was the case with this adolescent, who wore her mother’s old prom gown from the 1980s, which was sewn by her grandmother. What are the chances that this outfit would look excellent on both of them?

Honor Thy Mother

Reading over the comments from the moms on this list, it’s clear how emotional it is for them to watch their daughters don their old prom gowns. So, while this girl chose a new alternative for her own prom, she did, as her mother pointed out, wear the old dress for her mother.

“She didn’t wear it to prom, but I did get her to try it on and stand in the same position at my parents’ house the morning of her prom day…20 years later.”

Minus the Shawl

It’s an old cliché, but it’s more often than not true: less is more. In this situation, that means removing some of the bells and whistles from a garment to make it seem even better.

The teen’s choice to ditch the embellished shawl and go bare-shouldered for this spaghetti strap frock paid instant benefits, as she looked beautiful with her date (sorry, Mom! You still look fantastic). Times change and you have to be ready to face them.

Pure White

Wearing white as a prom dress, whether in 1987 or 2017 (as this mother-daughter combo did), is a courageous choice – especially given the trend toward darker color palettes. We love how the daughter got her date to wear white too.

Regardless, both women look stunning in their white floor-length gowns, and how about their companions, who both sported flowers on their tux lapels (not to mention the younger gentleman’s great shoes)? Very fashionable and a great addition to the couple.

Pink Makes The Boys Wink

Speaking of risky choices, wearing a pink dress to a large dance takes a lot of guts. But, hey, just wearing it confidently is half the fight! Plus, she convinced her date to wear a matching pink vest and tie.

“Some may remember Roxanne’s prom gown. I wore the gown to my senior military ball in 1988. I’m sure we have a few photographs of me in the outfit at my mother’s house, but this is the only one I have. We made no changes to the clothing,” one mother said on Facebook.

Gloves Come On

You don’t frequently see a black/green prom dress, but after witnessing how nicely this youngster wears her mother’s dress, it could become a more popular option! We certainly approve of the winning combination and wouldn’t mind seeing it again.

“My younger sister opted to use my mom’s prom dress for her dance this year and it’s making me so sad,” said the young woman’s sibling. She also brought some old opera gown gloves to add a luxurious touch to the festivities!

Bringing Cheetah Back

This dress was one-of-a-kind when it was originally worn by this young woman’s mother, and it remained so when she wore it to her own prom! We adore this lady’s confidence in bringing cheetah patterns back into style when they’ve been out for so long.

Clearly, you must be rather brave to pull off this gown, as the dress will undoubtedly capture attention – whether owing to the eye-catching designs or the abdomen cutout. One thing is certain: this is an unforgettable gown for all the right reasons.

Classic Blue

Isn’t there anything wrong with a little friendly competition between mother and daughter? Maybe that’s what this parent was thinking when she uploaded the photograph below with the message, “Who wore it better??? I adore the fact that my kid is dressed in my 17-year-old gown.”

It’s a simple yet lovely outfit, worn 17 years apart – and we honestly can’t determine who looked better in it. Both females will have to make do with a portion of the prizes since everyone looked amazing in the dress.

Polka Dot Paradise

Polka dot dresses aren’t seen very often (particularly for prom), which is a pity because they’re imaginative, fashionable, and fun! They aren’t nearly as trendy nowadays as they used to be, but maybe this girl is making a statement and they’ll come back!

This gown includes a few features that make it stand out, such as an asymmetrical skirt length and a ribbon with a contrasting dotted design. This teen’s mother captioned the photo, “Estee went to prom today wearing my senior prom dress from 1991!” Beautiful girls, stunning gown!

Back in Black

Didn’t we say that a well-cut black dress is ageless? The image below is just another illustration of how such a gown may look wonderful even across generations. And, as they say, you shouldn’t fix what isn’t broken.

With its black body and stylish collar offering a hint of color and pop, this youngster didn’t need to make major adjustments to this antique dress. Without a question, this garment has withstood the test of time.

Simply Stunning

The title says it all — such a stunning gown and design! Mom, who wore the gown to her senior prom in 1996, wouldn’t look out of place wearing it to any big gathering today; it’s that good.

As a result, her daughter wisely chose to wear it to her prom 21 years later in 2017. With its lovely neckline and eye-catching details, as well as the thigh-high split, this is a dress that will be worn for many years to come.

Attention Getter

“Nothing attracts attention like a red dress.” The preceding comment from Laura Bush definitely relates to this stunning gown, which would stick out in a gathering. Add in the amazing shape and plunging neckline with a little diamond, and you have a stunning gown.

This young lady’s father clearly thought so, as he captioned the photo, “My wife and I 1997 prom, our daughter’s 2017 prom identical dress!” And kudos to Dad, who looked very handsome in his ’97 tuxedo!

Simple and Clean

You already know the rest of the story: black dress, basic design. There’s a reason why the bulk of the gowns passed down from mother to daughter on this list is mostly black. It’s because black is a classic that never goes out of style.

This gown features a plunging neckline, is ankle length, and has elaborate beading, as shown in the 1995 photograph when it was initially won by the teen’s mother. However, we think it is equally flattering on both ladies.


Isn’t it remarkable how some of these clothes, although having been worn for many years, can appear brand new? There are a few changes made to the present version of the dress (such as the extended skirt slit).

This mother shared these photos with the caption, “Share as my daughter wore mine just this past Sat[urday]! My prom was in 1996, and hers was in 2017.” It’s such a fantastic garment that it looks amazing even after more than 20 years.

Pretty in Pink

This young woman deserves a standing ovation for almost precisely recreating her mother’s prom outfit! It definitely helps that wildly curly hair is back in vogue again, but that might also come down to genetics. Some things you just can’t escape.

Mom wore this red gown to her senior prom in 1994, and she wisely decided to keep the garment in case someone else needed it in the future. That someone was her daughter, who dug it out of the attic 22 years later for her prom in 2016.

Just Peachy

This is our first peach item on the list, and doesn’t it look crisp (pardon the pun)? But, before we go any further, isn’t it strange how alike mother and daughter — as well as their dates – seem in these photos?

Of course, the young woman wearing the same dress as her mother helps, but she makes it her own with a red belt (and Apple watch – there are so many fruit-related puns, just be pleased we only opted for one this item).

Refined Ruffles

This is possibly the nicest outfit on the list. It’s unlike anything else, entirely one-of-a-kind and eye-catching, with wonderful colors to boot! We believe in doing whatever is necessary to stand out from the crowd and these ladies certainly did that.

This mom wore this gown to her junior prom in 1990 and made the sensible decision to save it (it couldn’t have been a difficult decision). Her daughter would awaken the garment from its slumber 24 years later and become the belle of her own ball!

Navy Stripes

Another fantastic gown made the more spectacular by its one-of-a-kindness. This is a sleeveless tulle gown with royal blue details to make the garment stand out. We love how the daughter updated the look by adding some blue in her hairdo too.

It’s a modest yet exquisite gown that was first sported by mom to her prom in 1988, then by her daughter to her prom in 2016 — both times with no adjustments because both ladies were the same size at the same age!

Always Choose Red

Is it just us, or does this outfit appear to be designed for a Disney princess? It’s stunning! You can tell it’s gorgeous just by looking at the photograph on the left, which was shot in 1989!

Furthermore, even though the first photograph is a little hazy, you can tell where this kid got her eyes and grin from. So it stands to reason that this young woman would wear her mother’s gown to her own prom in 2014.

Mom Knows Best

You’ve never heard of a peplum dress, have you? Peplum is derived from the Greek word for ‘tunic,’ and it is most generally referred to as an overskirt. Royal blue peplum gowns, like the one this woman wore to her prom, were evidently quite popular in the 1980s.

They’ve waned in popularity since then, but that did not deter one kid from wearing her mother’s gown to her prom, discarding the black gloves and stockings for a more modern style. The necklace also adds a bit of trendy flair.

A Little Tailoring Goes a Long Way

Okay, it’s not a new dress, but with the extreme adjustments this girl made to her mother’s garment (seen below), you’d be excused for believing it was! We don’t know whether she made the alterations herself or took it to a tailor, but it looks awesome.

As you can see, the daughter trimmed a lot of material off the frilly dress so it is less voluminous and shorter, but it’s still heartwarming to see she’d sooner wear her mother’s dress than purchase a fresh one for herself.

Red is Forever

A further instance of a girl who didn’t have to make many changes to her mother’s prom dress, this dress worked wonderfully – both in 1995, when it had its ‘debut,’ and 22 years down the line, in 2017.

The only substantial alteration this adolescent made to her appearance was her haircut, which she chose to wear fully down with a bedazzled headband — plus a dab of red dye to match her frock!

Puffy Sleeves

The ’90s, ah, the ’90s. Anyone else here old enough to remember the puffy sleeves on dresses trend, if we can call it that? Silly. We find it hard to believe that anyone ever thought those things were stylish.

That’s not to say this mom looked horrible on her prom night – au contraire – we’re simply delighted this adolescent spotted the old gown in the back of a closet, removed the puffy sleeves, and made some other changes to make this dress more appropriate for the twenty-first century.

Like Mother Like Daughter

Call us insane, but the only differences between these two photographs are the corsage (and the young man with mommy) and the hairdo. Isn’t this teen a striking picture of her mother?

The gown, a deep crimson velvet outfit with a mesh emphasis around the waist and a slash up the thigh, is undoubtedly the focal point. It’s really lovely that it didn’t require any adjustments, and it must have brought back some happy prom memories for mom!

Pump It Up

Both ladies look amazing in this magnificent black satin dress. Honestly, if you’re a young kid reading this and wondering what to wear to your own prom, a black satin gown is a safe bet no matter what era you’re living in.

It’s no surprise that this kid didn’t make any alterations to her prom dress (it also helps since she’s the same size as her mom was for her prom!), other than wearing her hair down and switching out the pointy-toed heels for peep-toed pumps.


We must mention that this is an amazing example of tailoring. When this adolescent discovered her mother’s old prom gown from 1987, she wanted to save money by altering the gown for her own dance.

So she went to work, removing the puffy sleeves and reducing the dress to make it more modern. Add a new pair of sneakers, and you’re done! Her prom attire was fantastic, and she must have gotten a lot of compliments on it.

Green Never Goes Out of Style

What a lovely gown! The forest green hue, v-neckline, and thigh-high split make it so basic yet lovely. As everyone knows, green never goes out of style so this dress was totally fine to wear twenty years later. She’s really rocking her mother’s look.

And what is more, this adolescent nearly replicated her mother’s prom outfit from 1998, right down to the haircut and jewelry! All that’s lacking are the blossoms and the jewelry, but we’ll overlook that because she still looks fantastic.

What exactly is it saying? “A classic is never out of style.” Of course, it depends on your definition of a “classic,” but for these teenagers, it was unmistakably their mother’s prom attire. So, for what was perhaps the most important (social) night of their high school years, these young women opted to forego the usual practice of purchasing something new and current, instead bringing back some old looks inspired by their mother’s original getup. The end effect was stunning.