Pop Up Prom Dress Shop – Millfields Inspired

Millfields Inspired, the Millfields Trust and Makers HQ love to come together from time to time for a project that they can all lend a hand with and for the second year now, they have come together for the pop-up prom shop!

It all begins with a shout-out via social media for the people of Plymouth (and beyond…..with dresses coming from as far as Exeter and Wiltshire!) to look in their wardrobes for that dress or suit that they love so dearly, but if they are honest with themselves, they will probably never wear again. We are asking that they donate this dress or suit to the pop-up shop.

We are looking for quality outfits that predominantly the Year 11 students will find appealing for their special school prom. Many of the outfits that have been donated over the last two years have been either brand new or only worn once and we sell everything for £20.

Last year, one of our local councillors Sue MacDonald was really concerned that some families were finding themselves in debt in order for their year 11 student to have the best prom experience!

To lend some real help we set up the pop-up prom shop:

Millfields Inspired’s role within the Stonehouse neighbourhood is to reach out and help the young people in various different ways. The one most people are familiar with is the Widening Horizons programme with the Year 5 children in the seven primary schools. Reaching out to the Year 11s is a new but rewarding experience for us. We hope the better we get to know them, the more we will be able to do to help.

The Millfields Trust have donated the space within their HQ building on Union Street for the pop-up shop. It is a wonderful space, surrounded by photographs of the old Plymouth, curated by Richard Fisher, a local historian and friend of the Trust. It has been a wonderful space for the young people to come along and browse through the dresses and suits with an ample changing room too.

Makers HQ designed the posters for the social media posts which have gone out via Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIN. The schools have also added them to their websites and their own social media platforms. It has been a slow-burn for the year 11’s to start spreading the word amongst themselves – we are hopeful that as time goes on, more and more people will be inclined to join in this new era of embracing the vintage outfits. Makers HQ also help to man the shop, so real experts from the fashion and textiles industries are on-hand to give expert advice on whether or not a garment can be altered.

So, our second year has come to a close. We will still be reaching out throughout the year to the people who are willing to donate their special outfit. The reception team at the Millfields Trust are always available to accept donations. My only hope at the moment, is that the Year 11s around the whole country get the chance to attend their prom! Hopefully they will be postponed, rather than cancelled and if there are still some young people out their who need their special outfit for a re-arranged prom, they know where to find us! We are more than happy to pop-up again on the other side of the coronavirus pandemic!