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Everything You Need to Know About Going to or Organising a School Ball in Perth, WA.

Hair and Makeup for Your School Ball

School Ball Hair & Makeup Tips and Information

Start looking at hair and makeup images around 3 months prior to your ball.

There are 1000’s of images available on the internet and in magazines. To make it easier for you we have a large number of images on our schoolballs Pinterest page and website.

Choosing a Hairdresser & Makeup Artist

  • Now you have decided on your look you need to choose a hairdresser and/or makeup artist. There are many options available such as;
  • Have your hair and makeup done at the one salon
  • Have your hair and makeup done at separate salons (you will need to allow travel time between the two locations for this option
  • Have a mobile hair and makeup artist come to your home
  • Have a separate hair and makeup artist come to your home
  • Do your hair and makeup yourself or have a friend do it for you
  • Organise a small group of friends to gather at one location and have a mobile hair & makeup artist attend (a group discount may be offered)

Ball Makeup

When choosing a hairdresser / makeup artist;

  • View images of work they have done via their website or facebook page
  • Read any testimonials from past clients
  • Ask what is included in the price
  • Ask what brand products they use
  • Ask how much time to allow

Timing & Checklist

Allow around 1 ½ hours to have your hair and makeup done.

Have your hair done first then your makeup.

Be mindful of travel time between appointments, allowing for any peak hour traffic.

1 Week before your ball:

  • Confirm your hair and makeup appointments.
  • Avoid using any new skin care or hair products just incase you have a reaction to them. 

The night before your ball:

  • Wash your hair.
  • Get the photos of your desired hair and makeup look ready. 

The day of your ball:

  • Wash you face and remove any residue of makeup.
  • Wear a button up shirt or zip up jacket so you don’t mess up your hair.
  • Arrive to your appointments on time.
  • Have a photo of your dress and jewellery so the hairdresser / makeup artist can understand your overall look.
  • Have any hair accessories ready for the hairdresser to fix in place.
  • Ensure you have your photos of desired hair and makeup style with you. 

School Ball Suits and Tuxedos

Hiring or Buying a Suit?

 This is a personal decision with most students hire a suit for their school ball. You need to weigh up the pros and cons of each, like have you stopped growing?, do you think you will need to wear a suit again in the next few years etc. 

What is a Tuxedo 

A Tuxedo features satin trimmings, with satin lapels on the jacket and satin stripes down the outside leg of the pants. Tuxedo shirts can have a pleated front, and have studs or cuff links on the sleeves. The sleeves of a tux jacket are a fraction shorter than the length of the shirt, so the cuff from the shirt is just visible. Patent (shinny) leather shoes are worn with tuxedos. Tuxedos come in a range of colours black, grey, white, ivory, bright colours, brown, navy and pinstripe.

Traditionally a tux is worn with a white shirt, however today any colour goes. Tuxedos have a curved or pointed peak lapel and the jacket has one button. Cummerbunds, waistcoats and bow ties & ties are accessories worn with tuxedos.

Formal Suit

Suits can be any colour, ranging from white, black, grey, navy, brown, bright colours, pin stripes and top hat and tails. Formal suits do not feature satin. They have lapels made from the same fabric as the rest of the suit and are worn with a dress shirt.

Depending on the suit colour you choose you can make certain looks with the colour shirt worn eg black on black ie black shirt, or white on white ie white shirt white suit or black suit pants and white jacket. 

The Formal Suit can be worn with either tie, bow tie and or vests. The options are limitless allowing you to create your own individual style.

Kilts for the Scottish, Irish, Welsh and Cornish

Your school ball is the ideal opportunity to embrace your heritage and stand out from the crowd.

The kilt for a formal school ball should include the kilt and jacket with either a waistcoat or a jacket with belt and buckle. A formal shirt should be worn under the jacket with a tie. Ghillie brogues, which are black shoes without tongues should be worn. The laces on a pair of Ghillie brogues wrap around the ankle and tie in the front. Accessories can include the the sporran, the pouch that hangs around the waist, hose and flashes, hose being the socks and flashes which are strips of fabric that help hold the hose up.

Perth Ball Dress Shopping Tips

Perth Ball Dress Shopping Tips - When, Where, How

Ball DressesWhen to start shopping for a ball dress

Approximately 6 months prior to your ball. This has many benefits such as;

Your ball dress has to be ordered in it can take up to 12 weeks for delivery.

Shopping early allows you to time to pay off your ball dress.

Most ball dress shops in Perth have ball registers to avoid double ups of the dress at your school ball. If you leave it too late to shop around you may find the ball dress you love is not available as someone else has already ordered/purchased that ball dress for your school ball.

Allows time for alterations

Where to shop for ball dresses

Perth has many stores that sell ball dresses. The quickest way to find them is by visiting our Ball Dress shops in Perth page to find out where they all are.

Download our FREE schoolballs mobile app for iPhone to help find where Perth ball dress shops are based on your current location. Simply click on Near Me and a map of shops selling school ball items will pop up based on where you are at the time.

Things to consider when ball dress shopping

Buying new, hiring or buying a pre-loved ball gown.

Shop with a parent/guardian as some ball dress shops wont let you try on ball dresses without them present. You may also be asked to wear a disposable scarf over your face so you don't put makeup on the ball dresses.

Don’t wear jewellery or shoes that can potentially put pulls in the fabric of ball dresses.

Wear comfortable shoes.

Before taking photos of dresses ask the store/sales assistant for permission

Try on different style ball dresses to see what styles best suit your body type and take advice from the shop assistant who will know exactly what will and wont suit you. A lot of dresses look a lot better on than they do on the hanger, so try them on.

Don’t be too hung up on a particular colour for your ball dress, you’ll be surprised at what colour actually suits you best and you probably wont end up buying the dress colour you set out to buy.

Before you buy a ball dress check it carefully for pulls in the fabric, flaws and makeup stains etc.

Perth Limo Hire Tips

Get Organised Early - remember there will be lots of students trying to hire a limo for the same school ball date as you. In Perth during the peak ball season it is not uncommon for 5 balls to be held on the same night. If you leave it too late you will find it difficult to secure a booking.

Perth Limo Hire TipsYour Limo Group - sorting out who is going to be in your limo can cause a few dramas, trying to include everyone and deciding on your limo group and type of transport. However, currently there are 2 - 54 seat limousines so there are plenty of options available. If you are not sure what types of limousines are available check out our Types of Limos Photo Gallery.

Making Enquiries to Limo Companies 

Once you have a rough idea who is going to be in your limo, appoint 1 or 2 people in your group to phone or email around Perth limousine hire companies and to make the booking and collection of the money.

Ask questions such as; 

  • Are they available on the date of your ball?
  • What is the overall price and what does it include?
  • How many passengers the limousine is licensed to carry?
  • What is the seating configuration
  • Where will the photo stop over be?
  • Do they provide transport to the afters party?

Facebook - create a facbook private event for your limousine hire group. This is a quick and easy way of communicating between everyone in your limo group. By doing this you can post links with photos of the limos, the limo companies website, the cost per student and everyone is kept up to date with the plans. Each person can confirm if they want to be included in the arrangements by saying they are attending the event. If someone clicks not attending simply invite someone else to the event.

Collecting the Money - get a firm commitment from everyone in your school ball limo group by asking for the money up front before paying the deposit to Limousine hire company. This way the person that has made the booking is not left out of pocket if someone pulls out. If circumstances change and one of the group members has paid and changes their mind it is then up to that individual to find a replacement and get the money from them.

It is illegal to form a contract with a minor (person under the age of 18) so a parent/guardian of one of the organising students needs to be involved when making the limousine booking.

Ask for cash to be dropped to your home so you are not carrying large amounts of money around at school. Alternatively ask for payments to be made directly to the bank account of the parents of the organising student, with each student’s name being used as the payment reference. Ticking names off the list as payments are made then once all payments have been made the payment should be made by the due date to the limo hire company.

Booking Confirmation - get a firm contract with the limousine hire company and ask for a receipt.

Keep in contact with the limousine hire company. If you have made a deposit and not received a receipt or confirmation of your booking within a fortnight contact them to ensure they have processed your booking.

Ball After Party Transport - ask the limousine hire company about possible transport after the ball to any post ball functions. Limousine hire companies in Perth have varying policies with regards to this.

Limo Parking - plan ahead and decide where the limousine or limousines can park to safely collect you from your designated pick up point. Limousines need space and lots of it. Reserve a parking area for them using Limo parking only signs. Put a message out closer to the day via the facebook event stating where the limos are going to collect you from and advise not to park in this area. In Perth we have many cul-de-sacs etc which can make it quite difficult for some Limousines to turn around etc especially if there are several limousines at the on pick up point with lots of cars. Setting aside a parking area for the limos will make this easier for them.

Music - to ensure you enjoy the music for your limo ride your safest option is to make your own playlist. Check with the limousine company as to what devices their limousine supports.

Limo Hire Legalities - not wearing a seat belt in the limousine is a

$500 fine per person. If the passenger is under the age of 16 the limousine business operator will also be fined and loose demerit points.

Alcohol even if you are 18 cannot be consumed in any vehicle on WA state roads, including school ball limousines. There are several laws that cover this.

Going to the School Ball With a Partner

Going to a Ball with a Partner - Your Questions Answered

Asking Someone to the Ball

Traditionally you would ask the person you would like to go to the ball with in person, or by telephone. With technology today more and more students are using text messages and facebook to ask their date to the ball. 

Who Pays for the Ticket and Transport to and from the Ball?

Traditionally if you ask a partner to your school, you pay for your partners ball ticket and transport to the ball.

Today many schools do not allow for partners from other schools to attend their school ball. In this case if you can only go with a partner from within your year group or school, generally you pay for your own ticket and transport as you would have been going anyway. However, if you are a couple that are dating, then traditionally the guy pays for the girls ball ticket and ball transport regardless. 

What Do You Need If You Are Going To a Ball With a Partner

Corsage/Button Hole

It is tradition when going to a school ball with a partner that the guy buys the girl a corsage to be worn on her wrist and the girl buys the guy a button hole flower to wear on the lapel of his suit.

Generally the girl’s wrist corsage with match or compliment the colour of her ball dress. The guy should ask the girl what colour corsage she would like and if she has a preference to a particular flower eg frangipani, orchid, rose etc then the girl will match what she orders for the guys button hole to the colour and type of flower she will be wearing.

Remember to order the corsages and buttonhole flowers and DON'T forget to pick it up on the day - better still get it delivered. 

Matching Attire

Check what colour dress your partner is wearing and decide if you are going to match attire to your partners dress colour. This can be either their suit shirt, vest, tie or bow tie. If your partners dress is a soft pale pink and you don’t want to wear that colour shirt, black and white goes with anything.

How to Tie a Tie

How to Tie a Tie

There are many ways to tie a tie however, the most common is called the Windsor.

How to Pin Button Hole Flower to Suit

How to Pin a Flower to a Suit

Pinning Flower to SuitTake the pin provided by the florist – this may be loose in the box or pinned into the stem of the flower.

Place the flower up against the left lapel of the suit jacket.

Face the stem downwards with the flowers facing upwards.

From the under side of the lapel, hold the flower with your index finger and thumb.

Push the pinto in through the fabric and the flower ensuring you don’t see any of the pin on either side of the stem.

What is a Button Hole Flower and Who Wears One

Button Hole FlowerTraditionally a ‘buttonhole’ flower is worn by your male school ball date.

Buttonhole flowers should be worn on the left hand side of the suit jacket. Why? Because it is above the heart!

The buttonhole flower should be pinned to the outside of the suit jackets left lapel and should never be placed into a pocket or a button hole on a suit.

It will usually be secured to the suit by a pearl-headed pin, which will be invisible from the front of the suit. If you have a gold or decorative pin and want to show it off, you could pin the buttonhole from the front.

Ball Dress Styles

Ball Dress Styles

Classic Ball Gown - The classic Cinderella style gown with a fitted bodice and a full skirt that flairs out from the waist.

A Line - A skirt that flares out like the legs of an A with vertical seams running from shoulders to the hem.

Empire - Fitted bodice with waistline falling from the under the bust line, creating a high waist appearance.

Sheath - Is a narrow figure hugging shape that flows straight down from the neckline to the hem.

Mermaid - Features a tight fitting bodice down through the hips. Has a flared skirt from mid or lower calf.

What Ball Dress Style Suits You Best

The majority of us DON’T have the perfect airbrushed bodies of those we continually see in the media. Use this guide to show off your figure by choosing the right ball dress to highlight your very own original beauty.

If you are tall

Try – A full length dress with a front or side split. Fortunately for you, most ball dresses styles will flatter you. Avoid – Little frilly ball dresses.

If you have a big bust

Try – V neck style dresses and wear a supportive bra. Avoid – Shoe string straps and showing too much cleavage.

If you have big hips and would like to make them look smaller

Try – Classic Cinderella ball gowns, Empire line dress or dresses that draw the focus upwards. These styles will draw the attention away from the hips. Avoid - Sheath style and body hugging and clingy fabric dresses.

If you would like to flatten out your tummy

Try – An empire line dress which will give you a longer look or a classic ball gown with a corset-style bodice, which will emphasize your bust. Avoid – A sheath style dress or dresses which will draw attention to your midsection, dresses with sashes and horizontal stripes.

Table Settings and Etiquette Explained

Formal Table SettingIf you are not sure which utensil to use, work from the outside in towards the dinner plate.

When you first sit down at the table place the napkin in your lap.

Break bread rolls in half before buttering.

Your glasses are set on the right.

Your bread plate and napkin are set on the left.

Don’t talk with food in your mouth.

Beware Buying Ball Dresses Online

Beware Buying Ball Dresses On Line

Buying online is becoming more popular. If you are considering buying online allow time for it to be made, delivery, possible alterations, return/exchange, time to shop for shoes and accessories.

Ask these questions of the supplier;

  • What is the returns policy and costs associated with returns?
  • How long will it take to be posted? In particular ask about any public holidays – especially Chinese New Year. If the dress is coming from overseas – this could add several weeks onto the postage time. 
  • What guarantees are given on craftsmanship 

We have had many disappointed online ball dress shoppers report the following;

  • Postage times have taken twice as long as stated, when coming from overseas
  • The colour of the dress on the computer screen varied greatly to what they received
  • Dresses have not fitted and needed costly alterations.
  • The style and colour did not suit them as they had not tried it on.
  • Very poor craftsmanship
  • The dress they received did not resemble the image of the dress they ordered from.