Photo courtesy Blumz by...JRDesigns in metro Detroit,

The Prom! OMG! What do I wear? To go or not to go? Who’s my date?

Really? How did it all get started? Prom is short for promenade. The term was first officially used during the Victorian period by those crazy Victorians. (What a bunch of steampunkish party-monkeys!) A promenade was a public area, usually along a river or body of water, where people would go walk in order to “be seen” and to be considered a part of proper “society.”

Modern day proms are also a place to be seen and considered a part of high school society. The whole idea was to stand out and be seen. No shrinking violets or wallflowers need attend. Prom fashions of 2012 are no different and would certainly give those Victorians a case of the vapors. Today’s plunging necklines, jacked up hemlines and cut outs leave little to the imagination.

An especially fun trend this year for those wishing to be noticed is those totally fab floral fascinators. The word fascinate is derived from Latin fascinare, “to bewitch or enchant.” A fascinator, for those of you who were living in a cave during William and Kate’s big event, are those fun, funky and totally enchanting headpieces worn by many of the Royal wedding’s guests. They are made of tulle, net, beads, flowers and feathers — lots of feathers. They are usually perched jauntily on the side of the head either through the use of hair combs, barrettes, headbands or clips.

Orchid and feather fascinator.

Fascinators gives promgoers a great opportunity to show off and get lots of attention. Just like corsages or wristlets, they can be coordinated to the dress and customized up or down depending upon the budget. Starting as little as $25 for a simple floral, tulle, ribbon, feather piece on a clip, the sky really is the limit and creativity can run rampant.

Brides are even getting in on the action using the fascinator as an option for a veil or having one made to wear to the reception in the place of the veil that was worn during the ceremony.

Fascinators can be fashioned with typical corsage type flowers such as spray roses, and smaller orchids such as dendrobiums and mini cymbidiums are perfectly suited for this design. Combine them with exotic feathers and bling, and you have a beautifully bewitching “topper” for your ensemble.

So this prom season, be fascinating with a floral fascinator from your local florist.

Tell us about your prom ensemble.