Peyton Manker just wanted to win a scholarship during her senior year of high school. The 18-year-old spent weeks working on her submission to Stuck at Prom 2020, a competition where students make prom outfits out of duct tape to win over $20,000 in cash prizes. But then Covid-19 happened, and suddenly all over the U.S. there weren’t any proms anymore.
But Manker was determined. She used the pandemic as her inspiration.
“It wasn’t just high schoolers, it wasn’t just America, it was the whole world being impacted by the pandemic so I wanted to show that,” Manker told CNN.
The blue gown with gold trim features an image of cap and gown-donning students attending a virtual graduation. Another section is devoted to mask-wearing essential personnel like janitors, nurses and restaurant workers. There are giant, colorful people coughing, recoiling and even running from the coronavirus.
Manker paired her creation with a matching face mask that says “flatten the curve!” The prom outfit is punchy and whimsical — a stark contrast to the heaviness of the times.
It took four months and 41 rolls of duct tape to create the stunning gown, which was her first project of its kind. Manker’s dress went viral on Facebook in June with over 254,000 shares, thanks to her mom sharing a few photos.
“We can have some positive things come out of this whole experience and my dress is an example of that,” Manker told CNN.
You can still vote for Manker’s dress to secure her chance at the prize.
If you liked this post, you can check out what the future of fashion looks like through the eyes of FIT students.
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