Experience the Junk-O-Rama Prom

In this special indoor party, the Junk Gypsies show how they decorate for their semiannual junk-inspired prom, held during Texas Antiques Week each spring and fall.
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Photo By: Sarah Christine Wilson

Photo By: Sarah Christine Wilson

It started as a few friends getting together, but Junk-O-Rama prom now boasts a typical 2,000 attendees. "A friend of ours bought all these old prom dresses for $10 each, so we decided to throw a prom the next night," Amy said. "That was over a decade ago and we've had one twice yearly ever since."

All of the Junk-O-Rama proms are held outdoors, with the exception of a special December prom, held in Legler Dance Hall.

Of the indoor prom, Amie says, "We wanted the chance to decorate and do centerpieces and just go all out. Just once."

Sisters and Junk Gypsy mavens Jolie and Amie uncovered an old cowboy boot sign, once used as a decoration on a parade float, to adorn the Junk-O-Rama stage. In the beginning, all music at the prom came from a handheld jam box, but now, the John Evans Band plays every year.

The décor for the indoor prom included side tables made from old suitcases.

To create the tables, Amie and Jolie drilled holes in strips of wood and screwed them to the suitcase interiors.

To assemble the tables, Amie and Jolie drilled holes through the wood reinforcements, stacked the cases and screwed them together.

The secured suitcases became the perfect side table beside a vintage sofa for the party.

Another upcycling project for the event, a Thunderbird car grill light fixture, illuminated the main entrance to the hall.

For special mood lighting, Amie and Jolie put votive candles in rusty old bedsprings and then used ribbon to hang the fixtures. This is an easy, as well as very affordable, way to achieve lighting with "personality."

Each table at the December prom had a unique centerpiece made from junk finds, including glitter letters, birdcages, musical instruments, feathered angel wings and other found treasures.

When decorating or envisioning a new project, Amie says no junk is off-limits. Here, the junk sisters used old Christmas decorations and a well-aged car hood with working headlights to decorate the prom entryway.

When Amie and Jolie first decided to throw a party asking friends and family to wear vintage prom duds, they didn't have a name for the event. "Some UT Austin students did a documentary film on us. They were interviewing Jolie and me and they heard we were doing prom. Jolie and I said, 'Junk-O-Rama Prom,' in tandem. It was crazy."

Amie and Jolie's prom dresses change for every Junk-O-Rama, but one thing remains: "We always wear our dresses with cowboy boots. Always," Amie says.

While the over-the-top women's vintage prom dresses usually highlight Junk-O-Rama Prom, the event is no stranger to dudes in dapper duds. The tackier and wilder, the better.

While there has been no admission charge at Junk-O-Rama in the past, that could change in the future. Typically, 2,000 or more people attend, so Amie says significant proceeds could be donated to Junk Gypsy pal Miranda Lambert's charity for rescued animals.

While Junk-O-Rama is a blast for Amie and Jolie and their friends and family, they're thrilled to hear that it has been an inspiration to others, both young and old. "We hear about people holding their own Junk-O-Rama proms all the time. One lady even told us she held one in a nursing home. It's so cool," Amie says.