The Marine Corps Birthday Ball is just around the corner and I wanted to share some ideas on where you can get those last minute ball gowns! The Marine Corps Birthday is held on November 10th, however not every command will hold their ball on this specific date because of operational commitments (like deployments) or it can also depend on your duty station (too many commands on a single base competing for ball venues), so plan on it varying throughout the month of November depending on your command and duty station. Because of a training exercise last year for my husband’s battalion, we attended our last ball as late as December!
I attended our first and second ball in Hawaii and will be attending my third one in SPAIN this year! We have gotten pretty spoiled on ball locations so far!
My first year I went to the mall and went through all the stress of going into every single store that sold gowns and trying them on! Two dozen dresses and hours later I didn’t find one I liked until the VERY last store…ugh! This first gown purchasing experience was only possible because we didn’t have any children at the time. So if you got the time and enjoy trying on tons of ball gowns over the course of an entire day then this method is definitely the way for you!
By our second ball we had our son, so I did not have time to go shopping like I did the first time around. That’s when I decided to checkout the website “Rent the Runway.” Honestly I was a bit nervous at first, ordering a dress that I hadn’t tried on because I didn’t know if I would like it on or if it would even fit right….but this is the part that makes RTR so great: you get to choose TWO different sizes in the dress you want PLUS you can add on a backup dress at a low cost to have just in case you end up not digging the first one. I ended up LOVING both the dresses I got, so I had a hard time deciding which one to wear. To rent a dress you simply go to their site, select the type of event you are looking for, the dates you need it, and then pick out your dresses! They send you the dresses with a return label and the dress bags to easily drop off at a post office to mail back when the time comes. This is a pretty easy option when looking for a ball gown! And my husband says my dress came out beautiful!
For this year’s ball in Spain I did not order from Rent the Runway, only because I am going out of the country which may make it difficult for ordering and returning the dresses in an area I am unfamiliar with. So I bought an affordable dress online from Morning Lavender. I wasn’t too worried about the sizing because I bought a flowy dress to give me that extra room for my growing pregnant belly. I received the dress fairly quickly and it looks just like it did online. Overall I am happy with this option and it was easy!
I personally love the ball because it’s the one night out of the whole year where I get to get all fancy and dolled up, eat, drink, and dance the night away with my husband and our friends! The ball is a celebration of our beloved Marine Corps and the wonderful men and women who serve in it. I am very excited for this year’s ball because I’m heading to Spain to spend time with my deployed husband..whom I have missed very much!
Whether this is your first ball or your thirtieth, I hope you have a wonderful time! I can’t wait to see everyone all dressed up. Happy 242nd (early) Birthday Marine Corps!