Prom dresses have a lot in common with bridesmaid's dresses. Usually a bit over-the-top, they tend to be frocks that are only worn once and then languish at the back of the closet. But these days, you can find all sorts of creative dresses made from recycled materials, from vintage to more modern pre-loved dresses for a steal online (eBay is a great place to start looking for the latter.)
This dynamic and colorful dress is made from leftover window displays and advertising, as well as other found materials. The designer, DiscardCouture, makes one-of-a-kind dresses like this for customers through her Etsy site.
The Dress List is a great resource for previously worn dresses all over the United States. You can search by dress type and location. You can find great bargains on dresses than have never even been worn (like the one above).
This beautiful dress, made from vintage hankies and embroidered napkins, and a one-of-a-kind piece that is not only vintage-lovely, but would be incredibly comfortable to wear too. Via Coyote Wood Works on Etsy.
If you have an old prom dress you'd like to get rid of, or if you have limited resources for buying a new one, check out this resource for various options in your area, and check out Donate My Dress video above.