A Southern California teenager has won Duct Tape’s national Stuck at Prom contest after spending more than 100 hours making a stunning dress.
Karla Torres, 18, used just over a dozen rolls of duct tape to create a masterful ballgown inspired by French art at the Getty Museum in Los Angeles.
‘I was very inspired by the French paintings I saw, very elegant dress. So I knew I also wanted to create an elegant dress,’ the teenager said KTLA.
By winning the national competition, Torres wins a $10,000 scholarship to a school of her choice where she plans to study business administration.
The dress will be on display at Duck Brand headquarters in Avon, Ohio alongside previous winners with as much talent and ambition as Torres.
Karla Torres, 18, used just over a dozen rolls of duct tape to create a masterful ballgown inspired by French art at the Getty Museum. The dress won her a $10,000 scholarship
Torres stands alongside the dress she made while appearing on KTLA
Just days after winning the competition beating hundreds of other entrants, Torres spoke to the Southern California media about the process.
“Well, it took a lot of trial and error,” Torres said with a laugh.
She said she was lucky to also have help from her mother and her crafting hobby.
“My mom has a lot of craft machines, so maybe that gave us an edge,” Torres said, describing how they put the dress together.
The couple used a metal press and stencils to make the cuts.
“We weren’t sure it was actually going to work. It’s supposed to cut paper,” Torres said. “And it worked and that’s what helped us make the trim, the necklace, and other flowers.” This discovery therefore helped us a lot for the design.
The dress was made in pieces including a deconstructed petticoat and bra.
“Most of the part is using wax paper and then putting tape over it, which helped us create the whole dress,” Torres said.
She was strongly inspired by French art with her pastel colors and golden reflections.
“It was a time of luxurious dresses full of lace, floral prints, ribbons and ruffles. So I wanted to incorporate some of those elements into my dress,” she said.
The dress took 120 hours to make and the pair used just over a dozen rolls of tape
The teenager also made a duct tape pouch to go with the dress
The gorgeous dress
In total, they took about 120 hours and bought 14 rolls for the dress.
Each roll costing between $5 and $8, they spent about $100 in total.
Even after the dress was made, the work was not finished.
Torres’ mother had to glue it into the dress to make it a finished product.
“For the top part, I had to tape it,” Torres said. “So my mom was helping me record it. And then to remove it, she would have to tear it off or cut it.
The hard work paid off when she got the call she had won – even though she nearly missed the message.
“They actually called me and I was sleeping,” Torres said. “So I was like. “Good morning?” And then when they told me I was the winner, I was so excited and I just had to tell my mom.
The dress – like other incredible winners from years past – will now remain on display at the company’s headquarters for visitors to view.
Ian H, the first tuxedo winner who also won a $10,000 scholarship
The competition started in 2019 and received thousands of submissions.
Each creation is judged on a number of factors ranging from workmanship to use of color to originality.
The dresses submitted are then judged by a jury which determines the winners and runners-up.